The semi-annually Barron’s poll is bullish – which confirms my being medium term bearish

This poll started by the end of September but some send in their opinions in late October – since Oct. was one of the worst months to the downside, I am not sure how valid it is. On the other hand, they were bearish short-term so they might have factored that in.

Well, the fact that they are overwhelmingly bullish confirms my bearish view – but at some point they will be right, as we see right now even in bear markets, you get substantial corrective waves. We will get a more substantial rally from a lower low though. It’s amazing that a majority thinks that a 13.5 PE is an undervalued market.

Excerpt from Barrons:

NOW THAT STOCKS HAVE tumbled to five-year lows, 62% of Big Money respondents say they’re undervalued, up from 55% last spring. A scant 7% think equities are overvalued at today’s levels. Almost 70% say stocks will be the best-performing asset class in 2009, compared with 13% who favor cash, and 11% who prefer bonds.

[poll]

The managers plan to tread cautiously: Half describe their investment stance as defensive, compared with 20% who are aggressive. Some 37% say improved credit conditions would induce them to become more bullish about stocks in the next six months, while 25% say they first want to see a better outlook for corporate profits. Still, there is no mistaking the optimism in their 2009 market forecasts. The Big Money bulls expect the industrials to advance almost 9% in next year’s first half, to 11,621, while the S&P could rally to 1247 and the Nasdaq to 2231.

THE BIG MONEY POLL is produced twice yearly by Barron’s, in the spring and fall, with the help of Beta Research in Syosset, N.Y. About 70 money managers from across the U.S. responded to our latest survey. Some are sole proprietors, while others manage billions for pension funds, mutual funds and hedge funds. The poll was e-mailed to investors in late September, when the Dow was around 11,015, the S&P 500 was at 1207 and the Nasdaq was at 2,179. Ballots were still coming in through late October, with the averages at much lower levels.

Notwithstanding their diverse investment forecasts, the managers are in virtual agreement about this year’s presidential race. Eighty-six percent predict Senator Barack Obama, the Democratic contender, will be the next president of the United States, trumping Republican Senator John McCain at the polls tomorrow. Unfortunately, 60% think a McCain administration would be better for the economy and the stock market.

Among other things, Obama is expected to raise taxes on investment income. Half of our respondents think the next administration will boost taxes on dividends and long-term capital gains to 20% from today’s 15%, while 28% think dividends will be taxed at ordinary-income rates, as they were before the Bush tax cuts were enacted.

Seventeen percent of poll participants say they are bearish or very bearish about stocks these days, up from 12% last spring. Those on the fence have lost some company, with 33% of managers now neutral, down from 38% in the spring. The bears expect the Dow to finish this year at 9516 before falling to 9379 by the middle of 2009. They see the S&P at 1015 in December and 1452 in June, and the Nasdaq at 1769, before dropping to 1747.

It’s comforting, however, to know that even the biggest bears don’t see huge downside from here. Only three managers expect the Dow to end the year below Monday’s close of 8175, while just one thinks the blue chips will be trading below 8000 next June.

[chart]

[chart2]
[portfolio]To put the selling into perspective, it might have derived
simply from the fact that markets were declining and they basically needed to sell to increase the cash and hold the equity
weight at balance – but let’s assume they were smarter than the average market, although 85% of all portfolio managers can not beatthe benchmark index. So we seem to have the smarter 15%
here. But as I see how much credit they give Bernanke and Paulson, it fits again for me as a contra-indicator. These two guys are responsible for part of this mess with making pathetically bad calls
and drop-dead wrong decisions. Paulson still works for Goldman’s interests obviously.

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~ by behindthematrix on November 2, 2008.

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