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Richard Drew, Associated Press
Moneywise

Bull market predictions for 2014

There is nothing like a turn of the yearly calendar to turn financial experts toward predicting the future.

The Exchange at Yahoo Finance polled several experts on what the future holds.

Ralph Acampora from the New York Institute of Finance told The Exchange that he is bullish for 2014, "but I expect some kind of correction (maybe a bad one) during the year."

Brian Gilmartin at Trinity Asset Management told The Exchange that "the risk is shifting from 'it's worse than we think' to 'It's stronger than we think.’ ” Todd Sullivan at ValuePlays says, "The theme for 2014 will be housing." And Jamie Lissette at Hammerstone says, "Bitcoin crashes and trades below 100."

Anatole Kaletsky at Reuters predicts the U.S. economy will grow by about 4 percent, which is higher than mainstream predictions of about 2.5 to 3 percent growth. Kaletsky also things equity prices will continue to rise while bond prices continue to fall. "The biggest problem for stock markets will be higher interest rates," he says, "since 10-year yields will rise to at least 3.5 percent as the U.S. economy accelerates."

Paul B. Farrell at MarketWatch says: "The markets are living in a timeless Roaring Twenties exuberance. There are five huge reasons it'll accelerate past a New Year's rally into 2014. Yes, you can make some real money. This year. And next. Don't miss it. Listen to the revelers toasting all over the ballroom. Confetti flying. Strobe lights flashing. Jazz band tapping a snappy Charleston. Madcap dancing. Get ready, jump into the festivities, get on this new bandwagon."

But behind his fun over-the-top hype is the specter of what followed the Roaring Twenties.

Mike Burnick at Money and Markets says to watch stock performances this week: "No indicator is perfect, but when stocks are down the first five days in January, the market manages to rebound for full-year gains only a little more than half the time, and stocks have suffered spectacular losses some years. So it's worth paying attention to the stock market's trend over the first five days of 2014, which runs through the close on Wednesday, Jan. 8."

Dan Caplinger at The Motley Fool says predictions have a terrible track record. "Obviously, when you look at any prediction," he says, "you should consider the motivations of the company or person making that prediction. For UBS, Merrill Lynch, JPMorgan, and other Wall Street analysts, those making predictions are trying to put their clients at ease about the investment decisions their respective companies recommend while also setting themselves apart as being better at making accurate calls about the market."

Daniel Crosby at InvestmentNews says predictions are "tripe," but gives a few of his own: "Some political hiccup will send the market into a panic, only to have it return to normal days later," and "Greed will continue to entice some poor investors to make bad decisions with products that seem too good to be true" and "Investors will fail to save adequately and continue to sacrifice tomorrow for today."

Tadas Viskanta, who comments on finances on his blog, Abnormal Returns, told The Exchange that he doesn't give financial predictions, "However in 2014 I can pretty safely bet that there will be no shortage of self-serving financial advice that on the margin harms individual investors rather than helping them." He also told people they won't find better financial advise than that given by Harold Pollack last year on a single index card.

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