There’s no shortage of 2014 predictions, from stocks to gold to the price of a barrel of oil. Most of these 2014 predictions will miss the mark, but investors can’t live without them. After all, that’s what trading and investing is all about: correctly guessing price directions.
Of course, some 2014 predictions look more likely than others. A group of market strategists surveyed by Barron’s have a 2014 prediction that the S&P 500 will rise to anywhere from 1,900 to 2,100, while the mean 2014 prediction puts the S&P 500 at 1,977, good for a 7% gain over last year.
That jibes with what usually happens after the market logs such an usually good year. After rising 30% in 2013, the S&P 500 should tack on another 7% to 10% in 2014, if history is any guide.
Then again, there are plenty of predictions that are so surprising or seem so unlikely, at first glance they look like they’ve got to be a goof. But then recent events have shown us that seemingly nutty predictions — the collapse of the housing market, the ensuing financial crisis — are sometimes right on the mark.
With that in mind, here are three of the more surprising 2014 predictions from some prominent Wall Street names: