With the most sweeping and controversial overhaul of health care in 40 years now firmly behind the market, some traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange say the White House needs to refocus on the fundamentals of economic growth.
The good news is that the overhang of regulatory uncertainty has been lifted, which bodes well for more market gains ahead. The bad news is that we'll only get there if the Obama administration shows the Street that it's serious about juicing the economy and creating jobs, says Jason Weisberg, a trader with Seaport Securities, a brokerage on the floor of the exchange.
"The Dow should close in the 12,000 area and the S&P [should close] at 1,200 by year's end," Weisberg says. "But in order for that to happen we need to see a positive change in attitude from the institutional and the retail investment community."
After all, with flows to bond mutual funds at record highs last year and a record $3 trillion-and-change parked in money market mutual funds, well, equity mutual fund managers are running out of cash for buying stocks. Something needs to lure all that money back into the stock market, Weisberg says. And so far, that money -- at least from Weisberg's corner of the trading floor -- is unimpressed with the White House response.
"The administration hasn't put a lot of real substantive ideas forward in terms of getting the economy going the way it needs to be going," says Weisberg. "We've stemmed the bleeding, so to speak, but we're kind of in cardiac arrest."
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