It's still a bull market, even as tech stocks tank: Analyst

  • Even as tech stocks tank, the market remains bullish, says Steve Chiavarone, vice president and portfolio manager at Federated Investors.
  • “We’re about to enter not just a good earnings season, but the best since 2011,” he says.
  • Tax reform, deregulation and repatriation will continue to push the market upward, he says.

Steve Chiavarone, vice president and portfolio manager at Federated Investors, said it’s still a bull market, despite today’s losses.

“We’re about to enter not just a good earnings season, but the best since 2011,” Chiavarone told CNBC on “Fast Money” on Tuesday. He said the 2018 forecast for earnings growth gets better each quarter and he anticipates the market will rally, even as tech stocks tanked.

“We don’t think the market rolls over and dies here,” he said. “We think it’s time for a new group to take the mantle. It could be financials.”

“In Q1, we’re expecting positive earnings growth across all 11 sectors,” he said, “seven of them … by double digits.”

“Absent a shock in inflation, we’re going to be bullish,” Chiavarone said.

But the market fell sharply on Tuesday, causing panic among investors. The Nasdaq Composite was down 2.9 percent to 7,008.81, with shares of tech giants Apple and Amazon in the red. The S&P 500 declined 1.7 percent to 2,612.62, with tech stocks down more than 3.5 percent — its worst day of trading since Feb. 8. The Dow Jones industrial average closed 344.89 points lower at 23,857.71, re-entering correction territory. Microsoft was the worst-performing stock in the index.

Meanwhile, Facebook continued to fall amid the data scandal, and chipmaker Nvidia was down after the company announced on Tuesday it was no longer testing autonomous cars. Other FANG stocks dropped as well. Netflix was down 6 percent, and Google parent Alphabet closed 4.5 percent lower.

Art Cashin, director of floor operations at UBS, said the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite was leading Tuesday’s tech sell-offs.

“Today has been a story of the Nasdaq,” Cashin said Tuesday on CNBC’s “Closing Bell.” He said investors could use the sell-offs as a buying opportunity if they move quickly.

Chiavarone said he has some concerns over the tech stocks, particularly the business model of big companies, but doesn’t think it will affect the market long term.

“Big tech is where financials were a decade ago,” he said. “They have to decide if they’re going to self-regulate or invite the government in to do it.”

Christopher Hyzy, chief investment officer of Bank of America, said it’s “healthy to get concerned about days like this” and that as long as the three pillars of the market — profits, interest rates and the dollar — remain stable, he doesn’t anticipate a problem.

“When they go, then you change your outlook,” he said on “Closing Bell.”

Chiavarone agreed and said as long as fundamentals remain strong, a little bit of volatility is ok.

“The positive stimulus in the economy — between tax reform, deregulation and repatriation — is somewhere 20 times the size of the cost of tariffs,” he said.

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