Wien on 2014: More jobs, stronger US growth—and Obamacare that works
After years of sluggish growth, the world's largest economy is ready to spring out of its "doldrums" with stagnant labor markets following suit—several key takeaways from noted investor Byron Wien's annual list of 10 surprises for the year.
Stock markets, currently stalled after spending much of 2013 rallying to new records, will see a "sharp correction" triggered by geopolitical troubles, Wien predicted. That will begin a new rally, he added, "with a move to new highs as the Standard & Poor's 500 approaches a 20 percent total return by year end."
(Read more: Is QE behind the rally? Wien and Siegel debate)
He expects U.S. growth to exceed 3 percent in the year, with the unemployment rate sinking toward 6 percent. The economic resurgence will push the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury rates above 4 percent, and that will weigh on housing markets and the U.S. dollar, he said.
The surge in growth will also light a fire under West Texas Intermediate (WTI) oil, according to Wien. The U.S. crude benchmark will rocket past $110 as "demand from developing economies continues to outweigh conservation and reduced consumption in the developed world," he added.
The rising tide will also help lift other commodities, such as agricultural products. Demand from emerging markets will lift corn to $5.25 a bushel, wheat to $7.50 and soybeans to $16.
Among other things, the vice chairman of Blackstone Advisory Partners said in his list of surprises for the coming year that the federal government's embattled universal health care program would stage "a remarkable turnaround," helping to lift President Barack Obama's approval ratings and help Democrats retain their lead in the Senate.
On Tuesday, Wien will appear on CNBC's "Squawk Box" at 7 a.m. to discuss his predictions.
--By CNBC's Javier E. David.