Ultralow borrowing costs. Pent-up demand. Aging infrastructure. Record consumer wealth levels. JPMorgan Chase's Tom Lee has a long list of reasons to remain bullish on stocks this year.
"To me it's really a formula for stocks to do quite well because it's going to be a story about earnings surprise for the next few years," Lee said Monday on "Squawk on the Street."
Lee, the chief U.S. equity strategist for JPMorgan, said that one big reason for remaining optimistic was also something that could "transform the character of investing": an influx of retail investors. The longtime stock market bull discounted fears that an increase in retail investors portends a looming stock market decline.
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"I still think we're just in the middle innings of a bull market," Lee told CNBC. "The retail investor will ultimately provide a lot of support for stocks. It's really going to transform the character of investing. ... You can look at many decades of data, but the retail investor is not generally coming in at the top. But they're going to come in midcycle. ... I don't think this is at all a mature bull market."
Monday was a good day to share Lee's optimism. The Dow rose just under 180 points by 1:30 p.m., and the S&P 500 reached a record high at 1,858 points. Adding to the bull case for stocks, Goldman Sachs' chief U.S. equity strategist, David Kostin, told CNBC on Monday that the S&P had plenty of room to run. He believes the index with hit 1,900 this year.