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Is it time to pay the piper? That was a big topic of conversation on Wall Street Thursday as the first trading session of the new year drew to a finish.
By the closing bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had declined by triple digits while the S&P 500 ended with its worst decline in weeks. For every advance more than two stocks slid on the New York Stock Exchange.
Some pros worry the price action is a sign that headwinds are starting to blow. Whether it's the threat of higher interest rates, a potential showdown over the debt ceiling or the uncertainty presented by a new Fed chair, bears say there's every cause for concern.
"It's obvious that we have a bad year coming, right? Isn't that what the stats say when you start off the year with a day like today," noted Jim Cramer with more than a hint of sarcasm in his voice.
That sarcasm is important to note, because largely the "Mad Money" host isn't buying what the bears are selling.
Cramer thinks negative catalysts in the market were far more serious last year. "In 2013, we had the sequester, a government shut down, Cypriot bank troubles, a Brazilian collapse and a Chinese slowdown to name but a few headwinds and what happened?" The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 26.5% ending the year with its best advance since 1995.
Cramer believes the advance had everything to do with fundamentals, particularly the improvement in the economy.
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And from the energy revolution underway in North America to the trend of healthy eating to the banking recovery, the "Mad Money" host sees plenty of reasons for the nation and the globe to remain on that current trajectory of improvement.
Therefore, he also believes the rally will endure.
"Don't be scared away by the first day decline and all of the obvious negatives touted by the naysayers. There were a lot of obvious things wrong in 2013 and stocks roared, I bet they keep roaring in 2014, too."
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