"As we get closer to normalization by the Fed, which means the rising of rates, the market is going to demonstrate characteristics it always had, which included pullbacks and basically trying to decide what valuations should be," she added.
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Old-fashioned price discovery indeed has become a relic in the time of unprecedented Fed easing. The central bank has expanded its balance sheet past the $4.5 trillion mark as it has injected liquidity into the markets and given new meaning to the old "don't fight the Fed" adage.
The S&P 500 has surged nearly 200 percent since the financial crisis on the back of the Fed's quantitative easing, but gains ahead could be harder to come by, or at least require more work on the part of investors.
The Fed is set to end QE later this month but probably will keep interest rates anchored near zero until well into 2015.
Still, uncertainty persists about the timing of the rate hike. Stocks surged Wednesday for their biggest gains of the year when minutes from the most recent Federal Open Market Committee indicated a persistent dovish bias, but the momentum did not carry over to Thursday's session, which saw losses that wiped out all of Wednesday's gains.
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"The market's going through a period of discovery. That's how the market's going to normalize," Krosby said. "They're going to decipher whether the valuations are commensurate with what companies are telling us. When all is said and done, the market should be about what companies are doing."