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Wall Street's cautious stock calls for the year

Despite the generating double-digit gains for 2014, Wall Street analysts are remaining cautious with their outlooks for 2015, predicting slim gains and broad consolidation for the year ahead.

The mean average of the ten analysts' calls collated by CNBC is 2,185 points for the U.S. benchmark. This means a return of just over 6 percent for the year and is below the circa 11.5 percent gain seen in 2014.

The bull market for stocks is currently in its sixth year after the global financial crash of 2008. A wave of global liquidity from central banks has helped to prop up developed economies in recent years and has been the main driver behind stock markets, according to many economists.

However, with U.S. Federal Reserve dialing back on its quantitative easing (QE) program and looking to raise its benchmark interest rate at some point in 2015, some are predicting volatility ahead for markets.

Societe Generale is the most bearish bank with its 2015 outlook, predicting that global equity markets (including the U.S.) will suffer a "hiccup" ahead of the Fed rate hike, which it expects in mid-2015. Making the call back in November - when the index was at 2,067 points - its global strategy team expects a fall to 2,050 points by year-end and predicts the same level for the end of 2016 and 2017 as well.

"Since 1875, we have never seen the S&P rise for seven calendar years in a row: an eighth year seems highly unlikely," the team - led by Alain Bokobza - said in its 2015 outlook.

Canadian investment bank, RBC Capital, was the most bullish with Jonathan Golub, chief U.S. market strategist, projecting a 2015 year-end target of 2,325 points, driven by a "combination of earnings growth and multiple expansion." Goldman Sachs, meanwhile, has stated a target of 2,100 points by year-end, but strategist David Kostin has implied that it could even stretch to 2,300 if the Federal Reserve holds back on any interest rate hikes.

In their 2015 outlook, JPMorgan said it forecast the S&P 500 to reach 2,250 by the end of 2015 -- a 9 percent upside from current levels.

UBS told CNBC that it doesn't give formal price targets for indexes, but said that it expected returns on the S&P 500 to be 7-8 percent, broadly in line with its expectations for growth in earnings per share.

This piece has been updated since first published to include JPMorgan's forecast.

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