US Markets

Tom Lee: This will turn market sentiment bullish

It's been disappointing: Lee

Despite the "disappointing" start to the year, strategist Tom Lee is still bullish on the market. In fact, he still thinks stocks will have double-digit gains.

"We're really looking at a plethora of negative headlines— whether it's Europe, oil, dollar—but we really have to focus on some of the things that are going to matter, like consumer," the co-founder of Fundstrat Global Advisors said in an interview with "Squawk on the Street."

"The consumer, I think, is going to have some positive catalysts over the course of the year, and I think that is going to turn sentiment back into bullish."

For example, consumer credit is recovering, and lending standards are coming down, he said. That will play into stronger housing.

Lee expects consumer spending to pick up when people think the economic recovery feels permanent.

"I think it is a June quarter, March quarter story of consumer spending strengthening," he said.

Read MoreFebruary outlook: Retail, energy and a correction?

Lee also thinks the market will get a boost from the strong U.S. dollar. because it will cause P/Es to expand and will cause a flurry of mergers—with European companies buying U.S. firms, he said.

Although that's counterintutiive, he said 30 years of merger data show that "companies want to be where capital will have the best return.

He expects that M&A activity to take place in sectors like industrials, health care and materials

Facing February market fears

Strategist Bill Stone also thinks the consumer will see strength. He said markets got a glimpse of that strength in last week's disappointing report on economic growth,

"Buried underneath there was the bright spot. It was actually [the] consumer. If you only had the consumer last quarter, you would have actually had a growth rate and GDP higher than what we showed. So everything else net took away from GDP," PNC Asset Management Group's chief investment strategist said in a "Squawk Box" interview.

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Data from the Commerce Department on Friday showed that GDP picked up 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014. Analysts had expected an uptick of 3 percent.

Economic growth surged 5 percent in the third quarter.

PNC it tilting away from cyclical stocks in the face of weak demand abroad, Stone said. The firm is increasing its exposure to consumer staples and continues to be bullish on health care.

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PNC is also positive on financials ahead of the Federal Reserve's anticipate interest rate hike. The steep yield curve over the long run and a focus on U.S. business should also boost financials, Stone said.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, and fell for two consecutive months. The S&P financials surpassed energy as the worst performing sector in January.