Investors chasing easy money trades in Europe may be missing an opportunity to take advantage of a U.S. economy on firmer footing, Brian Belski said Monday.
While Europe saw a nice rally this year, it still faces structural problems that the United States has already addressed, said the chief investment strategist at BMO Capital Markets. Now may be the time for investors to go against the grain and recalibrate their portfolios toward U.S. stocks, he said.
"The consensus is to leave the U.S., right? Consensus has been wrong by the way for the last six years on this entire stock market, so we'd be a little cautious in terms of just throwing out the baby with the bathwater with respect to starting to turn negative on the U.S.," he told CNBC's "Power Lunch."
Picking stocks is not easy, so investors should not necessarily go after the easy trade and follow quantitative easing programs in Europe and Japan, Belski said. The European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan are currently buying up bonds in order to keep interest rates low, spur lending and stoke economic growth.
Following years of such programs at home and abroad, Belski said an entire generation of investors have been reared to buy stocks because interest rates are going down.
"They don't understand the fundamental circle of life, meaning that interest rates improve because the economy is improving, the stock market is going up," he said.
The Federal Reserve is widely expected to begin raising interest rates from zero later this year or earlier next year.
Belski said the S&P 500 could reach 2,250 by the end of the year, and BMO's favorite sector is financials. The space is seen benefiting from rising interest rates, which help banks' deposit-based businesses make money.
The S&P 500 is up about 1.3 percent this year at 2,085.