RBC slashes S&P 500 call, but loves stocks (huh?)

Markets want 'normalized rates': Pro

Jonathan Golub and the rest of his strategy team at RBC Capital Markets acknowledge they were way too optimistic about the stock market's prospects in 2015.

But don't call Golub a bear: He still thinks equities are heading higher, just not at the rapid pace he had originally expected.

RBC in a note to clients Monday cut its full-year outlook for the from 2,325 to 2,100. The old number would require a 22 percent or so surge in the next three months that would appear to be borderline delusional considering the ongoing heightened level of volatility. That forecast was a more modest 13 percent upside expectation from back where the index started 2015.

At 2,100, the target still is an expectation for a 10 percent move higher — again, a lofty expectation considering the market's current downside momentum, but more reachable than 2,325. Multiple other Wall Street firms were earlier in lowering their expectations; Piper Jaffray, for instance, in late August slashed its 2,350 call all the way down to 2,135.