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

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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.