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Fund manager: This could give stocks a needed boost

Earnings have done stocks no favors recently, but they may lift a sluggish market later this year, one fund manager said Monday.

A tough first-quarter earnings season is wrapping up. Through Friday, S&P 500 earnings had fallen nearly 6 percent from the prior-year period, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence.

But facing easier comparable numbers later this year, companies may soon boost markets with quarterly results, said Allen Bond, co-portfolio manager of the five-star rated Jensen Quality Growth Fund.

"We think that comps get quite a bit easier as we get through the year and earnings growth could actually be a positive catalyst," he told CNBC's "Power Lunch."

Bond said an oil price drop and stronger U.S. dollar held earnings back at the end of last year and into this year. With U.S. crude up nearly 7 percent this year and the dollar down 4.5 percent against a basket of global currencies, those challenges have dissipated somewhat, he said.

Markets could use that kick from earnings. The S&P 500 has climbed modestly this year.

Stocks will likely stay "sideways" within a longer-term bull market until the earnings outlook improves, Wells Fargo Securities strategist Gina Martin Adams added Monday on "Power Lunch."