Don't worry—this is just a 'back-to-school' sale: Technician

Stocks suffered a terrible Friday, with the S&P 500 falling 2.5 percent and closing at its lowest level of the day to log its worst session since June. But one market technician says there's little reason to worry just yet.

"In our world, a 0 to 5 percent drop is noise, 5 to 10 percent is a pullback, 10 to 20 percent is a correction and 20 percent or more is a bear market," Piper Jaffray technical research analyst Craig Johnson said Friday on CNBC's "Power Lunch."

With the S&P just 3 percent off its all-time high, Johnson's point is that we remain in the "noise" phase.

"Right now, this looks like a back-to-school sale from our perspective," Johnson said.

The sell-off appeared to be driven by indications that a Federal Reserve rate hike in September is a real possibility. This after a long lack of market movement, and amid building concerns about high valuations and a soft economy.

Yet Johnson sees reasons for stocks to swiftly sail higher once again.

"I know a lot of fund managers are going to be looking to put money back to work," he said. "This is going to give them the opportunity and the reason to do that."

The technical research analyst maintains a year-end target of 2,350, which is more than 10 percent above Friday's closing price.

Meanwhile, Zachary Karabell, head of global strategy at Envestnet, finds the market's Fed-inspired drop mighty revealing.

"Nervousness about 'Does the Fed move 25 basis points in a week or two versus in two months' speaks more to this ongoing uncertain delicate market psychology than it does to any substantial fundamental shift," he said Friday on "Power Lunch."


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Michael Santoli

Michael Santoli joined CNBC in October 2015 as a Senior Markets Commentator, based at the network's Global Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.  Santoli brings his extensive markets expertise to CNBC's Business Day programming, with a regular appearance on CNBC's “Closing Bell (M-F, 3PM-5PM ET).   In addition, he contributes to CNBCand CNBC PRO, writing regular articles and creating original digital videos.

Previously, Santoli was a Senior Columnist at Yahoo Finance, where he wrote analysis and commentary on the stock market, corporate news and the economy. He also appeared on Yahoo Finance video programs, where he offered insights on the most important business stories of the day, and was a regular contributor to CNBC and other networks.

Follow Michael Santoli on Twitter @michaelsantoli

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