×

Dow 20K should make you want to invest in stocks, analyst says

The highly anticipated milestone of the Dow Jones industrial average reaching 20,000 should remind investors of the pros of investing in equities, analyst Charles Bobrinskoy told CNBC on Wednesday as the index crept closer to the key level.

"The beauty of 20,000 is it reminds us how good an investment public stocks have been," Bobrinskoy, vice chairman of Ariel Investments, told "Squawk Alley." "Equities have been a wonderful place to invest over the long run."

With institutions like pension funds and university endowments investing in areas other than the stock market, Bobrinskoy said he hopes Dow 20,000 will show them the value of investing in equities.

"Pension plans own less stocks today than they have anytime in the last 60 years. University endowments have moved all their money into alternatives and hedge funds and private equity and are underinvested in stocks," he said.

"I think the average American is underinvested in stocks," Bobrinskoy added.


For Jurrien Timmer, director of global macro at Fidelity Investments, Dow 20,000 marks a broader economic trend.

"Dow 20,000, to me, is like New Year's Eve. It's really just another day but it's an opportunity to take stock of where we are," Timmer told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street."

"To me, it's poetic that we're reaching this milestone as we are embracing the promise of a baton pass, if you will, from monetary policy to fiscal policy," he said.

Timmer said the anticipated milestone couldn't have come at a better time as monetary policy among the world's central banks begins to stagnate.

"It is a sign of hope that we are going to get, finally, that escape velocity that the Fed has been talking about for so long," he said, referring to the push that enables an economy to escape its recovery period and enter an era of long-term economic growth.

The rotation in the market's sector leadership has also been a promising sign of approaching economic growth, Timmer said. The last several years, which saw investors flocking to the tech sector and to bonds, were unusual, in his view.

"With this new regime in place, investors have had to adjust from 'secular stagnation forever' ... to, all of a sudden, an inflationary growth regime," Timmer said.

"We're seeing leadership return to companies with pricing power — financials, industrials — and that's a more typical leadership in a rising market, so I think that's good sign," he said.

And optimism is skyrocketing, according to Paul Christopher, Wells Fargo Investment Institute's head global market strategist, who appeared in the interview with Timmer.

Christopher said a survey by Wells Fargo and Gallup tracking "investor and retirement optimism" showed optimism rising to a nine-year high.

"We are seeing investors take more optimism not just in the new administration but also in the broader economy," said Christopher, adding, "we continue to like large caps here," meaning companies with market capitalizations valued at more than $10 billion.