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The recent market melt-up may be in part due to the resurgence of tax reform talk, but that's not necessarily key to the bull run continuing, investing expert Jason Ware told CNBC on Thursday.
While recent highs may be attributed to tax talk, it has been the economy and earnings that have driven stocks higher overall this year, said Ware, chief investment officer at Albion Financial.
"We're at a phase in the secular bull market where earnings are more important than anything else," he told "Power Lunch. "
On Thursday, the House passed a $4.1 trillion budget — the first concrete step toward tax reform. Later in the day, the Senate Budget Committee approved its budget resolution. The Senate's budget now heads to that chamber's floor for a full vote, expected after Oct.16.
By passing a budget resolution through both GOP-controlled chambers, Republicans would trigger a legislative process known as reconciliation, during which they could pass a sweeping tax reform bill with a simple majority of 51 votes in the Senate, instead of the usual 60-vote requirement.
Republicans have said they plan to pass their tax reform package by the end of the year.
Ware said that while there are some tax cut elements baked into 2018 earnings, he doesn't think it's "nearly as much" as some strategists suggest.
Tax reform will add "fuel" to equity prices, but "I'm not sure that we necessarily need it to see the bull market continue. There are certainly other factors at play — low interest rates, low inflation, and ... earnings growth," he noted.
Michael Bell, global market strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management, told "Power Lunch" that his outlook for equities also remains "very positive."
He called the risk of recession over the next 12 months low.
Bell is broadly overweight equities across the board, and thinks European equities have a chance to do "slightly better" than those in the United States.
— CNBC's Christina Wilkie and Fred Imbert contributed to this report.
Correction: This article has been updated to accurately reflect a quotation of Jason Ware.