The stock market is likely to remain highly volatile, but the economy is unlikely to fall into a recession and that makes it a good time to "buy the dips" again when stocks fall, said Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Leuthold.
"If there's no recession, to me it's a buyable correction. They don't tend to get super deep and they tend to reverse. The whole key is the recession," he said in a telephone interview.
Paulsen agrees with many Wall Street forecasts that 2019 will see a slower pace of growth in the low 2 percent range, but no recession.
"That's one of the reasons I'm bullish again here. I'm betting we don't have a recession. I think if we didn't see the low, we saw something pretty close to it," he said. "On days when it's really dying, it's a good time to buy ... on days, when it's rallying hard, just stand pat. That's what I would look at doing."
The S&P 500's closing low was 2,351 on Monday, after a sharp drop in the half-day Christmas Eve session, giving it a 19.8 percent decline from its September high. Since Monday, it has swung hard in both directions, but was up about 3 percent for the week as of Friday morning.
"I think sometime in 2019, if you buy down here in this area, you'll probably be happy," he said.