Today's Stock Selloff: Overblown or Reason to Worry?

2007 Toyota Camry
AP
2007 Toyota Camry

Market strategists squared off on "Power Lunch" about whether today's meltdown should keep investors awake tonight.

On the skeptical side is Jack Ablin, chief investment officer at Harris Private Bank. He thinks "huge inflows of liquidity" will keep stocks afloat.

"The Shanghai market is an isolated market," he said. "Bottom line ... China is a tempest in a teapot."

Still, Ablin said investors should curtail putting funds in emerging markets and stay "somewhat defensive" in U.S. stocks, recommending shares of large cap, high-quality companies.

On the more cautious side is Steve Hochberg, chief market strategist at Elliott Wave International. He said investors should play it safe and stay in cash.

"Cash, in terms of Treasury bills, has outperformed the S&P for the past eight years," said Hochberg. "You're getting well over 5% for literally a no-risk investment, and we think that's a pretty compelling return given the risks we see in the market."

Hochberg said that market should decline further, which should have worldwide implications. In the U.S., Hochberg said a significant decline in stocks will signal a recession.

"We're probably not going to get (a recession) right away but once the market starts getting downside momentum, I think the economy will eventually follow."