May 28, 2024

AI, EVs, Fed, consumers, election: Investor Guide highlights

As 2023 comes to a close, investors want to know what’s in store for the year ahead. What’s in store from the Fed in 2024? Will the AI hype continue? What is the future of EV charging? How will the 2024 election impact the market? Yahoo Finance spoke to experts across the industry to answer these questions and more as part of the weekly series “Investor Guide 2024.”

Market outlook (00:00:05)

Infrastructure Capital Advisors CEO Jay Hatfield anticipates the S&P to reach as high as 5,500 points by the end of 2024. Hatfield said, “Europe is in a recession. And so we think the ECB is going to be forced to cut first, which will give the U.S. Federal Reserve cover. So it’s really more of a global focus.”

Goldman Sachs Chief US Economist David Mericle predicts that recession odds have eased to 15%, but challenges still loom over the U.S. economy. “The soft landing has gone from on track to largely here,” Mericle explained. “Rather than gliding into the mid-2s next year, which would have been a perfectly good outcome, it now looks like instead we are abruptly finding ourselves more or less at a 2% underlying pace.”

AI (00:00:47)

Tech giants Nvidia (NVDA), Google (GOOG), and Microsoft (MSFT) helped to drive the AI hype in 2023. But did the AI frenzy steal all of the metaverse’s thunder?

Wagner James Au, Author of Making a Metaverse That Matters, joins Yahoo Finance Live to weigh in on the metaverse’s outlook for 2024 and whether a comeback is possible. He said, “The metaverse … has actually been growing in terms of monthly active users, upwards of 600 million active users, led by Roblox (RBLX) is the leading metaverse platform.”

Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Global Chair Richard Lesser discussed the use cases for AI that companies will seek to implement in the coming year. “I think companies are going to end up spending a lot more on AI in the year ahead,” Lesser explained. “Companies are going to realize there’s a lot of value to be created here.”

Ruben Roy, Stifel Applied Technology Analyst, broke down the semiconductor market outlook and the possibilities for semiconductor companies in 2024. “We think Nvidia is one of the first semiconductor companies that’s cracked the code on becoming a software and services company,” Roy said. “I think that’s where investors should be looking. I think that’s going to be the big theme when you look ahead to 2024.”

Oil, energy, and gas (00:01:36)

2023 was a volatile year for oil prices (BZ=F, CL=F). Rebecca Babin, CIBC Private Wealth, U.S. Senior Energy Trader discussed some of the major catalysts for oil in 2024. Babin said, “So I think the key for 2024 is going to be what does U.S. supply do? Looking at 2024, the market looks very well balanced … the key that people are looking at is can the U.S. continue to outperform.”

Tesla (TSLA) has had quite a turbulent year in 2023. Executive Analyst Karl Brauer discussed the outlook for Tesla in 2024 amid the competition from major companies like Ford (F) and GM (GM). Brauer said, “Tesla shares … they’re down to about half the market. And of course they were the overwhelmingly dominant player just a few years ago. Every day, every month, every year we see more cars entering this marketplace, making them less dominant.”

Looking ahead to 2024, Patrick De Haan, Head of Petroleum Analysis at GasBuddy, discussed how geopolitical tensions and other factors may impact oil and gas prices. De Haan explained, “The national average is basically on par with where we were last year, but we could see a little bit more increase over the next few days into the holiday and into the close of the New Year.”

State of the consumer (00:02:36)

Investors often look for recession proof investments during uncertain times, including food and beverage staples. Peter Saleh, BTIG Restaurants and Food Distributors Analyst, top picks for 2024 include McDonald’s (MCD) and Domino’s (DPZ). “2024 we’re going to start the year with a lot of discounts. We’re already seeing that, and in that type of environment McDonald’s tends to take some share,” Saleh said. “One of our top picks for 2024 is Domino’s.”

The Magnificent Seven didn’t just dominate the markets this year, they also topped the list of the most trafficked ticker pages on Yahoo Finance. Tesla (TSLA), Nvidia (NVDA), Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN), and Microsoft (MSFT) topped the ranking. Yahoo Finance’s Jared Blikre broke down the list. “Not surprisingly in a year that was all about the mega caps, the Mag Seven, they dominate the top ten most popular pages visited by you on the Yahoo Finance app and website,” Blikre said. “And the winner by far is Tesla … that was seen over 300 million times this year.”

2024 election (00:03:21)

The 2024 election cycle is right around the corner and with that comes massive swaths of information about the candidates and the election itself. Yahoo Finance Tech Editor Dan Howley broke down the impact that generative AI can have on the election, specifically as it pertains to disinformation. Howley said, “The AI revolution has really supercharged a lot of companies … but there also are some drawbacks, and those include the spread of disinformation and misinformation … basically allowing them to manipulate the news.”

LPL Financial Chief Equity Strategist Jeff Buchbinder discussed the historical impact of the presidential election on the stock market. Buchbinder explained, “If you look back at history, the economy is really the biggest driver of not just how elections turn out but how markets do. So if we continue to have surprises on the U.S. economy like we’ve had in 2023, then no doubt this market can do quite a bit better than that historical average.”

Video highlights:

00:00:05 – Infrastructure Capital Advisors CEO Jay Hatfield

00:00:22 – Goldman Sachs Chief US Economist David Mericle

00:00:47 – Wagner James Au, Author of Making a Metaverse That Matters

00:01:06 – Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Global Chair Richard Lesser

00:01:20 – Ruben Roy, Stifel Applied Technology Analyst

00:01:36 – Rebecca Babin, CIBC Private Wealth, U.S. Senior Energy Trader

00:01:58 – Executive Analyst Karl Brauer

00:02:19 – Patrick De Haan, Head of Petroleum Analysis at GasBuddy

00:02:36 – Peter Saleh, BTIG Restaurants and Food Distributors Analyst

00:03:00 – Yahoo Finance’s Jared Blikre

00:03:21 – Yahoo Finance’s Daniel Howley

00:03:48 – LPL Financial Chief Equity Strategist Jeff Buchbinder

Be sure to watch all of Yahoo Finance’s 2024 Investor Guide.

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