Ed. Note: This article first appeared in CNBC
The next threat to the so-called Trump rally is brewing across the pond, said Samantha Azzarello, global market strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management.
While Azzarello believes that United States markets are already looking a bit too optimistic, she sees the upcoming French election as the next “meteorite” that could hit equities.
“European political risk is headline, and it might not hurt European equity markets because the fundamentals are looking good there,” Azzarello said Tuesday on CNBC’s “Futures Now.”
“No doubt it has the ability to cast volatility or to influence markets in the short term.”
The first round of the French presidential elections is scheduled to take place April 23, and eyes are on the right-wing National Front and euroskeptic Marine Le Pen, who has been gaining in the polls.
Azzarello believes that the results of the election, which will end in May after pitting the top two candidates against each other, could have implications for the Fed as well.
Analysts have predicted that the Fed could hike rates anywhere between two to four times this year, and Azzarello suggests that anything that would cause a stock market “tantrum,” like the French election, could motivate the U.S. central bank to raise rates only twice.
“The Fed is cautious, they have a bias to being on hold versus moving too fast, so I think that’s important to keep in mind,” she said.
This, along with political uncertainty from Washington, could mean that U.S. equities are overshooting.
“The market in some sense has had tunnel vision,” said Azzarello.
“While a lot of the gains we’ve seen might have had to do with reflation and the idea that global growth is picking up, when the market moves as fast and ferocious as it really did, it’s hard not to say that we’re all looking to Washington for positives.”
“While we may get some of [the positives] they may come with a lag and we might not get tax reform until 2018,” she added. “Yet the market in 2017 has already priced that in.”
The Dow fell for the third day in a row Wednesday. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite, however, did regain their losses from the previous two days.
Posted by: The Trust Advisor