"Still no sign of Dow 20,000," says Tom Siomades, head of Radnor-based Hartford Funds Investment Consulting Group, which manages the $78 billion-asset Hartford Funds.
"There was a lot of enthusiasm" driving up share prices in the weeks after Trump's election -- but now "the news is mostly Trump sniping back and forth with people who disagree with him," Siomades added.
If the pros are skeptics, the public remains hopeful. Almost two-thirds of Pennsylvania investors expect the S&P 500 to rise strongly over the next six months -- twice as many as expected that before Trump's election, according to a UBS survey cited by Brad Bernstein, senior vice president in the Swiss bank's Philly office.
Trump's penchant for "taking aim at an industry" has provoked brief jumps and dips in shares of Boeing or Lockheed Martin, Hartford's Siomades says. But investors need more than slogans before making long-term bets, he added.
"Everyone likes lower taxes. Everyone likes the right to health care. But now it's time to start breaking it down and say, 'How much is it going to cost?' It's hugely important to get this right," Siomades said.
With Trump's cabinet picks parading before members of Congress, "it's less nebulous than slogans. Now their feet are finally being held to the fire," he added.
After Friday's inauguration and more earnings reports over the next week, and increasingly as the Trump administration unveils more concrete proposals over the next few months, the market should "decide on a direction" and "break out of the narrow range it has occupied for about a month," Siomades concluded.