NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks have seen the worst of the declines and are poised to head higher boosted by a spate of interest rate cuts by the Federal Reserve and spending linked to the government's economic stimulus package, a leading equity strategist said on Tuesday.
Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist and chairman of the investment policy committee at Standard & Poor's, reiterated a forecast by his firm calling for the benchmark S&P 500 <.SPX> to finish 2008 at the 1,560, about 5 points shy of the index's record close set in October 2007.
"We do have a good likelihood of retracing our steps at least up to the 1,560 level," he told an investment outlook teleconference. "Much of the decline we've experienced is likely over in our opinion. We believe the worst is over and we could see the market work its way higher."
(Reporting by Ellis Mnyandu; Editing by Theodore d'Afflisio)