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What Wall Street wants from Obama in State of the Union address

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Obama's attacks on the banking establishment rub many in the pinstripe set the wrong way. One is David Kotok, chairman of Cumberland Advisors, a Vineland, N,J., investment manager.

“I would like him to say he will stop vilifying bankers and Wall Streeters, and that he understands that many, many Americans are invested in US stocks and bonds in their 401(k)s. When he throws out mean-spirited commentary about the bankers, he is doing it to all those who are invested in them.”

Many on Wall Street expect Obama to seek another job stimulus package. But they don’t want to see another massive package similar to the $787 billion economic recovery package that Congress approved last February.

“Anything over $200 billion will be way too big, a waste of money,” says Mr. Kleintop, who suggests that the bond market would be happy with anything under $150 billion.

Cool to a spending freeze

Even before the speech, the administration has floated the idea of a freeze on federal discretionary spending, representing about 17 percent of the budget. But “Wall Street," Kleintop says, "sees right through a freeze.”

Indeed, Scott Brown, chief economist at stockbroker Raymond James & Co. in St. Petersburg, Fla., says the bigger problem is entitlement programs, such as Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security.

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