Who’s going to be the next president? The betting odds on the election at gaming site Bodog as of Oct. 10 are Clinton -425 and Trump +325, meaning a winning $425 bet on Clinton will pay out $100, while a winning $100 bet on Trump would net you $325.
For investors, the important questions are how the election outcome could affect their investment portfolios and whether they should do anything about it. It’s a legitimate concern, considering the spikes in volatility this year caused by fears of global economic slowdown, dissolution of the European Union and policy reversal by the Federal Reserve.
A November election surprise could trigger renewed volatility in the financial markets.
Conventional wisdom has it that the markets favor Republicans in the White House because they typically fight for lower taxes and less regulation. Donald Trump, however, is not a typical Republican candidate.
Trump has promised tax cuts, but he has also railed against the “rigged” economy and talked of building walls to keep out neighbors. The market does not like uncertainty, and Trump may be as unpredictable a candidate as either party has ever fielded for the White House.
It stands to reason that a Trump victory could hurt more than just the Mexican peso and the stock market. His bravado toward global trading partners and his talk about renegotiating trade deals and global security pacts could also put a chill in financial markets generally.
On the other hand, a President Clinton might also rock some boats. If Clinton wins, energy stocks could arguably take a significant hit. So might health-care stocks. Many believe her support for a financial transactions tax on high-frequency traders could seriously damage sentiment in the markets.
Fear on Wall Street could spark a sell off no matter who wins. It could provide investors with a great buying opportunity. Having some cash in your portfolio may be a prudent option to take advantage of market volatility.