Donald J. Trump. President-elect Donald J. Trump. That title is a tough pill to swallow for some, but by blasting through the 270-electoral-vote threshold, America has spoken: Trump is the next president of the United States.
That this day would ever come seemed improbable at one point in time, but Trump successfully tapped into the frustrations of many Americans disillusioned by the politics of President Obama and the status quo that Secretary Hillary Clinton represented. This victory for Trump was in many ways a referendum on President Obama, and Hillary Clinton, unfortunately for her, was caught in the jet stream.
Now, what does it all mean?
One thing is sure, global markets were unprepared. As television and media rolled out win over win for Trump, global markets clammed up. U.S. stock markets plunged with futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling 506 points, or roughly 4 percent, a reaction to Trump’s anti-free trade views. Earlier this year, Trump told The New York Times that he would float the idea of a 45-percent tax on all imports from China, a move to bring back manufacturing to the U.S. If his idea is put into law, then enjoy $1,000 iPhones, folks.
Before Clinton conceded the election to Trump, apprehension of a Trump presidency was felt globally. It was evident at the open of trading in Europe, where stocks in London plunged 2 percent, after futures indicated losses as high as 4 percent. The Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong fell 2.7 percent, the South Korean Kospi dropped 2.5 percent and the Japanese Nikkei 225 was down 5.1 percent.
But the sun did come up, and after a skittish start, markets bounced back. The Dow perked upand was trading near the flat line in morning trading. The S&P’s 500 stock index, down 5 percent overnight, was down 0.2 percent in early trading. The NASDAQ composite dropped 0.4 percent.
Ken Wilson, managing director and co-chairman of asset manager CHMWarnick, discussed the nonplussed state of many U.S. voters. “They automatically think the worst,” he said.
On the other hand, investors, in the near-term, shouldn’t have as much anxiety. “The U.S. is still the place to put money into for safety and accessibility,” Wilson said. “Markets have now normalized. If the bets were against the future, why has it already stabilized?”