Trump: Midterms — Not Tariffs — to Blame for Sluggish Market

Analysts cite president’s trade policies for slowdown

In the face of today’s extraordinary bull market and other positive economic signs, memories of the Great Recession remain strong for many voters, Winston writes. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images file photo)
In the face of today’s extraordinary bull market and other positive economic signs, memories of the Great Recession remain strong for many voters, Winston writes. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images file photo)
Posted October 30, 2018 at 9:07am

President Donald Trump says the value of Americans’ stock portfolios will plummet if voters hand Democrats more power in Washington, even though many analysts say markets are sluggish due to worries about his tariffs and trade policies.

He has been telling supporters for weeks at his raucous campaign rallies that voting for any Democratic candidate in next Tuesday’s midterms would be a vote against their wallets. The president tells rally crowds that Democrats want to raise taxes while also altering immigration and health care changes that will mean less money in their pockets.

Trump, as he has for more than a year, started a Tuesday morning tweet by pointing to the stock market’s climb since he took office. For the first time, he acknowledged it “is now taking a little pause” because “people want to see what happens with the Midterms.”

Experts say Democrats are likely to take control of the House and have an outside shot at a small Senate majority, though it appears a split decision is ahead with Republicans picking up seats in the Senate.

“If you want your Stocks to go down, I strongly suggest voting Democrat,” Trump tweeted. “They like the Venezuela financial model, High Taxes & Open Borders!”

But financial experts say the market boon has slowed mostly over fears about Trump’s tariffs on goods including steel and aluminum. Companies like Caterpillar announced lower expectations for coming quarters because the price of steel has risen. On Saturday, during a speech to Future Farmers of America conference, Trump ticked off a list of heavy machinery companies; he excluded Caterpillar.

Peter Schiff, Euro Pacific Capital CEO, tweeted recently that shares of Mohawk Industries, a U.S.-based flooring manufacturer, “are down over 20% today, and near 60% so far in 2018.”

“The company is getting hit by the double whammy of tariffs and a slowdown in the housing market,” he wrote. “This is another dead canary that investors are blissfully ignoring!”

Watch: New Trump Ad Declares The Future ‘Isn’t Guaranteed’

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