According to a survey by Natixis Global Asset Management, which questioned 2,550 advisers across 15 countries, of the 300 US advisers it polled, around 120 said they were “ambivalent” about which presidential candidate will have the most positive impact on stocks, bonds, the global economy, trade and geopolitical risk.
“Even though a sitting US president exerts limited direct control over the capital markets, the uncertainty generated by the election process plays a huge role in market sentiment,” said David Lafferty, chief market strategist at Natixis Global AM.
In the latest polls on the US elections, due to be held 8 November, democratic candidate Clinton is leading among likely voters aged 18 to 30 by 60% to the Republican Trump’s 19%.
In terms of global trade, around 37% US advisers said they prefer neither candidate for the presidency, although 32% believe Clinton would be the better choice, compared to 26% for Trump.
“Perhaps ironically, while Trump has talked extensively about being tough on trade deals, US advisors don’t seem to be buying it and have given Mrs. Clinton higher marks in this arena,” explained Lafferty.
Lafferty predicts that between the US election, possible Fed tightening, and the start of Brexit negotiations, market volatility across asset classes will to pick up in last quarter of 2016, extending in the first quarter of next year.
“In this environment of heightened geopolitical risk, market movements are likely to overshadow economic fundamentals, which tend to evolve more slowly. We expect these overreactions will provide ample opportunity to capture better values and/or rebalance accordingly,” he said.
Advisers outside US
In contrast, between 40% to 50% of advisers in the rest of the world believe electing Hillary Clinton as the next president of United States would have a positive impact on investments, with around 15% saying Trump would be a better outcome.
In France, support for Donald Trump among advisers was higher (mid 20’s) than other country which Natixis put down to populist sentiment in the country follow “recent terrorism and immigration issues”.
Age appeared to a major factor for Trump’s backing, with 34% of advisers worldwide aged over 47 saying he would be better for the stock market, with 21% preferring Clinton and 37% supporting neither.
For adviser younger than 47, Clinton showed slight edge over Trump – 23% over 19% - but more nearly half (47%) chose neither.
“Younger advisors are clearly expressing their frustration at both party candidates, but consistent with more general polling data, the Republican nominee does better with older respondents,” said Lafferty.
Globally, 57% of the women surveyed believe Clinton will be better for the stock market, compared to 49% of all advisers. In the US, preferences fall clearly along gender lines, with 36% of women favouring Clinton on stocks while 24% prefer Trump.
Conversely, 28% of male US advisers believe Trump would have the most positive impact on the stock market, versus 20% for Clinton.
On the topic of the global economy, 43% of female US respondents favor Clinton and 19% favor Trump.
Men are more evenly split: 25% prefer Clinton and 28% prefer Trump.