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Can Trump Win a Second Term?

27 October 2020 By Mircea Vasiu

One week from now, the entire world will have its eyes on the United States. The U.S. elections held the headlines for the entire summer, albeit the coronavirus pandemic stole the show for a while. 

However, this week is all about the elections as the markets move in tight ranges. The daylight saving time difference between Europe and the United States also contributes to the relative calm seen in the markets.

So far, the polls credit Biden with a better chance to win the White House. Moreover, some of the polls suggest a “blue” wave – Democrats to win everything (i.e., White House and Congress). Considering that over sixty million Americans already expressed their vote, can Trump still win a second term?

A Few Things to Consider Ahead of November 3rd Vote

To start with, it is the polls. During the last five presidential elections, polls had an average error of about four percent in the last three weeks leading to election day. It means that national polls likely perform better in identifying the favorite candidate, but state polls are more important because the electoral college is responsible for picking the winner.

It happened in the past, so it would not be the first time to see the national polls getting it wrong. For example, Truman won in 1948 by 5% and all the time before the elections, the national polls gave him behind his opposing candidate by more than 4%.

Another curious thing is that in the last four or five decades, no male Democratic presidential nominee won the majority of American voters.

Last but not least, the stock market. A quick look at the incumbents race during the economic recession, and we find out that none won reelection during recession years. However, the stock market is a game-changer in 2020 because it sits at the highs – something that never happened before. Higher stock market prices increase the wealth effect on people, and this may influence the election outcome too.

Of course, everything listed here are just some “curiosities” or things that happened in the past. None is able to indicate precisely who is going to win.

However, one thing is for sure. Despite the polls giving Biden the victory, no one should be surprised by Trump’s win. After all, if polls were wrong in the past, a precedent for surprises exists.

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