Election 2020 Update: Trump Vs Biden Race Heats Up
Shain Vernier • 2 min read
With a little over a month to go until Election Day, the U.S. presidential race is tightening up. The contest between incumbent POTUS Donald Trump and challenger Joe Biden has become one of the closest and most heated in recent history. Going into 3 November 2020, there are very few analysts that genuinely believe there is a clear-cut frontrunner.
No doubt about it, 2020 has been filled with controversy. The onset of COVID-19, social unrest, and last week’s passing of Supreme Court justice Ginsburg have all driven political angst to new heights. So, how will the election pan out? The answer to that question is anyone’s guess, but here are a few current metrics to ponder:
- National Polls: The national average at Real Clear Politics (RCP) has Biden ahead of Trump by 6.6 points.
- Battleground States: As in 2016, Election 2020 will come down to a few contested states. Currently, RCP has Biden ahead in Florida (+1.3), Pennsylvania (+4.3), Michigan (+5.2), Wisconsin (+6.6), Arizona (+3.2), and North Carolina (+0.8).
- Political Markets: Over at Predictit.org, shares of Biden “Yes” are selling for $0.58; Trump “Yes” are going for $0.45 per share.
- Betting Odds: Offshore sportsbooks have Biden (-125) as a slight favorite to win over Trump (+109).
For the moment, Election 2020 looks to be a toss-up. While Biden is ahead in pretty much all of the polls, the data isn’t reliable. The polls in 2016 had Hillary Clinton winning big in almost every contested state ― this proved categorically false. If nothing else, 2016’s result taught us that polls are far from gospel.
Who Will It Be? Trump Or Biden?
There are a myriad of factors that will determine the final vote tally in this year’s election. Perhaps the single largest issue is mail-in voting. Many states have already gone to an exclusively mail-in format, with the implications yet to be seen.
Concerns over large-scale fraud are being voiced by opponents of mail-in balloting, led by the White House. Earlier this week, President Trump suggested that the election’s outcome is likely to be decided in the Supreme Court. So, while 3 November 2020 is Election Day, the final verdict may take some time to render.
Overview: As you can see from the chart above, September has been a rough month for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA, DOW). Values are off more than 5% over the past four weeks as investors are limiting exposure due to election uncertainty. However, U.S. stocks remain in bullish territory relative to last March’s COVID-19 panic selloff.
The key thing to remember about the coming month is that uncertainty will rule the market. No one really knows who will win, Trump or Biden. In addition, there is significant ambiguity regarding how long it will take the election to be decided. These two variables make massive swings in equities, commodities, and currencies probable. As active traders, all we can do is be ready for anything and wait for Election 2020 to play out.