Warren Win Unlikely to ‘Crush’ Equity Market, Bernstein Says

-A +A

(Dec 3): Elizabeth Warren’s run for president won’t necessarily send stocks tumbling, as argued by some on Wall Street like Leon Cooperman and hedge fund manager Paul Tudor Jones, according to Bernstein. Especially if the economy continues to grow.

“Would Warren crush the equity market?” the firm’s Philipp Carlsson-Szlezak and Paul Swartz wrote in a note. “Not so fast...”

The idea that any presidential election, even a “controversial” one, could dominate the equity market throughout 2020 is “difficult to buy into,” they said. “There is a powerful pattern of markets ignoring presidential contests for most of the year,” then catching up in the last six weeks of the race.

That makes it unlikely the stock market would set a value on Warren’s political fortunes for most of 2020 – “irrespective of the consequences of her policy agenda,” they said. Furthermore, the firm sees a “very high bar” for falling stock prices if the expansion continues.

“There are only two instances of negative equity returns in non-recessionary election years,” they point out. One, in 1940, was due to the “fall of Western Europe at the hands of Germany.” The other came in 2000 with the end of the dot-com boom.

“While Warren’s policy agenda is controversial, we’re reluctant to equate it with such secular shocks – even if her policy proposals in such areas as health care, energy, and taxation represent obvious obstacles for investors,” they said.