With Hillary Clinton leading in the polls, there has been a feeling of a safety net in place for the markets and the economy. It's because a HRC win would be somewhat neutralized by the Republican majorities in the Senate and the House. But then there's the Trump wild card factor and the little matter of the civil war he's started in the Republican party.
In the past few weeks, Donald Trump has been throwing punches at everyone from House Speaker Paul Ryan to Senator John McCain. Once Ryan said he would no longer defend or campaign for Trump, Trump declared on Twitter: "It's so nice that the shackles have been taken off me and I can now fight for America the way I want to."
All of this inter-feuding has created a new uncertainty for the markets and the election.
What happens if the Democrats not only sweep the White House but also the House and Senate, too? Then you potentially have a very anti-business agenda coming from the White House and a very difficult healthcare/pharma/bio landscape. There's also concern of a lower retail environment with a zero percent chance of lowered corporate tax. And none of this sounds good to Wall Street.
Back in August when I checked in with the finance community, industry professionals were starting to lean towards casting a Clinton vote in November (60 percent of the people in my highly unscientific poll). But it was Trump who had gained ground in the national polls as we moved from late summer to early fall. And here we are in October still digesting #Trumptapes and a Republican Party meltdown.
I reached out to finance professionals to see what their current opinion was of the election and its effects on the markets. And it's more divided than ever.
"It feels like folks have started to turn on Trump," said Joe, a sales trader Joe. "They hate HRC, but it's hard to stomach Trump. Even over here (his firm) which is a very conservative shop and not terribly politically correct."
But I found almost as many Trump supporters. "I'm still voting for Trump," Randy, a hedge-fund trader, said. "But he needs to stop going after the Republican Party. He'll be fine if he sticks to the issues." Although it's divided—no one seems to be pulling out the pompoms for either candidate. "Trump is a douche," Amy, a sales trader, said. "But I'm still voting for him."