"Our assumption continues to be that Clinton wins the presidency," John Roberts, director of research of Hilliard Lyons, wrote in response to the current survey. "We are hoping that the Republicans hold both houses, although our base case is that Senate control moves to the Democrats."
By 46 percent to 23 percent, respondents say they want Clinton to win the presidency. In 2012, the survey found respondents wanted Republican nominee Mitt Romney to win.
In the current survey, respondents give Trump a slight 3-point edge on who has the best economic policies. They also favor his policies in three of five specific economic areas asked about in the survey: taxes, business regulation and jobs.
Clinton is judged to have the better polices on trade and budget deficits. And a Clinton victory is judged best for the stock market by 69 percent of respondents, compared with 25 percent for Trump.
For several months, the CNBC survey has found a split where Trump is seen as better for the economy and Clinton for the stock market. Many favor Trump's proposals for tax cuts and loosening business regulations. Yet they fear the trade policies and political instability that could be brought about by a Trump presidency. Respondents say the relative continuity and predictability of a Clinton presidency would be best for equities.
Just under half of respondents, who include economists, fund managers and strategists, say they will mark down their forecast for stock market gains for next year if Trump wins. Among those, the average markdown is about 10 percent to their year-end 2017 S&P 500 forecast. Just under a third of respondents say they won't change their stock market outlook and about a fifth say they will raise their forecasts. The average increase among this group is 8 percent.
But James Bianco, president of Bianco Research, is skeptical that markets will be hurt by a Trump victory. "Trump wins, think Brexit," Bianco wrote. "Everyone thought that would be bad for markets."
And Art Hogan, director of equity research of Wunderlich Securities, said: "We have had elections for 240 years and some crazy ones at that. The world keeps spinning. I bet that will be the case come November 9th."