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What History Tells Us About US Presidential Elections and the Market

Jacob King

Jacob King

It’s natural for investors to look for a connection between who wins the White House and which way stocks will go. But as nearly a century of returns shows, stocks have trended upward across administrations from both parties.

Growth of $100
Fama/French Total US Market Research
March 4, 1929 – June 30, 2020

  • Shareholders are investing in companies, not a political party. And companies focus on serving their customers and growing their businesses, regardless of who is in the White House.
  • US presidents may have an impact on market returns, but so do hundreds, if not thousands, of other factors—the actions of foreign leaders, a global pandemic, interest rate changes, rising and falling oil prices, and technological advances, just to name a few.

Stocks have rewarded disciplined investors for decades, through Democratic and Republican presidencies. It’s an important lesson on the benefits of a long-term investment approach.

Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Their performance does not reflect the expenses associated with the management of an actual portfolio.

In US dollars. Growth of wealth shows the growth of a hypothetical investment of $100 in the securities in the Fama/French US Total Market Research Index. The chart begins with the start of the first full presidential term (March 4, 1929) for which Fama/French Total US Market Research Index data is available and ends on June 30, 2020. Data presented in the growth of wealth chart is hypothetical and assumes reinvestment of income and no transaction costs or taxes. The chart is for illustrative purposes only and is not indicative of any investment.

Fama/French Total US Market Research Index: This value-weighed US market index is constructed every month, using all issues listed on the NYSE, AMEX, or Nasdaq with available outstanding shares and valid prices for that month and the month before. Exclusions: American depositary receipts. Sources: CRSP for value-weighted US market return. Rebalancing: Monthly. Dividends: Reinvested in the paying company until the portfolio is rebalanced.

Eugene Fama and Ken French are members of the Board of Directors of the general partner of, and provide consulting services to, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP.

Dimensional Fund Advisors LP is an investment advisor registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results. Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Beaird Harris Wealth Management, Inc.), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Beaird Harris Wealth Management, Inc.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing. Beaird Harris Wealth Management, Inc. is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of the blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice. A copy of the Beaird Harris Wealth Management, Inc.’s current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available for review upon request.

Adapted from Dimensional’s What History Tells Us About US Presidential Elections and the Market

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