All Eyes on Midterm Elections
The midterm elections that are slated to be held in the United States today will have dramatic ramifications on the country’s politics, as well as on the global markets. Four hundred and thirty-five seats in the House of Representatives will be available and thirty-five slots in the Senate will also be voted upon. The outcome will determine if President Trump’s Republican party will maintain a majority, which would make it easier for him to implement his proposed legislation (especially about healthcare, trade, taxes, and immigration issues), or whether the Democrats will take control of Congress, giving the president substantial opposition.
The markets have already reacted to pre-election predictions, with polls showing a strong turnout for democrats which will alter the current government makeup. U.S. stock markets endured a rocky October, but analysts expect a strong rebound if the Republicans manage to maintain control in the midterm elections. According to a report published by CNBC, the odds of the Republicans losing control of both the House and the Senate are just 10 percent. According to Reuters, the Democrats are expected to take control of the House while the Republicans are expected to maintain control of the Senate.
Asian shares were mixed on Tuesday, with the Nikkei 225 gaining 1.14 percent as of 4:03 p.m. HK/SIN and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index gaining 0.56 percent. Both the Shanghai Composite and the Shenzhen Composite were down, trading 0.23 percent and 0.49 percent lower respectively.
On the oil markets, U.S. WTI futures were down 0.33 percent to $62.89 per barrel and Brent crude futures were down 0.59 percent per barrel, sliding further away from the four-year highs hit in early October, despite the implementation of new sanctions against Iran that went into effect yesterday.