It’s likely U.S. and global financial markets will be unmoved as a result of President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address.
In his address to the nation with the theme “Choosing Greatness,” Trump’s second State of the Union address pledged increased fiscal spending, affordable drugs and the protection of American jobs.
"Together, we can break decades of political stalemate," he said.
"We can bridge old divisions, heal old wounds, build new coalitions,” before adding: "An economic miracle is taking place in the United States and the only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous partisan investigations."
Trump reiterated his pledge that ‘the theft of American jobs and wealth’ would end. He made no assurances in regard to free trade, indicating his predilection for managed trade and safeguarding producer interests – defined as "jobs" by Trump – will continue.
Consequently, we don’t forecast financial markets to move significantly following the address, as this is how we already understand the president.
Indeed, last night’s address didn’t provide any major surprises for investors.
Trump didn’t declare a state of emergency over funding for "The Wall," that could allow him to bypass Congress for wall funding, although he did devote much of the speech to border security, referring to illegal immigration as "an urgent national crisis,” saying that working-class Americans are paying the price for illegal immigration.
In addition, the president also refrained from making any off-message comments related to China and the upcoming deadline to reach a trade deal of March 1. Should this deadline pass, the U.S. has said it will hike tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods from 10% to 25%.
Therefore, the markets will, in the main, carry on as they did before.
That said, a large number of the key issues that could affect markets and returns are still up in the air, so, as is always advised, investors need to make sure their portfolios are sufficiently diversified, over asset classes, sectors and geographical regions.
This ensures investors are best-placed to safeguard against risks and make the most of the inevitable opportunities.
Nigel Green is founder and CEO of deVere Group. One of the world’s largest independent financial advisory organizations, de Vere does business in 100 countries and has more than $12 billion under advisement.
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