Stocks on Donald Trump's 'Hit List' Feel the Pain
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Donald Trump likely doesn't have a corporate "hit list" per se, however, several stocks are trading like they are on this imaginary list after he won the election. Like voters, stocks often trade on emotions. Therefore, if you are an investor and think a company you own may be the target of a President Trump backlash you might want to discount that. This is what appears to be happening in a few stocks over the last two trading sessions since Trump was elected.
Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) - It is very clear, Donald Trump and Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos don't like each other. Some of this stems from Bezos' ownership of the Washington Post, which has been very critical of Trump. In a December 2015 tweet, Bezos said he reserved a spot for Trump on his he Blue Origin rocket with the hashtag #sendDonaldtospace. Bezos also said Trump "erodes our democracy." For his part, Trump, in the past, removed Washington Post reporters from the press corp following him and, more importantly and dire, said that Amazon has "huge anti-trust issues." Today, in a tweet Bezos congratulated Mr. Trump for winning the presidency, saying, " I for one give him my most open mind and wish him great success in his service to the country." Shares of Amazon are down 6% over the past two trading sessions.
Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL): On the campaign trail, Donald Trump repeatedly said he want to force Apple to make its products in the U.S. versus China, or slap them with a tariff. He also called for a boycott of Apple products after the iPhone maker refused to give the FBI access to the San Bernardino terrorist's iPhone. In addition, he will seek to force companies to repatriate overseas cash, although at a tax holiday 10% rate. For its part, Apple didn't support this year's Republican National Convention. In a letter to employees this morning commenting on the election, CEO Tim Cook said: "We have a very diverse team of employees, including supporters of each of the candidates. Regardless of which candidate each of us supported as individuals, the only way to move forward is to move forward together." Shares are down 3% since the Trump win.
Facebook (NASDAQ: FB): Facebook was accused of having a liberal bias, with Gizmodo reporting that employees responsible for the “trending” list had suppressed conservative articles. In addition, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was an outspoken Hillary Clinton supporter. In a Facebook post after the election, Zuckerberg said: "Holding Max, I thought about all the work ahead of us to create the world we want for our children. This work is bigger than any presidency and progress does not move in a straight line." Shares are down 5% since the Trump win.
Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL): Wikeleaks documents showed a close relationship between Alphabet Chairman Eric Schmidt and the Clinton campaign. E-mail showed that Schmidt met with Clinton advisor John Podesta and was interested in becoming head outside advisor. Also, Google results were said to show a liberal bias. Shares are down 4% since the Trump win.
Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX): CEO Howard Schultz publicly supported Hilary Clinton calling her the 'obvious' choice. This led to Trump supporters calling for a boycott of Starbucks. Yesterday, Schultz said he was stunned by the election results. Shares are down 1% since the Trump win.
Ford (NYSE: F): On the trail, Trump was very critical of the company's Mexican investments and warned he would place tariffs on autos made out of the country but shipped back in. Following his election, Ford congratulated Trump and vowed to work with him. Shares are up 4% since the Trump win.
United Technologies (NYSE: UTX): On the trial, Trump called out the company for moving its Indiana plant to Mexico, moving some 2100 jobs. Shares are up 3% since the Trump win.
While investors are showing some nervousness, the hope is that this was all campaign rhetoric and Trump will not retaliate once he is sworn in. That said, this goes to show that maybe public company CEOs, to protect their shareholders, should really remain publicly neutral on elections. And maybe Mr. Bezos should give up his publishing ambitions.
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Related EntitiesDonald J. Trump, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg
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