It’s not unusual to hear gloomy pronouncements from Marc Faber. After all, what can you expect from a man who publishes the Gloom, Boom and Doom Report? But in a recent interview, the legendary contrarian Swiss investor takes a bold stance; one that’s at odds with other pundits. He declared that not only would the U.S. do better economically under Donald Trump, for whom he says he’d vote, but that Hillary Clinton would “…destroy the whole world.”
Precisely how Mr. Faber would vote in the upcoming U.S. presidential election isn’t clear; he’s a Swiss citizen living in Thailand. But he’s not budging, telling Fox News, “I think the markets would sell off 100% if Hillary Clinton becomes president of the U.S.”
It’s a viewpoint that runs counter to other experts, who fear Trump’s personal volatility may see itself reflected in turbulent markets should he be elected to our highest office. Back in March Barron’s suggested many normally steadfast conservatives would “hold their nose” in the interests of market stability and vote for Clinton as the more predictable known quantity.
Questioning Clinton’s Credentials, Boosting Trump’s Policies
When asked for specifics about why he doubts Clinton’s ability to lead the economy, Faber pointed to the Middle East and the failure of our “nation-building” in the region. He went on to discuss aspects of Donald Trump’s policies he says would put the U.S on a firmer international footing. Regarding Trump pronouncements on trade that have given both markets and market-makers pause, Faber said, “I think that maybe we have to find a way to have a more balanced approach to global trade.”
In response to Trump policy positions, particularly regarding China, that experts are concerned would block free trade, Faber said, “I agree that it is negative if you have restrictions on a free market. That, I agree entirely. But you have to equally see that the U.S. has essentially given in on a lot of things that benefit other countries.” It’s important to note while such talk may make Wall St. nervous, trade is one area where the presumptive Republican nominee finds support among independents and centrist Democrats who lack confidence in Clinton’s resolve on such thorny issues.
While Clinton now opposes the Trans-Pacific Partnership, called the TPP, she supported the trade talks as Secretary of State. Trade is a wedge issue that gives Trump an opportunity to expand his appeal among working Americans; also one where Clinton’s nuanced stance comes off sounding like a policy wonk.
“”Maybe we have to find a way to have a more balanced approach to global trade,” Faber asserted, “I’m not saying protectionism, but the more balanced approach that is fair to the developed world,” including the U.S., Japan and Europe. For a Swiss investor who lives in Thailand, Faber may have a clearer grasp on the challenges facing working Americans than one, or more, of our current presidential candidates.