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Contested US election is investors' biggest fear - survey

Mon, 28th Sep 2020 10:10

(Sharecast News) - A disputed US presidential election has outstripped Covid-19 to be the biggest concern for investors, according to a survey.
DeVere Group asked more than 700 clients what their biggest investment worry was for the rest of 2020. A contested US election was the overwhelming concern with 72% of respondents saying it was their biggest fear. Covid-19 was the second biggest worry with 18%. The US-China trade dispute was the third biggest worry with 5%.

The results reflect the nearness of November's US election and doubts about the outcome. President Trump has refused to say he would step down if Joe Biden, his Democratic challenger, wins the vote. Trump has also tried to undermine confidence in postal ballots, of which there will be a record number because of Covid-19.

Trump's comments have raised fears about a long period of uncertainty resembling the disputed result in 2000 or a full-blown constitutional crisis if Trump refuses to accept a Biden victory. A disputed poll is likely to cause volatility in financial markets and undermine investor confidence with the global economy battered by the effects of Covid-19.

Nigel Green, deVere's chief executive, said: "Investors around the world are beginning to freak about the US presidential election. But not about whether Trump or Biden wins, rather over the looming possibility of a disputed outcome.

"President Trump is already questioning the legitimacy of the election, heightening the chances of a contested result and an ensuing constitutional crisis in the world's largest economy."

The survey covered 735 people in the UK, North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Africa and Latin America. A Washington Post-ABC poll showed Biden with a 10-point national lead over Trump, holding steady from before the Democrats and Republicans held their virtual conventions in August, suggesting there could be a clear national result but the election will be decided in a handful of swing states.

The candidates go head to head in their first televised debate on Tuesday.

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