Summary: Republicans face chaos around Trump's political difficulties, causing some to consider potential advantages of a President Pence. Market volatility has not yet brought the DJIA below pre-Trump numbers while the dollar index slides and gold moves up. Meanwhile, household debt is higher than 2008 levels even as fewer Americans own homes.
It looks like I picked a very volatile week to go out to Las Vegas, although I didn't pick this week; the week picked me
I have two conferences that I am attending here: the Las Vegas Money Show and the SkyBridge Alternatives Conference otherwise known as SALT
A lot is going on, certainly the political chaos in the United States, the Dow was down 365 points yesterday based on new revelations with respect to why Donald Trump may have fired FBI Director James Comey
Was he doing it because Comey refused to give up on his investigation of Trump's Russian ties?
Now you've got Congress members on both sides of the aisle questioning whether the allegations are true
Apparently Comey has some contemporaneous notes of conversations he had with Donald Trump
Donald Trump may have asked him to give up the investigation
Although from what I've heard President Trump said it would be nice if Comey gave up the investigation - was that some kind of idle threat?
Did that mean "You'd better do it, or you're fired."
I have no idea, but this obviously is creating concerns for the Trump Administration
The market, as far as I'm concerned, is really not down very much at all, given how much it had rallied based on nothing but the optimism surrounding expectations for all the good things that would happen as a result of a Trump Presidency
We were going to get tax reform, we were going to get regulations; we were going to have all this stimulus
Not only has none of these things materialized yet, even before the scandals broke, it was obvious that even if we got any of the promised legislation
Of course I've always said it would not even help the economy
But regardless, people actually think it it is going to, which created the big stock market rally
Even before this controversy it was obvious that the expected improvements were going to take a lot longer than people thought
Now this is going to delay Trump's agenda even more
Because now, rather than concentrating on tax reform or repealing ObamaCare, or stimulus, now they've got to deal with damage control to hold on to the Presidency and fend off these calls for impeachment
Now they've got to get a special prosecutor and all of this is going to add additional delays
Of course, a lot of momentum we had in Q1, in spite of weak GDP, you had all this confidence, all this enthusiasm on the part of Republicans and Trump voters
And it was all this confidence that was supposed to lead to extra economic growth
Businesses were going to have more confidence to invest and hire
And consumers were going to have more confidence to spend
Well certainly, what is happening now in the White House is going to shake some of that confidence
Some of the people who were so enthusiastic about Trump don't even know if Trump is going to be there anymore
And to the extent that is is there, he is politically damaged
Now he has to use a lot of his political capital just to secure his position rather than to advance his agenda
Whether or not that agenda would actually help the economy
Licence : All Rights Reserved