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Monday’s record plummet in the stock market is due to a number of complex factors, including the recent rise in wages, so perhaps it’s not entirely fair to blame President Donald Trump for its largest-ever daily point plunge.
Then again, if he’s going to take credit for its gains, logically, he has to take responsibility when it falls.
“The stock market has smashed one record after another, gaining $8 trillion in value,” Trump bragged during last week’s State of the Union address. “That is great news for Americans’ 401(k), retirement, pension and college savings accounts.”
It’s also something he’s mentioned repeatedly on Twitter.
“President Trump is not getting the credit he deserves for the economy. Tax Cut bonuses to more than 2,000,000 workers. Most explosive Stock Market rally that we’ve seen in modern times. 18,000 to 26,000 from Election, and grounded in profitability and growth. All Trump, not 0...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 14, 2018
Unprecedented success for our Country, in so many ways, since the Election. Record Stock Market, Strong on Military, Crime, Borders, & ISIS, Judicial Strength & Numbers, Lowest Unemployment for Women & ALL, Massive Tax Cuts, end of Individual Mandate - and so much more. Big 2018!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 20, 2018
Thus far, the president has been silent about the plunge on Twitter. Luckily, there were plenty of people who had something to say about it.
What... no Tweets from @POTUS about the 2200 pt #stockmarket drop in the last two days? The biggest drop in 9 years? C’mon #Trump... dying to see how you and President @SeanHannity are gonna spin this...— Andy Ostroy (@AndyOstroy) February 5, 2018
Just so I understand — We’re supposed to give Donald Trump credit for the stock market *only* when it’s going UP? pic.twitter.com/L7FWvD8oK0— J. Dice 🎲 (@jdice03) February 6, 2018
2017 was clearly Obama’s economy— Danny Ocean (@The_UnSilent_) February 5, 2018
2018 is now clearly Trump’s economy
Since his unclear & unstable #SOTU the market is down 9% or 2300 points, with today being the largest point drop in market history.
Coincidence? I think not...#stockmarket #DowJones pic.twitter.com/gjTstNfXAG
AAAAHHH!!! Down 1500 points! It's the "Trump Dump"!!! pic.twitter.com/aQN6RMc9eO— Joshua Green (@JoshuaGreen) February 5, 2018
Good time to recall that in the previous administration, we NEVER boasted about the stock market -- even though the Dow more than doubled on Obama's watch -- because we knew two things: 1) the stock market is not the economy; and 2) if you claim the rise, you own the fall.— Jay Carney (@JayCarney) February 5, 2018
Some people were encouraged that Trump seemingly left us very specific instructions on how to handle this situation back in 2015.
But the tweet of Trump saying the “sitting president should be ‘loaded’ into a very big cannon and Shot into the sun at TREMENDOUS SPEED!” turned out to be a fake. And as of Tuesday night, Trump still hadn’t said anything about the market.
Meanwhile, the White House has continued to say the economy is strong, that Trump has been “hardly focused” on the stock market, and that Monday’s historic drop was a “short-term” fluctuation. The market did rally a bit by the end of the day on Monday, gaining back some of its initial loss, and it continued to rise on Tuesday.
“Look, markets do fluctuate in the short term,” said deputy White House press secretary Raj Shah (the same guy who called Trump a “deplorable” in 2016). “We all know that. And they do that for a number of reasons. But the fundamentals of this economy are very strong, and they’re headed in the right direction—for the middle class, in particular.”
The only real takeaway from all this is that the current stock market, much like the current president, is more volatile than most people are comfortable with.
David Britton is a writer and comedian based in Rhinebeck, New York who focuses on internet culture, memes, and viral news stories. He also writes for the Hard Times and is the creator of StoriesAboutWizards.com.