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The US Midterms: Uncertainty in the Forecast

November 10, 2022 - 2 MINUTE READ

Election day has come and gone, with the votes still being counted. Which party will control the House and the Senate are yet to be decided. While the outcome of the election will impact what legislation has a chance of getting passed through Congress, the present uncertainty may not have as big of an effect on markets in the long term.

All 435 seats in the House were up for election this year, with Republicans favored to take the House and Senate leaning towards Democrats.1 It could be weeks before we know the final results. Control of the Senate will come down to a few key states; Arizona, Nevada, and Georgia. The state of Georgia will likely go to a runoff election on December 6th. Democrats need to win 2 of these states to split the upper chamber 50-50. Vice President Kamala Harris holds the tiebreaking vote, which would give them a 51-49 majority.

You may be surprised how these elections affect the market in the long term according to Denise Chisholm, director of quantitative market strategy at Fidelity Investments.1 “We’ve seen the best average returns in the 12 months following the midterm elections. 1The worst average returns with the highest variability in outcomes historically have been in the 12 months preceding the midterm election.”

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Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Data spans from November 30, 1950, to August 31, 2022. Years represent the 12-month period from November 30 to November 30 following a US presidential or midterm election. The chart depicts the average, minimum, and maximum price return achieved during this period. Stocks are represented by the S&P 500. Indexes are unmanaged. It is not possible to invest in an index. Source: Haver, FactSet, FMR. As of 9/7/2022.

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