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A Raucous Trump-Biden Debate Emphasized Potential Election-Related Volatility

Yesterday, the first out of the three presidential debates between President Trump and former VP Biden took place in Cleveland, Ohio. The following 6 topics were covered, both men’s records, the Supreme Court, the coronavirus pandemic, the economy, race and violence in cities, and the integrity of the election.

The debate was filled by interruptions, claims from both candidates which were independently fact checked and determined to be false, and personal attacks on each other's character. Many commentators in the media and voters who weighed in online characterized the debate as demoralizing for both sides.

Investors had few of their questions answered, as discussions on policy were virtually non-existent. During one of the worst economic crises the modern world has faced, the two men chose to spend their time relitigating old battles. Those who were looking for specific plans from the candidates on how they will handle the economic recovery were left disappointed.

Making matters worse, it’s becoming increasingly clear that an election night decision on who the next president will be is unlikely to occur. The use of mail-in ballots will prolong the process and generate significant uncertainty.


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