Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

It's a Voters' Market

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

It's a Voters' Market

Article excerpt

Portfolio allocation is as important in politics as it is in finance. This applies on the individual level - one's allocation of votes in the ballot booth on election day - and on the macro level - how the voters collectively weigh their party allocations and split or unify party control of the various branches of government.

An alternative approach is individual stock selection - analogous to picking the best candidate regardless of party or the likely outcome in splitting Congress and the White House.

Investment advisers often say that the distribution of one's holdings among stocks (blue chip, small cap, foreign holdings), bonds, and cash may be more important than the specific instruments held. They then apply risk tolerance factors, a time horizon for letting the portfolio grow, and so forth. A citizen can take an allocation approach like this in voting. In Massachusetts, what has turned out to be an excellent Senate race between incumbent Democrat John Kerry and his Republican challenger, Gov. Bill Weld, offers state voters a strategic choice. The men are well matched in ability and training. Mr. Kerry represents the Democratic theme of fairness to the less advantaged, and Mr. Weld mixes liberal positions on social issues like abortion and gay rights with tax-cut fiscal conservatism. Voters here may decide there already is enough Democratic liberalism in Washington and vote to shake up the GOP social conservative monopoly in Washington by sending Weld instead. In presidential races, I would argue, the principal change for the next four years is made on election day. What the winner himself does the next four years may be less important. For example, it is often said that Jimmy Carter's presidency was a disappointment. His decisive loss to Ronald Reagan is taken as an illustration of failure. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.