President Trump, who has taken credit for a rising stock market as a measure of his own success, complained on Twitter Wednesday that “good (great) news” in the economy led to an abrupt decline in stock prices, his first comments about the stock market since its sharp drop earlier this week.
In the early-morning tweet, Mr. Trump lamented that in the “old days,” stocks would rise on good economic news, saying “Today, when good news is reported, the Stock Market goes down. Big mistake.” The tweet did not elaborate on what he meant by the “old days” or explain further his analysis of why stocks plummeted on Friday and Monday.
Until Wednesday’s tweet, the president had been unusually silent about the stock market, which has been rocked by volatility, including a decline in the Dow Jones industrial average of almost 7 percent over two days. At one point on Monday, the Dow was down almost 1,600 points, or about 6 percent of its total value, the markets plunging at the same moment as Mr. Trump was giving a speech in Blue Ash, Ohio. It closed that day down 1,175 points.
Mr. Trump’s assertion that the fall was pegged to good economic news stems from Friday’s job report, which showed wages beginning to rise as the economy nears full employment. Rising wages are good for those who receive them, and for the presidents who seek to stimulate them, but investors see them as a sign of possible inflation and higher interest rates. Analysts pegged the sell-off in stocks to the strong employment numbers as investors feared the Federal Reserve might quicken the pace of its interest rate hikes.
White House officials had released only a terse statement after the market’s decline earlier this week. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, said in a statement on Monday that “the President’s focus is on our long-term economic fundamentals, which remain exceptionally strong, with strengthening U.S. economic growth, historically low unemployment, and increasing wages for American workers.”
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