President Donald Trump has officially presided over the end of America’s longest bull market post World War II as markets slid yet again on Christmas Eve.
The movement was helped along by Trump’s treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin — who spooked the markets over the weekend with an announcement that the country's banks are fine, even though no one suspected they were not — as well as the president’s own actions, from ongoing trade wars to his criticism of Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell — and recent reports that he wants Powell fired.
Trump and his top deputies are focused on trying to stop the market slide, but they are helping drive the market down even further.
On Monday, the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index closed in a bear market, meaning the longest bull market for stocks in the modern U.S. history has officially come to an end. (A bear market is a 20 percent decline from the all-time high, which occurred in September.)
Trump blames Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome H. Powell, his own choice for the post, for the steep stock sell-off. Many on Wall Street say Trump deserves some blame, too.
The stock market was only open a half-day Monday. It’s typically a sleepy day with little trading because everyone just wants to go home and eat. But not this time. The major indexes fell sharply and the world watched as America’s long bull run that began in March 2009 ended.
The S&P 500, the most widely held U.S. stock index, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq, are both in bear markets. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is very close. The stock slide began in October and escalated in December.