Shifts in Battleground States, Coronavirus & Election News Impacting Pfizer share price...

Joaquin Monfort | September 28, 2020

In this update, we review the all-important key marginal states where the real election will be lost or won, and look at the relationship between the Coronavirus Trending Topic on the election monitor and potential relationships with certain stocks.

Key takeaways

  • Update on 6 key marginals
  • Pfizer and Apple’s stock price and news about candidates and Coronavirus

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BIDEN FORECAST TO WIN 319 ELECTORAL VOTES

The 2020 presidential election monitor continues to show Joe Biden in a commanding lead, and if an election were held tomorrow he would win by 319 electoral college votes to Trump’s 219.

These are optimized outcomes taken from a predicted range of between 288-359 for Biden and 179 - 250 for Trump. Nevertheless, even if Biden only secured the lowest result in his range - 288 - he would still beat Trump hands down and secure the White House.

Popular polls are also still showing Biden in a comfortable lead, with the election monitor’s poll of polls showing Biden with 49.8% and Trump with 42.7% of the vote.

Last week New Hampshire flipped Republican but the same happened in August, only for the state to flip blue again a few weeks later. What is happening this time around, is New Hampshire likely to stay red or flip flop back again?

It seems this time Trump has actually managed to consolidate his lead, at least so far, with the monitor increasing its projection by 6.6% to 57.5% over the intervening week.

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BATTLEGROUND STATES

We continue our analysis of key battleground states with the updated tables below showing projections for 6 marginals.

The tables don’t just include RavenPack projections but also projections from 3 other leading election monitors, published by The Economist, FiveThirtyEight.com, and JHKForecasts, with an average of all 4 forecasts also included, as well as the changes from a week ago.

Overall, New Hampshire is showing the largest difference between monitor results and North Carolina the smallest.

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In the case of New Hampshire, this is mainly because of the anomalous RavenPack result, which is the only one showing the state falling to Trump with a 57.5% chance of victory. The Economist, in comparison, is forecasting an 86% chance of the Democrats winning.

North Carolina is the most closely fought state at the time of writing, with an average 54.7% chance of Biden winning. It is also the state with the least variance between the 4 monitor’s results: the lowest lies at 54.0% (RavenPack and the Economist) and the highest forecast is 55.8, only 1.8% higher (JHKForecasting). It suggests North Carolina could be one of the most important battlegrounds in 2020.

3 other states - Georgia, Ohio, and Texas have been included because they have shown consistently close polling with neither candidate leading by more than 5% since the start of the campaign.

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Arizona is another state which looks like it may be closely fought. It is currently showing a 55.6% chance of Biden winning, although the reason is because here too the RavenPack monitor is the only one showing the state will go to Trump, and Biden only has a low 32.2% chance of winning whereas the other monitors all give Biden a plus 60% chance of victory.

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Georgia has seen the largest weekly change in projections, with Biden gaining 18.4% compared to the week before, to give him an overall winning chance of 30.6% - still not be enough, nevertheless, to clinch the state.

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CORONAVIRUS + PFIZER + US ELECTIONS

Pharmaceutical stocks are sensitive to the Coronavirus pandemic due to the sector’s role in finding a vaccine or cure - a key issue for Trump the US presidential election.

There is also an interesting correlation between the pharmaceutical company Pfizer’s stock price and the share of news that mentions Trump and Biden alongside COVID-19.

The chart below, accessible by clicking on the Coronavirus ‘Trending Topic’ graphic on the monitor home page, shows the share of news linking Trump and Biden to Coronavirus charted against Pfizer’s stock price, with what looks like a strong relationship, particularly between April and mid-July.

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Compare that to a non-pharma stock like Apple, plotted in the chart below - in which there is no clear correlation - and it further highlights the closer relationship between Pfizer and the candidates’ COVID chatter.

It could possibly even suggest news about Biden or Trump and COVID-19 may be impacting the stock price, offering the potential for further research.

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