Grading Obama: The Wall Street Test

The day Obama was sworn into office the stock market dived and Fox News knew who to blame: The President. They called it The Obama Bear Market though the market had been in free fall well earlier. (See transcript after the jump.)

However, now that the President has had time to implement many of his ideas into actual policy, the banking, automobile and housing sectors are back on their feet as the economy has turned around, and the stock market soared to new heights. According to the Bespoke Investment Group, Obama has joined an elite group of Presidents who have Presidencies were marked by rallies in the Dow Jones of 50% or more during their first three years in office:

  • Franklin Delano Roosevelt
  • Bill Clinton
  • Dwight Eisenhower
  • Calvin Collidge
  • Barack Obama

Strangely enough, Fox News has stopped using the stock market as a criteria to judge presidential performance.

Extract from Fox News’ Hannity (March 5, 2009) follows the jump.

Fox News’ Hannity (March 5, 2009)

HANNITY: The Dow is literally tanking. It’s going down here. The president said he’s not watching the gyrations of the stock market.

OBENSHAIN: Oh, my gosh.

HANNITY: I’m thinking, this is like, well, it’s just like a political poll. And I’m thinking, well, a political poll? When people lose now —

OBENSHAIN: Unbelievable.

HANNITY: — we’re heading to 5,000? And people lost, you know, 60 percent of their money?

OBENSHAIN: In two and a half months, Barack Obama has added more to the deficit than George Bush did in eight years fighting two wars and dealing with Katrina. Of course, the markets are in a free-fall, because they recognize what’s happening here.

NICK DiPAOLO (comedian): Exactly.

STEVE MURPHY (Democratic strategist): That’s not what it is, but go ahead, Nick.

OBENSHAIN: That’s part of what it is.

MURPHY: That’s not what it is.

DiPAOLO: The free market is allergic to socialism. This is the reaction you should — the Wall Street — it should be.

HANNITY: Well, wait a minute.

DiPAOLO: Wouldn’t you get scared if it went up?

MURPHY: Nick, they’re all socialists on Wall Street themselves.

HANNITY: Well, but I mean, that’s the point. It is a reaction. Wait, it is a reaction.

DiPAOLO: It’s an allergic reaction to his baloney.

HANNITY: If they had so much faith and confidence in his plan — because, remember, markets don’t react emotionally. Markets react to numbers.

OBENSHAIN: Right.

HANNITY: If they had faith and hope in his plan, why wouldn’t they react more confidently?