Call it the election relief rally. Call it the presidential promise rally. Call it an extension of the longest stock rally in a quarter of a century. However one wants to refer to the stock market rally since November, it has been a historic run-up in prices with the S&P 500 stock index increasing more than 10 percent. That’s more than a year’s worth of gains in a third of the time.
Stock rallies have many sparks, but the heat generated in the market since the election of Donald Trump as president rests in no small part on the economic policies he pledged during the campaign: tax reform, infrastructure spending, financial reforms and repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act.
In the week ahead, Trump has his first significant opportunity to back up his campaign rhetoric with presidential political action. On Tuesday night, the president will address a joint session of Congress. In its trappings, this is the annual State of the Union address, but it lacks that title because newly elected presidents are not expected to assess the state of the union before they’ve served a year in office.
Presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway told Politico that the president will “put forth a detailed and deliberative recitation of the many things he’s accomplished in the first 40 days.”
The challenge for Trump and the stock rally, though, is that investors aren’t interested in past achievements. They need confidence that Trump, beyond the status quo-shattering first month in office, has the political skills to navigate his ambitious economic agenda through a fractious Congress.
Financial journalist Tom Hudson hosts “The Sunshine Economy” on WLRN-FM in Miami. Follow him on Twitter @HudsonsView.