Home/About/Press/Politics and the Stock Market: Motif Investing Maps Republican, Democratic Policies to Returns

Politics and the Stock Market: Motif Investing Maps Republican, Democratic Policies to Returns


“Clean” Technology, Gender Discrimination Show Losses; Investments in Health Food, Guns and U.S. Manufacturing Stand Up Better

San Mateo, CA, Oct. 2, 2012

(BUSINESS WIRE)—Motif Investing, the company that pioneered ideas-based stock investing, has tapped its powerful financial-analytics engine to examine how voters can translate politics into potential investment strategies in today’s stock market. The early, hypothetical results from deploying these politically tinged strategies—just like the current poll numbers tracking President Obama and challenger Mitt Romney—are fairly split between red and blue. Motif Investing highlighted the results of its analysis in an infographic which can be viewed here.

Motif offers customers the ability to invest in portfolios of stocks linked by a common theme, such as tablet computing, global inflation or home improvement. But the company, inspired by the upcoming federal election, recently added some new motifs and re-examined several existing ones to take a pulse on how some of the candidates’ public-policy positions could have fared, return-wise, if they had been organized around a stock motif. For example, Motif’s “modern warfare” motif—comprised of defense companies making the weapons systems Republicans appear to be unable to cut from their budget—is up 19.6% over the past year. Another motif that leans toward the Republican agenda, the “All American” basket of companies selling products only in the U.S., surged nearly 26.9%.

Obama’s team has had some winners too. The “Senior Care” motif, which tracks assisted-living companies, dialysis providers and Medicare insurers, among others, is up almost 26.6% over the past year–even as Republicans stand poised (at least according to the Democrats) to shift more Medicare costs to seniors. Two other left-leaning motifs, one focused on gay-friendly companies and another on companies led by women CEOs, have logged large hypothetical gains.

“Our foray into policy-tracking obviously isn’t completely scientific,” said Hardeep Walia, Motif’s chief executive officer. “But we think our politically-oriented motifs offer a fascinating window into how each candidate’s policy positions are playing out in real economic terms today.”

Just as some polls show President Obama with a slight, widening lead over Mitt Romney, Motif’s “Democratic Donors” motif—made up of companies led by major Democratic donors—has pulled ahead of its competing “Republican Donors” motif this year. Companies headed by left-focused CEO donors, including Time Warner, Google and Microsoft, are up nearly 39.5% in the past year, while companies in the Republican motif—Goldman Sachs, Exxon Mobil and Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas Sands—increased 28.1% in the same period.

Other politically-oriented motifs and their one-year returns include:

  • “Income Inequality,” high-end and low-end retailers serving a society of extremes. Republican, up 21.9%.
  • “Drill Baby Drill,” energy exploration and drilling companies. Republican, up 14.7%.
  • “Betting on America,” companies increasing their investment in US operations. Democratic, up 25.1%.
  • “Cleantech Everywhere,” solar, smart-grid and battery companies. Democratic, down 17.0%.

About Motif Investing
Motif Investing is an online broker that lets you invest in ideas. The company, based in Silicon Valley, is changing the face of online investing through an innovative new platform that allows individuals to invest in stock and bond portfolios based around everyday ideas and broad economic trends—and share those ideas with friends. Motif is a registered broker-dealer and a member of FINRA. The company’s investors include Foundation Capital, Ignition Partners and Norwest Venture Partners. Learn more at www.motifinvesting.com.

Investing in securities involves risk, you should be aware of prior to making an investment decision. An investment in individual stocks, or a collection of stocks focused on a particular theme or idea, such as a motif, may be subject to increased risk of price fluctuation over more diversified holdings due to adverse developments which can affect a particular industry or sector. The views and opinions contained herein are intended for informational purposes only and not representative of results an investor can expect to achieve.

Performance data was pulled as of 9/27/2012. Performance data and returns are based on past and are not representative of results an investor could expect to achieve. The 1-year return shows how a particular benchmark motif could have performed over the last 12 months. Stated returns of individual motifs do not take into consideration certain fees and/or commissions, corporate actions, or other activity that can affect the return an investor could expect to incur. The performance results attempt to follow a standardized and consistent methodology for performance reporting. While we believe the performance data is gathered from reliable sources, the information that generates performance results uses historical data that we believe to accurate but has not been validated and may contain errors in pricing or other conditions. For detailed information on how we calculate returns, please visitwww.motifinvesting.com.

Marisa Lam
GMK Communications for Motif

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