International Finance
Wealth Management

Trump’s travel ban: markets spooked

But, investors will be seeking out bargains

Nigel Green

February 1, 2017: US President Donald Trump’s ban on visitors from seven Muslim-majority nations has spooked markets, but clued-up investors won’t be panicking, they’ll be seeking out bargains.

The American markets fell on Monday below 20k, taking their cue from weak European and Asian markets.

For the past few months, a Trump presidency has been widely regarded as positive for stocks. But it appears that the rose-tinted glasses have come off as the travel ban for seven Muslim-majority countries has indicated to investors that there are major geopolitical headwinds brewing as the controversy intensifies.

The markets have been reacting to the fact that last Friday, Trump put a 120-day hold on permitting refugees into the States, an indefinite ban on refugees from Syria, plus a 90-day ban on citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya and four other nations. Many nations, including long-standing US allies, have called the measures divisive and discriminatory.

The markets are jittery, but this is more a bump in the road than a major obstacle – for the moment at least. Markets typically have a knee-jerk reaction to unexpected or controversial geopolitical events.

There is also the argument that markets were overvalued and investors might have been looking for an excuse to sell, and this measure by Trump provided them with that.

Despite Trump’s Muslim ban spooking markets, clued-up investors won’t be panicking, they’ll be seeking out bargains – and perhaps hoping that the sell-off continues.

They will be aware that the world is changing fast. Change means volatility.

Whilst some people are put off investing because of volatility, many of the most successful investors welcome it.  This is because profitable opportunities are found where there are fluctuations and portfolios can be topped- up and advantage can be taken of lower entry points.

Nigel Green is the founder and CEO of deVere Group

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