Foreign observers note ‘chaos,’ ‘rancor’ in U.S. presidential debate

“Chaos, interruptions, personal attacks and insults,” one outspoken Chinese newspaper editor said of the U.S. presidential debate. An Australian counterpart said it was “swamped” by the “rancor engulfing America.”

The first debate pitting Republican President Donald Trump against Democratic challenger Joe Biden was not a highlight of political oratory in the eyes of many overseas.

Yet interest ran high for its potential impact on what may be the most consequential U.S. election in years, now just over a month away.

Observers looked for possible impact on financial markets and currencies, although the reaction was muted overall. Share prices slipped further in Japan and the dollar weakened against the Japanese yen and the euro, while U.S. futures were lower, auguring a weak opening on Wall Street.

The debate itself went as expected, said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at Oanda.

“Markets have remained calm as no policy surprises have emerged from the debate so far,” he said. “My initial thoughts are the debate will not move the needle on the Democrat lead in the national polls.”

The greater worry is over how tight the race might be and whether a delay in election results might

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