Election 2012: The bottom line for your portfolio

No matter who wins in November, our advisors have you covered.

By InvestorPlace Nov 5, 2012 3:02PM

IPLOGOVoter voting in polling place Hill Street Studios, Blend Images, Getty ImagesWith the presidential election just a day away, the headlines are full of the latest polls, debate gaffes, and battle plans. But how will the results affect investors like you?

Four of InvestorPlace Media's top advisors sat down and discussed how the election will shape the investing landscape. Here's what they had to say:

Hilary Kramer: An Obama victory will boost health care, clean energy

Strategy: Picking growth winners in a volatile market

Her take: If Mitt Romney wins, I would look for opportunities in energy, especially U.S. drilling companies. I would expect to see much more natural gas production, boosted by the newest technologies, such as fracking.

One of my favorite plays in that space is Halliburton (HAL). Romney has also pledged to reduce the size of the federal government and lighten regulation, which means financial companies would likely benefit. Specifically, the big banks such as JPMorgan (JPM) and Citigroup (C) should do especially well. They've been struggling to comply with new financial reform laws, and some of these regulations could be rolled back under a Romney presidency.

If President Obama is re-elected, I think you have to look at hospital and health care services companies as "Obamacare" continues to be implemented more broadly. There is plenty to debate about the specifics, but the bottom line is that more people would have coverage. You'd also have to consider green energy. Companies that provide air-pollution reduction and control services should thrive as Obama continues to push for clean air and NOx emission reduction.

One name I've followed for a while is CECO Environmental (CECE), which helps companies remove airborne contaminants and pollutants from some of the largest industrial facilities in the world. Fuel Tech (FTEK) provides these services to utilities, industrial and energy companies and should thrive in a second Obama term.

Louis Navellier: A ramp into year-end -- either way

Strategy: Growth-stock investing focused on fundamentals

His take: The market is likely to do just fine no matter who is elected. While the major indices typically stumble in early October in election years, this dip is both temporary and an opportunity. In fact, about half an election year's average gains are made between the October lows and year-end. So regardless of who becomes the next president, I expect certainty to return to the market in November.

With that said, there are a few areas that will outperform depending on who sits in the Oval Office. If Mitt Romney is elected, I expect to buy more domestic energy stocks, since one of his main objectives is to create more jobs in the energy sector. If President Obama is re-elected, I expect that blue-chip companies will ramp up stock buybacks as the tax rate on dividends may increase. This shift will boost earnings and make this class of stocks more attractive. We may also see a stronger outlook for global stocks that have a tax advantage compared to U.S. companies.

Ahead of the election, an investor's best defense is a strong offense -- this is the time of year when fundamentals matter most. If you're not sure how to evaluate a stock based on its fundamentals, I have an easy-to-use proprietary screening tool, Portfolio Grader, which rates stocks across a number of fundamental criteria. Take a look and see how your portfolio stacks up!

Dan Wiener: Energy, industrial stocks will love a Romney win

Strategy: Unlocking upside from Vanguard mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs)

His take: No matter who wins on Nov. 6, I don't see interest rates moving higher or lower in the near term, so yields will remain punk. That means high-yielding stocks such as the battleship balance sheet companies owned by funds like Vanguard Dividend Growth (VDIGX) and Vanguard Equity Income (VEIPX) will remain in demand.

A Romney win will most likely mean "drill, drill, drill." I'd expect investors to bid up prices of stocks in the energy sector, so a fund like Vanguard Energy (VGENX) should do well. Ditto companies in heavily regulated industries like chemicals, which may see an easing of restrictions, so sector ETFs like Vanguard Industrials ETF (VIS) and Vanguard Materials ETF (VAW) could benefit.

A second Obama term should be fine for financials, as there's no uncertainty about what's going to happen in the sector -- Dodd-Frank is already on the books and stays in place. So, Vanguard Financials ETF (VFH) could be a good bet.

No matter who wins the White House, just the fact that the unease and uncertainty around the election will be over (unless we have another "hanging chads" moment) should be good for the markets overall. So, while it's fun to speculate over which sectors will rise and which will fall, my preference as always is to stay diversified.

Richard Band: Dividends are still king

Strategy: Low-risk, long-term investing with dividend opportunities

His take: Despite the coming tax changes, dividend stocks still offer income, appreciation, and an admirable level of safety.

The balance of power favors Democrats no matter who wins the election. Democrats will control the Senate and the White House during the lame-duck session, so they can force concessions from the Republicans by threatening to take us over the fiscal cliff well into 2013.

I expect investors will face at least some tax increases in 2013. But I don't believe the dividend tax will go up as much as Wall Street had feared earlier; a ceiling of 20% or 25% seems more probable now.

Thus, I see a buying opportunity shaping up over the next few weeks in high-dividend stocks -- especially those yielding 3% or more. Good values cut across sector and industry lines. Some of my favorites include PG&E Corp. (PCG) in the utility space; McDonald's (MCD) among the restaurants; Intel (INTC) in the tech sector; and Chevron (CVX) among the oils.

More from our experts

Nov 6, 2012 2:09PM
whom ever wins they still have to contend with a do nothing congress!!  they need replaced to!!!!!!!!!!
Nov 6, 2012 9:18AM
More gridlock If the congress stays the same!
Nov 6, 2012 11:27AM
Bottom line for your portfolio no matter who gets elected is: screwed blued and tattooed.
Nov 6, 2012 2:02PM
That has always been a dilemma for the wealthy in this country in controlling the government. If they take too much money out of the economy (by tax preferences; inheritance tax reductions, etc.), they make more poor people who would vote against their interests. Deficit spending by the government can hide this wealth transfer, but eventually has to be paid back. Since the poor are already poor, it falls on those who have assets / wealth. The wealthy is trying to make the middle class pay for the payback. The decline of 8% of the middle class into the lower class is just the beginning. The ranks of the unemployed swell and employers will continue to pressure workers to accept less and less for their services. Deflation occurs and the GDP falls as fewer and fewer of the masses has the money / assets to purchase and the deflationary spiral continues until you have a large poor class and a small wealth class and a small GDP. Third world status is achieved as the poor become destitute, unhealthy, uneducated, unproductive, and restive.
Nov 6, 2012 1:14PM
If Oblame-a is elected next year will be known as the Coffee Can Economy.  Take what little money you have left and bury it in the back yard in a coffee can before the democrats get their greedy little hands on it and expect to hear them digging in your back yard at night.
Nov 6, 2012 1:32PM
Anyone who claims to be an "expert" and says that the two largest tax increases in US history (Obama care and the higher tax on small businesses to more than fifty percent including state income tax in some locations) and the mandatory cuts in Sequestration, that Obama has said he will not fight, will make no difference really needs to examine the issues and stop calling themselves an expert. Obama care is disastrous for doctors and healthcare providers. If you believe that insurance companies will be strengthened by Healthcare on demand, you are deceiving yourself. Wake up and smell the Starbucks.Obama will continue to squander our hard earned tax dollars on poor private sector green energy companies that his friends started (over 90 billion) and they will go out of business or the cars will catch on fire (Volt) or explode in hurricanes (Fisker).  We will all be a lot poorer if Obama wins.

Vote Romney today.

Nov 6, 2012 1:11PM
I can't wait to pay more taxes if Oblame-a wins.  Also, it will be awesome to listen to him blame Bush for the next four years as the economy even worsens with this Socialists failed government spending of dollars they don't have.  If I was a stupid union dolt I would vote for him for sure.
Nov 6, 2012 12:26PM
Anyone believe that whoever is the next president could not make a case for his entire term to be a repair job on this administrations mistakes?
What if it is the same administration?



Nov 6, 2012 2:15PM
If the congressmen want to retain their jobs, they will have to answer to their electorate.  If the masses say they want things done, compliance is not an option.
Nov 6, 2012 2:13PM

Katie, Obamacare lessens the dependency on Medicare and Medicaid, and will save the American tax payers billions in the long run reducing our tax burden significantly.

Obamacare allows children up to 26 to stay on their parents insurance plan, so every time one falls out of a dorm window tax payers wont flip the bill in the emergency room.

Obamacare allows those with pre-existing conditions to purchase insurance and not go bankrupt and get on medicare, burdening the tax payers.

Republicans who have voiced favor for a individual mandate for health insurance in the past,

Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, John McCain, Tommy Thompson, Chuck Grassley, Bob Bennet, Orin Hatch, Jim DeMint, and the Heritage Foundation. If you think voting Republican will repeal Obamacare your sadly mistaken, Republicans secretly love it.


Nov 6, 2012 2:44PM

and the stock market's reflecting a Romney win, and finally we as a nation can EXHALE!! relax and get back to prosperity and REAL jobs, REAL PAYING, permanent  jobs not some temp nonsense


I welcome President Romney

Nov 6, 2012 2:50PM
Economics`101:   Massive gov't debt = higher taxes+higher interest+higher inflation!   i.e Greece; Spain.
Nov 6, 2012 3:33PM

Back in the good old bad days, everyone worked, starved, or had someone else who worked and supported them.  Family structures were like that.  People had children who they hoped would take care of them when they could no longer work / support themselves. 

The working class has to support those who do not work as well as those who choose not to work, or are wealthy.  The poor and the wealthy both are supported by those who work for a living generating goods / services.  The very rich and the very poor both consume far more goods and services than they provide back to the economy.  They are both net consumers and not producers. When you have too many of each of these groups, you'll have less productive economic activity.

Nov 6, 2012 3:09PM

The economy works by the transfer of goods and services to each other.  When money is taken out of circulation by those of us fortunately enough to be able to save / hoard money, it reduces the amount of money in circulation. 

When money is saved / hoarded, it takes money out of the public bucket and reduces the amount left in it for everyone else.  The Great Depression was one of those situations where most of the money was out of the bucket (as are recessions).  No money, no jobs, no spending.  

The government puts money back into the system (bucket) to get money moving again (expansion of the money supply courtesy of the FED).  They get it back as the money moves from one person's pocket to another's by the way of taxes.  However, money stashed away doesn't generate much activity in the economy.  The wealthy shouldn't have been allowed to have that much money that they can't even spend it all in their lifetimes in the first place. The problem isn't that there isn't enough wealth.  It's the uneven distribution of it. Money put into the hands of those who spend it creates more economic activity than those who just invests it.

Nov 6, 2012 5:36PM


"Psched: You really need to kick the MSNBC habit. The wealthy are a diverse group. Most work extremely hard and many hours per week. Most I know grew up poor or came from another country for the opportunities that were not available in their country. The American Dream, oh that's right, Obama wants to kill that. Job One."

It's like the military.  Having a commander is useful to direct activities and resources, but having a lot of them, is overkill and they all need someone who actually does the work.

I don't "work" for a living.  I direct others to do the work for me, but I know my contribution is merely providing opportunities for others who do the actual tasks.

The American Dream was once "to own a home," 10 years ago, and now it's to have a steady job as the defining criteria as surveyed recent as what defines middle class.  The middle class has been steadily losing buying power since 1999 when adjusted for inflation.  We went from a one wage earner family in the 50's & 60's where minimum wage was able to sustain a middle class lifestyle, to having a two wage earner working 3 jobs at minimum wage barely being able to sustain themselves.  At the same time there are more and more millionaires and billionaires who do little more than to try to find new ways to amuse themselves. 

The middle class is slowly being bled to death until we equal the workforce of third world countries.

Nov 6, 2012 5:21PM


"That is a "bucket" of something. 

The Government is inefficient. They must pay large pensions and use expensive workers to do the same thing the private sector can do significantly cheaper and more efficiently. The best thing the Government can do is get out of the way and let the private sector do their job.  

Case and point: We had a tree fall in front of our house. The city sent out workers to remove the tree. They had 1 guy holding the flag on each side of the tree, two guys watching and one guy sawing. Any business person would cringe at that inefficiency or just look at the DMV (or healthcare next year).."

Yes the government is inefficient, but it's not in the business to make money.  If it were, it would be communist.  Government spending is always wasteful.  The military is the case in point as are all the government departments (except the IRS).  They all lose money.  But at the same time, would you want your military run like the credit rating agencies (that certified junk mortgages as AAA rated investments), or left to the "honesty" of the marketplace (where profit comes before consumers)?  The government also funds (loses money) on research which no private company would spend money on like space technology, or nuclear energy.  Road, bridges, water projects, conservation restoration (after being pilfered by private enterprise to make a fast buck), healthcare, Social Security, education, etc are just a few things that aren't profitable enough for private enterprise to invest in. Could they do it cheaper? No doubt but that also means more auditors / inspectors and more overhead costs.  It's a case of how much do you spend to how much you save equation.

Nov 6, 2012 4:01PM

You really need to kick the MSNBC habit. The wealthy are a diverse group. Most work extremely hard and many hours per week. Most I know grew up poor or came from another country for the opportunities that were not available in their country. The American Dream, oh that's right, Obama wants to kill that. Job One.
Nov 6, 2012 1:45PM
Obama stock markets soar

Republicans stock markets crash
Nov 6, 2012 2:45AM
In 2001 gas prices were about $1.30 per gallon, after 8 years of drill baby drill under Bush, gas prices rose to about $4.30 per gallon in 2008, great for investors, but the American people are the ones who got DRILLED.
Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.


StockScouter rates stocks from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best, using a system of advanced mathematics to determine a stock's expected risk and return. Ratings are displayed on a bell curve, meaning there will be fewer ratings of 1 and 10 and far more of 4 through 7.

123 rated 1
262 rated 2
480 rated 3
651 rated 4
649 rated 5
629 rated 6
616 rated 7
496 rated 8
346 rated 9
111 rated 10

Top Picks

TAT&T Inc9



Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.

Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.

Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.