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Global markets have reacted with surprising equanimity to Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election. After being initially spooked, Wall Street rallied, followed by Asian shares on Thursday. This after all the fears in the lead-up to the polling that a Trump victory would cause markets to crash worldwide.
Perhaps Trump’s victory speech has something to do with it. With his conciliatory and reasonably gracious words, he did something he has not done all election season: took the conventional approach and promised to reach across the aisle and heal a divided nation.
Investors may be hoping this indicates a belated pivot to the centre, including on economic issues. It is somewhat thin gruel, but better than the alternative—a rout based on campaign promises of protectionist economic policies that Trump may or may not ultimately enact. Besides, Republican control of the legislature means the chances of gridlock in Washington have decreased. Whether for better or for worse remains to be seen.