Facing what could be a lengthy ballot to determine the next US president, Wall Street investors said they would closely monitor election results in some counties to get early signs of the counting.
Reuters is a watch list compiled after interviews with more than a dozen investors and political analysts advising them. They are among the most important counties in the most decisive states, as well as districts that can shed light on certain demographics or national trends.
The list is not definitive – there are certainly other races that investors are watching, and it remains to be seen which counties prove to be predictive.
Maricopa County: The most populous county in the battlefield, and President Donald Trump, a Republican, won in 2016 by nearly 3 points. Many investors saw Marykopa as one. The county had 1.25 million ballots on October 26.
Broward County: A strong Democratic county in southeast Florida, investors said that Broward could indicate how much enthusiasm for Democratic contender Joe Biden among young and Latino voters.
Duval county: In the city of Jacksonville, Trump captured DuVall in the 2016 election with only 6,000 of the more than 400,000 votes cast.
Jefferson county: East of Thalassi, small North Florida counties supported former President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012, but flipped Trump in 2016. It is seen again by investors as a potential “axis” county.
Miami-Dade County: Miami-area Kinnar, County is Florida’s most populous area. In the last three elections, solidly Democrat, investors saw it as a bell for pro-Biden voting.
Monroe county: In another axis counties of Florida, the Florida Keys voted for Obama twice but changed to Trump in 2016.
Pinellas county: The county, which includes St. Petersburg on Florida’s central west coast, easily flipped to Trump in 2016 after falling in favor of Obama in 2008 and 2012. Investors said the county’s older population could be an indicator for Trump’s support among seniors.
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Seminole County: Trump scored 1.5 points in the semi-finals in 2016, which was lower than Republican candidate Mitt Romney’s 2012 difference of 6.5 points to Obama.
Sumer County: Villages in Orlando’s West Florida County, a huge retirement community recently featured in the news for its pro and anti-Trump political rallies. Republicans have won the last three presidential elections, so investors are looking at Trump’s margin this time as a sign of support from older voters.
Kent CountyOnce viewed as a Republican stronghold, according to political experts, this county is one where Democrats are hoping to gain significant gains among suburban voters. Below Romney’s margin of 7.7 points, Trump won at Kent by a margin of 3 points.
Macomb County: The county endorsed Obama twice before giving Trump a double-digit victory in 2016. Four years ago, Hillary Clinton overtook Obama by more than 9 points, and investors would be watching to see if Biden could do better.
Monroe county: The type of blue-collar county that helped Trump win Michigan in 2016, Monroe County struggled to realize the kind of job he promised as a candidate. Jobs at Munro have fallen by about 3% since Trump took office.
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Bladen County: Small southeastern North Carolina County is one third African-American. Bladen could be a sign of a state-wide black turnout, with a national implication that would favor Democratic candidates, Biden and Cal Cunningham, in a tight Senate race. Trump left the county in 2016 after Obama went twice.
Durham County Investors say the overwhelmingly democratic Durham region is an indicator of suburban enthusiasm for Biden and Democrats.
Granville county: The small north-central county is about one-third African-American. Like Bladen, it could be a sign of state-wide black voting. Trump won the county in 2016 after being blue in 2008 and 2012.
Mecklenburg county: Large Charlotte-area counties are solidly blue and voting there may be an indicator of Democratic voter enthusiasm.
Trumbull County: Obama won Trumbull County by 23 points in 2012. Trump vowed to bring back construction works in 2016 with scores over 6. The county has seen a 7.4% drop in jobs under Trump.
Wood countyAnother Ohio county that has flipped from Obama to Trump, Wood is home to several Toledo suburbs where Democrats hope to gain a foothold with voters. Trump won the county by 8 points in 2016.
Buck County : Democrats have won this county in the last three presidential elections just north of Philadelphia, but by an increasingly narrow margin. The Bucks may be an indicator of national suburban enthusiasm for Biden.
Erie County: Northwestern County on Lake Erie reached Trump after Obama’s two wins in 2016. This is another axis county investors will be watching.
Luzerne CountyEastern County, just southwest of Biden’s hometown of Scranton, barely flipped for Trump in 2016 – giving him a margin of nearly 20 percentage points over Hillary Clinton – after voting for Obama in 2008 and 2012 in other Axis counties. Like, it may be a national indicator in a major state.
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Northampton County: Often flagged as a Belvester County, Trump claimed that Northampton won Obama in 2012, in 2016. The county has enjoyed stronger employment growth than the rest of the country under Trump, with jobs increasing by 6.4% during his tenure.
Harris county: Houston’s Harris County is marked as a flag to watch on election night, which could turn away many suburban voters from Republicans. It is also the most populous county in the state.
Tarant County: Like Harris, the Tarant is seen by Democrats as another indicator of suburban gains. After a 15.7-point win by Romney in 2016, Trump won by 8.6 points.
Kenosha County: Obama won this county in double digits in 2012, but Trump won here in 2016 by 0.3 points.
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