Trump says stock market thinks he's done well against virus

Mario Parker

President Donald Trump said that the stock market’s recent upward trajectory shows that traders think his administration’s response to the coronavirus outbreak has been a success.

“The market is smart. The market is actually brilliant,” Trump said at a White House news conference on Saturday. “And they’re viewing it like we’ve done a good job. They view it that way.”

President Donald Trump speaks during a coronavirus task force briefing Saturday at the White House.

The benchmark S&P 500 index rose for a second straight day on Friday to close at its highest level since March 10. The index is up about 8% over the last seven days and has recovered much of the ground lost through March 23.

Trump has long treated the stock market as a barometer of his performance and frequently celebrates large gains in the major indexes.

He’s been eager for Americans to relax social-distancing practices put in place to slow the spread of the virus through the community – so-called flattening of the curve – which have cratered the U.S. economy ahead of the Nov. 3 election.

“We had the greatest economy in the history of the world, better than China, better than any country in the world, better than any country’s ever had,” Trump said. “We had the highest stock market in history, by far, and I’m honored by the fact that it’s started to go up very substantially.”

About 49% of Americans disapprove of Trump’s handling of the outbreak while about 48% approve, according to an analysis of polls by FiveThirtyEight.

There have been more than 726,000 cases of the disease in the U.S. and nearly 38,000 deaths.