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President Trump frequently attacked companies like Amazon on Twitter. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

It pays to be on the president's bad side. At least it has for public companies over the past two years, a pair of indexes created by Ritholtz Wealth Management CIO Barry Ritholtz and featured in Bloomberg show.

Driving the news: President Trump has broken with past presidential precedent and heaped both praise and disparagement on a collection of U.S. companies since taking office. Ritholtz tracked the stock performance of companies relative to their relationship with the president.

  • In 2017, the "Oligarch Index" of Trump's favored companies rose 20%, but trailed the S&P 500's gain of 21%. During the same year, the "Drain the Swamp Index" of Trump's hated Twitter targets rose 43%.

Similar results were seen in 2018. For the one-year period ended Jan. 10, the Oligarch Index fell 23%. The Drain the Swamp Index rose 6.3%.

  • "That is a 29 percentage point advantage for Trump’s most-hated companies over his most favored ones," Ritholtz noted in his piece for Bloomberg Opinion. "This is even bigger spread than the first year we tracked the indexes, when the spread was 23 percentage points."

The relative performance of the indexes likely has more to do with who Trump likes than whether or not he goes after them on Twitter, Ritholtz said.

  • Jeff Bezos, owner of the Washington Post, and founder and CEO of Amazon.com had a good year. Amazon gained 32%.
  • Twitter, a favorite target of conservatives last year, whose founder, Jack Dorsey, refused to create a lying Hillary emoji, did even better, gaining 36%.
  • Even the "failing" New York Times added more than 23% during the period.

The Oligarch index, meanwhile, had some disasters.

  • Goldman Sachs, dealing with an ethical cloud, fell 31%.
  • Ford Motor dropped 34%.
  • Facebook, a conduit for fake news that may have helped Trump's electoral prospects, lost almost a quarter of its value.
  • Exxon Mobil, whose former CEO served for a time as secretary of state in the Trump administration, fell 17%.

"All told, it was a rough year for the Oligarchs," Ritholtz said, "with little other than huge tax cuts to comfort them."

Go deeper: Trump's Big Tech contradictions

Go deeper

Collins helps contractor before pro-Susan PAC gets donation

Sen. Susan Collins during her reelection campaign. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

A PAC backing Sen. Susan Collins in her high-stakes reelection campaign received $150,000 from an entity linked to the wife of a defense contractor whose firm Collins helped land a federal contract, new public records show.

Why it matters: The executive, Martin Kao of Honolulu, leaned heavily on his political connections to boost his business, federal prosecutors say in an ongoing criminal case against him. The donation linked to Kao was veiled until last week.

How cutting GOP corporate cash could backfire

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Companies pulling back on political donations, particularly to members of Congress who voted against certifying President Biden's election win, could inadvertently push Republicans to embrace their party's rightward fringe.

Why it matters: Scores of corporate PACs have paused, scaled back or entirely abandoned their political giving programs. While designed to distance those companies from events that coincided with this month's deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol, research suggests the moves could actually empower the far-right.

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Kaine, Collins pitch Senate colleagues on censuring Trump

Sen. Tim Kaine speaks with Sen. Susan Collins. Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP via Getty Images

Sens. Tim Kaine and Susan Collins are privately pitching their colleagues on a bipartisan resolution censuring former President Trump, three sources familiar with the discussions tell Axios.

Why it matters: Senators are looking for a way to condemn Trump on the record as it becomes increasingly unlikely Democrats will obtain the 17 Republican votes needed to gain a conviction in his second impeachment.