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Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

The S&P 500 has had a return of over 50% during President Trump's first three years in office, more than doubling the average return of 23% at the same point in a presidential term since 1928, CNBC reports.

The big picture: The market, which hit record highs across the three major indices, got a sustained lift in 2019 after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell lowered interest rates three times, the first such moves since the end of the financial crisis.

  • The big gains under Trump come despite a volatile 2018 that saw the S&P drop 6.2%, thanks to the uncertainty of the U.S.-China trade war.
  • And by another market's measure, there were worrying signals: the yield curve inverted this year, a phenomenon in the bond market known to precede recessions.

Of note: The S&P's 28.6% growth during Trump's third year lagged behind former President Barack Obama's 32% during his third year, which came as the economy recovered from the financial crisis.

What to watch: The S&P increases two-thirds of the time in a president's fourth year — with an average gain of 5.2%.

  • For Trump, any success will likely depend on how trade talks with China play out — and whether his "phase one" trade deal can hold.
  • As part of some of the known terms of that deal, China agreed to buy billions of dollars of U.S. agricultural products and Trump agreed to cancel pending tariff increases.

Go deeper ... Trump: "The reason our stock market is so successful is because of me"

Go deeper

Fintech's record year

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Massive venture rounds into fintech companies have ballooned this year, pushing up total dollars invested — in just the first three quarters of 2021 — to nearly double the amount in all of 2020, per new PitchBook data.

Why it matters: The maturing of fintech startups means a growing number of companies are able to raise huge later-stage funding rounds as investors look to lock-in their bets.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
1 hour ago - Energy & Environment

Democrats' clean power outlook is very muddy

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Here are two big questions as a key Democratic proposal to slash emissions from power generation flounders: how much its demise would sap climate protections, and what might replace it.

Catch up fast: New financial carrots and sticks for utilities to deploy zero-carbon power — the Clean Electricity Performance Program (CEPP) — look unlikely to stay in Democrats' big social spending and climate bill.

2 hours ago - Health

CDC: Unvaccinated are over 11 times more likely to die from COVID

Expand chart
Reproduced from CDC; Note: Data represents 30% of Americans across 16 jurisdictions: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York City, Seattle/King County, Wash., Utah and Wisconsin; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

The CDC recently published data evaluating Americans' rate of coronavirus cases and deaths by vaccine status, providing more data on which vaccines are working best and how much protection they offer relative to being unvaccinated.

What they found: As of August, unvaccinated people had a more than six times higher risk of testing positive for the coronavirus, and were more than 11 times more likely to die from the virus.