The big picture: Until now, markets looked at President Trump, and at the tech sector, and saw good times. Now, markets are looking at Trump and tech and seeing risk.

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Data: Money.net; Chart: Axios Visuals
  • With stock markets closed today for Good Friday, the firstquarter of 2018 is in the books, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 in the red for the quarter, and Facebook and Google down.
  • Be smart: Wall Streeters tell me that Trump’s impulsive crashing around on issues has started to affect market psychology. The economy's fundamentals, and corporate performance, are strong. But he is the x factor.   
  • A tweet by Neil Irwin of the N.Y. Times Upshot captures the Street zeitgeist: "It seems like markets are settling into a new groove in which modest news creates outsized swings in prices, whether for tech stocks or companies vulnerable to a trade war. The baseline assumption that 'it will all be OK' isn’t there anymore."
  • Even before this week's swing by Amazon, The Economist was warning: "'Fasten your seat belts. It’s going to be a bumpy night.' Those famous lines of Bette Davis in 'All About Eve' may turn out to be the motto for the markets in 2018."
  • And The Wall Street Journal's Greg Ip sees a volatile new normal: "Since early February inflation, interest rates, Facebook problems, White House turnover and trade have all been blamed for investor anxiety. It may simply be that years of preternatural calm, induced by rock-bottom interest rates and symbolized by the market’s low 'fear gauge' (VIX), are over."

When the stock market was booming, Trump obsessed about it as a kind of applause meter for his policies. And Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin has referred to the markets as an economic report card for the administration. Axios business editor Dan Primack writes:

  • If so, I guess we'd call Q1 a gentleman's C.
  • Big stock takeaway from the quarter is that volatility is back, after having been absent for almost all of 2017.
  • Why it matters: Trump tweets or actual White House policy decisions seem to have much more potential to carry (at least short-term) Wall Street consequences than they did last year, when almost everything was met with a shrug and a buy. 

The bottom line: There just isn't a factor on the horizon that experts see as likely to move the needle positively, as there was at this time last year with tax cuts. No one ever really bought into the viability of Trump's infrastructure plan.

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Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump's Tucker mind-meld

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images and BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

If you want to understand the rhetorical roots of Trump's Independence Day speech at Mount Rushmore, go back and watch Tucker Carlson's monologues for the past six weeks.

Between the lines: Trump — or rather his speechwriter Stephen Miller — framed the president's opposition to the Black Lives Matter protest movement using the same imagery Carlson has been laying out night after night on Fox.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 6 p.m. ET: 11,366,145 — Total deaths: 532,644 — Total recoveries — 6,154,138Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 6 p.m. ET: 2,874,396 — Total deaths: 129,870 — Total recoveries: 906,763 — Total tested: 35,512,916Map.
  3. States: Photos of America's pandemic July 4 ICU beds in Arizona hot spot near capacity — Houston mayor warns about hospitals
  4. Public health: U.S. coronavirus infections hit record highs for 3 straight days.
  5. Politics: Former Trump official Tom Bossert says face masks “are not enough”
  6. World: Mexican leaders call for tighter border control as infections rise in U.S.
  7. Sports: Sports return stalked by coronavirus
  8. 1 📽 thing: Drive-in movie theaters are making a comeback.

Bolton's hidden aftershocks

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The news media has largely moved on, but foreign government officials remain fixated on John Bolton's memoir, "The Room Where It Happened."

Why it matters: Bolton's detailed inside-the-Oval revelations have raised the blood pressure of allies who were already stressed about President Trump's unreliability.