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Photo: Andrew Harnik / AP

President Trump took credit Saturday for stock market gains since his election, telling reporters on Air Force One he's "always been great with money" and he's "always been great with jobs, that's what I do."

Why it matters: These quotes won't age well if the stock market takes a turn for the worse. They also came in response to questions about how Trump wants China, which recently elevated President Xi Jinping to a status not achieved since Mao Zedong, to view the U.S.

Go deeper: Trump's stock market expansion vs. those under Obama and Bush.

---

Full test of Trump's answers on the subject below. For context, this starts in response to a question "about Xi's consolidation of power, compared with Trump entering China, with Xi coming off a very successful run":

"Excuse me, so am I. Highest stock market in history, lowest unemployment in 17 years, a military that's rapidly rebuilding, ISIS is virtually defeated in the Middle East. We are coming off some of the strongest numbers we've ever had, and he knows that and he respects that and he's a friend of mine. We're friends.
"Now, with that being said, he represents China, I represent the United States. But we're going in with tremendous strength. We're going in with a stock market that's higher than ever before. We literally Friday closed at the highest point in the history of the stock market. You look at the unemployment numbers—we picked up 5.5 trillion dollars since my election in market value. These are tremendous numbers. Whether it's China or anybody else, these are massive numbers."

Then Trump is asked how he wants China to view the U.S. at the end of the trip:

"Well I think he's viewing us very, very strong, and also very friendly. But we have to do better with trade with China, because it's a one-way street right now and it has been for many years. And we will.
"But the reason our stock market is so successful is because of me. I've always been great with money, I've always been great with jobs, that's what I do. And I've done it well, I've done it really well, much better than people understand and they understand I've done well. But we have a tremendous amount of strength because of what's happened. You know, think of it -- $5.5 trillion worth of value.
"But also, look at ISIS. Look at our military budget that we just had approved. We're at $700 billion, and by the way, going up. We make the best military equipment in the world. A shot was just taken by Iran, at my opinion, at Saudi Arabia. You know about that, right? You saw the missile that went out? And our system knocked the missile out of the air. That's how good we are. Nobody makes what we make, and now we're selling it all over the world.
"One of the reasons our markets are so high and our defense companies are doing so well is I am demanding our allies and people we are working with that they buy our equipment. Now, there's two advantages to that. Number one, we make by far the best equipment, but, number two, they're buying from us.
"So I think we're going in with tremendous strength. I mean, I don't think – I mean, there's a question that you asked, and I understand the question. But when you think on Friday we hit the highest point in the history of our stock market when we picked up from November 8, which can you believe it is almost exactly one year?
"We going to be at China together? We'll have to celebrate together. November 8. I hope we'll all celebrate together, but — in fact I was going to have a big celebration party, and then I said, 'Well…' We'll celebrate together. But, um, what you think of $5.5 trillion, when you think what we've done to ISIS. Now, ISIS—the remnants—they go into Africa and other places and we're meeting them before they get there. So they've never seen anything like it. We have been more successful with ISIS than in eight years of the previous administration.
"So, anyway, I was just coming back to say hello. Go and have a good time. We'll see you a lot."

Go deeper

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Texas governor: "All hostages are out alive and safe"

SWAT team members deploy near the Congregation Beth Israel Synagogue in Colleyville, Texas. Photo: Andy Jacobsohn/AFP via Getty Images

All four hostages have been safely released after a day-long standoff at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said on Saturday night.

The latest: "Around 9 p.m., the HRT — hostage rescue team — breached the synagogue, they rescued the three [remaining] hostages, the suspect is deceased," said police chief Michael Miller of Colleyville, located roughly 15 miles northeast of Fort Worth. The other hostage had been released earlier Saturday.

The new normal: Google searches reveal America's COVID shopping habits

Data: The New Normal; Google Trends; Chart: Jared Whalen/Axios

As the pandemic enters its third year, some of America's COVID-era shopping habits — including strong demand for tequila and sweatpants — are here to stay.

Driving the news: Axios worked with Google Trends and the Schema Design firm to create The New Normal, which analyzes the products Americans have Googled since 2020. Items with a lasting increase in search interest help fill in the details of what our "new normal" looks like.

Updated 10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Concerns grow over CDC's isolation guidelines — Experts warn of more COVID-19 variants after Omicron — WHO recommends 2 new treatments — What "mild" really means when it comes to Omicron — Deaths are climbing as cases skyrocket.
  2. Vaccines: America's vaccination drive runs out of gas— Puerto Rico expands booster shot requirements— Supreme Court blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for large employers.
  3. Politics: You can start ordering free COVID tests Wednesday — Focus group says Biden weak on COVID response, strong on democracy — Biden deploying military medical staff to help overwhelmed hospitals.
  4. Economy: America's labor shortage is bigger than the pandemic— Nurses across the U.S. strike against COVID working conditions— CDC COVID guidance for cruise ships to be optional starting Saturday — The cost of testing.
  5. States: Biden admin threatens to take back Arizona's COVID aid over anti-mask rules — Students across U.S. walkout of classes to demand safer COVID protocols — West Virginia governor feeling "extremely unwell" after positive test — Youngkin ends mandates for masks in schools and COVID vaccinations for state workers.
  6. World: Beijing reports first local Omicron case weeks before Winter Olympics — Teachers in France stage mass walkout over COVID protocols.
  7. Variant tracker