2016 Elections

The Buck Stops Here

The 2016 election & your finances

The presidential campaign between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump has our attention, but the upcoming 2016 election also includes candidates for U.S. Congress, state governors, state legislatures, and county and local officials. Each level of government affects your wallet in different ways.

Regarding your wallet, it’s important to look at how each party and its current platform will affect the issues that may matter the most, e.g., tax rates, job creation, student debt, investment in innovation, healthcare costs, and child care.

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Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump



  • Your taxes would stay approximately the same.
  • Taxes would rise for the 1% richest Americans:
  • Her plan includes a multimillionaire surtax and higher estate tax.
  • She will close tax loopholes and expenditures for the most fortunate.
  • Her plan raises corporate taxes and rolls back benefits for moving jobs overseas.


  • Your taxes would be lower.
  • Corporate taxes would also decrease.
  • The richest people would benefit the most with lower rates.

Check out this calculator to see how each presidential candidate’s tax plan affects you:


Student loans


  • Will establish the New College Compact to promote college affordability and completion by:
  • Helping students attend a 4-year public college without taking out loans for tuition
  • Allowing students to attend a community college without paying tuition
  • Cutting the interest rate on student loans
  • Offering additional benefits for those who serve in the military


  • Does not have an official position about college tuition, but his campaign has outlined the following objectives:
  • Forcing colleges to share the risk involved in student loans
  • Making it harder for liberal arts students to take out loans
  • Opposing free and debt-free higher education
  • Eliminating government involvement in student loans and supporting market-driven lending

Federal minimum wage


  • Supports raising the minimum wage to $12/hr
  • Says raising the minimum wage to $15/hr should fall on the states


  • Has expressed support for raising the minimum wage a modest amount
  • Believes states should have the ultimate say

The stock market

Regardless of which party is in power, stock market prices will rise and fall over time. Numerous factors affect prices, including general economic conditions, geopolitical events, and supply and demand, but certain trends have emerged over the years. According to The Stock Trader’s Almanac:

“Wars, bear markets and recessions tend to start in the first two years of a president’s term. Bull markets and prosperous times mark the latter half.”

More often than not, more depressed markets mark the first couple of years after presidential elections, while growth and prosperity characterize the second half of a presidential term.

Republicans Vs. Democrats

Many other issues should also be considered when you vote, from finances to social equality to gun control. With races from the national to the city level, you can easily determine where a candidate might stand based on party affiliation.

Each party has a platform, which guides candidates from the presidential to local races. Here’s what each one has to say about the issues:


  1. Donald Trump’s tax plan and deficit: https://www.brookings.edu/opinions/donald-trumps-tax-plan-could-land-america-10-trillion-deeper-in-debt/
  2. Hillary Clinton’s tax plan: https://www.hillaryclinton.com/issues/a-fair-tax-system/
  3. Analyzing Clinton and Trump tax plans: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/13/upshot/how-hillary-clinton-and-donald-trump-differ-on-taxes.html
  4. Democratic party platform: https://www.demconvention.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Democratic-Party-Platform-7.21.16-no-lines.pdf
  5. Republican party platform: https://prod-static-ngop-pbl.s3.amazonaws.com/media/documents/DRAFT_12_FINAL[1]-ben_1468872234.pdf
  6. Tax Policy Center: http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxvox/two-very-different-paths-taxes-clinton-vs-trump
  7. Hillary Clinton’s college plan: https://www.hillaryclinton.com/issues/college/
  8. https://www.hillaryclinton.com/briefing/factsheets/2015/08/10/college-compact-costs/
  9. Donald Trump’s position on college debt: http://graphics.wsj.com/elections/2016/donald-trump-hillary-clinton-on-the-economy/
  10. https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2016/05/13/trumps-campaign-co-chair-describes-higher-education-policies-being-developed
  11. Donald Trump on raising the minimum wage: http://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-trump-calls-for-10-hourly-minimum-wage-breaks-from-gop-position-1469647220
  12. Hillary Clinton on minimum wage: https://www.hillaryclinton.com/issues/labor/
  13. http://m.kiplinger.com/article/investing/T043-C008-S003-how-presidential-elections-affect-the-stock-market.html

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