So who would be good for media business growth going forward?
When it comes to big economic and new business development, the perception is a Republican President -- even one that seems to be on the fringe of Republican values, like Trump, would be good news. (However, according to a Wall Street Journal article: "A striking feature of the U.S. stock market is that it persistently does better under Democratic presidents than Republican ones.")
Consider: Trump get credits for a 36% bump in Dow Jones Industrial Index since he took office through February 26. Under President Obama, Dow Jones was up 151% for his entire term in the office.
Selective examples may work for media as well: Trump’s highly touted usage of Twitter and positive promotion of Fox News Channel might help those organizations. Conversely, his attacks on CNN and others news media organizations.
What about a possible Bernie Sanders presidency? Wannabe billionaires -- including health-care insurers, big legacy media companies and social-media rich guys -- might have difficulty finding a silver-lining in his progressive-socialist economic agenda.
But this doesn’t apply to all media segments, for example, Roku.
D.A. Davidson says the set-top box/smart TV platform could see a positive response from a Sanders presidency -- due to its still upstart status as a growing media company looking to compete with bigger guys -- the Amazons, the Comcasts, the DirecTVs, and the Dish Networks.
Specifically, Tom Forte, media analyst at D.A. Davidson, says Roku can take advantage of the marketplace through its advertising business and “by selling consumers its proprietary hardware or having consumers purchase smart TV's with its operating system.”
The thinking is that Roku’s modestly priced set-top-box/smart TV interface could break the stranglehold of the legacy TV-video distributors.
Also think about smaller online retail competitors, with an advertising/media component, those fighting to compete with ecommerce giant Amazon. Here, Forte says Qurate Retail could thrive.
That said, big media-based/advertising companies, Amazon or Apple, would not be beneficiaries.
For one, Sanders has been committed to ending corporate tax breaks that would hurt Apple. Forte has said: “Tax cuts freed up additional capital for Apple to return money to shareholders via buybacks,” which helped Apple’s stock rise in 2019.
He added: “While there are multiple policies of Mr. Sanders that could be favorable to Amazon, taken as a whole, the company would be negatively impacted.”
Roku -- even with its rocketing growth, now at some 40 million active users -- is still perceived as an outsider. The same thing could have been said about Netflix about seven to 10 years ago.
Fostering small-to-midsize media and advertising competitive growth? Pick your media commander in chief.