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On The Money: Wall Street hedges on Trump with donations to Dems | Deficit soars to $782B | American economists win Nobel Prize

On The Money: Wall Street hedges on Trump with donations to Dems | Deficit soars to $782B | American economists win Nobel Prize
© Greg Nash

Happy Monday and welcome back to On The Money. I'm Sylvan Lane, and here's your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL--Wall Street hedges Trump chaos with midterm bets on Dems: From the New York Times: "For the first time in a decade, the broader financial community is on pace to give more money to Democratic congressional candidates and incumbents than their Republican counterparts, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan group that tracks campaign donations.

"Some of the same grass-roots energy coursing through the Democratic Party -- House candidates from Kentucky to Montana to New York are reporting record sums of small donations -- has spilled into the corporate boardrooms of American finance, even amid increasingly hostile rhetoric from Democrats in Washington and on the campaign trail toward Wall Street."

Why?: Some Republicans say it's residual anger from the tax cut bill, which eliminated a key housing deduction for state and local taxes in the blue states where most Wall Streeters live. Others say it's Trump's divisive rhetoric that alienates socially liberal or moderate suburbanites.

How it's playing out: Donors in the securities and investment sector have given $39.3 million to Democratic congressional incumbents and candidates, compared with $28 million for Republicans. That is a reversal from 2014, when Democrats scored $28 million and Republicans $41.5 million.

How Republicans are fighting back: Republican leaders have been warning donors about the broader threat of a Democratic House, but also the likely ascension of Rep. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersOn The Money: Markets roiled by trade tensions | Rally on hopes of Fed pause on rate hikes | Senate sends two-week spending measure to Trump | Consumer bureau pick confirmed | Trade deficit at highest level since 2008 Black Caucus chairman pushes back against committee term limits On The Money: US, Mexico, Canada sign trade deal | Ocasio-Cortez seeks spot on House banking panel | New GOP tax bill hits roadblock MORE (D-Calif.) to be chair of the House Financial Services Committee.

 

LEADING THE DAY

Americans win Nobel Economic Prize for work on climate and tech innovation: Two Americans were awarded the Nobel Prize in economics on Monday for their work that assessed how the global economy and the climate were intertwined, and how governments can best handle technological advancements in the economy.

William Nordhaus and Paul Romer received the annual award from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. The two men work at Yale University and New York University, respectively.

  • Romer's studies found that governments should provide research and development opportunities to improve technological change in the economy. His work, the academy said, "explains how ideas are different to other goods and require specific conditions to thrive in a market."
  • Nordhaus, who worked separately from Romer, created a model that showed how the economy and the climate interacted. He discovered that universally imposed carbon taxes provide the most efficient way to address issues caused by greenhouse gases.

 

Deficit soars to $782 billion in 2018: The overall federal deficit soared 17 percent in fiscal 2018, hitting $782 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

That figure amounts to 3.9 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), up from 2.4 percent the year before.

The federal deficit likely would have ticked higher were it not for the timing of certain payments based on when weekends fell. Without the shifted payments, CBO said, the deficit would have reached $826 billion, a 24 percent rise equivalent to 4.1 percent of GDP.

 

GOOD TO KNOW

 

ODDS AND ENDS