The Pen is Mightier than …

Joe Biden’s intent to push an aggressive agenda was on full display during his first day in office.

He spent the morning being sworn in as the 46th U.S. president in a relatively subdued inauguration event (that saw no security issues or unrest). 

He spoke of unity and of working together as a unified nation.

…But that was the calm before the executive action storm.

After heading to the White House, he quickly began to unwind his predecessor’s policies and enact change with the simple waive of a pen.

Biden signed 15 executive orders and issued two other memoranda, touching everything from civil rights, to immigration to the pandemic response. Executive orders are published in the Federal Register and are legally binding.

In recent history, only two presidents signed executive actions on their first day in office, and they signed just one each.

Biden’s record setting 17 actions were a clear attempt to quickly unwind the impact that Trump had on policy over the past four years.

As anticipated, many of the actions were aimed at social issues, but some will directly impact the U.S. economy and stocks:

  1. Order extending eviction and foreclosure moratoriums until at least March 31.
  2. Order extending existing pause on student loan payments and interest for Americans with federal student loans until at least Sept. 30.
  3. Order moving for U.S. to rejoin the Paris Agreement on climate change within 30 days.
  4. Order reversing Trump administration environmental policies, including: revoking the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline; reversing rollbacks of vehicle emissions standards; enforcing a temporary moratorium on oil and natural gas leases in the Arctic; and reestablishing a working group on the social costs of greenhouse gasses.
  5. Order halting construction on the border wall.

Day 1 – Executive Order Winners

·       Families struggling to make mortgage or rent payments, and student loan borrowers.

·       Rail lines and interstate trucking to make up for the pipeline discontinuation.

·       Renewable energy companies, battery manufacturers, EV companies and charging stations.

·       Energy efficient building materials and appliance manufacturers.

·       ESG investors and investment portfolios.

·       Steel manufacturers.

Day 1 – Executive Order Financial Losers

·       The Keystone XL Pipeline developer TC Energy Corp. – although their shares bounced back after an initial drop.

·       Rural families who rely on industries opposed by environmental groups.

·       The deficit and the national debt.

·       Border wall builder Fisher Sand & Gravel.

Tune in tomorrow, when I go through in detail a few these that you need to keep an eye on for your portfolios…

Cutting through the noise for you,

Frank


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