The German government is a little bit worried about Donald Trump
Donald Trump’s controversial bid for the White House has raised eyebrows across the world.
But on the European side of the Atlantic, it’s been largely a spectator sport as we struggle to understand the American psyche at the best of times (see #Tube_chat), let alone the Republican candidate, whose outrageous campaign techniques seem only to boost his support.
However, as the election draws close, and the polls draw closer, attention has drifted to what a Trump presidency could mean for the world economy.
On foreign policy, his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton has made Trump’s temperament a key point of the campaign, asking on multiple occasions whether he should be trusted with the “nuclear codes”.
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A string of establishment figures, including the World Trade Organisation, Christine Lagarde at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Mario Draghi at the European Central Bank (ECB) have all warned about the damage inward-looking protectionist policies akin to Trump’s anti-globalisation agenda might do to economies around the world.
In terms of pure output, however, the picture is still mixed. Currency analysts, for instance, think Trump’s tax-cutting, infrastructure-spending agenda would lead to faster growth, faster debt, prompting the Fed to hike rates and strengthening the dollar.
Others believe Trump scooping power in the 8 November ballot would be worse for global output than the UK’s vote to leave the European Union.
Now, according to the reports, governments are starting to plan. German newspaper Der Spiegel said today it has seen an internal memo from the German government warning Trump’s policies would lead to “shrinking gross domestic product, fewer jobs and higher unemployment” in their own backyard.
Despite their concerns, it is unclear how worried Angela Merkel and her team might be, with the research note simply stating his policies were “not feasible”.
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Those comments echo the growing concerns among US analysts that Trump’s legislative programme would face big trouble being pushed through the powerful Congress, with the exact limits of what Trump would be able to achieve unlikely to come clear until after he has been elected.
The German government did not comment on the reports.
Meanwhile, the businessman host of hit TV show The Apprentice has become embroiled in his latest scandal after attacking Hillary Clinton’s relationship with a former Miss Universe and accusing her (Alicia Machado) of appearing in a sex tape in a 3am twitter rant.