Model That Correctly Predicted Every Election Since 1980 Gives 2016 Verdict

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Guy Bentley Research Associate, Reason Foundation
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One of the world’s most well-known financial institutions which correctly predicted every presidential election since 1980 is predicting a win for Hillary Clinton.

Moody’s Analytics, a subsidiary of credit ratings agency Moody’s, believes President Obama’s strong approval ratings will give the Democratic nominee a significant advantage come November.

Hillary Clinton is widely expected to secure the Democratic nomination with what appears to be an insurmountable lead in delegates over rival Sen. Bernie Sanders.

“President Obama’s approval rating has crossed over the important 50 percent threshold for the first time in almost four years,” said Moody’s economist Dan White.

“This sudden surge could be a result of the messy primary season or a relative lull in geopolitical news from overseas,” White added.

White argues a situation of rising gas prices and a big drop in Obama’s approval ratings is the only circumstance when Donald Trump would beat the Democratic nominee, according to the model. Moody’s latest model predicts Clinton will take 332 electoral votes compared to Donald Trump’s 206 – 270 are needed to win the presidency.

Moody’s has been predicting a third term of Democratic rule since it first began forecasting for the 2016 race in July 2015, The Hill reports. The model tracks the two-year change in the president’s favorability ratings running up to the election and was introduced for the 2016 electoral cycle.

“In light of the myriad unusual factors swirling around this election, its inclusion may prove particularly prudent in 2016,” said White.

The model’s most important economic variable is income growth, along with gas and home prices. Moody’s also penalizes incumbents as voters will be more open to a change of administration after four or eight years.

National polls show a much tighter race than the Moody’s model. An ABC/Washington Post poll released Sunday gives Donald Trump a two percentage point lead over Hillary Clinton while a WSJ/NBC poll puts Clinton three percentage points ahead.

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