Donald Trump seems to be losing the power to move markets with a single tweet. The President of the United States had launched a Wednesday Twitter attack at Nordstrom after the retailer stopped selling the Ivanka Trump brand.
The Seattle-based store had announced February 2 that it would stop selling the first daughter’s shoes and handbags, citing “poor performance.” The 45th President of the United States had blasted “terrible” Nordstrom and accused the company of treating his 35-year-old daughter “unfairly.”
My daughter Ivanka has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom. She is a great person — always pushing me to do the right thing! Terrible!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 8, 2017
A source speaking to Fortune confirmed that Nordstrom stock hardly flinched at the President’s criticism. According to the source, stock prices dipped less than one percent before surging and finishing the day at 4.1 percent. The big retailer’s stock had dropped to $42.47 after the tweet. However, the trade volume of 6,700 shares then surged to over half-a-million shares in a less than five minutes, closing at $44.53 on a day the rest of the market did not do well.
Nordstrom’s stock price reaction is an opposing breakaway from previous Trump Twitter targets.
The 45th president had taken swipes at Boeing and Lockheed Martin questioning the high costs of purchases from the companies by the Defense Department. Stock prices of these companies had tanked after the 70-year-old politician tweeted his disapproval.
Nordstrom's stock closed 4.1 per cent higher after Donald Trump's tweet attacking the company https://t.co/hDozKp0w37
— Financial Times (@FT) February 8, 2017
In January, President Trump had also threatened Toyota in a tweet, warning that he would hit the company with border tax if it went ahead with a car plant in Mexico. Stock prices made available to LA Times, confirmed that the automaker’s stock plummeted to 0.6 percent that day.
Stocks that had been targeted by the President before had always recovered. However, traders revealed that none of them had peaked after criticized by the President on social media. Nordstrom stocks declined temporarily, but bounced back in minutes proving that investors were not bothered by Mr. Trump deriding the big-time retailer. Some investors even revealed that they purchased more stock in a strong show of support after Nordstrom announced that it was cutting ties with Ivanka.
I just bought Nordstrom's stock. I don't know what they do. I don't care. Drive it up, baby. @realDonaldTrump
— Nathan Hale (@NH92276) February 8, 2017
— Kathy Grayson (@kathygrayson) February 9, 2017
— brian h-k (@hkfamily) February 9, 2017
I'm going to spend some $$$ @Nordstrom at Union Square to show my support. Also I bought a boat load of their stock today.
— Greg Martin (@GMPhotoNYC) February 9, 2017
The President in a subsequent tweet had questioned the rationale behind dropping his daughter’s brand and insinuated that it was a political decision. A Nordstrom spokesperson responded to the criticism meted by the President of the United States, insisting that it was purely a business decision and that the businesswoman had been informed of the decision earlier in January.
“Sales of the brand have steadily declined to the point where it didn’t make good business sense for us to continue with the line for now.”
Some observers have slammed the President’s tweets, pointing out that traders might rely on his tweets to carry out sharp practices in the stock market. Others opined that Mr. Trump needed to be more presidential and realize that his words are “parsed to the nth degree, every thought magnified to global significance, no matter how casual or careless.”
Former press secretary for George W. Bush, Ari Fleischer said the tweets of the President were “something a father would say…not the type of thing a President of the United States should say.”
— Christina Wilkie (@christinawilkie) February 8, 2017
CNN confirmed that President Trump had sent the tweets slamming Nordstrom from both his personal account and the official @POTUS account. Trump spokesman, Sean Spicer further underlined this conflict of interest when he said the President had the right lead the country and “stand up for his family and applaud their business activities.”
Kevin Drum of Mother Jones believes the Nordstrom tweet is another indication of President Trump settling a personal score from his cyber-bullying pulpit. According to him, Nordstrom is not the only retailer that dumped Ivanka’s offerings.
Nordstrom sent strongly worded memo criticizing Trump's Muslim travel ban to staff 2 days b/4 dropping Ivanka's line https://t.co/AlBe4rnXge
— slone (@slone) February 8, 2017
Other retailers include Neiman Marcus, Shoes, Belk, ShopStyle, Jet, and Gilt, but the President only called out Nordstrom. In a story by the Daily Mail, the company’s three presidents — Peter, Erik, and Blake Nordstrom had circulated a strong-worded memo to employees criticizing Trump’s travel ban on immigrants from seven Muslim countries. Drum feels the “thin-skinned” President, singled the Seattle-based retailer because of that.
[Featured Image by Richard Drew/AP Images]