Billionaire bond trader Jeff Gundlach is once again predicting a Trump victory on election day.
“The polls right now say he isn’t going to win, but they said that four years ago,” Gundlach said in webcast hosted by Charles Schwab, accorrding to Marketwatch. “Mind you, my conviction is way lower than it was four years ago. But back in [that period], when Trump was little more than an asterisk in the betting odds, I predicted he was going to win. This one is much more murky, but in my eyes, it favors a Trump win.”
Gundlach is the founder of Doubleline Capital, an investment management company with $150 billion of assets. In May of 2016, he predicted Trump would defeat Hillary Clinton. He was one of the few titans of finance to forecast Trump’s victory. Private equity mogul Stephen Schwarzman, billionaire Carl Icahn, hedge-fund manager John Paulson, famed investor Wilbur Ross, banker Steven Mnuchin, and Robert Mercer of Renaissance Technologies also supported Trump.
And while some would say Trump’s re-election poses a risk to markets and global stability, Gundlach sees it differently. “You might dislike Trump or some of his policies, but risk is not what you’re getting with him, particularly compared to turning the presidency over to another party, and particularly when that party’s candidate isn’t saying what some of his policy positions are,” he said.
Gundlach added that his point of view doesn’t come from partisanship. “I don’t have a Republican voice. I actually don’t like the Republicans, and I don’t like the Democrats,” he said. “I used to be a Democrat, and I’ve voted for Republicans, but I simply don’t like the influence peddling that both parties do. They’ve really turned into the same party in terms of their sources of money.”
Gundlach said Americans should prepare for the possibility that a Biden victory would likely lead to Harris becoming president within the first term, according to the magazine Financial Advisor.
“We have to discount the probability of outright socialist policies with outrageous amount of deficit spending,” said Gundlach. “That would pose a big problem for stock and bond markets.”
Gundlach was raised in Amherst, New York, just outside of Buffalo. He majored in philosophy and mathematics at Dartmouth and was accepted into a PhD program in Applied Mathematics but dropped out after two years, according to Business Insider. He went on to play drums in a band in Los Angeles while working for an insurance company. He entered the investment management profession after watching an episode of “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” and deciding he wanted to be wealthy.
One night he caught an episode of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous that was dedicated to the “best paying professions.” The number one best paying profession: investment banking.
“I didn’t know what it was, but I figured number one was good enough for me,” he says.
He pulled out the yellow pages to look for all the ads for investment banks, planning on sending them his resume. To his surprise, there weren’t any ads for investment banks in the yellow pages.
“I ended up sending them to investment management companies. I figured they were the same thing,” he said.
Gundlach went on to become the chief investment officer at TCW but was fired in 2009.
Yahoo Finance’s Julia La Roche tells the story:
On Friday, December 4, 2009, a shockwave rippled across the trading floor at Trust Company of the West (TCW). A firm-wide email hit inboxes that informed the staff of Gundlach’s termination, and that the firm was acquiring fixed income investment manager Metropolitan West Asset Management (MetWest).
Gundlach, who was TCW’s chief investment officer, was also a nominee for Morningstar’s Fixed Income Manager of the decade at the time. He was viewed as the leader and the moneymaker.
As one DoubleLine employee put it, TWC “killed the Golden Goose” that day. Gundlach was one of the few who accurately called the credit crisis and played defense for his clients, calling subprime in June 2007 a “total, unmitigated disaster and it’s only going to get worse.” In 2009, he went on offense, buying up the beaten-down mortgage bonds, and subsequently put up stellar returns.
He started Doubleline shortly afterward, with many TCW employees resigning to join the new firm. He later sued TCW and was awarded $66.7 million by a jury.