Although the dollar moved in a distinct pattern around the past 31 elections, its behavior varied based on the type of election. It shows the dollar’s average gains and losses in the 12 periods surrounding all election days and compares it to the dollar’s performance in even-numbered years — either presidential or mid-term congressional elections — and the benchmark moves for the periods of the same length over the past 31 years.

The dollar was more bullish surrounding presidential and midterm congressional elections than during less-significant ones. In even-numbered years, the index posted either smaller average losses or larger gains in 11 of the figure’s 12 periods.

The index’s performance in the first month after the election highlights this trend. In general, the dollar traded sideways in the second week following an election, but after presidential and congressional elections, its 0.17-percent, five-day gain doubled to 0.34 percent by the 10th day. This postelection rally during even-numbered years culminated in a 0.61- percent average gain by the end of the first month — nearly three times as large as the 0.21-percent climb in the same period overall.

It breaks down average gains and losses into different election types: presidential and midterm congressional; odd-numbered (non-national election) years; midterm congressional only (1974, 1978, 1982, etc.); and presidential only. Comparing the first category’s average and median values reinforces conclusions drawn. The dollar’s median value was higher than its average in eight of the 12 periods around elections in even-numbered years. Therefore, the dollar has likely performed better before and especially following presidential and mid-term congressional elections.

The table also shows the U.S. dollar sold off leading up to and after oddyear elections. While the index gained an average 0.18 percent in the 15 days before these events and 0.24 percent by the 60th day following them, it fell or traded sideways in the table’s 10 remaining periods.

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