Market Overview

Surging Voter Interest in Tax Cuts Suggests Candidates Should Play the Economy Card in 2018 Midterm Elections, Says Predata in New Report


A Predata signal that tracks tax policy dominates online activity
ahead of Midterms; indifference towards US-China Trade Dispute despite
risk signal indicating high likelihood of escalation

Predata, the predictive analytics platform that anticipates geopolitical
risk, says in a new report that interest in tax cuts and economic policy
is surging, with the latest Republican-led tax cut proposal top of mind
for voters. Though news headlines focus on social issues, the economic
card could be the key to the upcoming Midterm elections.

Based on the U.S. Midterm signals that Predata tracks to measure online
behavior in key election issues, there is more interest in tax policy
than other popular topics such as gun control and immigration policy
within 60 days from Election Day, according to the Predata U.S. Midterm
Elections Observer report. The tax policy signal rose significantly
after the House Republicans' released another tax cut plan in late July.
The signal was at its highest last November after Republicans pushed
through the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.

Further emphasizing the economy heading into the midterm elections, a
Predata anticipatory risk signal indicates that another escalation of
the US-China Trade dispute is likely. The signal has reached its highest
level since April 2018, implying that the White House will follow
through on a threat President Trump made last Friday to impose more
tariffs on Chinese goods. Despite this escalation, online interest
remains moderate, suggesting that while the economy remains strong,
voters' interest remains elsewhere.

"Our measures of digital online interest reveal a pattern surprisingly
different from the general impressions of broadcast media and telephone
polls," says Jim Shinn, Predata co-founder. "The GOP is apparently
succeeding in attracting online attention to taxes and the U.S. economy,
whereas interest in the Mueller Russia investigation, the Kavanaugh
nomination, and the U.S-China trade war is currently muted. Even gun
control and environmental regulation are lagging in terms of digital

The report also shows that after the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to
the Supreme Court, Predata's Women's Health Signal spiked, indicating
that voters believed Kavanaugh was seen as a great threat to
reproductive rights and perhaps even Roe v. Wade. However, the Women's
Health Signal and also the Supreme Court Nominations Signal have both
been relatively muted recently compared to when Kavanaugh's nomination
was originally announced, even with the nomination hearings in full

Additional signals that span gun control, immigration, and foreign
policy around the Administration's international activities have also
been muted. "Predata's Gun Control Signal shows that the on-line
firearms debate rapidly fades from public memory, after spiking in the
immediate aftermath of a mass shooting. Unless another tragic shooting
occurs between now and November, gun control will likely remain a
secondary issue, although with a lot of state-to-state variation," said

Another Predata signal shows a potential resurgence in activity related
to the Trump-Russia investigation, which leapt to its highest level this
year in July after President Trump's summit with President Putin in

The report also discusses bursts in online activity around some
typically Democrat-led issues, though the spikes are relatively
moderate. The Healthcare Policy Signal, for example, surged after
left-leaning candidate victories in Democratic primary elections in New
York, Massachusetts and the Midwest—a reflection that those wins may
have galvanized left-wing voters elsewhere in the nation.

To learn more about the Predata U.S. Midterm Elections Signals and the
Predata platform, reach out at

About the Predata U.S. Midterm Elections Observer

The U.S. Midterm Elections Observer provides a quantitative outlook for
the top 2018 election issues. Predata's US Midterms signals are a
collection of topics-based signals that capture the relative level of
online activity related to various issues of importance in the 2018
election—from the economy to Russian meddling—to provide an indication
to clients of what topics are most salient to voters at a given time.

About Predata

Predata uses alternative data and machine learning to quantify human
behavior online to anticipate the risk of future events. The company is
building the most comprehensive predictive analytics platform for
geopolitical and market risk intelligence. The Predata platform enables
customers to discover, quantify and act on dynamic shifts in online
behavior. Combined with a proprietary event database, the Predata
signals provide users with early warning for different types of risk
events in any given country, operational footprint, or area of interest.
For further information, visit
or follow us on Twitter @predata.

View Comments and Join the Discussion!