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Cavuto Clueless on Cause and Effect

Reported by Judy - December 3, 2005

Cause and effect is something Neil Cavuto just doesn't understand. If two things happen at the same time, Cavuto is convinced one is related to the other, especially if one is an uptick in George Bush's approval rating and the other is an uptick in the stock market.

Cavuto on Saturday (December 3, 2005) continued his weekly quest to link President Bush to anything good that happens to the nation's financial markets. During his "Cavuto on Business" financial show, Cavuto asked his guests to discuss whether the uptick in markets this week showed that the markets were "predicting" an improvement in Bush's approval rating.

An Opinion Dynamics poll done for Fox News and dated December 1 showed Bush's approval rating at 42 percent, up from 36 percent in November. The poll of 900 registered voters has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points, meaning the approval rating could still be as low as 36 percent.

Charles Payne, of course, responded "absolutely," as he always does to anything connecting Bush to good news. Jim Rogers, author of Hot Commodities, threw cold water on Cavuto's premise. "It's the market doing what the market does. It's not Bush," he said, adding that if people have jobs and more money in their pockets, they're going to feel better about the president, whether it's Bush or Bill Clinton.

Greg Hymowitz, president of Entrust Capital and the "fair and balanced" panel's token Democrat, called the movement in Bush's poll numbers "a dead cat bounce" because his numbers were so low they could not have gotten any lower. "The market sure ain't getting a bounce from this president, with continuing indictments, continuing conspiracies, the disaster in Iraq," he said.

Herman Cain, radio talk show host, tried to claim that the market rise was part of a two-year "comeback" in the market that started after Bush's "stimulus package" was passed.

Adam Lashinsky, from Fortune magazine, agreed with Rogers that the market is looking at earnings and economic growth. "The market isn't saying anything about the president's poll numbers ... It isn't looking at President Bush right now," he said.

Rogers called out Cain on his revisionist market history. "The market has been flat for two years. So this talk that somebody is making the market go up. The market has been flat for two years. I don't know what you're talking about," he said.

At one point, Hymowitz suggested that what the market could be interpreted as predicting "a Democratic sweep" in 2006. The panel laughed.

But really, it makes as much sense as Cavuto's ridiculous suggestion that Wall Street investors make their buy and sell decisions based on George Bush's poll numbers.

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