With the Dow Jones Industrial Average down in massive sell-offs Monday, voters need to decide which candidate for president has more business savvy: Donald Trump or Carly Fiorina?
Trump blamed the market crash on China taking jobs from the United States, with nobody in Washington having a clue.
Fiorina, meanwhile, said in a “Fox & Friends” interview Monday that the market “has been way too high” due to Fed policy. She also weeted a video clip touting “growth potential” from small business.
But which candidate has the winning resume?
Trump amassed a fortune in real estate and media, starting with a stake from his father, who made millions as a real estate developer. Trump has a nose for money, moving to New York City the early 1970s to hobnob with the rich and influential crowd. His big break came with Pennsylvania Central Railroad’s bankruptcy. Trump developed one property into the city’s Javits Convention Center and turned the dingy Commodore hotel into the glass-encased Grand Hyatt.
From there, he expanded into New Jersey, Florida and Los Angeles, and became a billionaire. The financial crisis of the early 1990s nearly took him out, but by 1997 Trump was worth close to $2 billion, having run everything from hotels to casinos to the Trump Shuttle airline.
But Trump’s most important asset isn’t real estate: it’s his own fame, as he capitalized on his notoriety in 2004 to star in reality series “The Apprentice” and its spinoff “The Celebrity Apprentice.”
Fiorina hailed from more humble beginnings. After dropping out of UCLA law school, she took on a job as a receptionist and taught English in Italy before working as a salesperson with AT&T when she was 25. She worked her way up to head of North American sales, then led the company’s spin-off of Lucent to a $3 billion IPO.
In 1999, Hewlett-Packard tapped her to become CEO of the storied tech giant as the first woman to lead a Fortune 100 company.
Fiorina’s aggressive sales-oriented style didn’t fit with HP’s engineering culture, and after several top executives left in 2004, HP’s board called her on the carpet for the company’s lackluster performance. She resigned in January, 2005, but this May she defended her legacy at HP on Fox News.
“My track record at Hewlett-Packard is very clear. Together with the people of that great company, we took a business during the worst technology recession in 25 years,” Fiorina said. “We took a company and doubled it in size to almost $90 billion. We took the growth rate from 2 percent to 9 percent. We tripled the rate of innovation to 11 patents a day.”
With a clear commitment to Republican candidates and causes, Fiorina has never won an election, losing a bruising senate race in California to Democrat Barbara Boxer. But neither has Trump ever won an election.
Which of the two political outsiders and business leaders do you think has the savvy to lead the country? Share your opinion in the comments.