The U.S. is bracing for the inauguration on Jan. 20 of a tempestuous new president with radical policies who lost the popular vote by nearly 3 million ballots.
Massive anti-Donald Trump protests are scheduled for Jan. 21, and polls show that he is the least popular president-elect in 20 years.
Investors must contend with the consequences of a divided country. Whether one hates or loves Trump, no one can deny that he will put the world on edge into the foreseeable future.
Put aside ideological predilections. Democrats as well as Republicans should fasten their seat belts for a bumpy ride in global markets.
Even the conservative, free-market oriented magazine The Economist this year listed a Trump presidency as one of its "Top 10" global risks.
Case in point: his remarks last week about launching a nuclear arms race with Russia has alarmed the defense and foreign policy establishment and will probably roil the financial landscape for months to come.
Indeed, Trump's economic prescriptions could fit in a tweet: boost defense, confront China, cut taxes and regulations, embrace Russia, erect immigration and trade barriers, and favor oil. The nation's tweeter-in-chief has shown the ability to crush a stock, even mega-caps such as Boeing and Lockheed Martin, simply by taunting the company with an ill-tempered tweet.
The latest Twitter imbroglio occurred last week, when Trump yet again sent shares of Lockheed Martin, the world's largest defense contractor, tumbling when he tweeted that the "tremendous cost and cost overruns" of the F-35 program led him to ask Boeing to "price-out a comparable F-18 Super Hornet."
Impulsive tweets that clobber share prices are hardly a logical way to establish defense spending priorities.
Trump's destabilizing behavior is unlikely to abate, even after he is sworn in. And if there is anything that Wall Street hates, it is uncertainty.
At the same time, many analysts are calling for a long overdue correction and recession next year. The upshot: It is time for investors to take out a little insurance on their portfolios.
Investors should think about purchasing the ProShares Short S&P 500 Exchange-Traded Fund (SH) .