NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - The world's money managers believe Sen. John Kerry will defeat President Bush in the November election, according to survey results released Tuesday. But they also doubt whoever's president will have much of an impact on U.S. financial markets.
Forty-one percent of 293 fund managers surveyed by Merrill Lynch between Aug. 6 and Aug. 12 said they believe Kerry, a Democrat from Massachusetts, will win the presidency in November, compared with 37 percent who expected Bush to be re-elected. Twenty-two percent were uncertain about the outcome.
Wall Street would generally prefer a Bush victory, since the Republican president is considered friendly to business concerns, but fund managers doubted a Kerry victory would have much of an impact on U.S. financial markets.
Forty-four percent of those surveyed said a Kerry presidency would "make no difference" to markets. Thirty-seven percent said it would have a negative impact, while 13 percent said it would have a positive impact.
Broken down by region, fund managers in the United States, Canada and Japan thought Bush had a much better chance of winning the election than Kerry, while fund managers in other Asian countries, South Africa and continental Europe believed Kerry had the edge. Managers in the United Kingdom were nearly evenly divided.
The closely watched presidential election futures market run by the University of Iowa, in which traders bet money on the election's outcome, currently gives Bush a slight edge in the election.