Donald Trump is to be the next president of the United States after voters gambled on his promise to “Make America Great Again”.
At the end of one of the most divisive elections in modern US history, the Republican candidate defeated Hillary Clinton in a race that went down to the wire.
Hillary Clinton has rung Donald Trump to concede defeat in the US presidential election, according to American TV networks.
US president-elect Donald Trump has told supporters: “I’ve just received a call from Secretary Clinton. She congratulated us – it’s about us – on our victory and I congratulated her and her family on a very, very hard fought campaign.”
Vice president-elect Mike Pence declared Mr Trump’s victory “a historic night”.
Mr Pence, Indiana’s governor, addressed Mr Trump’s victory party in New York City early on Wednesday.
Mr Trump’s running mate said “the American people have spoken and the American people have elected their new champion”.
Mr Trump said it was “now time for America to bind the wounds of division and come together”.
Mr Trump also used the speech as a clarion call to unite the country and heal the wounds following a bitter 18-month election campaign.
He said: “Now it’s time for American to bind the wounds of division – we have to get together.
“All Republicans, and Democrats and Independents across this nation, I say it’s time for us to come together as one united people. It’s time.
“I pledge to every citizen of our land that I will be president for all Americans and this is so important to me.
“For those who have chosen not to support me in the past – of which there were a few people – I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together and unify our country.”
Mr Trump’s victory was sealed when he took key battleground states Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
The apparent election of outspoken businessman and TV personality Mr Trump, who has never held public office, illustrates the anger and frustration felt by many Americans at the political establishment represented by Democratic former secretary of state Mrs Clinton.
In an potential upset which has drawn parallels to the Brexit victory in the UK, Mr Trump rewrote the rules of political campaigning.
Mrs Clinton’s failure to become the first female president in US history would bring down the curtain on a political career which has seen her spend decades at the heart of American politics.
That experience may have played a major role in the result.
Mr Trump campaigned on a promise to “drain the swamp” in Washington, with Mrs Clinton’s use of a private email server while secretary of state and the 2012 attack on the US diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, frequently highlighted during his campaign against the rival he dubbed “crooked Hillary”.
The Republican took advantage of racial tensions and overcame a string of sexual assault allegations during a gruelling contest with Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton.
His triumph will end eight years of Democratic dominance of the White House and threatens to undo major achievements of President Barack Obama.
Mr Trump has pledged to act quickly to repeal Mr Obama’s landmark health care law, revoke the nuclear agreement with Iran and rewrite important trade deals with other countries, particularly Mexico and Canada.
The tycoon blasted through Democrats’ long-standing firewall, carrying Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, states that had not voted for a Republican presidential candidate since the 1980s.
He needed to win nearly all of the competitive battleground states, and he did just that, claiming Florida, Ohio, North Carolina and others.
International markets panicked as Mr Trump closed in on victory, with shares tumbling and the dollar falling in value against the Japanese Yen.
Mr Trump’s outspoken rhetoric about Mexicans during the campaign – and his promise to build a wall between the US and its southern neighbour – also triggered a fall in the peso.
There were ecstatic scenes at Mr Trump’s victory party, where their candidate reportedly arrived shortly before 7.30am UK time.
But across Manhattan, the mood at Mrs Clinton’s gathering was funereal, with many supporters in tears.
Raw materials and the companies that produce them were sent into turmoil.
Oil, industrial metals and agricultural commodities plunged on Wednesday while gold surged with safe-haven assets, as the Republican was set to to pull off a huge electoral upset and march into the White House after winning states including Florida, Ohio, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.
Traders rushed to unwind bets they piled into over the past two days amid predictions that Democrat Clinton would sweep to an easy victory. Shares of gold miners jumped while those of energy companies across Asia slid.
A Trump presidency promises to reshape the relationship of the U.S. with the world, and the potential for unpredictability in American policy is fueling speculation the Federal Reserve will refrain from raising interest rates. Global financial markets were in tumult on the brink of the billionaire businessman’s victory, with gold rallying the most since Britain’s surprise vote to leave the European Union sent shock waves through markets in June.
“The commodities sphere is in complete turmoil at the moment,” said Will Yun, an analyst at Hyundai Futures Corp. in Seoul.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate oil dropped as much as 4.3 percent to $43.07 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude slid 3.6 percent to $44.40 on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. Bullion for immediate delivery jumped as much as 4.8 percent to $1,337.38 an ounce, according to Bloomberg generic pricing. The Bloomberg Commodity Index, a measure of raw material returns, was down 0.3 percent.
Australian oil and gas producer Santos Ltd. dropped 7.5 percent, the most since May. Beijing-based China Petroleum and Chemical Corp., the world’s biggest refiner known as Sinopec, slumped 4.6 percent in Hong Kong trading.