The Old Age is over, and its welcome to the new, which is going to be little different – just a lot more complex. Thriving in a confused new economy of energy scarcity, inflation, recession and geopolitical threat isn’t easy – as the UK is about to discover.
Stock markets may be crashing on inflation fears, but watch the Putin Xi summit in Samarkand tomorrow as the critical event this week. Is China prepared to reinforce Putin’s failure – and what does that mean in terms of risk?
Putin’s supposed cleverness haunts markets. How much harder will he squeeze Europe’s energy crisis? How will Russia change the geo-political order? Will Italy’s coming election be the crisis that breaks the Euro? We give Russia too much credit – it’s a weak nation that can only get weaker.
Winter is coming as soaring gas prices are set to bite across Europe. Putin’s energy insecurity strategy has proved his major success and could yet win him the Ukraine War. Stagflation is nailed on it Europe.
The number of threats facing markets; from inflation, central bank hikes, war, geopolitics, recession risks, corporate earnings and bond liquidity are legion. The big risk is they combine into a chaotic tipping point, at which moment we will just have to pick up the pieces…. Again.
The outlook for markets remains dire.. no worries! But what chance governments, central banks, the economy and growth enablers suddenly turn up the good news and put it all right again…? Are we over-estimating stagflation and recession?
Who really knows what is happening in Ukraine, or what the players are thinking? The long-term economic consequences could be huge, marking the moment the post Cold-War global consensus and order breaks down. The potential consequences include social and political instability, war, famine, and who knows what else.
The World is Utterly Changed. The new imperatives are: Energy and Food Security, Defence and Cybersecurity. Climate Change will become a point of Western Friction. New Geopolitical Lines are being drawn.
Yet another difficult week in prospect for markets as $130 oil threatens a global shock, geopolitics remains on the edge, and London tries to rid itself of an infestation of oligarchs without exposing the politicians who let them capture the state.
The risks in Ukraine are escalating as Russia shows the nuclear card – but markets are behaving as if its Russia has been backfooted as the West finally wakes-up to the threat. Russia might have miscalculated some aspects of its strategy, but it would be wrong to think much has changed – yet!