We can't believe it, but its happened. Stop. Look. Listen.
Ukraine has kicked off and its risk-off for markets as the reality there being no effective Western response kicks in. The implications for markets are huge – especially from the global geo-political perspective as nations decide how to play this. Turkey is caught in a classic currency-debt crisis which is now an opportunity for Erdogan and threat for the West and China.
The immediate financial market outlook is risk-off driven by Ukraine, followed by rising fears and concerns about inflation policy mistakes, wondering when to pick the bottom in the tech cycle to buy great ideas, why Boeing should be in jail, and longer-term concerns about where we are going in terms of transition.
Inflation should be front and centre for markets – give or take Ukraine, Oil, etc. How real is it, and just how bad could the consequences be? Not talking about it is one way to ensure it hurts.
The world is a complex place, and the massive macro threat posed by Ukraine is a clear danger to markets. Less clear, but just as significant, is economic failure at the micro level as firms start to fail as banks pull back, and the sheer injustice of what happened to UK Postmasters. The elites will protect their own - not a single manager will go to jail despite their appalling treatment of post office staff.
Markets are up and down, and the noise is focused on Covid, Central Banks, Inflation and Tech stocks. But… perhaps the big risks lie elsewhere. Where are Geopolitics headed? Faceoffs in Ukraine and Taiwan have the potential to completely derail markets.