Market Strategist Bill Blain looks at critical themes in the global markets.
The prospects of a Chaos Moment seem to be rising. Although there is nothing specific to say a crash is coming, lots of signals point to crisis events; it maybe the sudden collapse of the myth behind We-Work morphing into fears about the Softbank Vision Fund, or it might be fears about how politics could trigger a chaos moment. The speed at which problems evolve into chaotic market moves can be overwhelming - and it can happen suddenly at any time.
Global central banks used to be bastions of trust and stability, but after 10-years of monetary experimentation and ultra-low interest rates, are we right to trust them anymore? QE and low rates have triggered all kinds of unintended consequences and market distortions, and the credibility of global central banks is under question. The degree to which they are politically independent, and what they can do next to address a global slowdown is debatable.
Donald Trump is a divisive figure - but to what extent will his impeachment trial destabilise markets? The potential disruption is enormous - right the way up to breaking confidence in the dollar and the US' dominant global position. Its critical the impeachment process is seen to clear, clean, transparent and open - or else it could backfire badly on the US and markets.
The UK election has finally been called. Its not a slam-dunk for Boris Johnson's conservative party. If he has overestimated the willingness of Labour Leave seats to vote for him, then there is a distinct possibility of a Liberal/Labour coalition. Everyone thinks its about Brexit - what if it is not?