A new year signals new predictions. The aim of the game is to forecast risky and somewhat disturbing events that could take place this year. In truth, it is unlikely that these predictions will occur, if you recall the epic fail of our 2016 EURO Cup prognostic. From an economic standpoint, though, our 2016 crazy predictions were not too far from reality.
Climate changes, a lack of political confidence, the health of the economy or even the social zeitgeist; the negative spiral intensifies. This morose dynamic will come to an end sooner or later once the damages caused can no longer be ignored and drastic action must be taken. This era will no doubt be tough but should be perceived as a source of infinite opportunity. New leaders and equilibriums will emerge.
This year we propose 10 predictions, from the most probable to the most ludicrous.
1. Bullish defence industry
A new world war has been on the media’s lips since Donald Trump’s election. In our humble opinion, no new wars or conflicts will breakout in 2017: too soon and too many major elections across the world. However, given the context and the outcome of recent elections, a wide scale reinforcement of military budgets and capacities can be envisioned as a logical preliminary measure. Weapons manufacturers and distributors should see large profits.
2. End of negative rates
Banks will be able to catch their breath, the states will (at last) reform themselves and individuals will flock to the property markets. The FED, followed by the ECB will end this aberration of negative rates. Find out more.
3. € 1 = 1 USD
Last year we foretold a parity between the Euro and the Dollar, and we almost got it right, 80% to be precise. We have therefore decided to carry this prediction over to 2017 as we believe it is only a matter of time; given the international context along with the rise of the FED rates (followed by the ECB) before we return to the same parity we had in 2002 (15 years ago…).
4. Paris 2024
The idea of allowing a country that is currently building a wall at its border and banishing its foreign nationals overnight, to host the Olympic games is unfathomable. Even lobbyists have their limits, or at least we hope they do.
Following the withdrawal of Hamburg (2015) and Rome (2016), Los Angeles will suffer collateral damages from the Trump administration; unless California secedes before then ( crazy prediction within the prediction?). Budapest and Paris are set to go head to head and we reckon Paris won’t fail a fourth-time over (1992, 2008, 2012). Besides, full marks for their website. Admittedly the official slogan of the campaign “made for sharing” is in English; another hit for the French language, the outcome will be announced 13/09/2017 in Lima.
5. Trump not as catastrophic as expected
We trust the American administration and its tightly woven system. President Trump (previously a media mogul) will be recognised far more by his spiteful tweets and provocative displays than for implementing concrete reforms. His first decrees were expected to be grand to please the electorates (but also American industries – America First) however, his domestic and foreign policy will soon clash with congress, the justice department and powerful lobbies. His many opponents, including republicans won’t give him any leeway and the impact of his actions should be moderate, if not slightly positive for both domestic employment and consumption. For now, no rise in geopolitical tensions in sight.
6. Violent protest movements
Popular movements are amplifying due to the radicalisation of our leaders as well as socio-economic tensions growing evermore in the four corners of the world (Brazil, Turkey, Romania. Venezuela, Africa, etc.). As opponents ferociously oppose the carrying out of social reforms, Western countries, already targeted by terrorists will not be forgotten.
7. Merkel & Erdogan in danger
In 2017, Mr Erdogan may finally achieve his ultimate objective: his official rise to the position of executive president, allowing him to run Turkey like a “sultan” unchallenged by the state government. Nevertheless, despite the polls becoming increasingly untrustworthy, we are betting on his referendum being a near miss.
On the German side, Angela Merkel will remain weakened by her liberal line on immigration. A stable coalition with historic allies seems difficult and her 4th election is far from in the bag. This is enough to revive concerns about the financial markets, notably the stability of the Euro zone and the debt of certain European countries (close watch on Italy).
8. Macron in
A case of gross indecency for Dominique Strauss Kahn (who was favourited during the previous presidential elections), a fictitious employment scandal for François Fillon… In the end an opportunistic candidate triumphed.
We wager an unprecedented duel between Le Pen and Macron during the second round of the French presidential elections, concluding rather insignificantly in a victory for Emmanuel Macron. His party being too young to win the legislative elections, he will be made to concede to a mandatory coalition or national union government. This yet possible absence of the two main French parties at the second round of the presidential elections will no doubt see radical changes in the French political landscape. Perhaps the left-right rivalry will be replaced by a europeanist vs nationalist rivalry.
9. Swift yet firm exit for UK
In line with our article this summer regarding Brexit, and despite the confirmation of a preliminary vote from parliament, we are betting on a much faster and fiercer Brexit than expected. Europe’s divisions as well as the new opportunities arising indirectly from Brexit (USA, China) could speed up the UK’s exit from the Euro Zone if article 50 is triggered in March 2017. One cannot deny that the UK’s economic indicators are yet to demonstrate any signs of chaos, as initially predicted, but instead the GDP grew by 2.2% in 2016 compared to 1.5% and 1.1% for Germany and France respectively. Furthermore, unemployment rates (4.8%) are at their lowest since 2005).
10. Climate disasters could trigger a new “social green era”
Sadly, climate change has become a banal concept; easier to ignore than to act on. Every year is the eleventh hour, yet the Eco warriors’ call for action tends to fall on death ears. Undeniably, the movement is growing, nations are taking turns in hosting conference parties each more convincing than the last; but no revolution has happened yet. We hope this year will be different. Perhaps those who are yet to play ball will experience a profound awakening following the broadcast of a natural disaster (reflection of the Syrian migrant crisis). If each of us do our bit in 2017 could it be enough to trigger a new era. Time will tell, in the meantime you can check out our initiatives
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