First the EU referendum, then the election of Donald Trump. In 2016, investors were surprised by events that pollsters and other experts said wouldn’t happen, although on both occasions stock markets swiftly recovered before reaching new highs.
Despite widespread calls for fiscal stimulus, the Chancellor confirmed the government will continue with austerity, albeit a little less aggressively.
Following the election of Donald Trump as the next President of the United States, investors should take note of the hidden costs of protectionism.
One of the most overlooked risks for financial markets over the next decade is the potential for the US to impose tariffs on imports. This risk is greatest if Donald Trump wins on 8 November. Yet our analysis suggests conditions are ripe for protectionism to have broader popular appeal: less extreme politicians than Mr Trump could use it to secure votes.
Barack Obama entered the White House on a wave of optimism and with a promise of momentous change. With his presidency heading into its final stages, we ask whether history is likely to judge him as one of the greats or as a leader who fell short of the expectations he set both for himself and for his country.
US stock markets have had a mixed year so far, following the Federal Reserve’s decision in December to raise interest rates for the first time since 2006. Renewed fears about the fall in oil prices and the effect of the slowdown in Chinese GDP growth on the world economy led to a 12% fall in the S&P 500 between late December and mid-February. Since then, US equities have recovered steadily and the S&P 500 reached a new peak in early July.
The UK has voted to leave the European Union, which will trigger two years or more of negotiations once Westminster formally notifies Brussels of its intention to secede. However, the referendum result is advisory rather than mandatory and there are significant constitutional issues that must be resolved before such notice can be given. As a result, UK and EU politics will have a significant impact on financial markets in the short to medium term.
More questions than answers