2021: The year of the Black Swans? by Tuomas Malinen

All sorts of things could wrong this year, and probably will. From Tuomas Malinen at gnseconomics.com:

A “Black Swan” is best defined as an unforecastable, low-probability, high-impact event. They may include more prosaic natural disasters, like earthquakes, but are more generally understood to be unforeseeable economic, financial and political calamities.

While Black Swan events are, by this definition, unforecastable, the trends building up to them can often be observed, and that process has been our aim since the inception of GnS Economics in 2012. For example, it’s nowadays often possible to observe the buildup of pressure in volcanos. This does not guarantee an eruption, naturally, but it provides an indication that such an event could occur.

The same principle applies to political, economic and financial events.

One of the most worrying trends contributing to the development of potential Black Swans has been the increasing fragility of the global economy, which we have been warning about since 2017. Recently, the fragility of the global economy has been aggravated by lockdowns and the ill-advised “support policies” of governments and central banks worldwide.

This has only accelerated the zombification of the global corporate sectors, while creating an intrinsic asset bubble, which keeps on expanding—and now an inflation shock lurks on the horizon. All these increase the likelihood of an economic “eruption”. However, political shocks may also be approaching.

The failure of contemporary politics to understand and correctly address this complex set of economic policy issues is one of the main reasons we are in this mess.

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