2019, like most years that end in a 9, (look back in history) will be a year to remember.
NB: I am NOT Nostradamus and I have no crystal ball.
These are predictions based on analysis and perspective guided by trends.
Like any such views they are a baseline and high and low alternatives are also plausible.
The year ahead will provide lots of intrigue, controversy, volatility and danger.
There are ways to play it and come out ahead or to be damaged—perhaps, severely.
The pundits are all focused on the “Fall of Trump”, which WON’T happen, but there are other traps and challenges galore.
Here then, from my strategist=scholar=diplomat perch is a list of the NINE things that I predict for the year ahead.
Keep watch and beware!
- Trump will remain in office and set for reelection, Keeping America Great. The government will reopen and a border barrier built. The impeachment campaign will fall flat on its face and the Mueller report, long awaited, will end with a whimper and aggressive rebuttal.
- Brexit will happen and the UK will leave the failed EU in a clean break, without an agreement and without forking over a ton of cash, They will proceed ahead on WTO trade rules and the economy will hardly suffer an iota; quite the contrary.
- As the US departs Syria, Iran and its proxies will try and fill the power vacuum, thereby starting a larger regional conflict involving Israel. It will not end well for the Iranians and their regime will suffer, as will the Ayatollahs. Oil prices will shoot up. Ending the year at almost $80 a barrel
- The global economy will retract as Europe slows under the dead weight of the Euro, slow growth and increased trade tensions. The US will be the only strong man left, growing at plus 3 per cent a year and witnessing yet more job expansion. The stock market – Dow Jones will end 2019 at just short of 28,000. America is the best safe haven.
- China will cry out “uncle” after its leadership realizes they are doomed facing an adversary like Trump. They will capitulate on nearly everything from tariffs to non-tariff barriers to intellectual property. The so-called ‘Asia century’ is postponed, indefinitely.
- The EU will reform after the 2019 election where the populist parties coalesce to form the majority. The old European Project will be discarded and a smaller, leaner pro-sovereignty EU will take shape around a common market, full stop.
- New breakthrough drugs will come to market that provide wonders — ranging from the prevention of cancers to the elimination of certain diseases, like malaria, ebola, HIV and Alzheimer’s. Invest.
- Automation, robotization and blockchain will continue apace, changing forever the way business is done, workers work, and things are made. White-collar jobs will be dramatically affected — not just blue-collar ones.
- Social media will become even more totalitarian by policing “hate speech”, censoring anyone they disagree with, and monopolizing our lives, wallets and minds. The backlash will begin. People will drop out, go local, off-line, and governments will regulate and commence anti-trust actions against FAANG.
And a bonus…
- Outer space will be back in vogue with many countries jumping into the next frontier. The US will launch its Space Force as a new military service, set a time to go to Mars and return to the moon.
Have a happy new year, realizing that as the French poet, Victor Hugo reminded us over a century ago in Les Miserables:
“The future has several names. For the weak, it is impossible; for the fainthearted, it is unknown; but for the valiant, it is ideal.”