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News And Commentary

Five options if UK rejects May deal

Even if UK Prime Minister Theresa May loses her position in the light of outcries against her Brexit deal, the arrival of a new Conservative party leader would not change the parliamentary arithmetic behind agreement. If parliament votes against the deal, there are just five possible outcomes, writes Charles Grant.

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Renminbi's global reserve share rising

Despite a weaker renminbi/dollar rate this year, the Chinese currency has increased its share in global reserves. Less than a decade after the launch of the renminbi internationalisation initiative, more than 60 central banks are estimated to have renminbi in their reserves, writes Gary Smith.

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British EU exit deal uncertainties

Britain's uncertain prospects for securing an exit deal from the EU and then securing backing from parliament were examined in an OMFIF briefing in London by Lord (Norman) Lamont, former UK chancellor of the exchequer, and Lord (Christopher) Tugendhat, former vice-president of the European Commission.

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ECB on brink of 'egregious policy error'

Despite growing signs of vulnerability in the European and global economies, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi sees no need for the ECB to change course from its decision to withdraw monetary policy stimulus by concluding its bond-buying programme later this year, writes Desmond Lachman.

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Zambia's infrastructure habit

In Zambia, the tension between infrastructure development and debt is a recurrent political theme. The two issues often lead back to China and its funding of Zambian infrastructure projects. In a nation that emerged out of colonialism, fears of its reoccurrence in a different form are well founded, writes Max Roch.

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Doves waiting in Fed wings

The rotation of voting members of the Federal Open Market Committee after its December meeting will bring to the fore outspoken doves from regional federal reserve banks, James Bullard of the St. Louis Fed and Charles Evans of the Chicago Fed, to balance out incoming hawks, writes Darrell Delamaide.

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Rising external deficit 'made in USA'

As US external deficits widen in response to strong US economic performance and imbalanced macroeconomic policies, there is a considerable risk the Trump administration could amplify its protectionist rhetoric. Yet rising US trade and current account deficits are largely 'made in America', writes Mark Sobel.

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US midterms fulfil market expectations

The results of the US midterm elections illustrate how President Donald Trump remains bound to historical norms around US voter preferences for shared power, writes Elliot Hentov. While the chance of gridlock in Congress is higher, the result also reduces the probability of negative policy surprises.

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Meeting CalendarView All Forthcoming Meetings

Promoted Meeting VIEW PHOTO GALLERY

The 2018 Absa Africa Financial Markets Index launched in Bali alongside the IMF-World Bank Group meetings. In its second year, the index is a premier indicator of the attractiveness of Africa’s capital markets, for use by investors and asset managers around the world.

Investment Clock – A pivotal October

OMFIF Chart

Investment Clock – A pivotal October

Stock market volatility tends to reach its peak in October, underlined by famous crashes in 1929, 1987 and 2008. Cross-currents in the world economy make this October particularly pivotal, especially in the light of the tug of war between good news out of the US and bad news out of China.

Threat of staglation

OMFIF Chart

Investment Clock: Threat of stagflation

Global growth and inflation figures, in addition to rising commodity prices and interest rates, point to the risk of staglation over the summer months. The geopolitical backdrop, and the threat of a US-China trade war, also has a whiff of stagflation about it.

Bull market has further to run

OMFIF Chart

Investment Clock: Bull market has further to run

The world is experiencing one of the longest economic expansions since records began and there's no end in sight, with muted inflationary pressures keeping interest rates low. Stock markets like this not too hot, not too cold 'Goldilocks' backdrop.

Global infrastructure finance falls

OMFIF Chart

Global infrastructure finance falls

Global infrastructure financing has fallen short of its potential.Private sector investment and institutional investor capital are often raised as possible solutions for filling the infrastructure funding gap.

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Advisory Board

Protecting current auditing structure

This month’s poll focuses on the UK’s top accountancy firms. Participants were asked: ‘With many people attributing at least some of the blame for the collapse of services firm Carillion to the ‘big four’ UK accounting firms, should their oligopoly on the audit market be reviewed?’