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Food banks spread in richer countries, hunger spreads in poorer countries, as Europe’s fertilizer crisis continues

Unfortunately, the problems look set to get worse rather than better. And the oil price rise caused by the Israel/Gaza crisis adds to the problems caused by the Ukraine invasion. A difficult winter, and 2024, lie ahead.

Food banks spread in richer countries, hunger spreads in poorer countries, as Europe’s fertilizer crisis continues Read More

Bond markets reach “The End of the Beginning” as traders finally realise rates will be higher for longer

300+ years of Bank of England data shows that interest rates are typically inflation plus 2.5%. At today’s level, this would imply – US rates would be 3.7% + 2.5% = 6.2%: Japan would be 3.2% + 2.5% = 5.7%: Eurozone rates would be 5.3% + 2.5% = 7.8%; UK rates would be 6.7% + 2.5% = 9.2%

Bond markets reach “The End of the Beginning” as traders finally realise rates will be higher for longer Read More

It’s our 16th birthday – and the chemical industry remains the best leading indicator for the global economy

The Ukraine war highlights how the real world can often be a very messy place. Issues such as geopolitics and demographics aren’t easy to understand. It can be hard to understand the detail of how key industries and markets are operating.

So it’s no surprise that most policymakers have preferred to stay in the world of theory.

It’s our 16th birthday – and the chemical industry remains the best leading indicator for the global economy Read More

Global auto fleet goes electric as “the electrification of everything” begins

The ‘digitalization of everything’ has transformed the global economy over the past 30 years. The rise of the internet is just one example. Now electrification is set to have a  similar impact, starting with the world’s largest manufacturing industry. Fasten your seatbelts for the ride!

Global auto fleet goes electric as “the electrification of everything” begins Read More

Food costs and interest rates rise as energy and fertilizer supplies are hit by the invasion

It’s going to be a very difficult winter. Most of the world will be impacted as Europe bids up energy/food prices to keep its people warm and fed. And it would never have happened if policymakers had recognised the importance of geopolitics, energy markets and demographics.

Food costs and interest rates rise as energy and fertilizer supplies are hit by the invasion Read More

The blog’s 15th birthday – and the chemical industry remains the best leading indicator for the global economy

The US is moving into recession as the Atlanta Fed chart confirms. Chemicals have been warning of this for some time. But policymakers and commentators remain in Denial about the economy. They prefer to focus on their computer models, and ignore the real world outside their window.

The blog’s 15th birthday – and the chemical industry remains the best leading indicator for the global economy Read More

“We now understand better how little we understand about inflation”, Jay Powell, US Federal Reserve Chairman

We are facing a perfect storm of global food, energy and financial crises set off by the war in Ukraine.  Analysts need to stop focusing on monetary policy and the inversion of the yield curve. They need to look out of the window and start dealing with the geopolitical reality of Putinflation. 

“We now understand better how little we understand about inflation”, Jay Powell, US Federal Reserve Chairman Read More

The chemicals industry continues to be the best leading indicator for the global economy

Central banks and investors believed stimulus programs had created a “New Paradigm” where asset prices would always increase. Now they are starting to realise that stimulus is irrelevant against the 3 Horsemen of the Apocalypse – China’s continuing battle with the pandemic, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and potential famine as rising gas/fertilizer prices mean farmers can’t afford to grow their crops or feed their animals.   

The chemicals industry continues to be the best leading indicator for the global economy Read More

Ukraine, pandemic, herald major market shifts

Energy and financial markets are exacerbating the risks ahead. Oil prices at current levels – as the chart confirms, they now account for more than 3% of global GDP – have historically led to recession as the chart shows. The reason is that consumers have to cut back on their discretionary spending, which drives economic growth, in order to heat their homes and travel to work and school. Today’s high levels of natural gas prices add to this risk.

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Friends of the Earth v Royal Dutch Shell – what did the Dutch Court rule, and what does it mean for Shell’s business?

My Dutch colleague, Daniël de Blocq van Scheltinga, is a graduate of Leiden University in the Netherlands, with a Master of Law degree and a specialty in International law. Here he gives his expert view on the Dutch court’s decision to order Shell to reduce its CO2 emissions by at least 45% , relative to

The post Friends of the Earth v Royal Dutch Shell – what did the Dutch Court rule, and what does it mean for Shell’s business? appeared first on Chemicals and the Economy.

Friends of the Earth v Royal Dutch Shell – what did the Dutch Court rule, and what does it mean for Shell’s business? Read More

2021 unlikely to see a quick return to ‘business as usual’

Investors have been spoilt in recent years by the absence of risk. 2020 confirmed the ‘risk off’ mode as central banks ramped up their support. But will Wall Street continue in party mood, despite the growing problems on Main Street?

 

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What would another 4 years of President Trump’s policies mean?

50 million Americans have already voted in the Presidential election. Turnout is on course to be the highest percentage since 1908. This week we analyse President Trump’s agenda if he is re-elected. Next week, we will look at Joe Biden’s alternative for the country.

 

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Central banks try to ‘print babies’ to boost consumption

Supply/demand balances are weakening in oil markets, whilst a Fed Governor has highlighted the serious problem that developed in Treasury markets during the March collapse. We also focus on the economic impact of the Perennials – who will provide the majority of US/Western and Global population growth over the next decade.

 

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