Adding Back Central Bank Ambiguity

Central banks are adding more ambiguity back into their reaction functions. This points to higher global rate volatility After years of repression, rate volatility is beginning to rise. This is not only a reflection of greater macro-economic volatility, but –...

European Property Surge Set to Continue

Aggressive monetary expansion and a slowdown in construction activity have underpinned surging property prices. Both dynamics will keep fuelling the rally In the decade following the global financial crisis, unprecedented low funding costs and the search for yield...

Outlook stable for Europe and UK consumer

With global trade headwinds intensifying and many governments still reluctant to turn on the spending taps (for now), the burden of growth remains with the consumer. In the eurozone, consumer conditions appear relatively mixed. There is a divergence between soft and...

Swedish Housing Market Starting to Crumble

We have previously flagged Swedish property as both a precariously overvalued asset and a risk to systemic stability given the high degree of household leverage. The scale and intensity of the Swedish property bubble is reflected in the two charts below. In real terms...

The Italian Doom Loop

With Rome appearing to square off with Brussels over its contentious budget, BTPs have faced considerable pressure and bank stocks have been hammered. This is the nefarious doom loop: Italian banks own a large chunk of Italian government debt and, given the lack of...

Foreigners’ Confidence in UK Remains

The politics of Brexit have enveloped the UK, and have negatively affected UK growth. However, as recent current-account data shows, things are less bad than originally feared. The top-left chart shows that net investment into the UK has continued to rise. The total...

Vulnerabilities in Europe

Sentiment in Europe has soared to its highest level since 2001. However, in Europe as elsewhere, such lofty sentiment should be taken as a warning for markets, not a green light. As we can see from the top-left chart, previous peaks in economic sentiment have...

Negative Feedback Loop in Europe

While most of the attention post-Brexit has been on the UK, we are far more concerned about Europe.  Markets and the economy operate in a feedback loop, and the performance of European banks relative to the stock market points to a fall in lending ahead in Europe. ...