Post Tagged with: "Politics"

This is what the Dutch election was all about

This is what the Dutch election was all about

On Wednesday night, the Dutch elections saw the two parties in the governing coalition lose 37 of the 79 seats they now hold between them. That’s a massive defeat frankly. Yet, the Prime Minister’s party is spinning this as a win. And for some reason, the international press is focusing on the underwhelming gain of the anti-Euro PVV party as if that’s the big takeaway. It isn’t. 

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The most important chart to see before the Dutch election

The most important chart to see before the Dutch election

The present Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mark Rutte, is the first Prime Minister from a party other than the two traditional centrist parties, PdVA and the CDA, and their predecessor parties since the Dutch constitution and voting system was fundamentally changed in 1917. Clearly, we are seeing a change in voting patterns

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Hedging against rising global political uncertainty

Hedging against rising global political uncertainty

Starting in 2007, global markets were buffeted by a series of financial and economic crises that created the greatest deflationary scare since the Great Depression. We have left out-and-out crisis mode. But the challenges are still considerable, especially politically.

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Great risk to Turkey as relations with Germany sour

Turkey is in the middle of a major political row with Germany. In the wake of the attempted coup d’tat last year, Turkish President Erdogan wants to change its constitution to give the President more power. And because the likely vote will be close and so many Turks live in Germany and the Netherlands, Erdogan’s allies want to campaign in those countries.

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Is Trump just a conventional politician who uses over-the-top bluster?

Forget about the executive orders and Trump press conferences. This is all for show – reality TV, if you will. Concentrate instead on what actually happens, what policies are actually implemented and what impact this is going to have on the economy.

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Why the election timetable favours the Five Star Movement in Italy

Yesterday, I was talking to a veteran journalist based in Rome. He remarked that youth unemployment in southern Italy was 60% and that this was one of the biggest problems to deal with politically. The spectre of strong, able-bodied young men sitting idle is always something that should fill any political system with dread – because it is exactly those same young men who always lead violent protests or revolution, no matter where in the world.

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The negotiations over Greece aren’t about Greece

Earlier today, I was listening to an interview with IMF head Christine Lagarde dance around the issue of the unsustainability of Greece’s debt load. And she said something very telling. She said that debt haircuts were not on the table but that maturity extensions and interest rate reductions were, but only AFTER Greece implemented reforms demanded by the Troika.

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Europe’s delusional economic policies

Europe’s delusional economic policies

Yesterday three big things happened in three different eurozone economies that I think are interrelated. And I am going to tell you what I believe they mean for the European political economy by tying them together in this post under the somewhat provocative banner of “Europe’s delusional economic policies”. The reason for the title is that what I see happening is an anti-growth economic framework which is having political consequences by fomenting nationalism and anti-EU sentiment.

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Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to supporters as he takes the stage for a campaign event in Dallas, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

If Donald Trump remains a cultural warrior, he will fail

Early on in President Trump’s new administration, too much of his energy is being placed on divisive ‘cultural’ issues and not enough attention is being paid to economic policies. To the degree Trump has turned to the economy, much of his policy has been focused on issues that will not yield long-term economic benefits but contain considerable risk, like trade with Mexico and China. And so, while Donald Trump is only a few weeks into his presidency, I think we can begin to take stock of what his presidency will mean for the US economy.

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Germany is the biggest loser in 2017

Germany is the biggest loser in 2017

As Donald Trump attempts to make wholesale shifts in American domestic and foreign policy, there are bound to be winners and losers economically and politically. Leading German government representatives from Sigmar Gabriel to Frank Walter Steinmeier to Angela Merkel have all taken a vocal stance against Trump’s policies. But the Trump administration appears to be moving in a direction that would weaken Germany’s hand. And so, Germany risks being one of the losers politically in 2017 – something that plays into Vladimir Putin’s hands.

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A Q&A With Prime Economics’ Jeremy Smith on Brexit, Immigration and Democracy

A Q&A With Prime Economics’ Jeremy Smith on Brexit, Immigration and Democracy

On Monday, UK Prime Minister Theresa unveiled her vision for Britain’s exit from the European Union. The Prime Minister couched her outlook in positive terms, speaking of Britain leaving the EU but remaining in Europe. She spoke of EU member states as friends and partners. And she insisted that Britain would prosper after Brexit is achieved. I have written about what the key takeaways from her speech were. But to get a better sense of how realistic her vision is in political and economic terms, I also asked Prime Economics Co-Director Jeremy Smith for his take.

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The country to watch in 2017 is Turkey

The country to watch in 2017 is Turkey

If I could name three countries that will be particularly difficult for the US to deal with geopolitically, I would pick Russia, China and Turkey. The first two are obvious choices but the third is going to be equally tricky because of the increasingly heavy-handed way Turkish President Erdogan is cracking down on alleged Gulenists in the aftermath of last summer’s attempted Coup d’etat. It is Turkey’s unique relationship to the West via NATO and the increasingly authoritarian rule which will make the relationship tricky in 2017.

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