US: Low unemployment implies limited room for expansion
Eurozone: Weak growth points to further policy stimulus
The Nordics: Labour market mismatch keeps Nordic unemployment high
Donald Trump is unlikely to start his term of office by introducing high tariffs on imports from Mexico and China, even though he can do this without the approval of Congress. Rather, the "super-negotiator" Trump will prefer to retain this threat and start negotiations with these countries in order to improve US trade conditions. Despite Trump's election campaign promises, we see very little likelihood of a major trade war.
Trump has won the American presidential election, and both the House of Representatives and the Senate have Republican majorities. The major uncertainty regarding President Trump's political agenda will probably lie like a wet blanket over the economy in the near future.
The Swedish krona has been weak and it has gone from bad to worse in recent months, as the anticipated strengthening of the krona has actually turned out to be the weakest level against the euro in more than six years. We have been bullish for some time and still believe the EURSEK is at elevated levels, but we feel it is necessary to adjust our short-term forecast up to 9.55 (9.35).
• Cyclical and structural factors dampen growth
• Increased risk of a slump
• Monetary and fiscal policy out of ammunition
• Demographics push down interest rates
We had a series of meetings with economists, political analysts and even a real estate company in London on September 26-27, with the aim of obtaining deeper insight into the British economy after the Brexit vote and how the process of leaving the EU is unfolding. We left with a number of interesting impressions, although we note there were different views among those we met about how the Brexit process will unfold, and whether or not the outcome will be a 'hard' or 'soft' Brexit.
Our key impressions:
• The likelihood of the UK government backing away from the Brexit process is very low, as is the likelihood of a new Brexit referendum.
• The Autumn Statement might include some further government spending, but it is not likely that it will be very generous, given that government finances already are stretched.
• The process within the British government to devise a proposal that deals with basic issues (immigration and trade) before invoking Article 50 will take time, meaning that the UK probably will not start negotiations early next year.
• The Brexit negotiations will be extremely complicated and difficult to resolve given the number of governments that must provide approval; some even deemed it impossible under the current rules.
• There appears to be some rather cautious optimism in the property market, but it remains unclear what will happen with foreign investments.