Giuseppe Sandro Mela.
L’Occidente sta attraversando una crisi politica ed identitaria di entità tale da non trovare riscontro nella storia dei decenni recenti: si dovrebbe risalire agli anni venti del secolo scorso per trovare una situazione ragionevolmente analoga.
Negli Stati Uniti il passaggio da un’amministrazione democratica a quella repubblicana appare essere quanto mai sofferto.
In Europa grandi stati quali la Spagna, l’Olanda, la Germania e, forse, tra poco anche l’Italia, si trovano nella condizione di avere governi minoritari, instabili, frutto più di necessaria convivenza che di chiaro indirizzo politico condiviso.
In questo ambito, anche i paesi dell’est europeo stanno passando i loro triboli.
Ma ai turmoil politici corrispondono ovviamente altrettante turbolenze economiche.
«In many investors’ eyes, political events in central and eastern Europe fall into the usual political noise category, while changes in larger emerging markets can mean a watershed moment for the economy, …. Investors may see the European Union as the ultimate backstop to negative political developments.»
«For long-term investors, broader developments in economical, political and social areas are more important …. Financial market participants have strong confidence in the long-term political agenda of CEE, as it’s still better-established and more diversified than many other emerging-market regions.»
«Political risk is alive and kicking in eastern Europe, but investors couldn’t care less»
«The region’s currencies and bonds continue to outperform peers, helped by the European Central Bank’s asset purchases in the euro area and the fastest economic growth in six years»
«Eastern European economies probably grew by 3.7 percent last year, the fastest pace since 2011»
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Problema davvero complesso, senza soluzione unica.
Né si sottovaluti la crisi demografica. Sarebbe impossibile progettare impianti industriali che richiedano mano d’opera numerosa in paesi che si stanno spopolando. I dati demografici sono un freno totale ai progetti industriali di lungo termine.
Da un punto di vista pratico potrebbe essere utile distinguere abbastanza nettamente due differenti tipologie di investimenti.
Gli investimenti di medio termine sono al momento vivibili in termini ambivalenti. Da una parte si constata quanto possano essere remunerativi, dall’altra ci si rende conto di quanto la instabilità politica possa generare bruschi cambiamenti del contesto operativo. Sta quindi all’operatore la valutazione del rapporto prestazioni / costi e dei relativi rischi connessi.
Gli investimenti sul lungo termine sono invece al momento poco turbati da tutti questi sobbollimenti. La opinione diffusa è che in una qualche maniera proprietà e redditività saranno tutelate in modo ragionevole.
Ma alla ragionevolezza delle previsioni dovrebbe sempre far riscontro l’uso di una sana prudenza.
→ Bloomberg. 2018-01-18. Investors Are Ignoring Big Risk Signals in Eastern Europe
– Traders look past politics in Poland, Czech Republic, Romania
– ECB stimulus, growth have helped countries outperform peers
Political risk is alive and kicking in eastern Europe, but investors couldn’t care less.
Currencies from the zloty to the koruna and the forint are all strengthening, ignoring political risk and turmoil. Poland is being threatened by unprecedented political and possibly economic sanctions by the European Union for eroding the rule of law, while the Czech Republic’s billionaire leader has failed to form a majority government and Romania’s ruling party just ousted its third prime minister in about a year.
The region’s currencies and bonds continue to outperform peers, helped by the European Central Bank’s asset purchases in the euro area and the fastest economic growth in six years. Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary boast the best-performing emerging-market currencies since the beginning of 2017, while volatility is waning. Their stock indexes have also hit multi-year highs in the last 12 months.
“There’s still ample global liquidity and search for yields,” said Viktor Szabo, a money manager who helps oversee $15 billion in emerging-market debt at Aberdeen Standard Investments in London. “External demand from the EU is strong, EU flows are coming in, domestic consumption is strong across the board, inflation is not a major problem, at least in central banks’ view. What’s not to like? The music is on, so investors have to dance.”
Eastern European economies probably grew by 3.7 percent last year, the fastest pace since 2011, according to a weighted average of country forecasts in a Bloomberg survey. That growth has been helped by investments funded by billions of euros in development aid from the EU, which most regional countries joined in the previous decade.
While it spars with Brussels, Poland’s governing Law and Justice party looked to appeal to investors when it last month appointed former Economy Minister and bank chief Mateusz Morawiecki as premier. Hungary’s cabinet is feuding with billionaire financier George Soros as it ramps up an anti-immigrant campaign heading into elections in April, with Prime Minister Viktor Orban holding a firm lead in polls. In Bulgaria, which this month took over the EU’s rotating six-month presidency, Prime Minister Boyko Borissov is facing a no-confidence motion that has almost no chance of passing but could be a source of humiliation.
“In many investors’ eyes, political events in central and eastern Europe fall into the usual political noise category, while changes in larger emerging markets can mean a watershed moment for the economy,” said Magdalena Polan, a global emerging-market economist at Legal & General Group Plc in London. “Investors may see the European Union as the ultimate backstop to negative political developments.”
Central banks have also been supportive of assets. The Czech Republic was one of the first to tighten policy in Europe to curb accelerating inflation on the back of rising consumption and wages. The region’s local-currency bonds outperformed the 11 percent return on an index of emerging-market notes.
Polish policy makers have kept interest rates on hold for almost three years, while Hungary’s record current-account surplus has allowed investors to see bond gains without suffering from currency depreciation, as the central bank pushes ahead with unconventional easing. That contrasts with the situation further east in Turkey, which has been forced to tighten policy to counter a lira being sold off on political risk and a deteriorating current account.
“For long-term investors, broader developments in economical, political and social areas are more important,” said Jetro Siekkinen, who helps oversee $2.5 billion in emerging-market debt as head of portfolio management at Aktia Asset Management in Helsinki. “Financial market participants have strong confidence in the long-term political agenda of CEE, as it’s still better-established and more diversified than many other emerging-market regions.”