Davos Speakers Offer Their Counsel to Trump and Brexit Negotiators
- There was plenty of advice for Trump at the World Economic Forum Friday
- There was advice too for the UK and EU teams negotiating Brexit
Government ministers, central bank officials and finance industry executives were using the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland as a platform Friday to offer guidance to incoming US President Donald Trump and the politicians who will negotiate the UK exit from the European Union.
Among them, Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, said one of the biggest risks to the global economy in 2017 is “a race to the bottom” on taxes, regulation and trade, in a thinly-disguised reference to the policies proposed by Trump during his Presidential campaign.
There was a warning too from Larry Fink, chief executive of asset manager BlackRock, who said the US faces a strengthening Dollar that will likely fuel tensions between the Trump administration and the Federal Reserve. He added that he expected Fed interest rate increases this year to push up the value of the US currency “significantly” and said “we all should be aware right now that we are going to be living a world of a strong Dollar.”
Fink said too that talks with members of the incoming administration suggest their economic policies will be “loud, noisy and strong”, adding that such policies were set to support US markets for at least the first 100 days of Trump’s presidency, although it was not clear to him how the new administration plans to pay for its stimulus measures, including investments in ageing infrastructure.
However, Wolfgang Schaeuble, the German finance minister, said he can’t imagine the Trump team will cause huge damage to free trade but that the US must stick to international agreements. As for Brexit, Schaeuble said he doesn’t expect it to have a negative impact on the Euro-Zone this year and that the German government will try to minimize the risks and damage to both the EU and the UK.
Philip Hammond, the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, said Trump’s election is likely to create more uncertainty for Europe than Brexit. “The change of administration in Washington is a very big issue,” he said. As for Brexit, the UK has a strong interest in a stable and successful Euro, he said.
Haruhiko Kuroda, governor of the Bank of Japan, was more upbeat though. He said there may be upside risks to the US economy this year and next year as long as protectionism does not spread all over the world.
--- Written by Martin Essex, Analyst and Editor
To contact Martin, email him email@example.com
Don't trade FX but want to learn more? Read the DailyFX Trading Guides.
DailyFX provides forex news and technical analysis on the trends that influence the global currency markets.