Positive consumer confidence readings in Israel underpin our view that private consumption will be the main driver of growth over the coming quarters. The picture is more mixed for the manufacturing sector, which is struggling to gain traction amid weak exports.
BMI Research recently held a webinar in which we presented our Emerging Markets Key Themes (see 'Emerging Markets Key Themes Chartpack - Q316', July 26). Here, we outline our answers to some of the topical questions that came up in the Q&A session.
The result of the opposition Labour Party's leadership election could pose risks to the Brexit timetable. Challenger Owen Smith's demand of a second referendum on any future deal with the EU before triggering Article 50 could act as a rallying cry for pro-EU voters turned off by Labour incumbent leader Jeremy Corbyn's passive support for the EU.
The ability to control pathogenic outbreaks is heavily dependent on the ability to produce and distribute vaccines in a timely and appropriate manner. For much of Sub-Saharan Africa, the ability to respond to disease outbreaks is marred by a lack of financing, poor treatment awareness, and inadequate healthcare services. The recent outbreaks of yellow fever, concentrated in Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo, has necessitated the use of fractional dosing - a short-term vaccination strategy that highlights the limited global vaccine supply.
After rallying by 20% in July-August driven by the delayed impact of El Niño on tree yields in South East Asia, palm oil prices will ease significantly in the coming quarters. The tightness in supply driven by El Niño in 2016 will dissipate as we turn to 2017 and fundamentals for the market will be bearish for prices. Palm oil will be one of the only commodities to average lower on a y-o-t basis in 2017.
The US consumer has increased its share of the economy over several decades, and over the past three quarters private consumption has remained strong at a time when business investment dragged on overall GDP growth. Although several short-term dynamics such as lower debt levels, strengthening wage growth and low unemployment figures point to short-term strength for the US consumer, they do not tell the whole story and importantly, more influential structural trends such as a falling savings rate and rising consumption as a share of the economy paint a more negative picture. In this piece of analysis, we outline the three scenarios we envisage for real private consumption growth over the coming quarters.
Outgoing UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is emerging as the de facto frontrunner for South Korea's December 2017 presidential election, as the conservative ruling Saenuri and centre-left liberal parties are struggling to find plausible candidates amid severe internal rifts. Meanwhile, President Park Geun-hye's deteriorating relationship with Saenuri is accelerating her descent to lame duck status, which will impede her ability to pass economic reforms and host the US's THAAD missile defence system.
The outperformance of emerging markets in terms of vehicle sales growth will become far more pronounced in 2017 as major EMs recover and DMs plateau or in some cases contract. The gradual recovery of Russia and Brazil, coupled with a slowdown in the US will be central to this view.
A Hillary Clinton presidency would adopt a tougher line towards Russia as part of a continuation of the decades-long policy aimed at containment. By contrast, a Donald Trump presidency would open the possibility of a significant improvement in US-Russia relations, albeit with some major caveats.
The reduced operating costs of new North Sea developments gives a glimmer of hope to the future production potential of the mature basin, which has long suffered from high operating costs, leaving it vulnerable to downturns in the oil price.