Weekly Outlook 28/1/2019 to 1/2/2019

George Soros’s speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos stun the world "I want to call attention to the mortal danger facing open societies from the instruments of control that machine learning and artificial intelligence can put in the hands of repressive regimes". That was how George Soros began his speech in Davos. He lambasted the Chinese dictatorship and the president Xi Jinping for attempting to materialize a “social credit system” by consolidating information at the individual level into a centralized National database. Such a “social credit system” - which is due to be fully operational in 2020 - would be designed to assess conformity of each and every Chinese citizen through a system of algorithms, and to determine – according to Soros - if any of them represents a danger for the single-party Chinese state.

A vibrant debate at the world level is expected on the topic throughout the incoming week.

The global monetary policy wait

On the 24thof January, the Governing Council of the ECB decided to maintain all the main policy rates unchanged, at least through the summer of 2019. This orientation for “wait” – as it doesn’t represent nor an expansion nor a contraction – has characterized all monetary policy decisions worldwide this year (18 central banks in total up to today). The most accredited explanation is that CBs are waiting for the uncertainty concerning the US business cycle to be over. In fact, the US expansion has been extremely long-lasting and some crisis signs have already come up.

Additional Information

  • On Wednesday 30th, the INSEE will draw up the new French GDP q/q prospect.

  • In the same day, the BoE Governor Carney will deliver a public speech. It is interesting in term of future monetary policy maneuvers and then in terms of potential pound exchange rate variations.

  • The Bureau of Economic Analysis will, also on the 30th, present the US GDP q/q prospect and, later in the afternoon, the Federal Reserve will make its interest rate decision.

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