The GlobalEconomic and Financial Outlook: 2020 Vision
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The English language has an expression ‘20/20 vision’ which means perfect vision. The year 2020 may be the end of the current decade but the surest way for an economist to lose his or her reputation is by making forecasts particularly as far out as that. Economists can no more predict the future than can anyone else. Thus I will not try to predict the financial or economic world in 2020. What economists can do, however, is to point to developing trends, inconsistencies in policy, changes in underlying fundamentals and other factors that might impact on the firms whose activities they help to finance and hence impact on the providers of financial services. But the outcome of these factors will remain uncertain and will not be subject to statistical risk analysis. Nonetheless, for politicians, regulators and bankers it is necessary to try to make sense of developments and take steps to try to protect countries, financial firms and financial assets, respectively, from these uncertainties.
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