Although the sun is still shining on the global economy, the markets are much more unstable than is generally perceived, much like at the start of the bursting of the bitcoin bubble, but especially given the spurt of volatility that affected the stock exchanges of the planet at the beginning of February: a hiccup that will be quickly forgotten some will say, but it is reasonable to think that we have returned to a zone of dangers with fragilities that are sensitive to the slightest tremor. This leads to a climate of monetary uncertainty (dollar strong or weak), which influences the prices of commodities.

Here too, without going so far as to speak of a bubble, we must expect a readjustment of prices, especially with respect to oil. Not a day goes by without this or that agency reassessing the prospects for US production. If Canada and Brazil are added in the short term, the best efforts of OPEC and Russia will come to naught, even with the persistence of the chaos in Venezuela. The victorious statements of OPEC do not change anything and producers will be happy if the barrel does not go below $60, which has become the tolerable ‘social’ threshold for the main Gulf countries.

In other commodities markets, it is also time for a return to fundamentals dominated by Chinese appetite, whose environmental limits are hard to measure. The world scene is also animated by commercial skirmishes between China and the United States: sorghum against washing machines, which is a long way from the happy times of multilateralism!

The CyclOpe team is in full drafting mode of the CyclOpe 2018 report, which will be published in May. Reading the ‘papers’ that come to us from all over the world, there is greater optimism than that indicated in our forecasts for Brazil (+2.5% in 2018) and also more pronounced doubts with respect to India, which has become somewhat disenchanted with Mr. Modi. This contrasts with the increased optimism in Europe and the United States. To be continued…

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