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2022 Trends Analysis

Updated: Jun 2, 2022

One might be inclined to think that trend analysis is pointless in 2022. This would be due to the amount of flux the world has experienced in the last two years given the Covid pandemic, especially. But if you've been paying attention, the flux began accelerating in at least 2016 with Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, and arguably began to do so with the onset of the global financial crisis in 2008. And whilst we're looking back, since almost the very beginning of the 21st century with the terrorist attacks of 9/11 in 2001. The first two decades of the twenty-first century have proven far more turbulent than most pundits would have predicted in the late 1990s.

Not only change, but the speed of change has been increasing. Technological change was inevitable. But also predicted. Not necessarily the specific technologies, but the fact that there have been significant technological advances in the 21st century is no surprise to anyone in any particular field. Russia's invasion of Ukraine is the latest event, although seemingly incomprehensible at the end of the last century and arguably even more so a decade ago. But the drumbeat of war had been there since at least 2014 with Russia's invasion of Crimea with the benefit of hindsight.

As a result of the invasion, Europe is more united than it has been for decades. Efforts for common fiscal policies in Europe have been expedited. In all likelihood, the invasion will result in the expansion of Nato, with historically neutral states Finland and Sweden starting for the first time to express a serious desire to become member states. But the war has resulted in inflated energy and grain prices in markets that are already struggling with inflation due to the backlash of the Covid pandemic. Increases in the money supply, worker shortages and rising wages, supply chain disruption, as well as fossil fuel prices have all contributed to inflationary pressures. The European Central Bank has forecast inflation to drop to 4.3% later in the year and to 2.8% next year. So hopefully, these inflationary pressures are short term.

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