Thursday, 7 January 2010

Looking to 2010

The winter might have brought a global freeze in the US and Europe but there are signs that 2010 will show an economic recovery. In the US the change of administration has seen a shift in Congress’ attitude towards fiscal policies and legal implementations. It seems the year is going to end with the Obama Administration successfully introducing a revised healthcare bill. A much wanted victory for the US President, who lost much of his international standing in Copenhagen last week. In Europe the weather is more uncertain. 

The barometer is certainly showing signs of change but, as in previous years, the environment can blow hot and cold. The EU Lisbon Treaty has come into force, at last, but only a few believe anything will really change in the decision making process and bureaucratic machine, which is called Brussels. Time should tell whether the French and Dutch ‘No’ in the past turn out to be justified after all. While Germany looks back on a dull election year with an outcome embraced by investors and the financial markets, it is the United Kingdom who is warming up for the big battle of Downing Street. Will the next UK Prime Minister be called Gordon or Cameron? The question how Italy’s entertaining internal struggle - with Prime Minister Berlusconi as the absolute centre of (un)wanted attention – will most likely be answered in the course of the year.

While Banks are regrouping and fighting to survive, others are repositioning themselves within the market, regionally and globally. It will be a decisive year for the airline industry, with some familiar names likely to go under. If we think positive, 2010 should be the year the last mess is cleaned up, it stops raining and the temperature can rise again, while another conference - halfway 2010 in Mexico - is going to try to tackle those extra degrees.