Turbulent Times – 6th November 2020

Well, it certainly has been a tumultuous few weeks.

Lockdown part II seems to have coincided with a fairly inconclusive US election result, which at the time of writing, looks as if it could remain that way for many days or even weeks at this stage. Throw in a relative lack of news over the progress (or not) being made with the Brexit trade deal and we have a recipe for an interesting winter.

None of these things were totally unexpected, in fact you could argue that all of them were fairly likely, however that still doesn’t make the uncertainty any easier to deal with.

As always, we like to look for the positives in all of this.

First of all, although we are now in a second lockdown, it is far less restrictive than the first. Parents across the land will be breathing a sigh of relief at the fact that the schools are remaining open. We can at least have a tiny bit of outdoor contact with others outside of our immediate family and we are not restricted to just a single dose of daily exercise (quite what the logic of that rule was the first time around I will never know!).

As far as the US election is concerned, I think we can take some comfort from a financial planning perspective from whichever outcome we receive. A Trump victory would arguably be the stock markets favoured outcome. He would likely maintain the status quo in terms of low corporate taxes and reasonably low levels of regulation. If Biden prevails on the other hand, although he might introduce some policies which would create a short-term market shock, he is perhaps the more moderate candidate and might be more willing to negotiate and cooperate with other countries around the world which would do geopolitics a world of good.

Finally, we have Brexit. Although the news on this front has been rather quiet of late (it’s amazing to think just how much Covid-19 has stolen the show in terms of media airtime), there are some glimmers of hope that we might reach a deal. My own view is that they will be able to pull something out of the bag at the eleventh hour, it just depends what that ‘something’ is.

It just goes to show that most clouds do have a silver lining.

Enjoy your lockdown the best you can – it will be over before we know it (I hope!)