Five Surprising Scenarios for the Year of the Dragon

(Jan 24) Peter’s predictions for 2024 as published in Japan Forward, the English language version of the Sankei newspaper.
  • In 2023, normality resumed. Or so it seemed. People stopped talking about Covid. No prime minister was assassinated. Inflation fell to reasonable levels in many developed countries.
  • Concerns about a Taiwan emergency faded as Russia’s stalemated invasion of Ukraine demonstrated the risks of military adventurism. Despite concerns about a full-scale war in the Middle East, the oil price fell, and America’s Dow Jones Index hit an all-time high.
  • In other words, as predicted here, 2023 was a “Pinker Year”, named after the optimistic Harvard University professor Steven Pinker, rather than a “Roubini Year”, named after the apocalyptically pessimistic author of “Megathreats”, Nouriel Roubini.
  • So, everything is fine now? Not at all. The geopolitical and economic fault lines are still there and could generate massive disruption at any time. They are currently held in check because everyone is aware of the consequences.