The stock markets are shifting without a clear sense of direction. As Alberto Matellán, Chief Economist at MAPFRE Inversión, explains, this summer, we are still in a period where any event, however small, can trigger sharp swings for which there is little justification when looking at the fundamentals. That’s why “we mustn’t lose sight of the long-term vision,” he stressed in his weekly statement on Radio Intereconomía’s A Media Sesión program.
The macroeconomic data that has recently come to light is doing little to change the outlook, meaning the data is losing significance. “Investors are looking at specific focal points, such as geopolitical affairs, the evolution of COVID-19 or news regarding possible vaccines, but macroeconomic data and interest rate developments will still be determining factors in the long-term,” he added. In fact, he highlighted the weight that is being attributed to any news about vaccines, even though “it’s still just noise,” according to the expert.
This week the annual meeting of central bankers in Jackson Hole sets out the agenda. In Matellán’s view, this is a fairly important event because the Federal Reserve is expected to take stock of the effects of the measures implemented following its framework review a year and a half ago, long before the onset of the pandemic. “The symposium is expected to provide signs of higher inflation, which should be received positively by the market, but even so, given the current context, potential monetary policy changes are sure to be left open to macroeconomic data yet to come.” In this regard, the economist says that German representative Isabel Schnabel has the option to align positions with the European Union following the major shift that took place in the spring, which was led by Angela Merkel.
“The current situation has proven that Germany needs Europe and Europe needs Germany,” he explained.
Meanwhile, there are still tensions between the United States and China. The Asian giant accused the United States of sending a spy plane into a no-fly zone used by the Chinese army for real fire drills, without permission yesterday. “It’s a tug of war in a long-term competition, and we should get used to that. It’s been happening for several years, sometimes in a military context, sometimes trade… it’s a competition for technological and economic leadership,” Matellán concluded.