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Reasons to be cheerful – part three


6th February 2024

After a year of geopolitical turbulence in 2023, elections in more than 40 countries in the year ahead look set to keep the tensions bubbling, fuelling global uncertainty and market caution. But despite the prospect of yet more change and upheaval, there are actually signs of reasons to be cheerful.

February alone brings votes in volatile countries such as South Africa, Belarus, Pakistan, Senegal, Azerbaijan, Indonesia and the Dominican Republic. They keep on coming every month, finishing with South Sudan, Algeria and Ghana in December.

Yet the economic indicators remain encouraging.

The Bank of England held UK interest rates steady at 5.25% for a fourth meeting in a row in February. While this was widely anticipated, there is a broad consensus that rates are set to fall in 2024, in the UK and elsewhere, with some predicting a cut as early as June.

Inflation is also heading south. The EY Item Club predicts inflation will fall faster than expected in 2024, reaching the Bank of England’s 2% target by May and averaging 2.4% in 2024.

Meanwhile GDP has also started showing signs of life.

KPMG predicts 0.5% GDP growth for 2024, whilst the EY ITEM Club has upgraded its growth expectation to 0.9% in 2024 versus the 0.7% it had projected a few months previously.

Now, these trends do not paint a picture of roaring twenties-style economic recovery, but they definitely speak to a gradual stabilisation following several years of economic challenges. As the gloom begins to dissipate, it is the perfect time to review market positioning and sharpen up corporate communications strategies.

At Houston, we work with our clients – both listed and unlisted companies across a range of sectors – to deliver positioning that supports and enhances their investment case while reinforcing the brand proposition with clients and prospects.

In times of change, it’s critical to know where you stand and what you stand for. What’s more, it’s vital that everybody else knows too.

If you’d like to know how Houston can help you, get in touch with our team