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Saxo’s outrageous predictions for 2024 sure are outrageous

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Alongside the reanimation of Cliff Richard and local press reports about rip-off Christmas grottos, Saxo’s Outrageous Predictions is a December tradition that arrives with predictable predictability.

This year’s selection is a little bit Black Mirror and quite a lot of WSJ Opinion pages. Here are Saxo’s own summaries; click through for the detail:

With oil at $150, Saudis buy Champions League franchise

Emboldened by surging crude oil prices, Saudi Arabia makes waves on the international stage, as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman manages to create a World Champions League, after buying the UEFA Champion League franchise.

World hit by major health crisis as obesity drugs make people stop exercising

As the world embraces GLP-1 obesity wonder drugs, the people next in line to get a prescription stop caring about dieting and exercising, figuring that the drug will later solve all of their weight-related health problems.

The end of capitalism in the USA

With the US budget deficit spiraling above 10% of the GDP, the government is desperate to foster demand for US Treasuries. Under intense pressure from the White House, Congress makes income from government bonds tax-free.

Generative AI deepfake triggers a national security crisis

After a criminal group deploys the most deceptive AI deepfake ever seen, generative AI becomes a national security threat. With public distrust soaring, governments crack down with harsh new laws, puncturing the AI hype.

Deficit countries form ‘Rome Club’ to negotiate trade terms

To fix the divergence in the global trade and financial system, the largest deficit countries unite to negotiate new world trade terms. For surplus countries, the reset of the global economic model is a painful adjustment.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr wins the 2024 US presidential election

As discontent with Biden and Trump rises to fever pitch, Robert F. Kennedy Jr sees his support rising inexorably in the polls. On November 5, Kennedy wins the US presidential election, ushering in a new era in US politics.

Japan’s ‘lucky 7%’ GDP growth rate forces BoJ to abandon yield curve control

Stepping up Japan’s economic transformation in 2024, PM Kishida brings in a host of populist policies to boost domestic demand. As the GDP growth rate hits 7%, the BoJ is forced to abandons its yield curve control policy.

Luxury demand plunges as EU goes Robin Hood, introducing wealth tax

As people wake up to how little tax Europe’s billionaires are actually paying, the EU Commission implements a wealth tax of 2%. The tax sends shockwaves through Europe’s luxury industry, with luxury giant LVMH plunging 40%.

Saxo also provides a summary of how previous outrageous predictions have turned out. These include bitcoin’s price popping (2017) and Brexit Brexiting (2015), but also a lot of stuff that definitely didn’t happen. The 2023 selection, for example, has Emmanuel Macron resigning, the IMF splintering, and the UK calling another EU referendum, all of which would make for an exciting December.

Of course, the whole point of Saxo’s Outrageous Predictions list isn’t to be right. It’s to generate a bit of press for a mid-tier Danish bank by giving hungover hacks on deadline something easy to write about, which is a tradition we are very happy to uphold.

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