Time to Revisit the Implementation of Brexit

Like the inversion of Mike Campbell in Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises” the United Kingdom ended at a hard Brexit suddenly, and then gradually. The big bang was the vote six years ago, but that did not have to mean an absolutist clean break. That was instead the result of an accumulation of constant framing, and a myriad of tactical misjudgements. Theresa May tried to get a Brexit bill through Parliament in early 2020, several times. This included a backstop whereby Britain would not leave the customs union until an alternative arrangement for Northern Ireland was found. For all her limitations as a politician, May tried to sincerely grapple with this particular hot potato. It was no surprise that [...]

By |June 21st, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|

The Role Of Energy

One of the big success stories of modern Danish business is renewables. 2020 was the first year where a majority of electricity used was powered by wind and solar energy. Now, roughly 40% of gross energy consumption is from renewables. With hugely ambitious projects underway like “Energy Island” in the North Sea (which will provide electricity to 800,000 homes) the role of renewables will substantially increase.   These projects are not only hugely beneficial from an environmental point of view, but the geopolitical urgency has become clearer in recent weeks. Denmark’s neighbour and Europe’s largest economy, Germany, has made significant strides in the production of renewables, but natural gas still makes up a quarter of all energy consumption, and 55% [...]

By |April 27th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|

Denmark Post-COVID

Denmark is gradually gaining control over the novel Coronavirus. However, its consequences will have a huge impact on the country’s political economy in the coming years. Here are five issues to follow closely.   Support for the Government   The popularity of the current Social Democratic government has skyrocketed in recent months, with the Social Democrats now polling 15% above their nearest rivals. This is predictable – almost all governments have experienced a “rally round the flag” effect during the pandemic; even those with imperfect responses like the United Kingdom and Italy. Factor in Mette Frederiksen’s calm and forthright approach, so impressive as to be praised by opposition politicians, and the popularity is no surprise.   In normal times, the [...]

By |June 9th, 2020|Categories: Newsletters|

Economic Performance Under Trump

Part of the media’s role in politics is to sort out the spin from the facts. In terms of analysing the American economy, the media have failed. They have wholeheartedly embraced the Trump administration’s narrative that the America is witnessing a groundbreaking performance; in fact the performance is decidedly average and well below the Trump’s administration’s goal. With the 2019 figures in, the average growth rate for the last three years has been 2.5%. This is below the average since the Second World War, broadly similar to President Obama’s second term, and well below the 4% President Trump promised (the Clinton administration, uniquely in recent decades, got close to this figure). To make these bald numbers worse, this is [...]

By |February 17th, 2020|Categories: Newsletters, Uncategorized|

Five Talking Points from the British Election

Elections to the British Parliament were held on 12 December. The Conservatives won a comprehensive victory, whilst the night proved disastrous for the opposition Labour and Liberal Democrats. Here is a rundown of five of the main takeaways.   Johnson’s Personal Triumph   A year ago Boris Johnson’s top level career seemed to be over. He had resigned after an ineffectual spell as Foreign Secretary, and parliamentary colleagues briefed journalists about his countless failings.   Theresa May’s deal floundered though, and the Conservatives were crushed in the European elections. Desperate times called for desperate measures, and previously sceptical Tories threw their reservations aside in the hope that Johnson’s charismatic style would win back swaying voters.   The election result vindicated [...]

By |January 20th, 2020|Categories: Newsletters|


Whilst British Prime Minister Boris Johnson recently illegally suspended Parliament, and US President Donald Trump faces an impeachment inquiry, new Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has faced far less turbulent times. Firstly, a ferocious Liberal party power struggle has taken up all the domestic focus in recent months. Secondly, Denmark is in a fairly enviable position. Growth since the financial crisis has been steady, if unspectacular; unemployment is moderate; there is a whopping current account deficit; and Denmark enjoys one of the lowest levels of public debt in the rich world. Nobody should be lulled into a false sense of security though. Firstly, although public debt is low, private debt in Denmark is high by international standards. Combined with [...]

By |October 17th, 2019|Categories: Newsletters|