Global trade won't accelerate in 2017 after a sluggish 2016. The good news, however, is that all the money in the system will prevent a serious economic or market decline, said Ludovic Subran, chief economist at Euler Hermes.
"Trade growth will weaken to 2.1% by volume in 2016, with a negligible acceleration of 3.1% in 2017," according to Subran. "However, crashes like those 1990s should be avoided as abundant global liquidity and foreign exchange reserves make them more resilient to external shocks."
Subran said global growth will inch closer to 3% in 2017 thanks to growth from the U.S. and emerging markets, but will not rise above 3%. That's not to say things will be dull, especially with Donald Trump moving into the White House.
"President-elect Trump is a game changer for the global economy," said Subran. "He is Mr. Reflation, and we are already seeing that with the rise in interest rates."
He added that protectionism will continue to rise under a Trump administration. Subran cites the more than 350 protectionist measures have been recorded worldwide in the first half of 2016 related to both trade in goods and in services.
In Subran's opinion, low rates and monetary policies are far from uniform, so liquidity can move rapidly across the regions, generating volatility and turbulence.
Subran blames the disappointing trade numbers on demand shocks in the emerging world, the low-for-longer commodity prices, the wave of currency depreciations around the world, and a growing isolationist trend.
"Consumers globally now demand more services and experience than goods," said Subran. "In addition, trade financing has become more complex and costly, and political risk and protectionism are on the rise."