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Patrick L Young Newsletter The Frontier Financier - Prologue

 

Prologue

 

002

Poland Risk Advisory

 


"Jesus, Holy Mary,
it's an inconceivable tragedy,
an inconceivable disaster,"

- former Polish President Lech Walesa



Dear <<First Name>>,

The tragic news is that a Polish Air Force Tupolev Tu-154M VIP transport carrying a delegation of Polish dignitaries led by President Lech Kaczynski and his wife Maria crashed this morning at Smollensk Airport in western Russia.

The governor of the Smollensk region Sergei Antufiev has confirmed that all 87 people on board are dead.

I must begin by expressing profound and sincere condolences on the passing of a great many leading figures in Polish public life. Our sympathies lie with all Polish citizens who are traumatised by this shocking death of an acting head of state.

In a highly ironic twist of fate, this 1960's Soviet era aircraft crashed on a visit to the Katyn memorial site marking the 70th anniversary of the gruesome massacre of a previous Polish elite. During April 1940, over 20,000 officers of the Polish army were butchered under the direct orders of Stalin.

From an investor standpoint, I must stress that despite a truly tragic situation the Polish nation is and will remain stable. The tributes to the dead President are mature and respectful, even from those, like his predecessor the Solidarity leader Lech Waleska with whom there had been many very public spats in recent years. Walesa doubtless speaks for the nation with his typically off the cuff remark quoted above.

Ironically, only this week Prime Minister Donald Tusk had paid tribute to the victims of the Katyn massacre alongside his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin marking significant diplomatic progress in the ongoing healing of deep-seated wounds arising from Soviet occupation.

Prime Minister Donald Tusk has called an emergency meeting of the Council of Ministers today which is procedural given the circumstances.

The Speaker of Parliament will become the acting Polish President. Coincidentally, this is the declared PO (government) candidate, Bronislaw Komorowski who recently beat Foreign Minister Sikorski in a primary. (The late President was a member of the opposition PiS). Poland’s public television station TVP has reported that in the event of the head of state dying, new presidential elections must be called within two weeks and take place within 60 days. This will bring forward the contest previously expected to be held on October 3rd, probably sometime in June.

Previously opinion polls clearly suggested the election would be won by any PO candidate. Komorowski assuming interim power in the interregnum ought to give him a further quasi-incumbency advantage. However, the ex-Prime Minister and twin brother of the former President Jarosław might decide to stand in the hope of winning a sympathy vote. The latter if it were to eventuate is a short term negative to Poland  (the previous Kaczyński Presidency impeded Tusk's reformist agenda). While another Kaczyński Presidency may delay reform, it is probably long term negative for the PiS party unless a new and more dynamic leadership emerges. In the event of a Komorowski victory the PO will have a clear mandate to undertake the dynamic reforms which Poland needs to become a genuine powerhouse of the "New Europe" building on the back of the successful economic management of Finance Minister Jacek Rostowski. (Remember Poland was the only EU economy to grow during 2009).

The death of the President of the National (i.e. Central) Bank of Poland (NBP) Slawomir Skrzypek adds a further financial twist to this tragedy. In recent days both Rostowski and Skrzypek met with IMP chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn in Warsaw and subsequently had a public dispute about retaining Poland's IMF credit line. The PO have been keen to replace the Central Bank chief. They will now install somebody politically closer to Rostowski.

A genuine tragedy has befallen the people of Poland today. Nevertheless the economic and political situation is entirely stable. The governing PO will strengthen its grip on power and presumably progress vital economic reform. As a keen investor in Poland, I see no reason to change my opinions. The circumstances are tragic but the economic outlook has been brought forward by the increased likelihood of a more accommodating President with less veto inclination entering office sooner than anticipated. On a final minor point, the possible end of year (IPO) privatisation of the Warsaw Stock Exchange is unlikely to be affected by today's sad events.

All feedback will be welcome but our sympathies are with the nation of Poland today.

Best wishes,

Patrick

Patrick L Young
patrick@derivativesvision.com


 


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It’s summer so I am at home in Monaco but thanks to a lack of political leadership in Europe, there have been ample opportunities to speak with the media. For my most recent videos from RT News channel, have a look on my newly revamped web site: www.patricklyoung.net.
 
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In the Media



Current Projects

I'm hard at work on the final edits of a book for charity with contributions from a welter of serious hedge fund maangers, analysts and pundits...more news to follow soon!

Several new start-up exchange ventures are on my desk while various publsihing ventures are also nearing fruition!


Travel Plans

Various destinations in Europe likely during September including London.

About This Newsletter

Patrick L Young is the author of several financial market books such as "Capital Market Revolution!" and

"The Exchange Manifesto" His Op Eds have been published in most of the world's leading financial media such as the Financial Times and Wall Street Journal while he has appeared frequently on BBC,CNBC, CNN and other digital media throughout the world.

My expertise is, (in no particular order!) exchanges, derivatives, market infrastructure and financial centres, as well as emerging markets. I can claim modest provenance as an early adopter on the web, having published various online magazines along with other WWW ventures since 1995. Nowadays I enjoy a varied portfolio of advisory work (most notably for investors in exchanges) but along the way I have done just about everything from multiple financial start-ups through to advising government and other stakeholders in financial centres the world over. I also indulge in some  entrepreneurial projects too. After more than 20 years in finance some folk might think I am due a spot of remission for good behaviour. I think it is clear from this bulletin, my passion for markets remains as keen as ever!

 

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