(Not) Developing a habit and the global market’s response to elections in Brazil

So, almost three months after my first post I get to share the second one. So much for making a habit out of this! This has not gone as I had anticipated. But then again. What does?

My first few months in the “magic city” have been different to what I had envisioned and the new job has taken a fair bit of my time. Beyond time though, it has taken quite a bit of my headspace – as well as the move to Miami and a fair few visits from friends and family.

Enough of the excuses, let’s get this second post going. I thought I was going to touch upon some MBA related topics and life after “the best two years of your life” or whatever that means, but I’m going to go political.

Yes. I’m going to show my colors a bit too early probably. But let’s be honest, (i) how many people are really going to read this? (ii) if anyone does, they probably share my line of thinking (which would be a shame, because I welcome discussion and opposing views) and (iii) at least from now on ye’be warned.

First, a bit of context, have a look at this article from Bloomberg  “Brazil Stocks, Currency Surge as Bolsonaro Takes Commanding Lead”. If you are a bit lazy, like me, the clue is in the title. Which got me thinking –

if an openly misogynistic and racist politician doing well in the first round of voting in Brazil is a good sign to the markets, then what does that say about the markets?

To add insult to injury, and I swear I’m not making this up, “the former army captain has professed a disinterest in economics”.  And I know what some of you might say, it’s not so much that investors like Bolsonero, they dislike the alternatives, Haddad and the PT (Lula and Dilma’s political party that took Brazil to one of it’s worse recessions). Fair enough.

But indulge me for a moment, the world market doesn’t seem to care about a presidential candidate’s interest in the economy, it doesn’t seem to care about its social views on women and the LGBTQ community, it just cares about a government that will give it free rein. Or at least, it does seem to be skewed in that direction. I mean, “free economy” and “small government” do seem to outweigh “equal rights” and “social equity” when it comes to the market. Can we agree on that?

There’s no punch line. This was very much a “spur of the moment” post. I must admit it was fueled by a lot of press and posts around me but also about a quote from the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment (GSG) Summit in New Delhi. Apparently, @AlGore said something along these lines: “Capitalism is the answer if it can be refined and fixed”… well, it seems to me it needs an awful lot of fixing.

Come to think of it, so much so it might be better to do something completely new, right? Why not overhauling it? Why are we so scared to say: “Hey, Capitalism has led us to where we are today, and yes, we are alive, but that is much good as I can say about it”. How can we salvage something built on false premises and flawed assumptions?Apologies for the lack of solid arguments and research rigor, I love a stab at Nobel prize winning theories from bed on a Tuesday evening.

If you made it this far. Thanks. If you didn’t and you just scrolled down. Well, thank you too!