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Macron 2.0: pension reform and cost of living in focus

The re-election of French President Emmanuel Macron gives him five more years to improve France’s economic potential and its public finances, with pension reform and the green transition central to his plans. But Le Pen’s greater vote share suggests he will have to work hard to keep the electorate on side. Drop-In (Thurs., 14:00 BST): Nordic & Swiss – Shortly after the Riksbank meeting, economists from our Europe and Markets services will be online to discuss the monetary policy outlook for the region’s economies and currencies as the ECB turns hawkish. Register now.

25 April 2022

President Le Pen: seismic shift or five-year blip?

A win for Marine Le Pen would need to be followed by a strong showing for her party in June’s legislative elections if she is to implement most of her programme. A government of national unity or “cohabitation” would clip her wings, at least on domestic policy. So a Le Pen presidency might be less radical than many investors fear. That said, her election would highlight voters’ discontent with the EU. French election Drop-In (21st April, 09:00 BST/16:00 SGT): Join our Europe and Markets economists the morning after the crucial Macron vs Le Pen debate for a briefing about risks around the presidential election, including to the French economy, the European Union and the euro. Register now.

20 April 2022

Tight labour market, French election in focus

While there is very little spare capacity in the euro-zone’s labour market, this has not yet fed through to wage growth. The tight labour market and high inflation are likely to push wages up eventually, but not soon enough to alleviate the squeeze on real incomes this year. Against this backdrop, it is no surprise that Marine Le Pen is still faring well in the polls for the next French presidential election. We will be watching these closely next week, as well as the flash Composite PMI for April, which we expect to fall sharply.
We are sending this Weekly one day earlier than usual because our offices are closed for Good Friday on Friday, 15th April.

14 April 2022
More Publications

French presidential race still looks very close

A solid result for incumbent Emmanuel Macron in yesterday’s first round of the French presidential election has helped to allay fears of a Le Pen presidency. But the latest polls still point to a very tight race and the momentum is still with Marine Le Pen, who will benefit from the focus on the cost of living.

Growing risk of Le Pen upset to Macron re-election bid

This month’s French presidential election no longer looks like the shoo-in for incumbent Emmanuel Macron that it did only a few weeks ago. Right-wing nationalist Marine Le Pen’s chances have risen sharply over the past week or so and a surprise victory for her would cause upheaval in the French economy, financial markets and European politics.

Revisiting “Le Pen risk” & implications for financial markets

While the prospect of a euro-zone break-up looks more remote than during the 2017 French presidential campaign, the possibility of Marine Le Pen taking power is still a major risk to euro-zone financial markets. In view of the wider interest, we are also sending this FX Markets Update to clients of our European Economics and Global Markets Services.

Le Pen’s chances of victory are increasing

The chances of right-wing nationalist Marine Le Pen winning the French presidency later this month appear to have risen sharply over the past couple of weeks. A victory for Le Pen would almost certainly worsen the public finances and place a question mark over France’s place in Europe, unnerving investors. Drop-In: The fallout from Europe’s energy war (6th April, 10:00 EDT/15:00 BST): Join our Europe and Commodities teams for a special briefing on Wednesday, 6th April about the structure of global energy markets and the outlook for the European and Russian economies. Register here

Replay of 2017 French election fears unlikely this time

French President Macron is on course to win re-election in April by a comfortable margin, and is likely to push for a lower tax burden and pension reform in his second term. His main rival Marine Le Pen no longer proposes a “Frexit”, but a victory for her is the key tail risk, both for investors and the economy.

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