Later this week I’ll be posting my predictions for 2023, but first we revisit my predictions for 2022 to see how I got on.
This is more an exercise in entertainment than anything else because, in case you needed reminding, risk management changes - and so do forecasts - as events unfold. As Mr Keynes once said, “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do?”
So when you leap back a year, and there’s stuff that’s wildly out, and I have egg on my face, because, for example, a certain man ordered the invasion of a certain country and that threw things off rather, by all means chortle at my expense - but don’t think I didn’t revise my opinions.
Right that’s the excuses over and done with. A reminder of the rules: I get 2 points for a direct hit, 1 point for close but not a bullseye, 0 for a miss and minus one for a howler.
There were 14 predictions (you can read them in full here) and the first was a humdinger of a howler. My view was that, because of the scalability of tech, the Nasdaq would continue its relentless march higher and we would see 19,000. The opposite happened. Tech gave back all its post Covid gains. Minus one.
Prediction Two was that oil (Brent), which began the year at $77, would revisit $100. We hit that target in March, and some. Two points.
Prediction Three was that the US dollar would start weak, with support at 95, and later go higher. Longer term “the dollar looks like it can go a lot higher”. Support did prove to be 95, and it went a lot higher. Two points.
Prediction Four was that gold, which began the year at $1,825, would go north of $2,000. It went to $2,080, then it went down. Two points.
Prediction Five was for the S&P500 to go to 5,000. Wrong. Bear market. Minus one.
Prediction Six was for the crypto market cap to go above $3trn. The year started quite well, but no. Minus one.
Prediction Seven was that two other nations would follow El Salvador’s lead and adopt bitcoin as legal tender. Just the one did - Central African Republic back in April. Zero points.
Prediction Eight was that copper goes above $5/lb. It did. For one day in March. Technically, it’s a two pointer but I’m only going to give myself one because it had such a horrible bear market later in the year.
Prediction Nine was for house prices to continue their inexorable march higher. Amazingly, house prices have marched higher. “Average UK house prices increased by 12.6% over the year to October 2022,” says the ONS. That will come down as the data for the last part of the year comes in. I’ll give myself a point, but not two. The backdrop for house prices is looking shakier than it’s looked in a long time.
Prediction Ten was that the pound would get to €1.24. It didn’t. €1.21 was the high, and it ended the year lower than when it started. Zero points.
Prediction Eleven was that silver would disappoint, as always, and can’t get above $30. You can always depend on silver. It disappointed. As always. $27, or just nigh, was the high. Two points.
And so to Prediction Twelve which was that, to everyone’s surprise, Boris would still be Prime Minister. Ha! We’ve had two since then. Prime Ministers are like buses. Uh-uh.
Prediction Thirteen, your Bruce-y bonus sports prediction, was that Manchester City would win the league and that Watford, Norwich and Burnley all go down. A bulls-eye, sir. This year’s table will be much harder to get right.
And, finally, my Prediction Fourteen, “based on my own instincts, not data or science” was that “Peak Covid has now passed and something akin to free movement can slowly return”. It looks obvious now. It was not then. I lost Christmas last year to Covid.
And so to the score. Maximum possible would be 28. Minimum minus 8. Both so extremely unlikely as to be impossible. I’ve got a middle-of-the-road, deeply mediocre 11. Could do better, as my school teachers so often noted.
Happy new year, everyone, hope you have a great 2023 and that prosperity makes a welcome return to our portfolios.
And make your Number One resolution for 2023 to listen to Kisses on a Postcard.
Interested in protecting your wealth in these extraordinary times? Then be sure to own some gold bullion. My current recommended bullion dealer is The Pure Gold Company, whether you are taking delivery or storing online. Premiums are low, quality of service is high. You can deal with a human being. I have an affiliation deals with them.
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This article first appeared at Moneyweek.