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Citi Wealth Insights

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Why are Europe and UK Poised for a Better 2021?

Second wave infections are still rising in several European countries. However fatalities are not rising at the same pace as in wave one, partly because of progress with treatments and also more hospital capacity. Recent vaccine news from pharmaceutical companies are also positive-looking towards the second half of 2021. Lockdowns are likely to be for shorter periods than 2Q and measures are softer.
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Impact of a Healthcare Solution to COVID-19

On 9 November, pharmaceutical company Pfizer announced better-than-expected vaccine results, with “90% or more” efficacy in blocking COVID-19 transmission, according to the company. Citi analysts see the vaccine news as a first major advance toward a post COVID-19 world economy.
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East vs. West: A Contrast in COVID-19 Outcomes

After a summer reprieve, the rise of a second wave of COVID-19 in US & Europe was widely anticipated. In comparison, COVID-19 infection rates have remained dramatically lower in much of Asia.
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Asia’s Faster Rebound from COVID-19, but Scars Remain

Despite major sources of economic scarring that could impact Asia’s return to pre COVID-19 trend growth, parts of Asia are buffered by the dynamic technology sector and a more robust management of the pandemic. Compared to the Asian Financial Crisis, Asia banks are now better capitalized and the region could return to pre COVID-19 output levels by Q4 2021.
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Positioning in a New Economic Cycle

Despite near-term uncertainties (US election and risk of rising COVID-19 infections in winter), a supportive macroeconomic policy backdrop and better-prepared health sector suggest challenges may not be nearly as severe as COVID-19’s initial global shock. Citi’s Global Investment Committee thus increased its Overweight in Equities, increased its Underweight in Bonds. Gold and REITs remain Overweight while Cash remains Underweight.
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The Economic Implications of COVID-19 in the US

News of President Trump’s infection highlights the increased health risks for the US and strengthens the hands of those arguing for a measured approach to economic re-openings. At the margin, Citi analysts think that the news may move Republicans toward a compromise on greater stimulus efforts.
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