The Big Picture

Key themes shaping global credit markets in 2019


Economic growth, a core underpinning of credit conditions and quality, continues to be a key focus area for 2019.

We expect a gradual slowdown in 2019 across advanced and emerging market economies. Three drivers will dominate the weaker growth outlook: tightening monetary policy, worsening economic disputes and higher oil prices. 

Read the latest on India’s interim budget measures
Read our 2019-20 Global Macro Outlook
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Financial Stability

Financial stability, a fundamental building block for the global economy and markets, remains a prominent theme for 2019.

Tightening of global financial conditions will weigh on funding costs and liquidity. Meanwhile, growth of corporate debt signals future credit stress and increases late-cycle risks.

Read the latest on Russia’s upgrade to investment grade
Watch the Chinese regional & local governments outlook video
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Trade Tensions

Trade tensions are top of mind for investors. US trade policy is the most potent, far-reaching source of global risk with significant sector and regional impacts that could derail the global economy.

Escalating trade disputes will create uncertainty around company investment decisions, moderation of global trade flows and likely shifts in supply chains.

Read our Global
Trade Monitor
View our infographic on trade tensions
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Political Risks

Rising political and geopolitical risks take center stage in 2019. Heightened political risks will pose the greatest source of uncertainty to credit conditions and quality.

Rising US-China tensions will extend far beyond trade disputes, while the potential for a “no-deal” Brexit has risen, and populism will increasingly influence political debates and policymaking.

Read the latest on Brexit and the UK parliament's 'no' vote
Watch our global credit conditions video
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ESG Risks

Environmental, social and governance risks will become more prominent in 2019. The transition to a low-carbon economy and social and demographic change have the potential to fundamentally alter credit profiles.

The ESG issue that is the most likely to materially influence credit in 2019 is carbon transition risk. The credit spotlight will widen on social considerations, such as immigration, labor, income, aging and pensions.

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Read our report on social issues of government credit quality
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Technology & Innovation

Technology and innovation have the potential to reshape the credit landscape for countries, banks and companies. They remain a key secular theme for 2019.

Advances in digital technologies, including artificial intelligence, machine learning and blockchain, are likely to lead to productivity improvements and business disruptions. Cyber risks and data privacy will add to operational and reputational risks for governments and industries.

Read our latest report on Fintech in China
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Emerging Markets Focus

Explore the global, regional and national credit risk dynamics across developing economies
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