Investor behaviour is driven by greed and fear is a well-known saying in the stock markets. Most human actions are driven by one of these two emotions.
Post-World war II, fear receded, as most countries in the world got busy with reconstruction and development. Fear got replaced by hope and optimism. Almost eight decades of peace have been unprecedented.
Current pandemic might lead to despair. This is not ruled out.
Unbridled economic growth, but for Great Depression, in the last many decades, of USA resulted in excessive emphasis on the so-called growth through consumerism and marketing forces from 1970s onwards.
1990s saw the disintegration of USSR making it a unipolar world – exuberated free market forces supported by technological advancements led to the economic growth with inequalities of income growing, deterioration of healthcare services and corporations getting mightier.
Partners in crime were Investment Bankers, the Central Banks and the Governments – with US in the lead. Investment Bankers- too big to fail- not regulated, Central Bankers with Allan Greenspan in the lead with instruments like Quantitative Easing and Governments too passive and too incompetent to act have all contributed to where we have reached today. This is the story of all financial crisis including the biggest one of 2008. Instead of correcting the fault lines, knee jerk reactions and make shift arrangements were made. In sum total, this was the story of the Greed.
Beginning 1940, in the last eight decades the pendulum completely shifted from Fear to Greed.
Rise of China and weakening of the USA in the last decade has made the world more uncertain and multipolar.
Institutional edifice is crumbling, institutional arrangements globally and locally are faltering. Technology is taking the world forward and politicians of the world are pushing their nations backwards.
We are living in a world where unemployment in the world is rising, old age social security is disappearing and all sources of funding and investments are getting funnelled up in the stock market. Shareholder is the only stakeholder to be serviced.
Economic order and financial system of the day is a result and story of GREED and political and governance system is a story of Fear and Despair and Indifference.
Pandemic of 2020-2021 is an opportunity to rejig political, economic and financial systems in the wake of changing life styles due to Covid-19 lest Trumpism makes it imperative for the world to be governed by the Corporates if not the Corporations.