I think Europe will do a little better next year, especially in the second half. Europe has already double-dipped, with recession in 2008 and again in 2011. I think Europe will avoid a triple dip in 2015, but it'll be a close call. And I think, and hope, by the end of the year Europe will pick up with help from Italy, Spain, and Portugal. The euro should weaken even more, call it 1.15 to the U.S. dollar sometime this year. I believe the fighting in Ukraine will remain a contained border dispute rather than a full-fledged Russian invasion. I traveled to Ukraine in July and sensed that western Ukraine would just as soon see the eastern part of the country go. "They're all drunks and drug addicts over there," a wild-eyed local told me, referring to Russians in eastern Ukraine. If Russia should try to annex eastern Ukraine I doubt Ukraine will do much about it. The world might slap more sanctions on Russia, which will create incentives to get around them. Like someone said, gatekeepers only keep out those who don't know where the holes in the fence are. In Latin America, Venezuela might default on its debt in 2015. Lower oil prices have hit Venezuela's leftist government hard. Meanwhile Argentina might finally cure its default. Both the default (Venezuela) and cure (Argentina) could slip into 2016. FATCA—capital controls on U.S. citizens and foreign banks—will hurt Latin America especially. Americans wanting to move to the region will have an even tougher time getting banks to transfer money to buy a house, develop real estate, or invest. The U.S. Treasury has finally begun to profess concern about the problem. Still, I doubt the U.S. government will act. I detect a distinct lack of empathy in Washington, D.C. The notion seems to be, if Americans move out, we don't deserve banking services. Ridiculous. I think Asia will outperform the rest of the world, and China will grow at 6% or so. Obama and Xi Jinping just agreed on a new visa deal, providing for 10-year visas in both countries. Vicki and I picked up the new visas last month. Assuming the United States follows through, larger numbers of Chinese will travel and invest in the United States, especially California. India should improve growth in 2015 as Modi pushes through market reforms. As always the bureaucracy will resist. Five decades of socialist rule tends to destroy the spirit. But small, steady progress there should unleash buried talent. China and Europe will have to do their part to get the world economy cranking. Leftists will continue to plague South America; I think growth there will stall. Finally, I think the Chicken Littles will be proven wrong again. The United States will do fine. Fighting in Ukraine, the Islamic State, and Ebola should have little market impact. I plan to have a fun-filled 2015, and I hope you do, too. I offer these predictions to promote discussion and perhaps even action. Good luck. Paul Terhorst Editor's Note: Global investor and perpetual traveler Paul Terhorst writes a regular retirement-planning and investment column for our Overseas Retirement Letter. Get on board here to read Paul's insights, predictions, and recommendations each month.
Continue Reading: Retiring To The Beach In Corozal, Belize
Kathleen Peddicord P.S. Peter and Lief's remarks and recommendations for where and how to bank offshore in our post-FATCA world were recorded and are being edited now, along with the recordings of every other presentation from last week's meetings in Belize City. Together, this timely bundle of resources will create our new Wealth Building and Diversification Kit. Right now and for the next 72 hours only you can reserve your copy of this everything-you-need-to-know-to-diversify-offshore program pre-release for 50% off the regular price. This discount expires at midnight on Nov. 2.
Continue reading: The Cost Of Buying Property In France
Continue Reading: Reaching Out To Expat Groups Overseas
Create redundancies. For every foreign bank account you have, you need a second, back-up account...
When you have the opportunity to open an offshore account...open it. “You’re here in Panama this week,” Lief said. “To open a bank account in Panama, you need to visit the bank in person. So, again, you’re here. I suggest you make an appointment with one of the Panama-based banks I’m recommending to start the process of opening an account while you have this chance.”
Don’t close any foreign account you have if you don’t have to—even if you have no immediate need for it. You never know when or if you’d be able to replace it in the future...
Kathleen Peddicord P.S. I and others of my Panama-based editorial team are on the scene at this week’s Offshore Summit, and we’ll continue our live coverage over the coming few days. Meantime, we’re recording every presentation, including those on offshore banking from Peter Zipper and Lief Simon this morning. The entire library of recordings will be bundled to create our new Offshore Summit Home Conference Kit, which will be available two weeks following the close of this week’s event. Meantime, you can arrange to purchase this important resource pre-release for more than 50% off the regular price here now.
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Kathleen Peddicord is the founder of the Live and Invest Overseas publishing group. With more than 25 years experience covering this beat, Kathleen reports daily on current opportunities for living, retiring, and investing overseas in her free e-letter.
Her book, How To Retire Overseas—Everything You Need To Know To Live Well Abroad For Less, was recently released by Penguin Books.
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