How a bout of even mild inflation could knock out the world’s ambitious plans for decarbonization – by Peter Tertzakian (Financial Post – April 28, 2021)

The market battle between EVs and ICE vehicles may well be determined in the mines and oilfields of the world

The global economy is gaining momentum, even before the masks have come off the pandemic.

Unemployment rates are falling faster than expected in key countries, most notably the United States. Global GDP is being revised upwards to 6 per cent this year, according to the International Monetary Fund’s latest World Economic Outlook report.

Put simply, this means that after contracting 3.3 per cent in 2020, the global economy will be larger in 2021 than in the pre-pandemic days of 2019. It seems we are back on a fast-moving train (still diesel-powered), and it’s all happening before governments shell out a couple of trillion dollars on the clean energy transition.

Not surprisingly, economy talk in Zoom breakout rooms is of budding inflation and interest rate hikes. We haven’t experienced that duo in any meaningful way for at least 40 years.

The 1970s was a nasty decade overall — prices rose by over 10 per cent a year, wage and price controls were brought in, and interest rates were hiked quarterly to combat the scourge that kept eroding our spending power. Can you imagine taking out a mortgage at 20 per cent?

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