Fear stalks markets amid heightened UE, Eurozone vulnerabilities.
Ever since multiplying escalations in oil prices in the 1970s wrought havoc in the West, then dominating the global economy, it has been axiomatic that they pose an uncommon threat, whether used deliberately or not.
It was in that era that the term ‘stagflation' entered the fray, with the realisation that a higher import bill for a given volume of energy input suddenly imposed a drop in living standards both in terms of higher prices and lower growth.
Governments that had complacently become used to the notion of managing demand as if fine-tuning the economy as a well-controlled — not to say well-oiled — machine suddenly became all too aware that sand had been kicked not only in their faces but in that machine as well.
Attempts to offset that impact ran ruinously into the reality that this substantial supply shock could not just be finessed away by supposed technocratic sophistication.