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Before I fired up the ol' laptop to write this latest opinion piece, I got the stellar issue 37 of WEALTH off the shelves and read what I wrote last issue.

Hoo-boy, what a doozy.

"The Trump situation is on everyone's mind. I'm writing this in late October, and at press time, things have started to calm down. Unless a band of time travelling hunters go back in time, venture off the path, and accidentally step on a butterfly, (and depending on when you're reading this, they might have,) it looks like Hillary Clinton is headed towards a win."

First question first--which one of you stepped on that butterfly?

Second, how did we all get this so wrong? It has been the year when we failed to read the writing on the wall. We have failed to predict a lot of the biggest events of 2016. Brexit seemed like an impossibility. Trump's election seemed laughable a year ago. But what got them there was something that we all noticed, even as much as we tried to bury our heads in the sand. Populist, nationalistic sentiment has risen all across the globe.

At least I got that right last issue: "Just this morning, I had coffee with Steen Jakobsen, Chief Economist, Saxo Bank, and we both agreed that Trump may falter, but what caused Trump's rise isn't going away. The nationalistic sentiment that has popped up in the US, UK, and all around the world isn't going away. And, like it or not, those movements are going to affect the world's economy."

That is as true now as it was a few months ago. In fact, if things had gone the other way it may have taken us even longer to wake up to that reality, and change ourselves to do things about it. These changes would not affect the economy as much if we prepared for them. Finance is all about the future-- so if we are to get better at finding value, we have to get better at staring down into our tea and trying to see what the leaves may be telling us.

For Americans, though, this may be the time to look at what a lot of WEALTH readers have looked into--citizenship by investment.

Eric Major, Chief Executive Officer of the global citizenship advisory firm Henley & Partners, says his firm saw an increase in interest from Americans following Trump's election. And the schemes that would most benefit them are some that WEALTH readers are very familiar with.

"Americans now have the world to choose from when it comes to acquiring an alternative residence or citizenship. Both the relatively new Malta and Cyprus citizenship programmes give successful applicants the right to live and work in 32 European countries including the 28 EU member states, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Luxembourg. The investment amount is reasonable given the privileges granted, and the application process is quite efficient. There are also numerous prestige residence programmes in Europe including the UK, Switzerland, Belgium and Austria, and the Investment Migration Program in Canada remains popular amongst Americans."

Of course for the rest of the world, there is no running away. I'll try to offer up no more predictions for you this issue. Rather, we will all just have to do a better job of accepting the signs that threaten the status quo, as much as we do not want to. And as much as some might want me to stop printing his name, I can predict one thing--you'll be reading a lot more about Donald Trump.

William Mullally

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Date:Jan 31, 2017
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