French economist who predicted Trump win is betting on Le Pen

by WorldTribune Staff, April 21, 2017

The Hong Kong-based economist who was one of the very few to publicly predict Donald Trump’s election victory is betting on Marine Le Pen winning in France.

Charles Gave, founder of asset-allocation consultancy GaveKal Research, told Bloomberg the markets are underpricing Le Pen’s chances and not considering backlash in the country against the European Union.

National Front presidential candidate Marine Le Pen. /Reuters

France’s apathy for the other candidates, center-leftist Emmanuel Macron, center-right candidate Francois Fillon and leftist Jean-Luc Melenchon is also being downplayed, Gave said.

“Le Pen’s momentum is a slow-moving reaction against the men of Davos – as we have seen with Brexit and Trump – but markets don’t want to believe it,” Gave told Bloomberg.

Meanwhile, France says it is tightening security for the presidential election after an April 20 terrorist attack killed a police officer in Paris.

“Nothing must hamper this democratic moment, which is fundamental for our nation,” Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said after an emergency security cabinet meeting on April 21.

Cazeneuve said some 50,000 police and gendarmes will be deployed to provide security during the first-round vote on April 23, with an additional 7,000 soldiers also on patrol, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported.

The first round of the French presidential election is set for April 23. The election is expected to be decided in a May 7 run-off.

Gave said that at least half of the far-left and half of the center-right won’t vote for Macron if he makes it to a run-off against Le Pen, believing he is“tainted” by his association with Francois Hollande’s government.

Gave said many of Macron’s supporters would probably rally to Le Pen if she were to face Melenchon in the final round.

He sees only Fillon with a chance to defeat Le Pen in the run-off. Fillon’s support, however, has been curtailed by graft charges, Gave said.