SINGAPORE (Aug 19): The past week may have marked the juncture when the many stresses in geo politics and the global economy reached a tipping point: It is now more likely that we will get a series of political shocks and an accelerated downturn in the world economy. Political hot spots — in Hong Kong, Italy, Brexit, Argentina and South Asia — are turning critical. New data suggests that the prospects for global economic growth have also taken a knock. Yes, the major central banks will now cut interest rates more aggressively, but monetary policy cannot alone overcome the headwinds. Therefore, the outlook for trade-dependent Asian economies cannot be good — unless their governments respond quickly and effectively.

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