“The BlackRock Geopolitical Risk Indicator (BGRI) continuously tracks the relative frequency of analyst reports, financial news stories and tweets associated with geopolitical risks. We have used the Thomson Reuters Broker Report and the Dow Jones Global Newswire databases as sources, and recently added the one million most popular tweets each week from Twitter-verified accounts. We calculate the frequency of words that relate to geopolitical risk, adjust for positive and negative sentiment in the text of articles or tweets, and then assign a score. We assign a much heavier weight to brokerage reports than to the other data sources because we want to measure the market’s attention to any particular risk, not the public’s.
We see geopolitical risk as a material market factor in 2019, especially in an environment of slowing growth and elevated uncertainty about the economic and corporate earnings outlook. At the center of the geopolitical debate? Increasing rivalry between the U.S. and China across economic, ideological and military dimensions. We believe these tensions are structural and long-lasting. With that in mind, we are taking a deep dive into the race between the two countries for global technological leadership.
Our geopolitical risk dashboard features both data-driven market attention barometers and judgment-based assessments of our top-10 individual risks. We show the market attention to each risk, assess the likelihood of it occurring over a six-month horizon, and analyze its potential market impact. We adjust the market impact reading for how much each risk may already be priced into markets. The greater the market’s attention to the risk, the lower the potential market impact. Lastly, we highlight assets sensitive to two key risks that are on the market’s radar screen: Global trade tensions and European fragmentation”.