I might as well turn in a few predictions for 2016: I predict fireworks and some interesting times.
1. Hillary Clinton beats Donald Trump in a landslide victory. The Donald wins only the southern states but does not carry any of the key battleground states and loses Florida quite handily. He only gets about 9% of the Hispanic vote and it turns into a referendum on immigration. The rise of the Hispanic voter becomes the key issue in politics this year. The GOP barely holds onto the Senate but retains the House with only a few notable losses.
2. The GOP Congress finally gets some things done now that Paul Ryan is in charge. They send a bunch of symbolic bills that are defeated by a lame-duck Obama. The reactionary wing of the GOP calls for Ryan's ouster by the end of the year.
3. Obamacare is dealt a blow from Democrats who try to alter it after hearing it from their constituents who are having trouble with high co-pays. Insurance companies mostly pull out of the exchanges and the price of health insurance does not go down by any appreciable margin.
4. Obama becomes very active at first but peters out as he takes many foreign trips. Almost all of the news will be about the Election and he quietly works well with the Ryan Congress. Trump and Hillary suck the air out of the room and Obama's ego is bruised.
5. Hillary is indited but the FBI does not pursue the case until after the election. She pretty much gets out of any blame for the illegal email server and it becomes a non-issue after the election.
6. The US becomes slightly less partisan by the end of the year with both parties staying away from the extremes after Trump implodes.
1. ISIS starts to collapse as recruits leave the fold and the bombing starts to get results. The Iraqi army pushes ISIS out of Iraq and regains a firm grip on their country. However, ISIS becomes even stronger outside of the remnants of the "Caliphate" as young radical Islamists fight the West from the comfort of their own homes. Several more terrorist attacks are planned and carried out but nothing as big as the Paris attacks happens in 2016.
2. The Chinese economy slows but does not enter a recession. A mix of stimulus and number fudging carries them throughout the year. The Chinese stock market gyrates wildly but ends the year down only 2% from the start of the year.
3. Oil prices stay low throughout the year but spike briefly as the Saudi/Iranian crisis looms. There is much posturing and sabre rattling but there is no outright warfare between the two. However the Sunni-Shia divide becomes the defining characteristic between the Great Powers going forward. The Sunni side is championed by the Saudis and the gulf states and Iran champions the Shiite powers. Both lead states are backed with petro-dollars and both now have a free hand due to the Iranian nuclear deal. A clandestine nuclear program is found in Saudi Arabia and an arms race begins.
4. Russian power finally extends into the Mediterranean as Syria falls into their sphere of influence. By the end of the year the Syrian war becomes the "Russian Vietnam" with advisers training and re-arming Assads troops. Russian MIGs fly more sorties then the Western powers combined. Assad's troops push back ISIS and retake much of Syria while a massive Russian presence looms in the Levant.
S&P 500: 2300
Crude Oil: $65
10 Yr Bond: 2.54
NFL: Arizona Cardinals
NBA: Golden State Warriors
MLB: San Fransisco Giants
NHL: Montreal Canadiens
Premier League: Arsenal
Bundesliga: Borussia Dortmund (probably Bayern Munich though)
NCAA Football: Alabama Crimson Tide
NCAA Basketball: Kansas