Lazard Chief Executive Officer Peter Orszag says the geo-political risk to the global economy is severe and that if the U.S. government shuts down next week, Ukraine aid will be the cause.

Speaking at the Reuters Next conference in New York, Orszag pointed out the unusual combination of the constructive U.S. macro environment with severe political risks globally.

He said Europe’s economy was less constructive and that he believed that China’s outlook in the medium term would also be challenging.

Lazard’s chief said a lot of the factors that led to low real interest rates were still present.

The pandemic has played a much larger role in the run up and decline in inflation than conventional wisdom reflects, he added.

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