Lena Komileva

Lena Komileva is a City economist and a commentator on global economic themes with a long-established track record in financial services. Well followed for her core research, Lena works with public sector clients, policy officials, private wealth managers, hedge funds, market intermediaries, bank traders, risk officers, portfolio managers, public sector and corporate treasurers, inter-government institutions and media opinion-leaders. She is read by national and supra-national policy institutions, including the Federal Reserve, the People’s Bank of China and the IMF. 

 

Lena is the Chief Economist and Managing Director of G+ Economics, an international market research and economic intelligence consultancy based in London. Previously she was Senior Vice President and Global Head of G10 Strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman, a private US custodian bank, and Director and Global Head of G7 Market Economics at Tullett Prebon, No1 Broker for Currencies in the 2010-2011 Risk Magazines rankings and the biggest government bonds broker in Europe. 

 

From the position of a top-down macro-economist with nearly two decades of experience in the heart of global capital markets, Lena writes on a variety of economic themes related to US, Euro area and UK fundamentals, policy, financial markets, capital flows and systemic links in the global economy. She was among the very first to argue the global implications from the securitisation crisis in the summer of 2007, including the dislocation of money markets, next-to-zero G7 monetary policy rates, the Great Recession and the new role for public capital in the functioning of financial markets with the worrying side effects of long-term public debt sustainability and global financial inflation pressures. Her product expertise lies in foreign exchange, money markets and government debt, while monitoring and analysing relationships with other markets such as volatility, credit derivatives, equities, commodities and emerging markets. Lena is a frequent contributor to the quality financial media and is regularly invited to speak at international industry forums.

 

Industry awards and recognitions

  • Over 90%  forecasting accuracy for the US Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank and the Bank of England. 
  • Topped Bloomberg’s poll of economists as the best forecaster for the US CPI (96.2% accuracy), 2003
  • One of the top ten forecasters in the world of the US ISM Manufacturing index, a leading indicator for the US business cycle, Bloomberg Rankings 2003. 

Track Record

 

Lena Komileva was one of the very first economists to draw the link between a systemic regime change in global market dynamics, credit multipliers in real economies, recession risk and the central bank response in early 2007. After accurately calling the end of the Fed tightening cycle in response to subprime stresses in February 2007, months ahead of the consensus, she wrote about the “impending credit crunch” on 1 June 2007, as stress signals from US subprime securitisation sectors reached European bond market volatility gauges, accurately predicting the balance sheet risk transmission from debt to equity markets and the collapse of the FX carry trade over the weeks that followed.

 

By January 2008, her economic model showed 85% probability that the US was already in a recession – twelve months before the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) confirmed it. As “dislocated money markets” – a term that Lena coined in the summer of 2007 - defied central banks’ short term liquidity stabilisation measures – Lena’s article in FX Week in March 2008, arguing that the disconnect between elevated emerging market asset valuations and riskier developed market credit impulses was unsustainable, became a prophesy for the steady rise and dispersion of market volatility in the summer of 2008. This ultimately culminated with the collapse of Lehman and the nationalisation of US mortgage markets in 2008, and the start of a new era of central bank policy making that centred on balance sheet size, market liquidity risk premia and deflation tail risk probability management, over traditional rate and inflation targeting.

 

For the past decade, Lena’s early “lower for longer” calls on market rates, against repeated consensus calls for early tightening from the Fed, the ECB and the BoE in the years between 2009 and 2014, preceded the steady flattening of the US and European core government bond yield curves.

 

In recent years, Lena has repeatedly warned that the decoupling between the US business and financial cycle is harbouring distortions in US and global risk asset pricing, with significant consequences for the economic risk cycle. Her early calls on market policy mispricing and peak cycle dynamics over the course of 2017, and in particular her call that US 10yr yields are unjustifiably low in August 2017, have resonated strongly with the shift in the global policy tide over the past year and the return of market volatility in 2018.  

 

Today Lena advises top tier investors, CEOs and Exec Boards on financial, macro-economic and policy developments across core G+ markets, as managing partner and chief economist at G+ Economics, an international market research and economic intelligence consultancy based in London. With over two decades advising CEOs in banking, custodial, wealth management and legal and regulatory consulting services as head of market economics for the largest European government bonds broker in the world, Lena a regular voice at policy and industry forums, and an economic adviser, working with such institutions as the CFA Institute, the World Gold Council, McKinsey & Co., and the UK Parliament among others. Lena is a regular contributor for Bloomberg, the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, and the BBC, and a leading independent voice in the international policy debate on global growth themes focusing on market efficiency, international capital flows and monetary analysis.

Product and Market Expertise

 

With a wealth of experience advising top-tier institutional and policy clients, Lena has written extensively on US, UK and Euro area fundamentals combining financial, monetary and macro-economic analysis.

 

Her focus is on analysing the flow of funds between the financial industry - including the banking sector and wholesale asset markets - and the real economy, and its impact on economic and financial stability and policy. Lena was among the very first to argue the global implications from the securitisation crisis in the summer of 2007, including the dislocation of money markets, next-to-zero G7 monetary policy rates, the Great Recession, the Eurozone crisis and the new role for public capital in the functioning of financial markets with the worrying side effects of long-term public debt sustainability and global financial inflation pressures. 

 

In addition to thematic strategy and economic analysis and forecasting, her product research focuses on foreign exchange, money markets and government debt, and the relationships with other asset classes such as volatility, credit, credit derivatives, equities, emerging markets and commodities.

 

Lena is a frequent contributor to Bloomberg, Reuters, Financial Times, the BBC, the WSJ among others. She is regularly invited to present at market industry forums and has contributed articles to Bloomberg Brief, the Financial Times, Reuters, FX Week and others. Her research has been extensively quoted in the international press and she gives regular TV and radio interviews.

 

MEDIA

Industry engagements

 

Gallery: Keynote economic address: Milan Pension Funds Forum, 2016

Newsroom

Bloomberg TV: Bloomberg Daybreak, Oct. 23, 2018 

Bloomberg Daybreak with Karen Moskow and Nathan Hager

GUESTS: Lena Komileva Mng Partner/Chief Economist G+ Economics

Tracy Alloway Executive Editor Bloomberg News

Charles Geyh Professor Indiana University Maurer School of Law

Note links open a new window

FT Video: Is the world really ready for higher rates? 

Is it time to ease the world economy off zero rates? Lena Komileva, chief economist at G+ Economics, argues to FT editor John Authers that productivity, employment and inflation remain low, while leverage has rebounded, so central bankers should be very careful. (Source: www.ft.com)

Bloomberg TV: Greece Is More Out Than In the Euro Zone - Komileva 

G+ Economics Managing Director and Chief Economist Lena Komileva discusses the Greek debt deal, the Greek banking system and the future of the indebted nation. She speaks to Bloomberg’s Guy Johnson and Anna Edwards on “Countdown” (Source: Bloomberg)

Bloomberg TV: Fed Should Be Proceeding Towards Normalization Says G Plus' Komileva

Lena Komileva, chief economist and managing director at G Plus Economics, discusses the yield curve, the Fed balance sheet, U.S. inflation and Fed policy normalization. She speaks on "Bloomberg Daybreak: Europe." (Source: Bloomberg) 

Think tank discussion with the Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation: Lena Komileva on European currency markets

CNBC: Markets ‘married to 1987’ economic models, Fed policy more forward-thinking

Markets are "married to 1987 models" of economic theory. Federal Reserve policy by contrast is "very much a function of 2007," and the direction after 2017 will be very different. Developments such as the "gig economy" and fintech have radically shaped the landscape of the economy. Lena Komileva talks to CNBC.

Read Lena Komileva's interview with Portugal’s Jornal de Negócios

Portugal’s Jornal de Negócios: Komileva: ECB "will extend stimulus" beyond 2016 (10/06/15)
Interview with Portugal’s Jornal de Negócios: Lena Komileva recognizes that the ECB's measures are already having an impact, but doubts that inflation is headed to 2% with full employment in the Eurozone.
Portugal CFA article.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [841.9 KB]

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In the news

 

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FT Long View: Mind the gap between the markets and the real economy (18/04/2020) 

 

Market Talk Roundup: Coronavirus Removes Safety Net for Investors, G+ Economics Says (09/04/2020) 

 

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International Financing Review: Fed launches repo program for foreign central banks (31/03/2020) 

 

Bloomberg TV: Global Economy Set for Battering Not Seen in Decades - The coronavirus pandemic is not a "black swan" so much as "a series of extraordinary events that have opened up several lines of global systemic fragility," according to Lena Komileva, chief economist at G Plus Economics. She speaks to Anna Edwards on "Bloomberg Markets: European Open." (25/03/2020)  

 

FT Market Forces: Softening the blow is not a cure (18/03/2020) 

 

FT Market Forces: A fiscal and monetary prescription (11/03/2020) 

 

FT: Lagarde to confront coronavirus crisis at ECB policy meeting (09/03/2020) 

 

FT: Fed decision to go it alone bucks history of collaboration (05/03/2020)

 

FT Market Forces: Failing to calm the churning waters (03/03/2020) 

 

FT: Investors seek clues on new thinking as Lagarde launches ECB review (23/01/2020) 

 

FT: ECB’s new faces give investors pause for thought over policy shifts (13/01/2020)

 

FT: Eurozone economy set to slow further in 2020 — FT poll (26/12/2019) 

 

FT poll: Christine Lagarde expected to change ECB inflation target (22/12/2019) 

 

Bloomberg Surveillance: Stocks, bonds, currencies and commodities. Lena Komileva joins Francine Lacqua in London and Tom Keene in New York. (12/12/2019)

 

FT Market Forces: Jamming the pause button for an extended period (11/12/2019)

FT: ECB vows to hold rates at historic low until inflation picks up (24/10/2019) 

 

Investing.com: Oil Ends Near Flat; Trade War Trumps Kurdish Conflict (08/10/2019)

 

FTSE 100 finishes higher on Friday as US jobs report brightens the mood (04/10/2019) 

 

Yahoo Finance: Gold Steadies as Powell’s Inflation Quest Offsets Encouraging Jobs Report (04/10/2019)

 

FT Market Forces: Awaiting a hawkish delivery (17/09/2019) 

 

BBC Radio 4 Today programme: “ECB to do whatever it takes” - Lena Komileva, chief economist and managing director of G+ Economics, discusses what the ECB is likely to do, when interest rates are already negative. "There is a general agreement that the ECB has to follow up on reassuring words with action, a broad range of a blend of action, rates, asset purchases, guidance, a promise to do what ever it takes - again. It's clear that the ECB's toolkit is rather maxed out," she told BBC Radio 4's Today Programme.(12/09/2019) 

 

Investing.com: Sterling Struggles to Hold Gains after U.K. Jobs Report (10/09/2019) 

 

Germany’s Boersen Zeitung: “Rezessionsangste schuren Debatte uber Konjunkturstutze / Recession fears spur debate about economic stimulus” Lena Komileva speaks to Germany’s Boersen Zeitung  chief economics correspondent Mark Schrörs together with Lucrezia Reichlin, Stefan Kooths, Stefan Schneider and Christoph Schmidt (23/08/2019) 

 

FT Market Insight: Market challenge for the Fed is just beginning (07/01/2019) 

 

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