The war in Ukraine is significantly raising the risk of nuclear apocalypse, but investors should nonetheless remain “bullish,” according to a recent report.
“Although there is a huge margin of error around any estimate, subjectively, we would assign an uncomfortably high 10% chance of a civilization-ending global nuclear war over the next 12 months,” said a team of BCA Research analysts, led by chief global strategist Peter Berezin, in a Friday report.
“ “If an ICBM is heading your way, the size and composition of your portfolio becomes irrelevant.” ”
The researchers said that if the war in Ukraine continues to go badly for Russia, and “Putin concludes he has no future, the risk is that he will decide that no one else should have a future either.”
For more: Complete MarketWatch coverage of the Russian invasion of Ukraine
The report found that even if a third world war is averted, global markets could “experience a freak-out moment” in the coming weeks akin to what happened at the beginning of the pandemic in February 2020, as nuclear fears rise.
But the report from the Montreal-based company concludes on a practical, if not particularly reassuring, note, saying that despite the increased risk of nuclear war, “it makes sense to stay constructive on stocks” over the next year, betting that civilization will not actually end.
“If an ICBM is heading your way, the size and composition of your portfolio becomes irrelevant,” they wrote. “Thus, from a purely financial perspective, you should largely ignore existential risk, even if you do care about it greatly from a personal perspective.”