First of all, Happy New Year to you! May we all look forward to seeing COVID in the rear mirror at some point in 2021. No doubt, getting enough of the population vaccinated will take longer than we all hope, but it will happen and science will help us put COVID behind us. There is a known variant circulating, first identified in South Afria and then in the UK and Europe and now in the USA. While it is not certain whether the current vaccines on the market account for this variant, they will find a vaccine for this one too if the current vaccines do not.

Due to the inevitable mutations of viruses, it is quite possible (but still unknown) that we may need to get a COVID vaccine each year to ensure we have maximum protection from potential variants. While this is something none of us look forward to, it is no doubt better than the alternative. Obviously medical science is far from perfect and there will always be a small percentage of people who have adverse events to any vaccine. However this is just about the case with every medicine on the planet. The majority will benefit.

The certainty of a vaccine alongside a more unknown supply and vaccination schedule means it is just a matter of time before we return to a new normal. How much time is the unknown.

Certain trends that were initiated in 2021 are however likely to stay:

a) Work from home is now built into the global business model. Some businesses will adopt this more aggressively than others. It is however here to stay.

b) Technology companies that make "virtual" work and "remote individuals and teams" more cohesive and productive will continue to succeed and grow.

c) The integration of technology, quantum computing, AI and 5G are going to transform and accellerate IOT (the internet of things), drug discovery, devices, cars, computers, battery technology, wireless charging, the way we shop and pay for goods and services, travel and just about everything we do.

d) The more connected devices and our lives become, the more ironclad "security services" will need to be. Blockchain will play a significant part in the new security, supply chain and payment ecosystems of the future.

e) With all the stimulus money that has gone into the economy, most asset classes from real estate, stocks to collectables are likely to melt up. Some industires will do better than others. Leading innovators in Biotech, Healthcare, Technology, Electric Cars, Cannabis, AI and 5G and the Cryptosphere will likely be ammong those to benefit the most.

In next weeks blog article we will examine some more market trends that we see in 2021.