Latest News


McKee to participate in the Qatar Global Forum in December
Christopher will participate in the conference devoted to enhancing transparency and integrity in business in Qatar. The conference is spearheaded by the Administrative Control and Transparency, and reports directly to HH Emir of Qatar.


McKee to meet with Philippines Central Bank and Treasury Heads in DC in October
On the sidelines of the annual IMF/WB meetings in October, Christopher will meet National Treasurer Rosalia De Leon and Deputy Central Bank Governor Francisco Dakila of the Philippines. The discussion will center around PRS’ ratings, the components and implications of the PRS/ICRG risk methodology, and the Philippines’ efforts to improve certain risk metrics. 


New book on Political Risk in the Age of Technology slated for Fall release

Christopher and  Peter Marber (Aperture Investors, Harvard), will release a new book on political risk, titled: Quid Periculum: Measuring and Managing Political Risk in the Age of Technology. The new book will include new material from leading experts in the field, as well as a round-table discussion from Ted Merz (Bloomberg), Price Lowenstein (Sovereign), and Michel-Henri Bouchet (Skema, Paris), among others.


PRS and UNWE in Talks for Unique Balkans Risk Conference and Executive Training Center

PRS and Bulgaria’s University of National and World Economy (UNWE) are in the early stages of a joint venture that will see the creation of an executive training center for political risk established at UNWE. A global conference on political risk is also planned, as are a number of related activities.  The training center will cater largely to the executives and others in the Balkans region.


PRS Unveils Private Client Advantage (PCA)

This fall PRS will unveil its new Private Client Advantage (PCA).  Recognizing the large expansion and varied interests of clients from the institutional investment sector, academe, and the multilateral world, the PCA will provide multi-tiered layers of client contacts, ranging from early delivery of ICRG data, discounts on bundled PRS products, bespoke updates, and regular meetings with Christopher are also offered. 


New Studies Underscore Importance of ICRG Risk Data

Several new studies have been released, pointing to the relevance of ICRG data in the academic and applied literature. A recent study by IMF staff, using our ICRG data, considered the impact armed conflict on the current account (CA) and exchange rate. Controlling for other CA determinants, the estimates suggest that the marginal impact of an armed conflict is to raise the current account by 1% of GDP. Additionally, practitioners have found that, using ICRG risk data, political risk is more pronounced on floating exchange rates versus managed/fixed regimes. Market volatility in both emerging and developed markets is influenced by our major ICRG risk metrics.


New Clients Welcomed
Christopher would like to extend a note of thanks to some new clients that have joined the PRS family of late.  In addition to a number of institutional investors (assets under management of a combined $12 trillion), PRS is happy to have on board: the University of Delaware, Tulane University, University of Malaya, Istanbul Commerce University, Fundação Getúlio Vargas, and the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, the University of Colorado (Denver), the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey, Rice University, Wake Forest University, and various global consultancies.


McKee comments on Mozambique’s foray into its graphite sector, securing investor interest
Investors look at the sector or commodity that they are interested in, not just sovereign risk, and then they will take the necessary steps to mitigate against these risks… (http://www.theafricareport.com/Mining/mining-mozambique-glittering-graphite.html)


 McKee sees little immediate term risk to new Brazilian leadership
The populist rhetoric of the campaign will ease as the realities of governance takes hold… (https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-10-06/risk-consultant-prs-plays-down-risk-of-bolsonaro-s-populist-past)


McKee comments on Ethiopia’s privatization drive
Even though the banking sector remains off-limits, foreign investment in other state-owned enterprises will support infrastructure development. (https://www.euromoney.com/article/b1b4sjz8r9bn8h/ethiopia-pushes-its-privatization-agenda)


McKee sees not all emerging markets as equal, some less prone to the sell off in risk assets
Most of the frontier markets didn’t or couldn't borrow as heavily during the 'salad days’…[t]his lower borrowing—along with Chinese money flowing through the Belt and Road initiative… (https://blogs.wsj.com/frontiers/2018/09/07/this-week-on-the-frontiers-september-8th-2018)


McKee discuss investment implications of Saudi-Canada diplomatic row
Against the growing and encouraging will to invest, the incident with Canada brings to light some of the issues that many investors see as inseparable…(https://www.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-canada-investment/saudi-canada-row-could-further-rattle-foreign-investors-eyeing-kingdom-idUSKBN1KT1UQ)


McKee comments on Lebanon’s bond yields and political risk
Appetite for Lebanese paper has improved but the underlying fundamentals of the country and some looming political risks should warrant a second look.  Bond Yields Are Juicy, But Don’t Hide Lebanon’s Debt Burden.” Bloomberg, 12 Jul. 2018


McKee details challenges facing new administration in Mexico
Mexico has a new government, but despite AMLO’s huge win the risks investors face in Mexico remain formidable.
More than 100 politicians have been murdered in Mexico ahead of Sunday’s election.” CNBC, 26 Jun. 2018


McKee on the violence in Nicaragua and Ortega’s political longevity
How long can Ortega hold on? And what could happen if a hasty exit unfolds?
Molotov cocktails and state-led violence: How Nicaragua is slipping into Venezuela-crisis territory.” CNBC, 15 Jun. 2018


McKee details challenges facing new administration in Mexico
Mexico has a new government, but despite AMLO’s huge win the risks investors face in Mexico remain formidable.
More than 100 politicians have been murdered in Mexico ahead of Sunday’s election.” CNBC, 26 Jun. 2018


ICRG Corruption Scores Correlate with Growth
A 2017 study by the IMF found that a one unit increase in ICRG’s corruption score (1-6) may raise per capita GDP by one percentage point. The finding is significant since it’s the first such correlation drawn by the multilateral organization to any of the dozen firms that supply corruption data to Berlin-based Transparency International for its annual Corruption Perceptions Index.


PRS Expands Its Country Coverage to include more frontier markets and offshore commercial centers
Client demand has been sufficiently robust that PRS – via ICRG – will increase its country coverage to the following: Mauritius, Seychelles, Montenegro, Mauritania, Rwanda, Macedonia, Cambodia, Macao (China), Uzbekistan, Laos, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Cayman Islands, British Virgin Islands and the Marshall Islands.  

Be sure to call our NY office for further details (315-431-0511) and to take advantage of some introductory prices.


McKee to deliver keynote address in Riyadh
Christopher will be a keynote speaker at Saudi Arabia’s National Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha) 3rd conference titled “Protecting Integrity and Fighting Corruption in Privatization Programs,” on April 4th and 5th in Riyadh. Christopher will also be providing attendees with a two-hour Master Class on topics related to political risk and privatization.


ICRG Methodology and Data in New Book on Political Risk and Globalization
The risk methodology and some data findings from the International Country Risk Guide (ICRG) will be presented in a new book titled “Country Risk Assessment in the Age of Globalization,” by Michel-Henri Bouchet, Charles Fiskin and Amaury Goguel. The book will be published this year by Palgrave-MacMillian.


McKee to conduct Master Class in political risk for GARP in NYC
March 5th, 2018
Christopher will be leading a day-long Master Class for the Global Association of Risk Professionals in NYC on March 5th, 2018. (http://www.garp.org/#!/events/political-country-risk-assessment-forecasting/a2h40000006gzLTAAY)


McKee meets with Kazakhstan’s Anti-Corruption Agency
November 29th, 2017
Christopher met with a delegation headed by Didar Smagulov, Deputy Director of Kazakhstan’s anti-corruption group, in Washington.  Christopher provided the group with details of PRS’ Anti-Corruption and Investment Climate group, with Kazahkstan responding with a presentation of its own initiatives to combat graft and improve the country’s business and investment climate.  Both sides plan working together in 2018.


McKee featured in the FT’s Investor’s Chronicle
November 17th, 2017
Christopher appeared in the FT’s feature article, and spoke about the challenges in investing in emerging and frontier markets, PRS’ risk models, and the firm’s new work in the field of artificial intelligence. (https://www.investorschronicle.co.uk)


IMF Working Paper on cross-border lending uses ICRG composite scores.
November 7th, 2017
Is the easing in cross-border bank lending (post financial crisis of 2008) evidence of a retreat in financial globalization? Using, in part, ICRG’s’ composite scores, the IMF provides a more nuanced consideration, highlighting increasing regionalization of lending flows, among other items. (https://lnkd.in/duV4kUz)


PRS-Queen’s Artificial Intelligence Initiative Launched
November 9th, 2017
PRS signs a five-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Queen’s University (Canada) to further early-stage work for research scientists and international investors that identifies risk metric correlations, country clusters, and related insights of PRS data series of nearly 5 million points. (http://www.queensu.ca/gazette/stories/forecasting-innovative-partnership)


IMF looks at African growth rates using ICRG datasets
September 8th, 2017
Is growth in Africa different? Using an array of ICRG’ datasets, the IMF looks at growth performance in Sub-Saharan Africa, and finds that what determines growth spells in the region are different from those in other emerging markets. (https://lnkd.in/dBdefr5)


PRS risk ratings on Poland featured in Barron’s
August 26th, 2017
Barron’s piece on further equity gains in Poland, citing Accuvest Global Advisors, which ranks Poland high on its list of country bets, with ‘more room to run.’ (https://lnkd.in/ePRNHmT)


IMF study on central bank interventions uses PRS data
July 10th, 2017
The Fund releases a new study that draws the correlation between ICRG composite risk scores and interventions in the FX market by Tunisia’s central bank. The study also underscores the linkages between energy trade deficits, FX interventions, country risk, and the exchange rate. (https://lnkd.in/e58yXiR)


ICRG risks scores and capital flows
June 9th, 2017
What are the effects of capital controls on the cost of international debt capital? Are they asymmetric across different types of restrictions? What is the role of political risk? Have a look at this new and interesting Working Paper by the IMF that uses our ICRG composite scores (inter alia) to show that restrictions on capital inflows produce a substantial and economically meaningful increase in corporate bond spreads. (https://lnkd.in/e-3A4_f)