In last half’s outlook, we noted that ‘an astounding 90%+ of the industrialised world now boast interest rates at or near zero percent.’ This half we take it one step further by noting that 17 countries now boast official interest rates that are negative! We really are living in extraordinary times and it is easy to become desensitised by just how unique this period is. To repeat our commentary from last half : ‘the reality is that much of the play book has yet to be written. No prior period has witnessed the combined impact of interest rates and quantitative easing of the scale and extent to that which currently pervades our markets. There are no analogues. There are times of ‘partial’ similarity such as the currency wars that occurred during the period intervening the great wars. But no period has evidenced the combined and coordinated central bank machinations of this time.’