Tomorrow sees the Euro 2016 kick-off, where home team and the bookies favourite France take on Romania. The British Foreign Office have warned that there is a “high threat from terrorism”, so huge is the security challenge that the French government has apparently released a terror alert app called SAIP (Système d'alerte et d'information des populations), which stands for Population Alert and Information System. In spite of the lingering threat, ~2.5 million football fans are expected to travel to France to soak up the continent’s biggest sporting event’s atmosphere. AirBnB have said it is preparing to welcome ~250k visitors alone, with fans from around the world including roughly 37k Americans and around 10k Aussies.
These fans bring with them significant spending power to the host nation; benefits of this competition will be felt right across the country as matches will be hosted across 10 different stadia/cities; the whole country should at least profit from the influx of visitors. This will be a much needed boost for France, whose central bank announced yesterday that the 2016 second quarter growth forecast shows GDP cooling to 0.2%, having risen 0.5% in Q1’16.
So, if we use Stratton Street’s Net Foreign Asset Model (NFA) as an indication of how each of the 24 teams will perform, we come up with a surprising winner (in footballing terms anyway). If we select winners according to the higher ‘NFA’ star ratings, Switzerland would be the resounding winner having played Belgium in the final; the bookies put the odds of Switzerland winning at 50/1. These teams would have met Germany (bookie’s 2nd favourite at 4/1) and Sweden (100/1) in the semis, having beaten the likes of Russia, Austria, Italy (which became a republic 70 years ago today) and France (3/1) in the quarter-finals. The bottom of the table would be taken up by Iceland (last place), Portugal and new entry, Albania (which is the bookies least favourite at 300/1!).
Holland unfortunately did not make the qualifiers; had they done so they would have played in the finals, but again lost to Switzerland. England would make it past the group stage, but just miss the quarter-finals. Although there is some coincidental correlation, we will not be relying on the Euro’16/NFA analysis to predict the final results. We wish all the teams and fans the best of luck and safe travels.