Stoking global trade spot fires

As the US and China swap blows on currency manipulation, trade tensions are rising over Russia's gas exports. But the last thing the world economy needs is a outbreak of protectionism.

An almost inevitable consequence of the deep and protraction economic weakness in the 'once were wonderful' economies of the G7 is a lift in protectionist rhetoric and a heightened risk of protectionist policies.

While it is an exaggeration to suggest that global markets are about to see the outbreak of a fully fledged trade war, there are signs that the chronic unemployment rates, fiscal imbalances, politics and growth envy are seeing trade tensions rise.

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