• Geopolitical Alpha

    An Investment Framework for Predicting the Future

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    PUBLISHED October 2020

    If unavailable in your jurisdiction, please check local amazon store

  • THE Constraint Framework Brought to life


    Geopolitical Alpha book cover

    "Geopolitical Alpha

    is now the ​locus classicus of market-relevant geopolitical analysis"

    Matt Gertken

    Chief Geopolitical Strategist

    BCA Research


    Not long ago, financial markets danced and central bankers called the tune. Today, investors confront a discordant world transformed by political paradigm shifts. In Geopolitical Alpha, investment strategist Marko Papic shares his framework for making sense of the new macro landscape.


    By focusing on material constraints, investors can ignore the ephemeral and irrelevant, generating consistent alpha even in the face of extreme uncertainty.


    Geopolitical Alpha is the guide to the future for anyone interested in geopolitics, economics, and finance.

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    Praise for Geopolitical AlpHA

    John J. Mearsheimer

    University of Chicago; author, The Tragedy of Great Power Politics

    "Above all else, Marko Papic is an astute strategist who understands that geopolitics is more important than ever for investors..."

    H.R. McMaster

    Lieutenant General (retd.) U.S. Army; Former White House National Security Adviser

    "...Marko Papic provides a framework for thinking ahead of where we are and anticipating geostrategic events."

    Scott Bessent

    CIO, Key Square Group

    "Geopolitical Alpha may do for macro-investing what Benjamin Graham's classic, Security Analysis, did for stock picking: provide a tool kit for generating excess returns by focusing on rigorous frameworks..."

    Alan Howard

    Founder, Brevan Howard Asset Management

    "Geopolitical Alpha is quite literally a bookend for a new paradigm in global markets. Geopolitics is now as relevant to investors as macroeconomics and central banking were in the last paradigm."

    Raphael Arndt

    CEO, Future Fund of Australia

    "To succeed in this new world, you need to understand geopolitics, and Marko is one of the best geopolitical strategists I know. If you want the best chance to achieve your return targets, read this book."

    Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg

    Chairman, Spitzberg Partners; former German Minister of Defense

    "A thought-provoking geopolitical tour d'horizon that should be considered when we discuss the future of a world in disorder."

    Ziad Hindo

    CIO, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan

    "Marko's approach is especially relevant at this juncture. The big shifts he cites are real and highly consequential for institutional investors like us. In fact, gaining the right perspective on them today might mean the difference between future success and failure."

    Jeremy C. Stein

    Professor of Economics, Harvard University

    "Geopolitical Alpha is a fascinating, entertaining, and highly readable book. Marko Papic offers a distinctive and compelling take on the interplay between geopolitics and financial markets, with a clear intellectual framework to guide macro investment decisions."

    Mark Brzezinski

    United States Ambassador (retd.)

    "Many ask who is a Zbigniew Brzezinski or Henry Kissinger of the young generation?... Welcome Marko Papic... He has written a remarkable book, Geopolitical Alpha, because he generally sees political risk analysts bungling it in terms of their analysis and strategic planning."

    Mark Haefele

    CIO, UBS

    "Marko Papic proves a shrewd and humorous translator between the world of investing and policy-making in the pursuit of Geopolitical Alpha. For both traders looking to find the next trade or policymakers looking to make better policy, ​Geopolitical Alpha can help you to better understand how our world works...."

    Sebastian Mallaby

    Author, More Money Than God

    "From his very first chapter, Marko Papic tells us what not to do. 'Niccoló Machiavelli was wrong,' he declares boldly. 'Don't study the Prince. Study his constraints...' Papic proceeds to lay out what he calls his constraint-based framework for generating geopolitical alpha."

    Stephen Gilmore

    CIO, New Zealand Superannuation Fund

    "Marko brings geopolitics to life through a very helpful practical framework presented with key insight and wit."

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    Marko Papic

    Marko Papic

    Clocktower Group

    Marko is a Partner and Chief Strategist at Clocktower Group, an alternative investment asset management firm based in Santa Monica, California. He leads the firm’s Strategy Team, providing bespoke research to investors and partners on geopolitics, macroeconomics, and markets.


    Prior to joining the firm, Marko founded BCA Research’s Geopolitical Strategy practice (GPS) in 2012, the financial industry’s first dedicated political analysis investment strategy. The GPS service generates geopolitical alpha by identifying gaps between the market’s political expectations and the firm’s forecasts. Marko was a Senior Vice President and the firm’s Chief Geopolitical Strategist.


    Marko began his career as a Senior Analyst at Stratfor, a global intelligence agency where he contributed to the firm’s global geopolitical strategy as well as its analyst recruitment and training program. In his academic work, he helped create the Center for European Union Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Marko holds an MA in Political Science from the University of Texas at Austin and an MA from the University of British Columbia.


    Born in Belgrade, Serbia, he has lived in Iraq, Jordan, Switzerland, Canada, and the U.S. When he is not writing macro and geopolitical research, you can find him coaching his kids’ basketball games or balling with the locals on the mean streets of Santa Monica.


  • Reviews & Media

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    Matt Gertken

    Chief Geopolitical Strategist, BCA Research

    "Throughout the work, the analytical style can be characterized as restless energy in the service of cool, chess-playing logic."


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    Momoe Ikeda-Chelminska

    Director, Educational Events & Programs, CFA Institute

    "Papic posits that investors can prepare for upcoming events and beat the market while they’re at it..."


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    Ted Seides

    Founder of Capital Allocators

    "... an imminently readable book... Marko's approach is akin to Moneyball for politics, challenging the orthodoxy..."


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    The Best Books of 2020 List

    "... We are in a new world. To understand it, step away from the economic textbook and pick up Geopolitical Alpha..."


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    Jacob Shapiro

    The Perch Pod

    "... Geopolitical Alpha, was a special treat... gives real world, tangible insight into how to apply geopolitics as a methodology to investing..."


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    Lauren Foster

    Take 15 Podcast

    "... takes listeners on a worldwide tour that starts with his constraints-based framework and continues through the recent US presidential election and on to US-China relations, Brexit, the Middle East, and Russia..."


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    Sarah p. & Mike R.

    What Goes Up

    "... discuss how the current economic and market cycle will be vastly different than the tepid recovery from the global financial crisis. He jokingly uses slogans from Reddit's WallStreetBets forum to describe the risk-taking posture he believes investors will maintain..."


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    Leslie Norton


    "... Many geopolitical analysts expect a bifurcated planet organized around U.S. and Chinese interests. Not so for Marko Papic, chief strategist of Clocktower Group, who sees a return to a 19th-century system in which nations act solely in their own interests, and allies become frenemies..."


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    The Pitfalls of trading geopolitical risk

    "... But there are pitfalls for the unwary, as Marko Papic of Clocktower Group, an alternative-investment firm, argues in his book “Geopolitical Alpha”... As Mr Papic shows in his book, the pattern from the 1962 Cuban missile crisis onwards is for a short-term fall in America’s stockmarket to be followed by a rally over the following year, and often quite a strong one."


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    INTERESTED IN Finding out more about Marko & Clocktower Group?

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    The Constraint-Framework in Action

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    2015 - SKAGEN Funds

    Multipolarity And Globalization: Incompatible Pairing

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    2019 - Real Vision

    The Escalating Trade War Between the US and China

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    2020 - Real Vision

    2020 Setting the Stage: The Next Decade for Geopolitics and Markets

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    2021- Real Vision

    Generating Geopolitical Alpha

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    2022 - Market Huddle

    Predicting Macro Soup

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    2021 - Market Huddle

    Bathe Yourself in Indifference