Top bank goes for gold with its Olympics predictions for Ireland
IRELAND will win one gold and four medals in total at the London Olympics next month.
That's the prediction of the worlds biggest investment bank Goldman Sachs, which yesterday applied the techniques of picking investment winners to an economic study of the Olympics and the potential medal winners.
In research that would seem especially suited to the quiet days of mid-summer, the bank has put some of its analysts to work forecasting who will be bringing home gold, silver and bronze once the games kick off at the end of the month.
The firm created a probability model for the games, and have come up with one gold for Ireland this time around.
The report doesn't state who will win for us, although Katie Taylor will be heavily favoured when she enters the ring.
The bank says its model has done "fairly well" at picking past winners so they are reasonably confident of success this time around.
Overall, Ireland will come 46th in the medal table. The table itself will be led by the US, closely followed by China, Great Britain and Russia, Goldman says.
Alongside the predictions, the so-called Master of the Universe also looks at what effect hosting the games may have on the London stock markets.
The answer: they're not sure. Some studies have shown positive growth while others have shown little or no impact.
Having said that, most markets outperform in the months following the games.
"All recent Olympic hosts have outperformed the MSCI World index in the 12 months following the Olympics.
"This is true of recent hosts regardless of the size of the economy or state of development.
"Given the below-average performance in the UK since the Olympic announcement, UK investors may hope for a continuation of this trend, looking forward to a positive year in equities following the London 2012 games," the firm says.
If you ever wondered how a European athletic team would do if the eurozone members went for total integration, Goldman has an opinion on this as well.
Using the unification of Germany as a guide, analysts Huw Pill and Andrew Benito identify a "large number of potential pros and cons of unification: to capture the benefits, one naturally needs to develop a structure that maximises the former and minimises the latter. This requires a high degree of institutional development."
Those words will sound awfully familiar to eurozone lawmakers everywhere.
Goldman has a track record in producing economic reports to coincide with major sporting events.
It has produced a report on the World Cup, complete with predictions, since 2002.