Bi-Weekly Geopolitical Report – Goodbye Prigozhin (September 18, 2023)

Bill O’Grady | PDF

On August 23, an executive jet carrying seven passengers and three crew members crashed near Moscow on a flight to St. PetersburgYevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner Group, a private Russian military company, was reportedly one of the passengers. Prigozhin was having an eventful summer.  He had led an apparent mutiny in June, but called off his march on Moscow despite making significant progress toward the capitol after seeming to make a deal with Russian President Putin, and thereafter was seen conducting Wagner business again.

In this report, we will examine four issues.  First, is he really dead?  Second, if he is dead, who did it and how did they do it?  Third, we will discuss the benefits and costs of the Wagner Group to the Russian state.  And fourth, we will analyze the potential benefits and costs of his apparent assassination.  As always, we will conclude with market ramifications.

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