Ad Hoc Commentary – Hong Kong Feng Shui masters did very well in 2014
Yours truly is a junkie for market outlooks. This year is no different and yours truly had been enjoying reading predictions from everywhere – as always there seems to be more predictions than economists plus strategists plus bloggers put together. Thank goodness not all the 7 billion people in this world makes their opinion known. Imagine what a deluge that would be.
Looking back in 2014, one of the best predictors for 2014 was the group of Hong Kong Feng Shui masters. This is our piece on what they said:
- strong gains in stocks
- people fighting for ideals
- regional warfare
- property slowdown
- natural disasters
- sex scandals
- tough year for people born under the year of the Horse…”
For item 1, we said “…We sell off into early Feb and rally from then till perhaps Oct 20 when comet Siding Spring makes a close pass at the planet Mars…”
Looking at our favorite S&P500, we made a low on Feb 3, 2014 and then rallied into a net positive year. Yes, we had a scare in Oct as comet Siding Spring made a close pass at Mars.
For item 2 and 3, we said “…2014 is the year of resentment… Expect more social unrest…”
A case in point for item 2 is the violence in Ferguson, Missouri:
On item 3, we remember the annexation of the Crimean Peninsula by Master Strategist Putin: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_Crimean_crisis
For item 4, we said “…yours truly is no property expert. But in Singapore, yours truly believe that public housing (which makes up the majority of homes in Singapore) will likely have a significant enough fall…”
Well, we did see the Singapore public housing resale price index fall from 145.8 in Q4 2013 to 137.1 (flash estimate) in Q4 2014. That is a 6% drop for now: http://www.hdb.gov.sg/fi10/fi10321p.nsf/w/BuyResaleFlatResaleIndex?OpenDocument
For item 5, we said “…wheat prices that had been coming off could just rebound into another spike…”
Wheat nearest futures did spike from late Jan (the date we wrote the post) to early May. However yours truly was wrong after that. Wheat prices fell precipitously into October, but recovered most of it today. Yours truly notice that wheat did not fall like oil. This probably means we need to eat after all. It is very likely that soft commodities will be the only bright star in the commodities complex, and softs will probably stay supported well into 2017.
For item 6, we had no comments.
For item 7, we said “…Merkel and Hollande are both born in the year of the Horse, 1954. That sits well with our prediction that the European sovereign debt crisis had returned to Europe to target the Franco-German core. Is history repeating itself again now with the Greeks giving France and Germany the Trojan horse of sovereign debt crisis? Perhaps the wooden Trojan horse will show its true color to Merkel-Hollande this year. We have European elections in May. If they love Europe, they should develop the infrastructure asset class that we had been talking about. Yours truly still believe that EUR/USD is a sell this year…”
Well, yours truly only got the “EUR/USD is a sell this year” part correct. It seems that the Greek Trojan horse is only happening in 2015, likely Jan 25, 2015 when Greeks go to the polls. The elites are pretending a Grexit is manageable. The price action in rest of Europe government bond markets is probably a reflection of money running out of Greek bonds into German bunds. Some say yields are falling because ECB say deflation is coming. They are probably giving too much credit to the ECB chief, Mario Draghi. Didn’t the same Mario complained about low-flation for most of 2014? Despite all his complain, we didn’t get QE in 2014. In all likelihood, yields in Bunds dropped due to a fear of Grexit (i.e. Greek exit from Eurozone). The geopolitical fallout of a Grexit would be significant given that Putin would probably see it as a good place to score brownie points for his public popularity.
As we can see, the Hong Kong Feng Shui masters did very well in 2014. Having said that, yours truly very much prefer the analysis done by the good economists at the World Bank, IMF, hedge funds and commercial banks. Economics might be the dismal science, but astrology is not even science. We can poke holes at the Laffer curve over lunch. But, what do you even say when the topic is about Pluto square Uranus on Mar 11-28, 2015?
Good luck in the markets.