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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Market's outlook? Element-ary, say feng shui masters

Business Times - 26 Jan 2009

Market's outlook? Element-ary, say feng shui masters

Geomancy consultants foresee Singapore stock market recovering in third quarter


CHUCK out the ratios and balance sheets. Unlike traditional stock market analysts - who got 2008 all wrong, anyway - the methods of the masters are more mysterious.

'I can't really explain it to you, but I can show it to you. It's based on calculating and psychology,' says geomancer Jason Chng.

Geomancy masters such as Mr Chng believe in the Chinese art of feng shui - that the universe is made of five elements, and that fortunes can be predicted by manipulating the environment with certain techniques.

The pleasing thing, for stock market punters, is that feng shui is able to offer far more specific calls than research houses can with their complex mathematical models. 'Feb 4, there will be some climbing back. It's a fire month, fire will support the shares,' says Mr Chng.

Sean Lui, senior consultant for World of Fortune, says there will be a 'major event to spark the local market in Q3'.

'There will be a sudden jump, it's a very exciting quarter based on past history.' He advises punters to bet on 'any Earth-related stock: chemicals, petroleum, property', since it's an 'earth' year.

And for the same reason, marine and shipping-related stocks are bad news, because they are linked to the opposing 'fire' element, he says.

Mr Chng agrees. 'Property stocks are very good this year but property prices will be terrible,' he says. He favours CapitaLand among the listed real estate plays. 'It's a good buy,' he says. 'I just saw today (Friday) it fell a lot, so it's good to buy now. Ship building is no good.'

Ang Kian Cheong, a feng shui consultant, also says a third-quarter (or autumn) recovery is likely. Spring and summer will be largely flat for finance, but agricultural stocks are to be favoured - the Earth theme, again - while 'wood' related companies should be interesting.

Wood companies are those in services, he says, as well as those dealing with paper and transport. SMRT Corp on Friday said net profit for its third quarter to Dec 31 rose 7.6 per cent to $41.2 million.

And 'metal' firms aren't bad either this year, Mr Ang says. That means cars, aeroplanes and electronics, which will be music to the ears of Creative Tech, which has just announced its biggest quarterly loss for eleven quarters.

The masters BT spoke to did not restrict their visions to the stock market. '2010 will be a very volatile year for the whole world economy,' says Mr Lui. 'Plenty of people will in one night move from success to bankruptcy.' Meanwhile, he predicts there will be a 'big storm' in Singapore politics in 2009.

Mr Ang says China will start tanking around mid-year. 'In the summer, their economy will start moving backwards, and that will affect Asean.'

Also, 'Thailand will see a very big crisis'; 'America is very bad now, but should recover in early 2010', and Mr Obama is going to be a great president, Mr Ang says.

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