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squeezetracker 259 posts  |  Last Activity: Feb 27, 2015 2:43 PM Member since: Apr 5, 2011
  • Lots of quality articles on AP gaiming this week on ggrasia website... but the soft opening date is now set.

    Read the article if you care, but interesting to see Lawrence Ho emphasize this is the "soft opening," before the Grand Opening prior to the Chinese New Year, of "the first phase" of COD Manila. As discussed here early last summer, they and partner Sy, the biggest, wealthiest commercial real estate developer in the Manila and MPEL partner on COD Manila, the second phase will consume much more real estate and will be more of an MPEL signature complex than the four building (rather blah) complex they took over from the stalled developer a few years ago.

    This should be great for MPEL, and good to see that the share data in Macau shows MPEL's share is flattish at 13%, without much clarity that tables reclassified to VIP is actually the fat margin direct credit premium mass. Meanwhile, WYNN is looking weak as VIP ex the MPEL sanitized numbers is only 8% for Nov and we know most of that is VIP margin business. If the trendlines continue another week, the quant values will be about back in sync, meaning back to the set up we saw in 2009 and then again in 2012 for MPEL to outpace the group higher. Been having fun trading small chunks of WYNN, but down a bit more pre Xi visit is a shot to go large -- unless WYNN effd up with Tam or such, long term betting with Steve is a good upside bet.

    Good to see the group coming in to MPEL's hammered numbers... scraping along the bottom is not much fun, but maybe Jinping's visit, along with the telegraphing from his Beijing frontrunner Lei this week, is a nice sign that Beijing is going to hold out MPEL exceptional entertainment with the likes of the water shoe and, within another 8-10 months or so, the cinematically themed PHASE ! of Studio City is EXACTLY the kind of "diversified IR" offering Beijing wants EVERY company to put together for mass tourism/family attractions in addition to world class spas and casinos.

  • Reply to

    a somewhat new theory on VIP decline

    by drjackcar Dec 4, 2014 7:33 AM
    squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 4, 2014 5:46 PM Flag

    Many of China's wealthy have funds throughout the AP region, away from mainland China scrutiny. I read what this guy wrote here several times and get quite get through this:

    "contrary to consensus belief, Macau’s slowdown is not so much driven by anti-corruption as it is by a structural tightening in the liquidity of the high-rollers’ source of wealth"... huh? Every ceo and the execs around them have said the crimp on VIP is principally foxhole mentality out of concern for being seen as too high profile while the 75,000+ politicans and their henchmen buddies have been under review... None of that does not have much to do with structured financing done with real estate conduit trusts and similar, nor does it have anything to do with the high profile defaults of hose jobs shadow banking trusts that have defaulted.

    The fact remains that the vast majority of high rollers touring with the big junkets, and some 80% of peak GGR have kept right on playing in Macau, ostensibly unconcerned that they or any one they have done business with while rising to be amongst the new mint millionaires and billionaires has anything to worry about while Xi's "tigers and flies" corruption reviews wend their way through bank and brokerage statements.

    Does anyone else enjoy the irony of this guy's name with the former head of security in the communist party running China? Zhou (namesake or relative?) is being prosecuted for massive fraud against the Chinese govt, taking Chen, one of the largest industrialists in China, right along with him. Rooftop watch in effect...

    But the "analysis" goes on to say that new openings on macau will increase visitation but maybe not
    GGR? No S? LOL Someone ought to advise him that direct credit players are set up with the house, likely paying off monthly debt via wires from around the AP region where primary bank accounts handle the money (not some imaginary shadow banking credit source from the mainland). Big junket VIP is not in the alley either

  • Reply to

    Xi Jinping's Visit

    by squeezetracker Dec 2, 2014 10:15 AM
    squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 4, 2014 2:27 PM Flag

    Beyond stomping out the HK nonsense that is immovable wrt granting democratic nominations/suffrage, the Macau Gift Basket needed for the good of China, Macau and these Macau stocks is really just two things:

    1. Corruption clarification
    Wave of his hand that he is not out to ruin the principal attraction of Macau, legalized gaming under China's domain. A simple statement that the only people he does not want gaming are the politicians and their cohorts who are defrauding China and anyone else who is trying to subvert Chinese law.

    2. Policy Directives Rolling Forward
    Wave of his hand that the new Macau regime and Beijing itself will continue to promote as much diversified entertainment venues as possible with all new properties built on the precious little land left to develop in Macau, and maybe even a little nod to the idea that MPEL's Studio City and COD, as well as WYNN's new lake, and LVS' serious MICE facilities are exactly what they are talking about... but also a clear statement that nonsense such as the ridiculous 3%/year table limit nonsense will be replaced by allocations that are "thoughful, reasonable and fair" to the entities developing some $25B worth of job and commerce/taxation enhancement in the 8 properties currently under construction on Cotai.

    If he does those two things with authority, the group slam will quickly resolve to the upside...because VIP tours will light up the reservation desk in a hurry, and in plenty of time to ensure the CNY celebrations go well.

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 4, 2014 8:45 AM Flag

    i don't know if your reply to my post was deleted by you or yhoo just now, but my reply to your comment above:
    "Great. Now if we could just get GGR in Macau to stop going down by 20% a month this would be something to get excited about."

    had nothing to do with COD Manila's delay, which has been officially, not "surprisingly" pushed back a few times since they signed up Hyatt. Further, Ho has said a few times that the buildings they took over are not what they would have built for MPEL, but they are going to make it special and work, even though it required two significant budget increases and several delays. I'll also point out that last year's major typhoon that bashed the middle of the Philippines likely has some disruptive effects on everything under construction throughout the islands.

    Again too, I am not saying all of the bs noise elements I cited above had no effect -- they were all clearly part of the FUD going on for Macau tourism and GGR, but most have faded. As I had noted many times here, the real GGR impairment (as now confirmed by all of the key execs running the US listed companies except Pansy Ho) has been the corruption crackdown and the macro economic concerns for China's millionaires and billionaires and the nonsense table limits policy of Tam and the former regime.... all the rest of the lame media and analysts' running negative commentary is on fade (except for McKnight, Karen Twang. Shuli baby and Detar at IBD). Kind of like our little girl on AOL here, they seemingly can't overcome pig-headed stupidity.

    Xi Jinping's gift basket of border crossing and longer hours is good, but the policy change really needed is to share his embrace of macau as a GAMING destination without peer, that wealthy patrons relaxing/gaming there is terrific, and that table limit nonsense is now over with "fair and reasonable" table allocations going to be the norm.

    And might SC phse 1 be delayed a few months? I'll suggest that may well happen, and BFD.

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 3, 2014 5:52 PM Flag

    toast, it is a darling review... and you do realize Macau GGR is not "going down by 20% per month," right? That would be bad...thankfully, that is not what is happening.

    No, instead, what is happening for the last two months is down by 20% year over last year's record results which still had all the momentum of the new properties opening/ramping on the Cotai strip, and did have not 75,000 people investigated on an as yet unannounced China-wide, politically-charged "corruption crackdown" now drawing to a close and STILL NOT IMPAIRING 80% of VIP!

    We can leave out the real estate market and banking system tightening (now in reverse) drjack and I discussed on several threads last year, all the noise Jim Chanos was making about about how the sky falling China, all the nonsense noise about $25B of UnionPay card fraud per Shuli Renn, IBD and Reuters that was really more like $400k of cash & 12 guys operating unauthorized card swipers out of their trunks, Hong Kong suffrage protest that is not going to change immovable policy for another 50 years, visa "restrictions" that mean nothing, shifting of tables between premium mass and VIP, lack of room supply for the top properties running full on record ebitda, moronic reporting such as the IBD piece yesterday suggesting that "corruption crackdown on VIP operators" (talk about ridiculous reporting!), smoking rooms and the other 10 or so items of media noise.

    Did I mention that none of that is impairing 80% of VIP and COD is still running 100% occupancy and has been since last year? Yeah... and the COD turnaway rate is stil over 30% on average, meaning they say yes to their own flagged out stay and play folks that are most valuable to the house in terms of rack room rates, eating in the complex and going to the shows between table games and machine play.

    The macau stocks are setting up to be darlings next year... shades of mid 2012 (run through March 2014) as new properties came on then ramped -- and will next year.

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 3, 2014 1:10 PM Flag

    Part 3
    Charisse Chuidian, City of Dreams Manila vice president for public relations, says: “With the luxury dining experiences offered in our three hotels – Crown Towers, Nobu and Hyatt, plus three entertainment venues including the innovative live and digital play space with DreamWorks which will be the first in the world, and two world-renowned nightclub brands Pangaea and Chaos, City of Dreams Manila will raise the bar in leisure and entertainment offerings. It will not be long before we offer a sneak peak in December, before a grand opening prior to Chinese New Year in 2015.”

    From one of the most incredible spa treatments I’ve ever had at the Crown Spa to a sexy, acrobatic cabaret with amazing performers from around the world to diamond-studded tourbillon collector watches, City of Dreams has something for everyone. And excitingly, it is what we can expect in City of Dreams Manila.

    As the trip came to a close, we were chuckling about how we were running out of superlatives to describe the entire experience. Stunning. Spectacular. Awe-inspiring. Extraordinary. Extravaganzaaaaa…. (cue drumroll and jazz hands, please.) Whatever it may be, I’m just glad that pretty soon I won’t have to travel far to get lost in my dreams. "

    note: This article was published last weekend in the Philippines Star Travel section; the author's last line references that COD Manila, home to the Philippines Star, will soon open to the public.

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 3, 2014 1:05 PM Flag

    Jade Dragon was such a remarkable experience. Each dish was artfully presented, crafted with care to give the cleanest, most sophisticated Chinese cuisine I’ve had. We were in fact in agreement that in comparison to another famous Chinese restaurant in Hong Kong that had three Michelin stars, Jade Dragon was far superior and deserved being awarded two more.

    Their Jade Dragon dumpling was the plumpest prawn and juiciest lobster encased in a paper-thin wrapper, full of flavor and there was no need for dipping sauce. A succulent Iberico roast pork is caramelized with fresh honeycomb and slow-roasted to melt-in-your mouth perfection with dark bittersweet charred crispy bits. Hot and sour soup that was far from your usual slop of mystery ingredients. Here, each julienned vegetable is suspended in a rich, spicy, tangy broth like glorious celebratory confetti. And who knew fried rice could be so elegant? Greaseless fluffy grains of rice happily danced together with a symphony of conpoy, roast goose and vegetables topped with lush scallops.

    What mini-bar? As Alicia Sy put it: “that’s a maxi-bar!” Hennessy Paradis Cognac ready to be savored at the Chairman’s Suite
    And because that wasn’t enough in the evening we were treated to a special wine pairing menu at the Michelin-starred Tasting Room by chef Galliot. French innovation using the best ingredients available, like sevruga caviar, tuna belly and quail. I loved his new take on the classic bistro French onion soup with a seriously savory mushroom velouté that I could have happily drank on its own. However, the real piece de resistance was the jaw-dropping delicious chocolate and banana millefeuille. Sweet, salty, bitter, crunchy, velvety, creamy, crisp… It was chocolate in all forms and textures. Pleasure on a plate.

    The people’s pleasure


  • Early this week we were invited to visit the City of Dreams Macau in hopes to have a glimpse of what City of Dreams Manila will have to offer when it opens early next year. To be quite frank, I have always been aloof towards these gaming resorts. I am not a gambler, and although I find the James Bond-esque allure of casinos exciting, I have a terrible poker face and would mostly likely lose all my chips in a matter of seconds.

    Spending a few days at the City of Dreams Macau has changed my perspective. Imagine spending close to 72 hours in a gaming complex and, well, not seeing the casino at all?

    The first thing I noticed was the stunning luxurious interiors of the establishments. From the warm contemporary chic of the Grand Hyatt to the glamorous interiors of Crown Tower. The table settings in each restaurant were all spectacular with a meticulous attention to detail. French porcelain, Baccarat crystal, Christophe cutlery, hand-carved solid jade dragons and sterling silver steam basket holders, and water was served in Schott Zwiesel glasses.

    There was a clear nod to the Chinese heritage and auspicious design without being so literal. Gold was everywhere and yet it never once felt too gaudy. It came in muted forms like a soft golden hue on the walls of the Grand Hyatt Chairman’s Suite or in the gold and black lacquer details at Jade Dragon. A definite feast for the eyes, it set the mood for the true feast on the plate.

    Feast fit for an emperor

    Over dinner, a friend asked me what I was doing in Macau to which I replied, “I was a cow in Macau.” Each meal more spectacular than the last, from their SoHo-themed dining complex to Grand Hyatt’s Mezza 9 “around the world in tapas” concept and their beautiful Beijing Kitchen with the crispiest roast duck I have ever had, to housing two Michelin-starred establishments, City of Dreams prides itself in being a destination to
    indulge your gastronomic dreams.


  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 3, 2014 10:59 AM Flag

    fun thread top to bottom...

    Longtimers know we came back on to LVS (large) in the low $70s after they pulled the Spanish empire nonsense... and that we bailed ~$82 a month later ("too early" -- by a week and $5/share -- about like the trade sleeve bail twice/core hedge on MPEL at $43 some $2.5 below the top -- twice).

    Have a look at a weekly chart for the last 12 months -- fun read, huh? Bailed on the LVS allocation one week before the top. Fun.

    The update part? All of the names are in dislocation again, except that contrasted with momentum chase expensive then, they way cheap now, just the opposite of where things were early this year... MPEL is by far the most compelling of them all down here.

    Again, unless the new Macau regime and the boys in Beijing want to neuter the Golden Goose with adherence to anything like the ridiculous table limits (that have never been enforced since supposed implementation in 2012) and or letting the Beijing/shanghai corruption witch hunt/scandals continue to #$%$ the missing 20% of VIP play, these stocks are oversold by a bunch...

  • Reply to

    Xi Jinping's Visit

    by squeezetracker Dec 2, 2014 10:15 AM
    squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 2, 2014 12:06 PM Flag

    More "mean little girl on AOL" bs from the board idiot today? LOL Stupidity is tragic. I have geezer on ignore so I don't see the dufus commentary unless on my threads, but to be clear, we've always emphasized this is a high beta sector and none of us give a rat's behind that he is clueless, understands nothing about common trading parlance, and was hyping that the stock was going to $75 this year, exactly the same week I explained why we sold out our then round 7 or 8 trading sleeve on this (owned below $34), and hedged out the core.

    Our core basis is $17 excluding extensive hedging gains (e.g. last month's short puts at $24) and paired trade gains/offset shorts on LVS and WYNN along the way, much of which has been shared here suggesting the momo chumps were chasing and it was time to be wary -- two days before it made the first of the double top at $45.50. Again, for anyone new or who cares, go look it up but back in january we sold out the trade sleeve and box hedged the core at $43, pulling the hedge at the 50d ema just before it began the run back to the double top on the strong Feb GGR for macau. As for the then new sleeve? Wash, rinse, repeat.

    We now own the core and our largest ever trade sleeve right around $27 thanks to all of the noise and of the summer, followed by the major corruption news of late July which took the group down hard (as Ho reset mass expectations from 30%+ to half that) and all the analysts scrambled to lower estimates. Those items are what took this stock back down from $32 -- the level I have said repeatedly will be the next comfortable "technical buy" level meaning only the value and quant pm have been adding/hedging their positions down here pending an improved outlook on new properties coming online over the next 30 months, and the view that the new macau and Beijing regimes will soon articulate more reasoned table and endorsement of Macau.

    btw, we lowered our ftm est to $40 in Aug when Ho reset the group. Street was @ $51

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 2, 2014 12:01 PM Flag

    fun to revisit... same week the board dufus little girl on aol was hyping this was going to $75 this year. LOL

  • squeezetracker by squeezetracker Dec 2, 2014 10:15 AM Flag

    President Xi Jinping's visit scheduled for two weeks from now, comports with the "speech" I posted here tongue in cheek for Xi a month ago and is consistent with the value/quant guys view of buying the stock last Q (n.b. Bain's remarks are consistent with the views of Lawrence Ho shared on MPEL's early November CC). Repeating myself, a wave of his hand and blessing of "okay to play if you are not a corrupt & violating laws" (comprised of the crooks and the spooked and small underfunded junkets that are gone totaling the missing ~20% of VIP) will get Macau stocks going again, perhaps in rocket blast fashion... yet again, I'll repeat my refrain that this sector is for spec money only, and a solid technical buy is pending a fresh breakout (in the low $30s) on heavy 10w ema volume.

    "President’s visit should be a longer-term positive. While many look at President Xi Jimping’s visit as simply a known negative to GGR, we believe the longer-term implications from the visit are positive for Macau.

    Already, the main border gate with the Mainland (Gongbei) will be open one hour earlier to 6am and close one hour later at 1am late this month and the Lotus bridge connecting Hengqin Island and Macau will be open 24-hours a day. These adjustments were largely viewed as “gifts” from the Mainland ahead of President Xi Jimping’s visit.

    Further, we believe there will be a positive psychological impact to VIP and premium mass players – they may see the President more or less endorsing Macau by his visit, calming certain fears connecting Macau to the anti-corruption campaign.

    Similar to other high-level Mainland Government visits, we believe it is likely the President speaks to the need for Macau to diversify from gaming revenue. While we believe such language will not impact policy (diversification the stated goal of the Macau Government for some time), such statements would come ahead of Government table allocations/supply growth in 2015/2016."

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Dec 2, 2014 12:08 AM Flag

    Shel's theory has been correct for 3 years plus so not sure what you are looking at... MPEL's COD has run at 100% occupancy with 30-40% turnaway all year, after 96%+ last year. They clearly will benefit from having one of the and obviously different IRs when Studio City Phase 1 opens in about 8 months.

    As for the stocks, review the 13F... there are many savvy guys adding down here. They are not in for a ride down when MPEL is already by far cheapest in the group... of course, Jinping's visit should be a positive, too... just 3 weeks away.

    Hard to think the stocks would do well today with billy clubs out in HK and big growth stocks off 4-5% on cluttery retail sales data from Friday.

  • What, something other than bad news on GGR? Fun to note that although HK prints on MPEL are trivial shares, the HK shares were actually up for the day.

    Next thing you know, Xi Jinping will visit and likely bring another gift basket to Macau -- perhaps just a freindly wave of his hand and some conciliatory remarks about how Macau has become a showplace of China as an emerging world tourism destination... essentially signaling the "all clear" siren for elite players.

    Meanwhile, from the more good news department, statisticians will recall MPEL and the group ended last year with soft holds... a simple restoration to mid-range holds will drive a significant ebitda beat for the group, and here comes Altira's VIP rejuvenation and at least some revenue from the already rolling "soft opening" at COD Manila.

    Hey, someone should email Benzinga to advise them their amateur hour reporting calling MPEL a "Macau pure play" is no longer accurate.

    P.S. The Nov short puts at $24 expired worthless for the "little girl on AOL" worried about our trading shares basis. LOL

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Nov 29, 2014 7:00 PM Flag

    as you know, Chris Woods agrees... and still not appreciated (yet) is that Macau VIP is still running close to 80% of last year's pre "Beijing corruption crackdown" levels...As Ho noted on the 3Q conference call, things can change very rapidly in china -- remember the stock bounced from $30 to $36.50 between June 14 and 25th this year when folks thought for a moment that VIP was picking up interweek...

    Then we have the table shifting going on related to the smoking ban nonsense for premium mass areas. So now folks will call those areas and tables VIP again, but they will all have the premium mass margins... What a waste of time and effort, but whatever the hell it takes seems to be the operative aspect of getting elite customers what/where/when they want to have a smoke or anything else...

    But what about the "missing" 20% of VIP? Might a biug bunch of that find its way back to the baccurat tables one day soon? Absolutely... just have a read back through what MPEL execs had to say about Macau's largest operator, SunCity, and the now "repositioned" Altira. From the CC:

    "Altira repositioned to cater to large VIP operators and turnaround already visible in the 3Q

    One of the big VIP operators [Suncity] just started operation in September, middle of September [so it] just started to ramp up… not full speed ahead yet and we see some potential.

    In terms of Altira, I think our strategy is due to looking to more larger and quality turnkey operator, getting into Altira whereby we've already optimized some of the largely -- the table, VIP table in Altira already. So the next step is really about invitation of those big and quality turnkey operators in there, so this is our fundamental strategy in Altira. And you'll see some of the improvement going forward."

    Beyond that color, a wave of Xi Jinping's hand signaling the "tigers and flies" witch hunt is largely over, or merely that Macau is to be visited and enjoyed by all who are not corrupt.

  • Seems this guy agrees with Chris Wood. If GGR gets going well soon, that will enable fiscal effort.

    "MANILA, Philippines - Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima is sticking to his upbeat assessment of the economy despite dismal growth in the third quarter.

    Gross domestic product (GDP)—the broadest measure of goods and services produced across the economy – expanded only 5.3 percent in the three months through September, its weakest pace in nearly three years, hurt by lower public spending. [Missing some of the govt spending to repair storm damage last year was part of the slight lull 3Q from ]

    Purisima, however, remains confident the Philippine economy will pick up speed in the medium term on prudent fiscal management and good governance.

    “We are very confident that growth will further pick up as we strengthen our economic and good governance reforms in the tail-end of this administration. Ingredients for sustained growth remain abundant as the fundamentals of our economy remain sound,” he said.

    “The drivers and elements of growth for the Philippines continue to fuel our momentum. We have a strong external position, and we maintain strong macroeconomic fundamentals that will ensure we will continue on our positive growth trajectory. Our reform agenda has been and will always be a force for inclusive and sustainable growth for an increasingly competitive Philippines,” Purisima said.

    He said the hefty 2.9 percent GDP surplus as well as contained fiscal deficit have created the necessary fiscal space for the government to spend productively.

    “We expect more solid foundations for growth as Congress approves our priority proposals on fiscal incentives rationalization and transparency, and amendments on the Build Operate Transfer Law and Foreign Investments Negative List,” Purisima added.

    Purisima highlighted the country’s resilience despite declining growth rates among leading emerging markets.

    He said the Philippines has entered a period of consistent growth...

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Nov 29, 2014 4:17 PM Flag

    Japan has tabled and recently decided not to go ahead on IR development in japan for now... good news for development of gaming in the Philippines (esp MPEL's already opened COD Manila) given that most Japanese players of substance don't like going to Macau and MPEL has focused on details such as japanese speaking butlers in hiring 5000 plus employees for COD manila. And the Abe stimulus ideas can only help, particularly since Beijing is now loosening up the cinch they have had on lending, liquidity and real estate up until last Friday's surprise easing moves.

    Part 3
    "What about Japan?

    There is a concern in Japan that a too-weak yen is destabilizing, and that [Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko] Kuroda may have taken a big punt. Japan was already a high-beta story; it’s become a higher-beta story. Investors should now assume the yen is going to 120 [to the dollar from 118 now and 100 a year ago].

    There’s no way I’d invest in Japan [for the long term], but for now, it’s going up. The problem with the BOJ is that its 2% inflation target is based on a consumer-price index that includes energy. Last year, it swung to the upside by higher imported inflation, because they couldn’t turn their nuclear plants back on. This year, it will swing down again on weak oil prices. My guess is that we’ll now get a heavy focus on infrastructure spending in Japan.

    The correlation with a weak yen and a rising Japanese stock market is back with a vengeance. This is good for investors who can hedge the currency; much less attractive for those who cannot.

  • squeezetracker squeezetracker Nov 29, 2014 4:09 PM Flag

    Part 2: Reward the "Good Boy" in context

    What about China?

    China is the least straightforward story in emerging markets... Best case is China avoids the hard landing, but it’s going through this structural adjustment. I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt. The two key things we are going to monitor are the residential property sector and capital flows. It’s healthy that they’re allowing a market-driven correction to happen. You have strong demand in the big cities but excess inventory in the small cities.

    The problem for the central bank is that many private-sector companies continue to borrow at much higher rates than state-owned enterprises. My base case is that easing will remain primarily incremental..

    In Macau, I’ve also put a weighting in Sands China [1928.Hong Kong], on the view that Macau names are geared to the mass market. The long-term future of Macau is family entertainment and integrated resorts. In 2016, the bridge linking Macau and the mainland opens, and that will be a game changer. There are decent dividend yields on the Macau names. The other potential positive trigger is that Chinese leader Xi Jinping is due to visit Macau in December. In classic Beijing style, he may give a goodie to Macau— reward the good boy. Obviously, Hong Kong is the bad boy.
    What are the prospects for the bad boy?

    Enlarge Image

    Hong Kong and Singapore are underweight, because of the credit cycle—all the risk is on the downside.

    What happens with the suffrage demonstrations?

    I think these demonstrators will lose support. The retail sales data from Hong Kong will be hit, and in my view, Hong Kong cares more about making money than about universal suffrage. As the weather gets colder, the demonstrators will disappear from the street. My guess is that China thinks it has the time to be patient. The Chinese government has given them some face by meeting with them, but what they want is nonnegotiable.

    cont. Part 3

  • This was the interview feature written by one of Barron's real journalists -- not blogger Shuli Renn who did her typical fine job of missing the relevant points. Here Chris Wood explains why he is bullish on India, and the Philippines, and why he thinks Macau has a bright future and why the pizza riot re democratic elections is a big yawn.

    "Thumbs Up for India and the Philippines
    Why Christopher Wood is bullish on India and the Philippines and bearish on Hong Kong and Singapore.

    The chief strategist for CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets is a sought-after commentator on Asia and global markets, given his trenchant observations about leaders in Asia and the West, investors’ animal spirits, and the sins of the Federal Reserve. Christopher Wood is a top-ranked Asia equity strategist whose books include Boom & Bust, The Bubble Economy, and The End of Japan Inc. We caught up with him recently as he visited U.S. institutional investors, and asked him about the outlook for Asian stocks...

    You have 7% in the Philippines, about six times the benchmark.. Why?

    It remains the best macro story in Asia. I’ve been 10 times overweight for the past four or five years. It’s too small for many global investors... Domestic demand is being driven by continuing remittances. The Philippines exports its own people, not just domestic workers, but white-collar workers, too. They send money back from all over the world. The good news is that the business-process outsourcing boom in the Philippines is about 70% of remittances. It’s a service-sector story; multinationals doing accounting functions out of the Philippines.

    India and the Philippines have the best demographics in Asia. Right now, the Indian economy is just bottoming out and the Philippines is basically growing about the same pace as China. But frankly, I think the Philippines growth is more real...


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