Market Overview

Top Three Industries to Watch For Asia's Market Comeback

Top Three Industries to Watch For Asia's Market Comeback

Over the past 10 weeks alone, $18 billion fled from Asian EMEs according to Morgan Stanley. This drastic outflow of funds was oddly reminiscent of the Asian financial crisis of 1997.

The MSCI emerging-markets index hit its lowest close in a year at 883.34 on June 24. This was its widest divergence with the MSCI World Index of developed nations in the last 15 years.

Despite several parallels, there's a striking difference between present day and 1997: today's global economy has just begun to recover from a worldwide recession. Numerous developed nations' economies can't breathe on their own, let alone help the lesser-developed counterparts.

Faced with a hauntingly familiar road to financial ruin, some still saw windows of opportunity. Many turned to these veterans of the Asian crisis for guidance.

These three emerging-market stock pickers were the only ones who didn't lose all of their clients' money even when the worst of the storm came in 1998. In an interview with Bloomberg, the survival tactics going forward were shared: Philippine retailers, Indian drugmakers and Chinese Internet companies.

Lewis Kaufman, who was responsible for the Thornburg Developing World Fund's gain of 3.2 percent during that time, increased the fund's position in Manila-based Puregold Price Club (OTC: PGCMF) after predicting that it would gain on a 20 percent sales growth.

As the weakening rupee primed the Indian economy for mega exports, Van Eck Emerging Fund's David Semple pursued Indian pharmaceutical shares from Glenmark Pharmaceuticals.

Anindya Chatterjee also bought more shares of China's Tencent Holdings (700) as the latest gambit for the CNI Charter Emerging Markets Fund.

Here's the yearly progress recap: Puregold rose by 9.1 percent, Glenmark by 3.1 percent and Tencent skyrocketed by 15 percent. Was returning to this financially war-torn land just the ultimate fluke trifecta? Most likely not.

Recent EME data can be partially attributed to tapering talk ripples. The good news is that the uncertainty of tapering and the certainty of stability in EMEs may have a positive correlation.

Euromonitor International reported that consumer spending in Asian emerging markets will likely increase by 9.2 percent in 2013. It's demographic predisposition, aka growing population and high savings rate are giving it the competitive edge in the race for economy recovery.

The biggest don't according to these three investors are state-owned enterprises. The volatility of these shares is almost directly tied to the whims of the controlling government, not to mention the inherent inefficiency of such corporations.

It's all a matter of perspective. See something as done for and it will be. The converse could hold true as well. These investors sought out patch after opportune patch.

Kaufman described his strategy during the Bloomberg interview: “It's been an environment where if you picked the right spots, there's been enough going right to offset the things that are going wrong. And there are a lot of things going wrong.”

Posted-In: Anindya Chatterjee Asia David Semple Emerging MarketsLong Ideas Emerging Markets Markets Trading Ideas Best of Benzinga


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