Feng Shui Index predicts flighty Year of Rooster

By Luo Weiteng in Hong Kong | China Daily | Updated: 2017-01-19 08:12

In the coming Year of the Rooster, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index is destined for a flat start, before tracking upward to peak around July and August-and finally ending on a positive note amid year-end volatility.

This is the prediction from Hong Kong-based brokerage and investment company CLSA's 23rd Feng Shui Index.

The tongue-in-check report, first published back in 1992 in Lunar New Year cards for clients, uses the traditional methodology of feng shui to chart the seasonal movements of Hong Kong's benchmark equity index.

Cherry Ma, a senior investment analyst at CLSA, described roosters as "humble, nimble, hard-working and fast-moving animals", indicating that the importance of timing cannot be overestimated this year.

The prediction said earth-related industries like real estate, resources and renewables would flourish.

But it said different sectors were set to gain seasonal momentum throughout the year.

In the second quarter, the baton would be seen passing to wood-related industries like retail and healthcare. CLSA predicted that fire would flare up afterwards, making technology and utilities prosper.

"That explains why timing really matters for a nimble investor," Ma said.

CLSA senior research associate Jeffrey Tong noted a big chance for the mainland's A-share markets faring better than their Hong Kong counterpart, as north stands as the favorable direction in 2017.

"Homebuyers are typically advised to go north this year," he added.

Despite the optimistic tone from the Feng Shui Index, many brokerage firms and banks have taken a dim view of Hong Kong's stock market.

Hong Hao, chief strategist at Bank of Communications International Holdings Ltd in Hong Kong, said he believed that turbulence in global capital markets would place sustained pressures on Hong Kong's equity markets.

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