Beware the Year of the Rooster – Although the festivities start on Friday, Saturday 28 January 2017 is the start of Chinese New Year, fun and games continue until the Lantern Festival, the 15th day of the new year.
This year is slightly unusual, as it is a Chinese leap year, we add one day onto our leap year but the Chinese have to go one better, they add a full month onto theirs.
In Chinese Feng Shui the Rooster is considered as the “birth place” of yin fire, in the Yin element life cycle.
The Rooster is also strong yin metal element which is the symbol of Jewellery and decorative metal such as necklace and bracelets. It is charming and beautiful on the outside, but very cold and hard metal quality inside. As such the Yin fire rooster will seemingly bring war, gun battles, killings and terrorist attacks. [No change here then!].
As well as having to contend with the potential unrest of the Rooster Year, the Chinese also must contend with their rising level of debt.
China’s rising debt burden could ruffle some economic Rooster feathers in 2017. Although Chinese leaders may continue to attempt to maintain the economic status quo – China’s sovereign balance sheet continues to deteriorate at an alarming rate.
In recent years, the rate of credit expansion in China has exceeded that of Spain and Ireland in their peak in 2008. Also, their debt levels exceed that of the US during its mortgage boom and Japan during the 1980s.
In the past couple of years, China’s economic activity has fueled global growth but increasingly debt levels point to a greater slowdown, not just for the Asian region but to economies and markets globally.
Add the possibility of a stronger dollar and increasing inflation, then investors have to sit up and take notice and make adjustments to their investment portfolios now.
A journalist recently asked me if Brexit would have an effect on investor returns, Brexit seems to be a media obsession. It is only one factor in many that one has to take into account when advising clients on investments!