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This Colorful Table Shows Why You Should Diversify Your Emerging Markets Portfolio

This Colorful Table Shows Why You Should Diversify Your Emerging Markets Portfolio

Sam Ro | Mar. 7, 2013, 5:37 AM | 783 | 

If you’re lucky, then you might be able to pick the right stocks that’ll help you beat the major benchmarks.  But most investors who try to be stock pickers end up losing. The same goes for emerging market investors. This is why the best strategy may be to invest in a portfolio of countries rather than just one. Below you’ll find US Funds’ Periodic Table of Emerging Markets, which ranks the annual stock market returns for various emerging markets. “Emerging markets, like all investments, can have wide price fluctuations over time,” they write.  “This table shows the ebb and flow of emerging market countries over the past decade and illustrates the principal of mean reversion — the concept that returns eventually move back toward their mean or average.”

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Study: Walmart Most Popular Place For People To Fall In Love At First Sight

Study: Walmart Most Popular Place For People To Fall In Love At First Sight

March 4, 2013 2:29 PM

HOUSTON (CBS Houston) — Forget online dating. According to one study, people just need to go to Walmart to look for love. A study in February’s Psychology Today reveals that a majority of people in 15 states felt that they fell in love at first sight at Walmart. The study, based on “missed connections” posts found on Craigslist, finds that people in Texas, Florida, Ohio, Montana and North Carolina, among others, believe that they spotted their future husband or wife at the giant retail store. The gym was another popular “missed connection” spot with people from three states believing they saw their future mister or misses there. Other popular places included the supermarket, bar and subway. One of the more surprising ones came from Kansas as people said they fell in love while eating a Big Mac and fries at McDonald’s. Psychology Today’s study was done from data based on each state’s 100 most recent “missed connections” posts on Craigslist.

China’s Top E-Commerce Site to Launch Product Searches Inside WeChat App

China’s Top E-Commerce Site to Launch Product Searches Inside WeChat App

Mar 7, 2013 at 12:20 PM by Steven Millward, in E-commerceMobileSocial Media

Taobao-search-on-WeChat-app

The new ‘Taobao Search’ account inside WeChat app.

The 300-plus million users of China-made messaging app WeChat can already use it for video calls, finding dates, or following brands and celebrities – and soon it will gain another aspect. China’s biggest e-commerce site, Taobao, is testing out a sort of e-commerce search engine insideWeChat. Once up and running, it’ll allow WeChat users to directly message Taobao on their phones by typing a kind of product that they’re looking for; then the app will respond with a link to the desired items. Read more of this post

Yacktman Wins as Heebner Is Too Volatile; Investors rewarded Yacktman, who employs an old-school buy- and-hold strategy, with a wave of deposits that helped swell his fund’s assets almost 30-fold in the past four years

Yacktman Wins as Heebner Is Too Volatile: Riskless Return

Donald Yacktman and Kenneth Heebner both crushed fund rivals over the past 13 years, racking up big gains in an era when stocks went sideways. The difference is Yacktman gave investors a smooth ride, Heebner anything but.

From March 2000 through last month, a span in which the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index returned less than 2 percent a year amid two bear markets, Heebner’s $1.5 billion CGM Focus Fund (CGMFX) had the best gain among large mutual funds that buy U.S. stocks. His clients had to stomach the highest volatility, as the fund went from an 80 percent jump in 2007 to a 48 percent drop in 2008. The $9.6 billion Yacktman Fund (YACKX), fifth by total return, avoided much of the roller-coaster ride to produce the top risk-adjusted return, according to the BLOOMBERG RISKLESS RETURN RANKING.

Investors rewarded Yacktman, who employs an old-school buy- and-hold strategy, with a wave of deposits that helped swell his fund’s assets almost 30-fold in the past four years. The rapid- trading Heebner suffered redemptions that chopped his fund’s size by almost two-thirds since 2008, as customers fled in response to what he calls “lumpy” performance. Read more of this post

How Dollar Diplomacy Spelled Doom for the British Empire

How Dollar Diplomacy Spelled Doom for the British Empire

“The British Empire seems to be running off almost as fast as the American loan,” Winston Churchill thundered before the House of Commons on Dec. 20, 1946. “The haste is appalling.”

As if secretly synchronized, the pillars of empire and the international acceptability of the pound sterling were crumbling in tandem.

In late 1945, President Harry S. Truman’s administration had grudgingly agreed to provide the bankrupt U.K. with a $3.75 billion loan — but on the condition that the pound sterling be made fully convertible to dollars at the rate of $4.03 to the pound by July 15, 1947. This would allow Britain’s colonies and dominions to sell sterling for dollars, satisfying a long- standing demand of U.S. exporters and anti-imperialists while depleting the U.K.’s meager official reserves.

Now dollars hung over every question of how the empire would be dismantled. In February 1946, the great economist John Maynard Keynes had been full of foreboding about the British government’s inertial desire to “cut a dash in the world considerably above our means.” The country, he observed, was “not prepared to accept peacefully and wisely the fact that her position and her resources are not what they once were.” Read more of this post

Where Have China’s Workers Gone? China’s large pool of surplus labor has fueled its rapid industrial growth. Now this “demographic dividend” may be almost exhausted, and its economy reaching a Lewis turning point

Where Have China’s Workers Gone?

March 7 (Bloomberg) – Xi Jinping and Li Keqiang are taking over China’s leadership at a time when growth has slackened and labor issues have become more complex.

Reports that businesses such as Foxconn Technology Group are raising wages and struggling to recruit workers in China have intensified debate over just how many surplus workers the country still has. Meanwhile, a boom in college-educated Chinese has raised concerns of an impending threat to U.S. competitiveness. These seemingly disparate concerns about China’s labor force are actually linked by common underlying factors, with critical implications for China’s ability to remain the growth engine of the world.

China’s large pool of surplus labor has fueled its rapid industrial growth. Now this “demographic dividend” may be almost exhausted, and its economy reaching a Lewis turning point: a shift named after the Nobel prize-winning Arthur Lewis, who was the first to describe how poor economies can develop by transferring surplus labor from agriculture to the more productive industrial sector until the point when surplus labor disappears, wages begin to rise and growth slows. Read more of this post

China’s Richer-Than-Romney Lawmakers Show Xi’s Reform Challenge

China’s Richer-Than-Romney Lawmakers Show Xi’s Reform Challenge

The ranks of China’s ultra-wealthy in its legislature swelled 20 percent this year, highlighting the vested interests that may oppose any measures by incoming President Xi Jinping to reduce the nation’s wealth gap.

Ninety members of the National People’s Congress are on a list of China’s 1,000 richest people published by the Shanghai- based Hurun Report, up from 75 last year, according to a review of the data by Bloomberg News. Everyone on the Hurun list had a fortune of at least 1.8 billion yuan ($289.4 million), more than former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

The growing presence of wealthy people in the legislature coincides with efforts by Xi to stem corruption and the public display of luxury by officials as he seeks to address concern the Communist Party no longer represents interests of ordinary Chinese. Xi’s task may become more difficult as the rich move to cement their gains through legislation, said Yang Fengchun, an associate professor of government and management at Peking University.

“The National People’s Congress has a lot of rich businesspeople who have the knowledge and the means to make laws, and that’s a privilege the rest of society doesn’t have,” Yang said in a telephone interview. “The common people believe that they can’t protect the rights of the weak.” Read more of this post

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