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Thursday, November 1, 2012

Rule of the Road - Break out Nations

1)Watch the changes in the list of top billionaires, learn how they made their billions, and note how many billions they made. This information provides a quick bellwether for balance of growth, across income class and industries. A country that produces too many billionaires, relative to its size, is in all likelihood off-balance.

2) Strong companies and stock markets should - but should not necessarily - make for strong economies, so don't confuse the two. The clearest examples are countries dominated by oligopolies, like Mexico, SA and to some extent Philippines.

3) Watch for steady momentum behind economic and political reform, particularly in good times. Nations typically implement reforms when their backs are against the wall.

4) Check the size and growth of the second city, compared to the first city. In any big country the second largest city usually has a population that is to 1/3rd to 1/2 of the biggest city.

5) Watch the locals , they are always first to know; they will be bringing money to a breakout nation and fleeing one in trouble.

6) The sight of local companies going global is often celebrated in headlines as a national success, but more accurate interpretation depends on the circumstances. Going global can be sign of corporate strength or of national weakness.

7) Don't get hung up on the rules.

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