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Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Hong Kong’s Chief Executive. Photo: May Tse

Carrie Lam to find love in Year of the Rat, Hong Kong stocks to perform better, CLSA Feng Shui Index says

  • Property, natural resources sectors a good bet, CLSA says
  • Luckiest dates will be March 5 and April 27, while the unluckiest will be September 1 and October 21

Hong Kong’s leader, Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, blamed for a policy misstep that sparked the city’s worst political crisis in decades, will find love in the Year of the Rat, according to investment bank CLSA’s satirical annual Feng Shui Index.

“Chief Executive Carrie Lam is born in the Year of the Rooster, so we foresee that she will have good luck in love. Love is in the air for roosters,” said Jamie Chan, an analyst who helped to compile the index.

The index, which takes a tongue-in-cheek look at the stock market based on the principles of feng shui, the ancient Chinese system of harmonising individuals with their surroundings, has been produced every year since 1992.

According to its forecast, the Hong Kong stock market will have a better time in the Year of the Rat, while the property and natural resources sectors will be good bets. Lunar New Year kicks off on January 25.

Although CLSA says the feng shui guidance is for entertainment purposes only, the index is regarded by many investors as an important informal indicator of Hong Kong stocks. The index shocked the market and gained popularity on its debut, after it correctly predicted seven key turning points in the Hang Seng Index (HSI) the following year. Its accuracy, however, is regarded as below average.

CLSA analysts Jamie Chan and Thomas Li at the unveiling of the Feng Shui Index on Friday. Photo: Dickson Lee

“The HSI will see good returns in the Year of the Rat, so on that basis it will be a good year for Hong Kong,” said Thomas Li, another analyst who helped compile the index. “All Earth-related industries, including the property, mining and natural resources sectors, will do well because of the harmony between the Earth and metal elements.”

The Feng Shui Index forecasts the HSI will start well in the first quarter, drop slightly in March and then hit a yearly high in August. It will slide again in October before recovering and finishing the Year of the Rat in January just below its summer high.

The luckiest dates will be March 5 and April 27, while the unluckiest will be September 1 and October 21.

Those born in the years of the Ox, Dragon, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, Goat and Snake are due for good fortune in the Year of the Rat, as well as the Rat itself. Those born in the years of the Horse, Tiger, Rabbit and Pig, might not be so blessed, according to the index.

The Feng Shui Index also advises Hongkongers to focus on north-western and north-eastern areas, such as Yuen Long and Sai Kung, and to avoid the north, east and southern areas of the territory. “The north is home to all things Tai Sui, so don’t renovate, drill or dig in this area,” Li said. Tai Sui, known as the grand commander of the year in Chinese culture, has a huge influence over fortunes in feng shui. It is considered a taboo to offend him.

Li stressed that the index should not be taken seriously, and that investors should seek guidance from professional analysts.

This article appeared in the South China Morning Post print edition as: Year of the Rat to be an auspicious one for stocks