Tag Archive | "Portugal"

International Investing Trick


Here is a global diversification trick that may do well in the likely global economic scenario ahead. Buy good value shares internationally as markets dive during the summer dip.

In a moment we’ll look at some Ecuador health ideas… first the investing trick.

Global equity markets have been in a bear market rally for six months but are now hitting the summer blues due to seasonality.

Share prices will probably drop now. Chances are there will be a strong global equity slump at least through October 2009.

This will create extra value in equity markets and provide good opportunity to pick up high value long term.

The bear market is likely to carry on until 2012-13, but good value shares acquired during dips are more likely to spike early and have extra potential after the bear ends.

Now through October 2009 could be a good time to invest in high value shares for long term appreciation.

But which shares… in which markets?

One way to approach this is to look for extra value created by inefficiencies in markets…to find markets where the values are best.

Statistically this is the best way to be absolutely sure of the best long term returns.

There are numerous investment managers who use very strict valuation criteria (usually based on dividend yields, cash flow, price earnings) to spot the best value markets.  They then try to apply similar criteria to select good value shares in the good value market.

The next goal is to decide how much should be weighted in major market and how much in emerging markets.

Here is a comparison of the Morgan Stanley Major Market versus Emerging Market indices.

The MSCI World Index is a market capitalization weighted index that measures the equity market performance of developed markets.  It includes 23 developed market country indices : Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

The MSCI Emerging Market Index includes Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Egypt, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Israel, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Taiwan, Thailand, and Turkey.

MSCI Indices performances.  Total per annum return over:

Major                            Emerging
15 years    4.10%                   5.41%
10 years  -3.85%                   9.11%
5 years    -2.77%                  11.16%
3 years   -10.81%              -00.17%
1 year      -20.81%             -27.53%
3 mos.      14.30%               27.53%

Regardless of the time frame observed,  the emerging equities almost always seriously outperformed major markets… but as a class they also dropped further in the 2008 downturn.

Here is a year-on-year comparison for the past five years.

Major                   Emerging
2003  10.74%           29.63%
2004    6.46%           16.51%
2005   26.17%           54.41%

2006     7.40%          18.23%

2007     -1.66%         25.71%
2008   -50.30%      -37.64%
2009      5.39%         34.79%  3 months

This history suggests that emerging markets deserve a substantial ranking.

However before becoming too aggressive in over weighting emerging markets, we have to keep in mind two thoughts.

First economic thought. The last 15 years has been a catch-up era when the investing world caught on to the idea that emerging markets offered great opportunity.

Second economic thought. A great deal of emerging growth came from debt financed exports to the developed world. This leaves emerging economies holding huge amounts of debt for customers who may not be able to repay the debt nor continue to buy the same volume of goods as before.

The easiest way for investors to invest in good value during dips is via a value mutual fund.

You can select a value major market fund, a value emerging market fund or a value diversified fund.

The benefit of a value diversified fund is that the professional manager decides how much to weight in emerging and major markets.

For example I just sent a lesson to our multi currency subscribers that showed a US traded international diversified value fund that has risen 36.08% in the past quarter ending June 30, 2009.  This fund is 86% in major markets and 14% in emerging markets.

Learn how to read about this fund as a multi currency subscriber.

The most valuable asset we can have in tough economic times is good health. This is why we studied Ecuador health ideas at our June tour.

Cotacachi is considered sacred by the shamans… a place of wonderful mountains that ring the valley.  This is Mt. Cotacachi to the west.

ecuador-shaman-recap

Mt. Imbabura to the east.

ecuador-shaman-recap

The valley is surrounded by mountains like these twin peaks…

ecuador-shaman-recap

creating wonderful, mystic  sunrises.

ecuador-shaman-recap

The first afternoon of the tour we visited La Mirage Spa and the Shamana Estella.

ecuador-shaman-recap

She began a theme that the many shamans we visited confirmed.   She said that the three keys to better health, increased longevity, more energy and fulfillment are good nutrition, proper exercise and good sleep.

The purpose of the Ecuador shamanic tour is to learn ways to unlock this healthy  combination in a natural low cost way!

The second day we joined Clemencia, the Shamana of Zuleta and drove 15 minutes from our hotel Meson de las Flores to Otavalo market where we visited the local food market…

ecuador-shaman-recap

filled with fruits…

ecuador-shaman-recap

vegetables…

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flowers and …

ecuador-shaman-recap

herbs.

ecuador-shaman-recap

Here is the shamana speaking to the group with Merri and Mauricio translating.

ecuador-shaman-recap

We learned the importance of the herbs to make good teas that hydrate the body are cedron, chamomile and lemon verbena.

ecuador-shaman-recap

We learned how other herbs relax such as chamomile and valerian root. Plus we were told to boil lettuce in milk as a prebedtime drink for better sleep.

ecuador-shaman-recap

On the other hand, tea from cinnamon, paprika, cloves and ginger help reduce sluggishness in digestion and to speed the system when we need to be fired up.

ecuador-shaman-recap

You can read this entire report as an Ecuador Living subscriber.

Gary

We hope you’ll join us and enjoy Ecuador’s or North Carolina’s beauty soon.

ecuador-sun

Sunrise from Meson de las Flores.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Or join us in Ecuador and learn more about living and retiring in Ecuador.

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course
Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Tour

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador
Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

Ecuador Crime


Ecuador crime & safety.

A reader just sent me this note about Ecuador crime.

Hi Gary, My husband & I have been reading everything you’ve sent on Ecuador & it sounds ideal. We were all excited about it as a prospect to move from the US to until we saw the US State Dept. website & what they
had to say about crime, rape, robbery & disease! It sounds awful. Have you seen it & what would you say in regards to? Thanks.

This is a good question that affects us all.

I replied:

I have written numerous times about risk during any travel because we all increase our risk when we go places we do not know. There are places of great risk in Ecuador as there in in New York, Seattle, Miami, LA or any city anywhere in the world. Yet people in these cities live fine because they know where to go and where not to go.


The State department correctly focuses on the most negative part of any country and they should. However there are vast parts of Ecuador that have been perfectly safe for us. This is a huge part of our service helping our readers know where readers have ad journeys and where they have not. Merri and I have taken several thousand people to Ecuador without a single violent crime. Where we live, we feel safe being out any time. Children are seen day and night playing, walking…on their own…without fear. I would let my grandchildren go more places in Cotacachi Ecuador than in the suburbia of Rockwood Oregon where I grew up.

However everyone has to make their own decision about the realities of risk.

Ecuador people are generally happy like these girls in Cotacachi.

ecuador-indigenous-girls

Ecuadorians are not violent people by nature. Even the worst reports suggest this.

Ecuadorians are friendly people.

Ecuador-friendly-people

The Overseas Security Advisory Organization wrote in their 2008 rpeort about Ecuador crime entitled “Overall Crime and Safety Situation”.

The criminal threat for Quito and Guayaquil is rated “critical” by the U.S. Department of State. Non-violent crime is the most common problem encountered in Ecuador, but police statistics show a significant increase in violent crimes. Reports of murders, rapes, kidnappings, carjackings, armed assaults, and burglaries are becoming more frequent throughout the country. The U.S. Mission to Ecuador personnel and other American citizens are routinely victimized by crime. The Regional Security Officer (RSO) continues to receive numerous incident reports from U.S. Mission personnel and American citizens detailing criminal acts committed against them, their families, and friends. Police reports show that in more and more cases, criminals are using some sort of weapon in the commission of their crime.

Children play safely in the streets night and day in Cotacachi.

ecuador-safe-children

The Overseas Security Advisory Organization report goes on to say:

Fortunately in the majority of these cases, the weapon is used for intimidation purposes only, with the result being that cooperative victims are seldom injured. Gratuitous violence is generally rare throughout the country, but is becoming more common in the larger cities, especially in Guayaquil.

Public transportation and tourist areas are still the locations with the highest crime rates, although the RSO office receives incident reports from different locations throughout the country. The RSO office recommends that visitors bear in mind that crime can impact anyone, anywhere, at any time, and thus should exercise normal security precautions throughout the country.

Observations/Trends

Ecuador is considered a critical crime country and hundreds of Americans are robbed each year. Weapons are readily available and criminals are frequently armed.

Ecuadorian people are not violent.

ecuador-happy-people

The Overseas Security Advisory Organization report adds:

Violence is rare as long as the victim cooperates. There is no evidence to suggest that Americans are singled out for crime, but some Western foreigners are perceived to be wealthy, causing them to be targeted by criminals. In two of the incidents, the victims were approached by perpetrators who used improvised schemes to approach the victims. This tactic is increasingly common, meaning that visitors should be wary of all requests for assistance

I wish I could report that Ecuador is crime free. Even more I wish that the world was crime free. Even more I wish I could report that crime in the USA and around the world was diminishing.

This is not the case.  Crime is growing in many places.

A recent USA Today article pointed out growing crime problems in America’s suburbia. It said:

Suburban neighborhoods are becoming refuges for those outpriced in gentrifying inner-cities.

Devastated by the subprime mortgage crisis, hundreds of homes have been foreclosed and thousands of residents have been forced to move, leaving in their wake a not-so-pleasant path of empty houses, unkempt lawns, vacant strip malls, graffiti-sprayed desolate sidewalks and even increased crime.

Many homeowners not only cut their own grass but also trim the yards of vacant homes on their streets, hoping to deter gangs and criminals from moving in.

Other residents discovered that with some of the empty houses, it wasn’t what was growing outside that was the problem. busted several pot homes with vast crops of marijuana growing from floor to ceiling.

The white picket fence of an American dream has faded into a seemingly hopeless suburban nightmare.

Tomorrow’s message looks at how these shifts in suburbia creates opportunity.

The point in today’s message is that crime is everywhere. in Ecuador as well as the US.

Ecuador crime has some positive aspects.

Ecuador crime typically is not violent. See the worst 50 countries for murder. Mexico is 6th, Costa Rica 19th, The US – 24th, Finland – 30th, Portugal – 33rd, Malaysia – 34th, South Korea – 38th, France – 40th, Australia – 43rd, Canada – 44th, Italy – 47th, Spain – 48th, Germany 49th.

Ecuador is not in the top 50. Statistically your odds of being murdered are higher in all the countries above.

Metals detectors are not required at Ecuador schools.

There have been no shopping center shootings!

Yet here is the decision everyone must make. Do you want to travel or not? When you visit unfamiliar places you increase your risk of being a crime victim.

To reduce risks when you travel see ten safety rules

We hope to help you avoid crime in Ecuador by taking you to places full fo color fun and laughter like this parade in Cotatacahi.

Ecuador-fun-people

Gary

Learn how to learn more about Ecuador her

Join us Oct 14-18 for our Ecuador Import Export Tour
https://www.garyascott.com/catalog/ecuador-import-and-export-tour

Visit Ecuador markets.

Ecuador-vendor

We still have space in our November courses and tours.

Nov 7-9 International Investing and Business Made EZ Ecuador
https://www.garyascott.com/catalog/international-business-made-ez-ecuador

Nov 10-11 Imbabura Real Estate tour
https://www.garyascott.com/catalog/ecuador-real-estate

November 12-15, 2008 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour; Quito Real Estate Tour
https://www.garyascott.com/catalog/ecuador-coastal-real-estate-tour

International Investing and Business Made EZ & Fun Part II


International investing and business have proven themselves over the past 40 years to be profitable. And even more than the profits are the broadened horizons, fulfillment and fun!

Yesterday’s message International Investing and Business Made EZ & Fun looked at why International investing and business should be a fun filled process…not a dull boring set of numbers.

One reason for this is that those who live a fulfilled, involved fun existence are likely to be healthier…with less need for expensive pharmaceuticals and medical treatment.

This makes life better plus can save huge amounts of cash.

This is likely to become even more important in the years ahead for those who live in much of the Western world.   Existing medical systems are already filled with problems.  Inflation and aging populations will make the problems even worse.

At the turn of the decade, The World Health Organization analyzed the world’s health systems. The WHO used five performance indicators to measure health systems in 191 member states.

The five performance indicators were:

* Fairness of financial contribution.  While private health expenses in industrial countries now average only some 25 percent because of universal health coverage (except in the United States, where it is 56%), in India, families typically pay 80 percent of their health care costs as “out-of- pocket” expenses when they receive health care.

* Overall Level of Health.

* Distribution of Health in the Populations:  the average level – goodness – and the smallest feasible differences among individuals and groups – fairness.

* Responsiveness: respect for persons including dignity, confidentiality and autonomy of individuals and families to decide about their own health as well as prompt attention and access to social support networks during care, quality of basic amenities and choice of provider.

* Distribution of Financing.

The study revealed that U. S. health system spends a higher portion of its gross domestic product than any other country but ranks 37 out of 191 countries.  The United Kingdom, which spends just six percent of gross domestic product (GDP) on health services, ranks 18th.  Several small countries – San Marino, Andorra, Malta and Singapore are rated close behind second- placed Italy.

Here is the WHO ranking.

1         France
2         Italy
3         San Marino
4         Andorra
5         Malta
6         Singapore
7         Spain
8         Oman
9         Austria
10       Japan
11       Norway
12       Portugal
13       Monaco
14       Greece
15       Iceland
16       Luxembourg
17       Netherlands
18       United  Kingdom
19       Ireland
20       Switzerland
21       Belgium
22       Colombia
23       Sweden
24       Cyprus
25       Germany
26       Saudi Arabia
27       United  Arab  Emirates
28       Israel
29       Morocco
30       Canada
31       Finland
32       Australia
33       Chile
34       Denmark
35       Dominica
36       Costa Rica
37       United  States  of  America
38       Slovenia
39       Cuba

Most of the readership of this site live in countries where the medical system is not even in the top 15 countries!

This means that many of us, (especially us boomers now in our 60s), may want to rely on a good lifestyle to keep our health…not the medical system.

The cost of this medical system is another reason we want to have independence
rather than reliance on government funded programs.  We’ll see why next message.

Until then, may your international investing and business be good…and fun!

Gary

Learn about our next International Investing and Business Course in North Carolina

Ecuador Ecuador Import Export Course

International Investing and Business Made EZ Ecuador