Barron's

Private Equity Cools on Emerging Markets

30 April 2017
Is the smart money fleeing EM just as the herd rushes in?

Barron's Sept. 2016

 

Investors are finally warming to emerging markets. The iShares MSCI Emerging Markets exchange-traded fund has jumped 17% this year, and emerging markets funds of all kinds have marked more than $130 billion in inflows, according to the Institute for International Finance in Washington.

But numbers from the private-equity sector make you wonder if something is wrong with this picture. New capital commitments to emerging market private-equity funds dropped 42% in 2015 to about $40 billion, and are plunging again this year toward 2009 levels, says London-based data tracker Preqin.

Where's the Emerging Market Oil Dividend?

30 April 2017
Cheaper oil is supposed to help most EM economies, which import energy. Hasn't happened so far.

Barron’s, May 14, 2016

 

Low oil prices are obviously bad for some emerging markets, such as Russia and Brazil. But they should be good for most of them, including India and China. Crude exporters represent just 20% of the global MSCI Emerging Markets Index, says Marcus Svedberg, chief economist at East Capital in Stockholm.

Markets have ignored this logic, however. Emerging market indexes have plummeted since the great oil crash began in mid-2014, and only started to recover as crude prices rebounded recently. Analysts who waited on an oil dividend for the developing world are giving up hope. “If you haven’t seen it for more than 20 months, you probably won’t see it now,” says John Baffes, who oversees the World Bank’s commodities forecasting. Here’s why:

Indian Software Falls Behind Digital Curve

30 April 2017
Tata, Infosys and Wipro made Bangalore a global tech nexus. But they haven't kept up with the times

Barrons, July 2016

A technological generation ago—the early 2000s—upstart software outsourcers from India like Tata Consultancy Services , Infosys , and Wipro wrought an industry revolution and put their country on the map as a global brain center. Now they are in danger of falling behind the times. Shares of all three have slumped over the past month or so after quarterly results disappointed on growth, margins, or both.

 

Emerging Markets Haven't Hit Bottom Yet

23 January 2016
EM equities will get worse before they get better, but bonds may offer value
Emerging Markets: How Low Can They Go?

September 26, 2015

 

 

When Mark Mobius urges caution on emerging markets, you know they’re in trouble. The septuagenarian executive chairman of Franklin Templeton’s emerging-markets group has been boosting the asset class for decades, exhorting investors to pile back in after crises and meltdowns. Now, not so much. “Things have changed since the 1998, 2008, and 2011 downturns,” he says. “It would be dangerous to make an overall or categorywide judgment.”

Iran Can't Just Open the Oil Spigot

23 January 2016
Energy companies won't rush to invest billions in the Islamic Republic

July 18, 2015

The biggest ripple for investors from the landmark July 14 agreement that could free Iran from international economic sanctions in return for curtailing its nuclear program will be felt in the oil markets. They didn’t take the news well. The price of Brent crude fell 2.5%, to $57.06 a barrel, from what was already close to a four-month low, before falling a bit further later in the week.

China's Internet Stocks May Be Oversold

23 January 2016
Baidu, Tencent and others may rebound from the broader market rout

July 11, 2015 2:22 a.m. ET

Chinese Internet companies, led by search provider Baidu and wide-ranging conglomerate Tencent Holdings, held their value for nearly a month after the broader Chinese market started crumbling in late May, and with good reason. These two fast-growing giants, along with Chinese e-commerce king Alibaba Group Holding and its upstart rival JD.com, are listed on U.S. and Hong Kong exchanges. They are bought by global tech investors a world away from the mom-and-pop Chinese punters who have been borrowing money to gamble on little-known companies traded in Shanghai or Shenzhen.

 

India E-tailing Gets Big, and Burns Cash, Fast

11 June 2015
The world's sleeping digital giant is waking up. And coming soon to an IPO near you.
Flipkart, India's Amazon, is on the Move

June 12, 2015

Evolving technology promises to revolutionize the way a vast nation shops and communicates. Online merchants’ sales grow geometrically, as do their losses. Investment banks proclaim they have seen the future, and it works with eye-popping stock-market multiples. Tech investors may feel like they have seen this movie before, but the backdrop is new: India.

Rotten broadband networks and dodgy electricity have kept India, population 1.25 billion, as the world’s sleeping digital giant, despite its depth of engineering talent. A leap forward in cellular, with smartphones selling as cheap as $40 and 3G rates dropping steeply, is set to change all that. The value of goods sold online will double this year to $7 billion, and keep on multiplying to $220 billion by 2030, Goldman Sachs projected in a report last month.

Time to Buy Iran? Not Quite Yet

26 March 2015
"It's like Turkey with 9% of the world's oil," one banker raves. But investors are in no rush to Tehran.
Axis of Profit?

Iran: The Next Frontier?

Bibi Netanyahu and most of the U.S. Congress may still view Iran as an axis of evil. But a few brave analysts are starting to pitch it as something else: the next great emerging market. “Iran is the largest economy in the world by far that remains cut off from global markets,” says Charles Robertson, chief economist of Renaissance Capital, a London-based investment bank that had a good run in Russia and now wants to expand across the Middle East and Africa. “It’s like Turkey, but with 9% of the world’s oil reserves.”

Sovereign Wealth Funds are Still a $7 Trillion Gorilla

06 March 2015
Savings in places like Russia are dwindling, but the giants will thrive, barring a total oil-price collapse.
Oil Wealth Still Packs a Wallop

March 7, 2015

Sovereign wealth funds swelled to a $7 trillion investing gorilla on a rich diet of oil windfalls, so it makes sense that they would lose some punch as oil prices fall. Marc Faber, a Barron’s Roundtable member and the editor of The Gloom, Boom & Doom Report newsletter, stressed at this year’s Roundtable that a tapering of sovereign-fund earnings would undermine global demand for securities in coming years.

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Where is the Emerging Market Oil Dividend?

26 February 2015
Markets of oil importers like Thailand or Turkey should be booming, only they aren't

Oil Dividend Proves Elusive for Emerging Markets

Shares of importers such as South Korea, Turkey, and Thailand haven’t enjoyed the expected boost from lower prices. What happened?.

By 

CRAIG MELLOW

Feb. 27, 2015 11:34 p.m. ET

Emerging Markets

It’s a common, and seemingly commonsensical, assumption these days that if oil-exporting emerging markets like Russia and Brazil have been hammered by sinking crude prices, oil-importing countries must be sailing. The hot performance of the two oil-buying BRICs, China and India, since the crash started last summer seems to cement the theory—except it doesn’t.

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