It was almost midnight when I checked into my hotel in Xian, China and I was STARVING. I hadn’t eaten since 7:00 in the morning and I had a hunger headache that wouldn’t go away until I ate something.
The problem was it was very late, the hotel restaurant was closed, and I had no idea where to eat because this was my first visit to Xian and the hotel desk clerk didn’t speak a lick of English.
Oh well, I’ve traveled to some out-of-the-way places in Asia and I was sure that I could find a place to eat.
I threw on my heavy coat because the temperature was below freezing and there were patches of snow wherever the afternoon sun couldn’t reach. I thought I was back in Montana!
It was an uncomfortable change from a few weeks ago and if you remember, I was complaining about the oppressive heat and humidity in Jakarta, Indonesia. That was too darn hot.
As I wrapped the collar closer around my neck, I wondered what possessed me to trade the fabulous low 80s temperate of Bangkok for this bitter cold in Xian.
I trudged through the mostly darkened street toward some bright neon lights a couple blocks away. I peered into the side streets as I passed them, but found nothing.
Nothing until I reached the neon lights of a large strip mall that included a couple of bars, a multi-screen movie theater, a closed KFC, and one open restaurant. Hooray!
My hunger immediately disappeared when I read the restaurant’s sign … Bullfrog Prince Restaurant.
The name was accurately descriptive because this restaurant indeed specialized in frog.
Apologies to my Louisiana and French friends who love frog legs, but frog is not on the top of my culinary wish list.
I was surprised and pleased to see that the restaurant served pizza and although I didn’t expect to find great pizza in Xian, China … I assumed that I could get just a plain cheese pizza sans the frog.
I sat down and tried my best to explain to my Mandarin-speaking waitress what I wanted. I pointed to pictures of mushrooms, bell peppers, tomatoes, and emphatically shook my head “no” when I pointed at a picture of a frog.
“Ah, ah, ah … okay, okay,” said the smiling waitress.
Ten minutes later, my pizza showed up with mushrooms, bell peppers, tomatoes … and two gigantic frogs legs buried underneath the melted cheese. What the #@!!*&# am I doing here?!
Xian is best known as home of the famous terra cotta warriors, but there is a lot more to the city than those archeological wonders. Xian is one of China’s four ancient capitals and the starting point of the Silk Road, the lucrative trade route connecting China to the Middle East, northern Africa, and Europe.
|Well known for its terra cotta warriors, Xian, China, is a breeding ground for investment opportunities.|
More important to me is the lucrative investment opportunities to be found in Xian today. You see, Xian has more than 100 colleges and produces more engineers than any city in China and that intellectual capital is turning Xian into a world leader in electric cars, metallurgical breakthroughs, and agricultural advances.
I’m not the only person impressed with what’s going on in Xian. Warren Buffett is so impressed with one Xian company, BYD Corporation, that he paid $230 million for a 10% stake of this innovative company.
I have a busy calendar of appointments this week and I absolutely expect to find at least one investment home run … just like my recent trip to Indonesia.
The stock I recommended to my Asia Stock Alert subscribers when I got back jumped from 0.25 cents on the day I recommended to 0.31 cents as of last Friday. That may only be 6 cents, but it works out to a 24% jump in JUST ONE WEEK!
Those are the type of opportunities I can find in Asia and even though you may be pleased with the investment results of U.S. stocks this year … you shouldn’t be.
Through the middle of November, the S&P 500 is up 24% and that is enough to keep most investors happy. However, that 24% compared to the rest of the world, especially to Asia, looks pretty pale. Just look at what the rest of the world has done!
Singapore … up 121%, India … up 101%, China … up 54%, South Korea … up 52%, and Indonesia … up 49%.
Asia isn’t done roaring yet either. Last week, the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) updated its economic outlook for China and next year looks even more promising. The OECD expects the Chinese economy to grow by 8.3% this year and by 10.2% in 2010.
“After slowing sharply in late 2008, growth recovered during the first half of 2009 and recent high-frequency indicators suggest that momentum is strengthening,” said a recent OECD report.
You see, the biggest surprise to me isn’t how much the Asian markets have soared this year. The real shocker is how strong U.S. stocks have been given how weak our economy really is.
In a global version of a rising tide lifts all boats, American stocks have ridden the coattails of China and the rest of its prospering Asian neighbors. I doubt that will last much longer.
If you want to lose your shorts … stick to American stocks.
However, if you want to make some serious money … add a big dose of Asian stocks to your investment portfolio right away. Look, I’m not freezing my butt off and pinching my nose while I choke down frog leg pizza for giggles. I’m doing it because of the nuggets of investment gold that I’m finding in Asia.
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