Author: Tim Staermose

Tim Staermose is Sovereign Man’s Chief Investment officer, based in the Asia-Pacific region. Born to a Danish father and British mother in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, Tim has led an international life since the day he was born. He has lived and worked throughout Asia, primarily focusing on equity research and emerging market opportunities.

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It’s officially a 3-way race to the bottom

September 26, 2012 Hong Kong It’s now officially a 3-way race to the bottom between the dollar, the euro, and the yen. It started on September 6th with the ECB announcing a new, UNLIMITED bond-buying program. A week later, the US Federal Reserve officially announced QE3, another open-ended (de facto limitless) bond buying

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Now even private companies are trying to borrow their way out of debt

September 19, 2012 Hong Kong One of the best short-selling ideas I’ve had over the past year or so was in Fortescue Metals (FMG listed on the Australian Securities Exchange). If you’re unfamiliar with ‘shorting’ a stock, it’s essentially a bet that a company’s price will fall instead of rise. In the case

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The end of the euro: When will it happen?

August 31, 2012 Rome, Italy My 2-year old nephew in Australia loves getting postcards.  He already associates me with frequent traveling.  I’m referred to as “Tim Hong Kong jet plane.” So before leaving Italy today, after a fantastic week in the Umbrian countryside with our Sovereign Man Total Access members, I set out

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This hidden gem has a booming economy

August 27, 2012 Spoleto, Italy All over the world, no matter how good or bad the economy might be in a certain country, there will always be some cites and regions enjoying above-trend population growth and economic expansion.  If you are looking for new economic opportunities, a simple strategy is to choose such a place and

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The next big trend…

August 13, 2012 Ubud, Bali, Indonesia A sprawling archipelago of more than 14,000 islands, Indonesia is home to some of the most beautiful, exotic, and alluring places in the world. Yet it’s so huge… so diverse, with different languages, cultures, and religions, to even call Indonesia a single country demonstrates how antiquated the traditional concept of geography

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The world’s gold is moving from West to East

Did you know that, according to Capgemini and the Royal Bank of Canada’s latest World Wealth Report, there are now more millionaires in Asia than North America…? An estimated 3.37 million individuals in the Asia-Pacific region have a liquid net worth of over US$1 million. That compares to 3.35 million in North America. The same

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The coming American diaspora

July 16, 2012 Hong Kong A few days ago in Indonesia’s Lampung province, I was following a sprightly Chinese woman, well into her 70s, as she showed me around her thriving home appliances and furniture shop. It was an amazing thing to see. The three-story shop-house was both the family home, and business premises. Yet  every

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Guess who’s bailing out bankrupt western governments now…

July 5, 2012 Jakarta, Indonesia Fourteen years ago during the Asian financial crisis, Indonesia endured a currency collapse, a severe 2-year recession, and an embarrassing IMF bailout. Western bureaucrats wagged their fingers incessantly at Indonesia, lecturing the country about the dangers of excess and fiscal irresponsibility. How sweet the irony is. In a stunning rags-to-riches

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Is silver finally bottoming out?

Over a year ago, I penned an article entitled “4 Silver Investments to Avoid.” About two weeks later, on April 26th, I wrote another article: “Should I Sell My Silver?” saying that I expected an imminent correction in the silver price, after it had gone “parabolic.” It caused quite a stir at the time. There was

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Burma ceiling

Boots on the ground in Burma

May 25, 2012 Yangon, Burma If you’re sick and tired of all the doom and gloom that pervades the US and Europe, and should your personal circumstances allow, I unreservedly recommend that you hop on a plane and go and check out Burma. This is a rare good news story, and it may very well

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Why there’s no shame in sitting on your butt

May 3, 2012 Hong Kong One of the most important habits of highly successful investors is that, when market conditions call for it, they have the ability to sit on their butts and do absolutely nothing. Great investors wait patiently for the next slam-dunk opportunity to present itself.  They do not jeopardize their capital in half-baked ideas,

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Two sets of rules: one for the elite, one for everyone else

April 19, 2012 Hong Kong One of the defining characteristics of EVERY boom is the presence of a small elite seeking to enrich itself through graft, corruption, and unethical behavior. When the music stops and the boom busts, these same people are frequently put to the sword of public opinion.  Think Bernie Madoff, Ken Lay, and Silvio

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They’ll actually pay you to store your gold

April 11, 2012 Hoi An, Vietnam Here’s something you don’t see every day: Banks in Vietnam will actually pay YOU to store your gold in one of their safe deposit boxes. I was pretty surprised to find this out for myself; neither Simon nor I have seen it anywhere else in the world except here. This

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You’d never expect this place would be so great

April 5, 2012 Hanoi, Vietnam For the past eight days I’ve been spending time with friends in Vietnam; I’ll be leaving in a few days to link up with Simon in Thailand, but for now, I’m really impressed by Vietnam. The country has a great deal going for it. In the ancient town of Hoi An

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Did you make 18% with us since December?

March 14, 2012 Manila, Philippines [Editor’s note: Sovereign Man Chief Investment Strategist Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon today.] Back in mid-December, I called buying platinum the “most obvious trade in precious metals.”  I pointed out that it had fallen all the way to $1,440 per ounce and was selling for well

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You didn’t get any of the benefits. Why get stuck paying the bill?

[Editor’s Note: Sovereign Man Chief Investment Strategist Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon today.] Hong Kong’s total population is around 7 million. The workforce is 3.75 million.  So generous are the tax breaks and allowances, only about 1.5 million people pay any tax at all. A single person can earn HK$108,000 a

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Do as I say, not as I do…

January 27, 2012 Manila, Philippines [Editor’s note: Tim Staermose is filling in today while Simon is at the farm in Chile.] There is a delicious irony in the world of economic policy at the moment. Back in 1997 and 1998 I had a ringside seat to the Asian financial crisis from my trading

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About those business opportunities…

January 16th, 2012 Manila, Philippines [Editor’s note: Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon today.] Reaction to my article last week about the strong economic picture, and business opportunities I see all around me here on the ground in The Philippines was overwhelming. Evidently there are some go-getters out there in this community

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It’s booming over here. What’s holding you back?

January 13, 2012 Manila, Philippines [Editor’s note: Tim Staermose is filling in today while Simon is down on the farm in Chile.] Amid all the doom and gloom in the world economy as insolvent western nations slowly suffocate under a mountain of debt, it’s easy to forget that there are places in the

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What to do with your cash when the financial system is “broken”

[Editor’s note: Tim Staermose, Sovereign Man’s Chief Investment Strategist, is filling in for Simon today.] January 9, 2012 Manila, Philippines A few days ago, I read a that famed hedge fund manager John Paulson, who’s best known for personally making over $5 billion from the sub-prime meltdown, lost more than HALF of his

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The most obvious trade in precious metals since silver went parabolic in March

Date: December 15, 2011 Reporting From: Manila, Philippines [Editor’s note: Sovereign Man Chief Investment Strategist Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon today.] Earlier this year, when silver went parabolic, rising from $30 to $50 in a matter of weeks, I issued an alert saying I’d put on a short-term bearish trade, using call

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One alarming indicator from China

[Editor’s note: Sovereign Man’s Chief Investment Strategist Tim Staermose is filling in today while Simon spends a few days with designers and engineers at the farm in Chile. More on those developments soon.] For a few decades now, the Communist Party in China has had an implicit social and political contract with the

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“They treat me better than Bono here…”

November 14, 2011 Manila, Philippines [Editor’s note: Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon Black today.] In the back of a chauffeured SUV limo, my friend Phil recently told me, “What I love about coming to the Philippines is that I feel like a rock star… not like at home where I’m a

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Why China is headed for a fall

November 10, 2011 Manila, Philippines There’s a key concept in economics called the law of diminishing returns. It sounds complex, but it’s actually very easy to understand. Imagine for a moment that there are two towns cut off from each other by a vast river. Communications and trade are infrequent at best. But

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Why cash is a great place to be right now

November 7, 2011 Manila, Philippines [Editor’s Note: Sovereign Man Chief Investment Strategist Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon today.] Last week, I sent my 4th Pillar subscribers an issue warning them of a sharp rally in the US dollar. Since then, the euro has fallen from above 1.40 to 1.379.  The pound

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We live in an economic dictatorship

Date: October 20, 2011 Reporting From: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada [Editor’s note: Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon Black today.] You can hardly go a day without hearing about a new protest… hundreds, thousands, even tens of thousands of people marching in the streets railing against various policies. They want answers. They

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The next big bust coming from cheap credit

September 13, 2011 Manila, Philippines I came across an interesting real estate deal the other day here in Manila. It was for a tiny, one bedroom condo of 45 square meters (just under 500 square feet). The building is under construction and isn’t -scheduled- for completion until late 2012 or early 2013. Asking

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A boots on the ground perspective on the Chile riots

August 29, 2011 Santiago, Chile You’ve probably heard that old saying– ‘if you’re not a socialist by the time you’re 20, you have no heart. If you’re still one by the time you’re 30, you have no brain.’ This is true everywhere in the world. Even in capitalist bastions like Hong Kong, there

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When the mob becomes violent

August 23, 2011 Manila, Philippines Today I was accosted by someone begging for money. I know… big deal, right? It’s not an unusual occurrence anywhere in the world, especially here in the Philippines. Begging is actually big business in Manila. Often small children are forced to work the streets by a ‘begging syndicate,’

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You can live well here on just $10/day

July 25, 2011 Daet, Camarines Norte, Philippines I first started coming regularly to Daet, in the Bicol region of the Philippines, more than 13-years ago. It’s a sleepy, quiet, relaxed place without the bustle of Quezon or Manila… perfect for people looking to live an easy, simple life. Despite the bucolic setting, though,

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Chongqing: The largest construction site in the world

July 12, 2011 Chongqing, China [Editor’s note: Tim Staermose is filling in for Simon today with another boots on the ground report from China.] By some accounts, Chongqing is the largest metro area in the world with a population of some 32 million. They ought to call it the largest construction site in

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Guangzhou South Station: something out of a zombie movie

July 7, 2011 Wuhan, China When I left my hotel bound for the new Guangzhou South Station the other day , I didn’t know much about the station– where it was, how far from the hotel, etc. After about 25 or 30 minutes in the cab, I still hadn’t seen any signs for

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