CLSA Feng Shui Index 2015

As is tradition, our annual CLSA Feng Shui Index offers an alternative look at what’s in store for you and the Hang Seng in 2015, more for your pleasure than profit, but you never know, you may just get lucky!

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Driving the Goat’s path

What’s in store for our Earth Rooster in 2015? New opportunities, but disputes with siblings - expect the Hang Seng to chart its own course away from the Dow, FTSE, TSE or even the SZSE. Don’t forget those pesky stars (three killings, five yellows) colliding with your home in the west. How best to deal with the battering blighters? Front and centre, amass the troops: the qilin, the pixiu and the guardian lions. How better to assail an imaginary host than with an imaginary defence?

The first half of the year sees the kindly Wood Goat meander to its peak mid-year. The Earth Rooster will have some financial entanglements early, peak in the middle and softly touch down. Lining up, ready for the starter’s gun are the bazi in their various guises as the Wood Sheep (year, yin), Earth Tiger (month, yang), Metal Pig (day, yin) and Wood Horse (hour, yang). How is the marriage? The Day Masters are both yin, less than ideal, and the Wood Goat may take energy away from the Earth Rooster. But the Pig and the Rabbit are good enough pals that accommodation can be made.

Prayers and invocations to wealth, engagements and transactions, openings and agreements are all smiled upon by the gentle Goat; earthworks and construction are also good. On the other side of the ledger, marriages and fermenting alcohol are bad, much worse if done together, and litigation, lawsuits and mean-spirited folk may cross your path. The conflict-engendering 3 occupies the centre, so expect frequent outbursts - but secret pals, the Horse and Goat in the year and hour pillars, and the Pig and Tiger from the other two pillars, are working behind the scenes. The stage is set . . .

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Year of the Goat


Cartoon confusion: Is it a sheep, a goat or a dog?

The Goat nearly missed out on being one of the 12 Chinese zodiac animals - his place originally belonged to another. But is the zodiac sign a sheep or a goat? According to the earliest table of animals, found on excavated Qin dynasty bamboo strips, the correct answer is . . . drum roll . . . whip . . . growl . . . a dog! We kid you not. That version had neither sheep nor goat and, while this is still in dispute, most Chinese scholars agree this zodiac sign was actually a dog. Where the

goat 羊 year is now, was once the horse, and where the horse is was a deer . . . and so on. Our favourite change is still the snake, which in the earliest list of 12 was an insect - we certainly don’t mourn the passing of the yang insect. Confused? Consider this an important disclaimer. There is no right or wrong in Feng Shui, little consensus and myriad ways of "divining fortunes". Our forecasts for the Hang Seng are based on the interplay of the destiny chart, or Bazi for the year, and the birth date of the Hang Seng Index (24 November, 1969). Bazi is a life-fortune forecasting chart called the Four Pillars of Destiny (one based on each of the year, month, day and hour of birth) or Eight Characters (each pillar comprises a heavenly stem and an earthly branch). Our longstanding health warning remains: don’t be a giddy goat and take it too seriously..


Hang Seng gets the leg-up to a higher ledge

In this year’s forecast, we’re expecting the second half to end marginally higher than the start, but a month-by-month view tracks a different path and you’ll want to stay away from cliffs late in the year. While the first-half bazi is constrained by the month and year pillars, in the second half, the hour and day pillars bring out the earth, meaning projects in slumber wake and we hear the Hang Seng crow. A new round of infrastructure investment may occur.

The Wood-Goat year is presided over by wood and earth, and the former will restrain earth’s power. Indeed, people will be ornery this year. Don’t expect full-scale office wars to break out or an Occupy-the-water-cooler struggle, but it’s certainly a good year to be on guard and not get fleeced. There is no water in this year’s five elements and the west is playing home to some nasty stars (they’re imaginary, but no less nasty for that).

Troubles this year come from the earth, but metals and fires will flourish, prompting hotels, jewellery, gold and silver, autos, electronics and firecrackers to explode. When shacked up, the Rooster and the Goat are clean as a whistleblower, so expect few corruption scandals. The Wood Goat is known for compassion, so expect stocks in Guanyin-related industries to rise. Wood Goats will need to pay attention to their health, thus preventative medical stocks will be in demand.

Finally, travel is not well-positioned for Earth Roosters, so all those who put good money on the Hang Seng moving to the Spratleys may want to have a bet the other way. Otherwise the market may be challenged, and the best thing to do will be to put glasses of water in the north, south and southwest - if you’re making money, make it scotch and drink heartily.

Our Feng Shui sector picks for the Wood Goat are: Cashmere (Great): China investments, Renewables, China Property (Not HK!) and Commodities. Feta/Kidding (Good/Not so bad): Oil & Gas, Gaming, Utilities, Financials, Technology, Transport, Retail, Telcos and Internet. Scamper (Avoid): None assigned. We warned you the Goat was benign by nature! (Better yet, look for what our sector heads are really saying!)


In divining the yearly outlook for property, Feng Shui determines the points on the compass assigned to potential negative energies, or malevolent qi in their various guises. With the help of our property team, we highlight one or two hotspots in each of the sectors that should be worth watching during this Year of the Goat.

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The Chinese calendar is broken into a 60-year cycle (六十花甲) also known as Stems-and-Branches (干支), a cycle of 60 terms used for recording time in days, years and even minutes, and in addition, directions of the compass. It first appeared in Chinese written texts from the Shang dynasty (1766 BC to 1122 BC) on oracle bones. The cycle of 60 stems and branches became the means to record years from around the middle of the 3rd Century BC. Since that time, time and direction have been assigned to certain elements, zodiac signs and resultant influences. This computation gives us the year, Wood Goat, and the direction from which negative energy potentially arises.

In divining the yearly outlook for property, Feng Shui determines the points on the compass assigned to potential negative energies, or malevolent qi in their various guises. The Grand Duke Jupiter, or Tai Sui, which is usually embodied by a General from Chinese history, is thought to be assigned by the Jade Emperor to look after the mortal world. This year he is embodied by a General from the Song Dynasty, Yang Xian. While ostensibly placed to guide mortals, he is easily offended, in which case he can negatively influence those who face him. This year he is in the southwest region of the compass. He is accompanied by other potentially malevolent forces, the Three Killings, or San Sha, which have the potential to cause bad luck, and this year influence the west. In addition to the Tsui Po, or year breaker, which sits opposite the Tai Sui in the northeast this year, and the Five Yellow, or Wu Huang, which are encamped in the west. If your house is facing one of these regions, you can protect your fortune with the use of traditional amulets and Feng Shui devices such as small statues of mythical animals, such as the Pixiu or Qilin, temple lions or a hexagonal Feng Shui or ba gua mirror.

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