Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Stock Markets and the History Chart of the End of the World (With Presidential Cycles) - 28th Aug 20
2.Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook... AI Tech Stocks Buying Levels and Valuations Q3 2020 - 31st Aug 20
3.The Inflation Mega-trend is Going Hyper! - 11th Sep 20
4.Is this the End of Capitalism? - 13th Sep 20
5.What's Driving Gold, Silver and What's Next? - 3rd Sep 20
6.QE4EVER! - 9th Sep 20
7.Gold Price Trend Forecast Analysis - Part1 - 7th Sep 20
8.The Fed May “Cause” The Next Stock Market Crash - 3rd Sep 20
9.Bitcoin Price Crash - You Will be Suprised What Happens Next - 7th Sep 20
10.NVIDIA Stock Price Soars on RTX 3000 Cornering the GPU Market for next 2 years! - 3rd Sep 20
Last 7 days
Google Alphabet (GOOG) AI Deep Mind Stock Trend Analysis - 17th Apr 21
Stocks and Bonds Inflationary Slingshot - 17th Apr 21
Best Smartphone Selfie Stick Tripod Review by ATUMTEK Works with Samsung Galaxy and Iphone - 17th Apr 21
How to Give Budgie's First Bath | Easy Budgie Bathing and Water Training with Lettuce - 17th Apr 21
Record-breaking Decrease in New Passenger Vehicle Sale in Europe - 17th Apr 21
US Stocks Climb A “Wall Of Worry” To New Highs - 16th Apr 21
Gold’s Singular Role - 16th Apr 21
See what Anatomy of a Bursting Market Bubble looks like - 16th Apr 21
Many Stock Market Sectors Are Primed For Another Breakout Rally – Are You? - 16th Apr 21
What Skyrocketing US Home Prices Say About Inflation - 16th Apr 21
Still a Bullish Fever in Stocks? - 16th Apr 21
Trying to Buy Coinbase Stock on IPO Day - Institutional Investors Freeze out Retail Investors - 15th Apr 21
Stocks or Gold – Which Is in the Catbird Seat? - 15th Apr 21
Time For A Stock Market Melt-Up - 15th Apr 21
Stocks Bull Market Progression Now Shows Base Metal Strength - 15th Apr 21
AI Tech Stocks Buy Ratings, Levels and Valuations - 14th Apr 21
Easy 10% to 15% Overclock for 5600x, 5900x, 5950x Using AMD Ryzen Master Precision Boost Overdrive - 14th Apr 21
The Current Cannabis Sector Rally Is Pointing To Another Breakout - 14th Apr 21
U.S. Dollar Junk Bond Market The Easiest Money in History - 14th Apr 21
The SPY Is Nearing Resistance @ $410… What Is Next? - 14th Apr 21
The Curious Stock Market Staircase Rally - 14th Apr 21
Stocks are Heating Up - 14th Apr 21
Two Methods in Calculating For R&D Tax Credits - 14th Apr 21
Stock Market Minor Correction Due - 13th Apr 21
How to Feed Budgies Cucumbers - Best Vegetables Feeding for the First Time, Parakeet Care UK - 13th Apr 21
Biggest Inflation Threat in 40 Years Looms over Markets - 13th Apr 21
How to Get Rich with the Pareto Distribution - Tesco Example - 13th Apr 21
Litecoin and Bitcoin-Which Is Better? - 13th Apr 21
The Major Advantages Of Getting Your PhD Online - 12th Apr 21
Covid-19 Pandemic Current State for UK, US, Europe, Brazil Vaccinations vs Lockdown's Third Wave - 12th Apr 21
Why These Stock Market Indicators Should Grab Your Full Attention - 12th Apr 21
Rising Debt Means a Weaker US Dollar - 12th Apr 21
Another Gold Stocks Upleg - 12th Apr 21
AMD The ZEN Tech Stock - 12th Apr 21
Overclockers UK Build Quality - Why Glue Fan to CPU Heat sink Instead of Using Supplied Clips? - 12th Apr 21 -
What are the Key Capabilities You Should Look for in Fleet Management Software? - 12th Apr 21
What Is Bitcoin Gold? - 12th Apr 21
UK Covd-19 FREE Lateral Flow Self Testing Kits How Use for the First Time at Home - 10th Apr 21
NVIDIA Stock ARMED and Dangeorus! - 10th Apr 21
The History of Bitcoin Hard Forks - 10th Apr 21
Gold Mining Stocks: A House Built on Shaky Ground - 9th Apr 21
Stock Market On the Verge of a Pullback - 9th Apr 21
What Is Bitcoin Unlimited? - 9th Apr 21
Most Money Managers Gamble With Your Money - 9th Apr 21
Top 5 Evolving Trends For Mobile Casinos - 9th Apr 21
Top 5 AI Tech Stocks Investing 2021 Analysis - 8th Apr 21
Dow Stock Market Trend Forecast 2021 - Crash or Continuing Bull Run? - 8th Apr 21
Don’t Be Fooled by the Stock Market Rally - 8th Apr 21
Gold and Latin: Twin Pillars of Western Rejuvenation - 8th Apr 21
Stronger US Dollar Reacts To Global Market Concerns – Which ETFs Will Benefit? Part II - 8th Apr 21
You're invited: Spot the Next BIG Move in Oil, Gas, Energy ETFs - 8th Apr 21
Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr US Dollar is Back - 8th Apr 21
Stock Market New S&P 500 Highs or Metals Rising? - 8th Apr 21
Microsoft AI Azure Cloud Computing Driving Tech Giant Profits - 7th Apr 21
Amazon Tech Stock PRIMEDAY SALE- 7th Apr 21
The US has Metals Problem - Lithium, Graphite, Copper, Nickel Supplies - 7th Apr 21
Yes, the Fed Will Cover Biden’s $4 Trillion Deficit - 7th Apr 21
S&P 500 Fireworks and Gold Going Stronger - 7th Apr 21
Stock Market Perceived Vs. Actual Risks: The Key To Success - 7th Apr 21

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

FIRST ACCESS to Nadeem Walayat’s Analysis and Trend Forecasts

Investing in Profitable European Companies

Companies / European Stock Markets Jan 14, 2009 - 04:35 PM GMT

By: Money_Morning

Companies Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleMartin Hutchinson writes: Commentators are tripping over one another to declare this country or that country's stimulus package as a primary reason to pour money into its stock market. Yet if you look at the highly damaging long-term effects of such loose monetary and fiscal policies, an investor can come to only one conclusion: You should invest in the country with the smallest stimulus package.


Stimulus packages are all the rage right now. President-elect Barack Obama has promised an $800 billion package for the United States , which equates to nearly 7% of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP). And there are plenty of others:

  • Japan has a stimulus package of $720 billion - roughly 14% of GDP.
  • South Korea plans two stimulus packages - the larger of them “green” - totaling about $50 billion, or about 6% of GDP.
  • Great Britain is expected to inject about $177 billion into its economy, the equivalent of 8% of GDP.
  • France has a modest $40 billion stimulus package in place but that's on top of a $300 billion European Union (EU) stimulus package, so the total's about 3% of GDP.
  • China has announced a $586 billion stimulus - almost 20% of GDP - and now appears to have decided even that is too little.

Then there's Germany. When the British stimulus was announced, Germany's finance minister, Peer Steinbruck , described it as “crass Keynesianism .” Since then, he's been forced to back off that stance a bit: On Jan. 12, Germany announced a stimulus plan totaling $70 billion over two years.

Still, even that is only is a relatively modest 2% of GDP, and Germany's 2009 budget deficit - even with the stimulus - is projected to come in at less than 3% of GDP. That's far less of a deficit than the country faced during the 2001-2003 recession, and means that Germany enjoys one of the soundest fiscal positions of any country in the world.

Germany's short-term economic outlook is unexciting, as is currently the case for most countries. According to The Economist , the country's GDP is forecast to shrink by 1.4% in 2009, after actually advancing 1.0% in 2008. That's equal to the Euro zone average and equal to Japan, a bit less than the United States (projected at minus 1.2%), but better than Britain (minus 1.7%). But at a projected 1.0%, at least inflation at 1% is expected to be satisfactorily low.

Where Germany stands out, however, is when you look at its balance of payments, which is in surplus by $265 billion in the year to November 2008 - the equivalent of 6.6% of GDP. That immediately distinguishes it from the finance-based economies of the United States and Britain, both of which have perennial balance-of-payment deficits.

The most impressive thing about the German payments surplus is that it is achieved against a background of some of the highest wage rates in the world, very heavy tax and Social Security costs and a strong euro exchange rate. Even though it has among the world's highest labor costs, Germany also has among the world's highest labor skill levels, and those are more concentrated in manufacturing than in finance or business services, making the German economy less vulnerable to this finance-based recession or to erosion through globalization.

Like other countries, Germany will see its exports hit by this global recession, but it has the ability to grow domestic demand to compensate without affecting its budget or payments position.

For a decade and a half, the German economy and its budget were bedeviled by the huge costs of integrating the former communist East Germany into the West. However, that was a one-off cost; anyone who graduated high school in East Germany under Communism before 1989 is now nearing 40, so younger workers have been given the education and training common to their splendidly productive West German counterparts. From about 2005 on, the drag on the budget and on productivity from East German integration costs has begun to decline, and it will continue declining in the years ahead.

With its low budget deficit and large payments surplus, Germany is the strongest economy in the EU. It is potentially the strongest economy in the world; while the United States, Japan and Britain will struggle for years with the nasty side-effects of their massive government-stimulus spending, Germany will remain in sound shape.

It is thus likely that over the next few years, the huge flows of “safe haven” money that for decades helped prop up the U.S. Treasuries market will flow instead into the German bund and equities markets: After all, where the hell else is there? That will reduce German interest rates and increase multiples on German stocks. For an international investor, it thus becomes essential to have a significant part of your portfolio in German stocks.

What to buy? Well, for a start there's the German exchange-traded fund (ETF), the iShares MSCI Germany Index ( EWG ). At $334 million, it's surprisingly small, but it has a Price/Earnings (P/E) ratio of 9.6, and a yield of 6.6%, so this ETF provides decent income as well as a broad exposure to the German market.

There are eight German companies whose American Depository Receipts (ADRs) have a full sponsored listing on the New York Stock Exchange (several others have moved to the Pink Sheets recently because of the costs of Sarbanes-Oxley compliance ).

Of these, Allianz SE (ADR: AZ ) and Deutsche Bank AG ( DB ) are both caught up in the travails of the global financial-services sector, while financial services industry's travails, while Daimler AG ( DAI ) offers the limited prospects of the automotive industry (though Daimler's a good bet once economic recovery is clearly in sight). Infineon Technologies AG (ADR: IFX ), a semiconductor manufacturer, and Qimonda AG (ADR: QI ), a maker of computer memory devices, are each currently making losses.

That means there are only three other possible recommendations, which is why, if you want a broad exposure to the German market, you should also consider a mutual fund or an ETF like EWG.

Deutsche Telekom AG (ADR: DT ) is Germany's traditional fixed-line telephone service, which has mobile operations and that also has increased revenue by providing high-speed Internet access services. Based on both 2008 and 2009 earnings, the P/E ratio of its shares is a somewhat high 15. On the other hand, however, the stock's dividend yield is better than 8%. A dividend cut must be possible, but the company in general seems fairly recession-proof.

SAP AG (ADR: SAP ), the well-known international maker and marketer of enterprise software, has a lower dividend yield of only 2.1%, but much better earnings-growth prospects: 2009 is currently projected ahead of 2008. At 14 times earnings, the stock currently looks cheap for this sector.

Siemens AG (ADR: SI ) is active in a broad range of heavy equipment, including items such as locomotives and electric power plants - the very kinds of businesses that are likely to benefit from heavy “stimulus” spending worldwide, especially infusions aimed at infrastructure development, which is very much the case in China.

With Siemens having recovered from losses in 2006, the company's shares are now trading on only 8 times estimated earnings for the year to September 2009, with a dividend yield of 3.7%. They seem attractively priced.

By Martin Hutchinson
Contributing Editor

Money Morning/The Money Map Report

©2009 Monument Street Publishing. All Rights Reserved. Protected by copyright laws of the United States and international treaties. Any reproduction, copying, or redistribution (electronic or otherwise, including on the world wide web), of content from this website, in whole or in part, is strictly prohibited without the express written permission of Monument Street Publishing. 105 West Monument Street, Baltimore MD 21201, Email: customerservice@moneymorning.com

Disclaimer: Nothing published by Money Morning should be considered personalized investment advice. Although our employees may answer your general customer service questions, they are not licensed under securities laws to address your particular investment situation. No communication by our employees to you should be deemed as personalized investment advice. We expressly forbid our writers from having a financial interest in any security recommended to our readers. All of our employees and agents must wait 24 hours after on-line publication, or 72 hours after the mailing of printed-only publication prior to following an initial recommendation. Any investments recommended by Money Morning should be made only after consulting with your investment advisor and only after reviewing the prospectus or financial statements of the company.

Money Morning Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules