2021 stated with a wave of optimism for Asian equities led by soaring large cap Chinese tech and hope that the COVID-19 crisis was coming to an end.
However, the year would become a year of booms and busts. At the top of the ‘bust’ category, Chinese tech. Some of the biggest names seeing eye-watering declines from their early year highs.
Uncertainty around Chinese Government regulation heralded the declines, then there was China Evergrande, concern about slowing Chinese domestic economic activity, along with mainland power shortages.
It seemed investors exposed to China couldn’t take a trick.
The bears were met with much more resistance in other parts of Asia though.
The rise of Indian stocks seeming unstoppable, while Japan’s Nikkei is ending the year close to its all-time high.
Meanwhile, cryptocurrencies also scaled new highs through the year and remain one of the best performing asset classes of 2021.
In global markets it has been soaring US tech stocks, inflation and the supply chain crisis dominating much of the conversation, while Elon Musk continued to entertain as Tesla defied its critics.
A look back at Asia Markets top 10 articles of 2021 paints a great picture of the year that was.
10) 3 Chinese Baijiu Stocks to watch
For a brief period early in 2021, Kweichow Moutai (SHA: 600519) became China’s largest listed company. At the time Baijiu stocks were even being compared to Bitcoin.
Asia Markets took a look at three of China’s top Baiju stocks in April.
9) Steen Jakobsen: Inflation like you’ve never seen before
Steen Jakobsen is a breath of fresh air. The Saxo Markets boss doesn’t indulge in the corporate-speak we have come to expect from many of his peers. He shares honest and frank views about his opinion of markets at the economy.
In October he shared his views on rising inflation volatility, saying; “inflation outcomes really will be very different from anything we have experienced in decades”.
8) Mastercard says Bitcoin demand at all-time high in Asia Pacific
Mastercard data released to Asia Markets in November showed demand from cryptocurrencies across the Asia Pacific had reached an all-time high.
The news followed a previous announcement by Mastercard about new partnerships with three leading cryptocurrency service providers in the Asia Pacific which would enable the launch of the first crypto-funded Mastercard payment cards.
7) Techtronic Industries stock tipped to surge in 2022
Asia’s largest power-tool manufacturer has delivered stellar returns for investors over the past few years and there’s more gains to come in 2022 according to Cooper Investors Portfolio Manager Qiao Ma.
Qiao’s views on Techtronic Industries (HKG: 0669) was Asia Markets’ seventh most-read article of 2021.
6) Boom time for Terra Network as 160 projects prepare to launch
South Korea’s Terra is one of Asia’s most promising blockchain and digital currency projects. Asia Markets has been paying close attention to its rapid development.
In this exclusive report, Terra Network Founder, Do Kwon, revealed more than 160 projects are set to launch on the network in early 2022.
5) “Everyone’s going to get plastered” – warning from a former U.S. Treasury secretary
In some colourful comments in October, former U.S. Treasury secretary, Larry Summers, lashed the U.S. Federal Reserve for being oblivious to longer-term inflationary pressures.
“Now the party’s gotten great and the Fed’s not removing the punchbowl until they’ve seen conclusive evidence that everyone’s going to get plastered,” said Summers.
4) Analyst says ‘buy GME and AMC’ before Evergrande crash
Dr Marco Metzler, an advisory board member at German Market Screen Agency, and a vocal critic of the handling of the China Evergrande debt crisis made a head-turning statement.
The respected analyst said investors should hedge against an Evergrande-induced market crash by holding AMC Entertainment Holdings (NYSE: AMC) and GameStop (NYSE: GME).
3) What is Pinduoduo? Revolutionizing retail, generating profits
Amid intensified interest in the future of Chinese big tech, fresh produce-focussed e-commerce platform Pinduoduo delivered a shock first ever quarterly profit during the year and remains a favourite amongst many retail and institutional investors.
This analysis by Asia Markets correspondent, Aditya Raghunath, was the third most-read article on Asia Markets in 2021.
2) PlanB ‘clarifies’ Bitcoin prediction as price growth slows
‘PlanB’ built a cult following throughout 2021 as the analysts’ Bitcoin price predictions proved to be very accurate. But did the November sell-off throw PlanB projections into disarray?
Asia Markets’ coverage of PlanB’s analysis was the second most-read article in 2021.
1) China Evergrande: Subprime on steroids, the greatest threat to markets?
This analysis of China Evergrande came at a time when there was very little coverage of the property developers’ emerging debt crisis in the mainstream media.
Asia Markets reporter, Henry Chia, provided an overview of the company’s problems and even explored theories about links to controversial stablecoin, Tether. It was the most-read Asia Markets article of 2021 with more than 800,000 unique readers.
Happy holidays, from the Asia Markets team.