The Chinese New Year or Spring Festival as it is
more commonly known as on the mainland, is the most
important of the traditional Chinese holidays. It is also termed the Lunar
New Year and on Sunday, February 10, the Year of the Black Water Snake will be
ushered in with green, the colour of prosperity.
We Irish are indebted to St. Patrick for driving
most of the snakes out of Ireland!
Finfacts will have limited
updates today as the holiday period has begun in its part of the 'South Sea' - -
CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, a brokerage and
investment group based in Hong Kong , today launched its 19th annual CLSA
Feng Shui Index (CLSA FSI) - - a
tongue-in-cheek look at what the celestial signs suggest is in store for the
Hang Seng Index, key sectors and markets, world leaders and celebrities, and
each of the 12 Chinese zodiac Animal symbols during this Year of the Black Water
“The past is a foreign country,” it is said, “they
do things differently there”. We can only hope so because the past five Snake
years – back to the Water Snake of 1953 – are not encouraging. In only one year
did markets end the year convincingly above their opening and the size of the
drops of the most recent three has been growing ever worse. As befits
“skin-shedders”, Snake years are marked by major transformation and change - -
and sometimes great upheaval: Pearl Harbour (1941), Twin Towers (2001),
Tiananmen (1989), Fall of the Berlin Wall (1989), Great Depression (1929),
recessions (1953, 2001), revolutions (1917, 1989), and major conflicts (1941,
However, there are signs that this year’s beast will
be better behaved: All five of the basic elements or energies are present in the
fortune charts (including the market-driver Fire!); and the annual Flying Star
energies all return to their “home” sectors for the first time in nine years.
CLSA asks: What manner of beast is she then? That
“she” is a big clue: Chinese zodiac Snakes always are female or yin,
and this influence should be a sharp contrast to the moody, broody, maddening
male yang energy that drove the Dragon to distraction during 2012 and many
investors to despair. Yin is in keeping with other calmer energies that are
likely to prevail this year.
Download report (English version)
Download report (Chinese version)
Besides, being the world's
most populous country, it's no surprise that China has a big diaspora and the
ethnic Chinese in Southeast Asia are termed as the people from Nanyang - -
South Sea. The Chinese use practical location names e.g. Beijing is North City;
Nanjing - - the capital city until 1421 is South City; Tokyo is called East City and the Japanese word for East
Sea is Tokai.
can speak Mandarin and their regional dialect. The people of China's industrial
heartland, the Pearl River delta province of
Guangdong, north of Hong Kong, speak Cantonese as Hongkies (residents of
HK) do. Napoleon
Bonaparte had a role to play in the predominance of Hokkien, the dialect of the
southern region of Fujian province (north of
Guangdong) in two
separate islands in Southeast Asia: Penang, northwest of Peninsular Malaysia
(south of Thailand) and Singapore, off the southern tip of Malaysia.
his brother King of Holland in 1806 and in London, the exiled Prince of Orange
had entrusted protection to the British for the Dutch colony of the East Indies
(modern Indonesia) and the fortified trading post of Malacca on the coast of
south Malaysia. However,
Farquhar, the British governor of Penang, ordered the destruction of the Dutch
fort in Malacca as he saw it as a trading rival for Penang. Chinese Hokkien
settlers were urged to move to Penang.
Some years later, Stamford
Raffles of the East India Company, selected the island of Temasek (Sea
Town in Javanese, now
known as Singapore, the Lion City) as a better location for a trading post than
Penang and Raffles used a succession dispute embroiling the Sultanate of Johor
to get the necessary local agreement. Meantime, the part of the Hokkien
population, who had not moved north to Penang, crossed the Straits to the
island, as did the Japanese in early 1942 to receive the greatest surrender of
British forces in history, from General Arthur Percival, who had commanded the Essex Regiment in Bandon, my hometown, in 1919.
Gōng xǐ fā
cái ! - - the traditional Chinese New
Year's greeting in Cantonese means may prosperity be with you.
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