I was asked by someone the other day for a good place to eat in Singapore. As some of you may know, I am a bit of a foodie, in my spare time. I even write restaurant reviews on TripAdvisor. So, when I am not spending time looking for interesting shares, I go in search of interesting restaurants. But the eatery that I proposed was greeted with a disdainful grunt. “There is nothing much to eat there”, I was told. That got me thinking. How is it possible that one person can look at a menu and see a potential…
I was asked by someone the other day for a good place to eat in Singapore.
As some of you may know, I am a bit of a foodie, in my spare time. I even write restaurant reviews on TripAdvisor.
So, when I am not spending time looking for interesting shares, I go in search of interesting restaurants.
But the eatery that I proposed was greeted with a disdainful grunt.
“There is nothing much to eat there”, I was told.
That got me thinking.
How is it possible that one person can look at a menu and see a potential feast on offer, while another person can see absolutely nothing?
I have frequented that particular restaurant on a number of occasions. I have never had a problem finding something to satisfy my appetite.
Nor can anyone else, it seems. The place is always full. The queue outside can be heartbreakingly long.
Low hanging fruit
So how is it possible than someone else could find the menu too limited?
Perhaps it is because they aren’t looking hard enough.
Some people like to only pick low-hanging fruits. They can’t be bothered to get out the step-ladder to look for bounties that may not be within easy reach.
Investing is a lot like that too.
There appears to be a band of people who are determined to tell us that valuations in the market are too rich.
Where’s the growth?
They point to disappointing earnings growth and a lack of sales growth for reasons to shun stocks.
“Where’s the growth?” they ask, with a wry smile.
Admittedly, global growth is slowing.
According to the World Bank, global growth this year is expected only come in at around 1.6%. Next year, the global economy could grow 1.9%. And the same anaemic rate of growth is forecast for 2018.
All in all, it doesn’t look that inspiring. So, maybe the naysayers are onto something here.
Who forgot to tell Netflix?
But someone, it would appear, forgot to tell Netflix that the world was slowing down. The entertainment technology company reported a 36% jump in revenues, and an increase in subscriber numbers in both the US and overseas.
Someone, it would seem, also forgot to tell McDonald’s and Dunkin Donuts that the world was slowing down, too.
And let’s not forget Microsoft, which saw its shares climb to an all-time high recently, thanks to growth at its cloud business.
Closer to home, the Monetary Authority of Singapore said the local economy is currently in a “cyclical downturn”. But Raffles Medical Group (SGX: R01) , which is one of our recommended shares at Stock Advisor Gold, posted a 17.5% jump in third-quarter revenues.
That’s not too shabby, when we consider that Singapore’s economy is not expected to pick up significantly, according to the MAS.
A fork in the road
Just as companies have a choice to make when they face a fork in the road, we have a choice before us to make too.
Some companies are taking advantage of the tough economic conditions to capture market share. There is nothing quite like hammering home an advantage, when you have one.
We can do the same. We can either choose to pack our bags and head for the doors or knuckle down to look for opportunities.
I am taking advantage of the lethargy in the markets to build out my portfolio. So should you.
The slowdown in the global economy doesn’t bother me one iota.
It doesn’t worry me that volatility could erupt every time someone remembers that Donald J Trump is the next president of the US of A.
I am just as unconcerned that another interest-rate decision is always just around the corner.
I just see any stock-market falls as another buying opportunity.
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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore Director David Kuo doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned. The Motley Fool has recommended Raffles Medical Group.