The other decoupling

The other decoupling
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First Published: Wed, Apr 23 2008. 12 08 AM IST
Updated: Wed, Apr 23 2008. 12 08 AM IST
The thumb rule to identify a bear market is this—a 20% fall in the benchmark index from its highs. Going by that rule, the Chinese stock market is now in deep recession. It is now 50% down from its recent highs.
The decline in the Indian stock market has been far more gentle in comparison. One reason is that stock prices here never took off vertiginously, as they did in China. Or: The higher they rise, the harder they fall.
But, is there more to the story? One major difference between India and China is that India boasts of several world-class firms, while China continues to be a state-led economy. Investors there are far more impressed by the big-picture numbers rather than the nitty-gritties of company performance. Indian firms boast of better financial management and returns on capital.
In other words, investors have far more reason to be worried about high inflation and other macroeconomic fault lines in China. India, too, has its problems—but also companies that can weather these storms.
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First Published: Wed, Apr 23 2008. 12 08 AM IST
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