Goldman’s O’Neill Still Bullish on Emerging Markets

Tuesday, 13 Dec 2011 06:16 AM

By Dan Weil

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Jim O’Neill, chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management and the man who came up with the term BRICs 10 years ago to summarize the strength of Brazil, Russia, India and China, remains enthusiastic about emerging markets.

Indeed, he is so impressed that he no longer calls them emerging markets, as they already have emerged. They are now growth markets. And in addition to the BRICs, O’Neill includes Indonesia, South Korea, Mexico, and Turkey, The New York Times reports.

All of those countries enjoy “largely sound government debt and deficit positions, robust trading networks, and huge numbers of people all moving steadily up the economic ladder,” O’Neill tells The Times.
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While some of these nations, such as Russia, have corrupt governments, their economies are superior to their more developed brethren in many ways, O’Neill says. Young and growing populations are helping the countries’ prosper, he says.

To be sure, some of the nations need more democracy to maintain their strength, O’Neill says. And they need to loosen restraints on trade and currency. But if they’re able to embrace free trade, they will truly benefit, he says.

Many investors have turned bullish toward Latin America.

"We believe that rising living standards and a rapidly growing middle class [in the region] will continue to drive long-term economic growth even if market volatility remains high in the near term," Jose Costa Buck, manager of the T. Rowe Price Latin America Fund, writes in a commentary obtained by Marketwatch.

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