Tags: emerging | markets | worry | BRICs

Eurasia Group: Emerging Markets Bigger Worry in 2013 than US, Eurozone

Thursday, 10 Jan 2013 07:45 AM

By Michael Kling

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You can stop worrying about the U.S. budget gridlock and the eurozone debt crisis, or at least worry less. Instead, you should worry about emerging markets more this year, according to Eurasia Group, a New York-based think tank.

Plus, some of the greatest risks are in BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries that were once investors' darlings.

Risks in the developed world — including the U.S. fiscal cliff, a potential eurozone break-up and Japan's zero growth rate — are overdone, Eurasia Group asserts in its annual top risks for the year report.

Editor's Note: 'It’s Curtains for the US' — Hear Unapologetic Warning from Prophetic Economist.

Emerging markets, which have unlimited downsides, unlike advanced countries, have greater volatility and instability, according to Eurasia Group. But prospects vary widely from country to country, so investors must dispel the monolithic "emerging market" group, as well as the unhelpful BRICs category.

Eurasia Group divides emerging markets into three groups: becoming developed, still emerging and backsliding.

"Becoming developed" countries are better able to handle crisis and continue to implement policies making investment more attractive. They include many Latin American countries, a few Gulf States, Turkey, Malaysia and the Philippines.

"Still emerging" countries have an upside, but much more volatility than most think, less political stability and tough economic challenges. The group includes India, which has a difficult political reform environment; Indonesia, which faces stalling economic reforms; and South Africa, where leadership has steadily deteriorated.

"Backsliding" countries, or "submerging markets," are the riskiest, with under-performing economies and unacceptable political dangers.

"The most notable of these countries is Russia," Eurasia Group asserts, "where opportunities are diminishing on pretty much every front but strategic resource development."

Corruption, capital flight and deteriorating relations with the West plague the country. It's hard to justify Russia as an emerging market, never mind a BRIC, the report states.

More experts believe the outlook for BRICs has faded, according to The Wall Street Journal. To varying degrees, they face problems such as inflation, labor unrest, and a shortage of foreign investment. The countries, including South Africa, have held summits to increase cooperation but often end up quarreling, The Journal reports.

Editor's Note: 'It’s Curtains for the US' — Hear Unapologetic Warning from Prophetic Economist.

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