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  • Writer's pictureJeff Matthews

Stocks Worth Air, Drivers Ready to Explode

For Chinese, the Reality of Higher Gas Prices

GANSU — Returning the fueling nozzle to the pump, Zhang Li jumped into the driver’s seat of his gas-guzzling Land Rover. “Such a long line,” said the 45-year-old tour guide, shaking his head. “What’s the world coming to? My stocks are worth air, and now I have to wait an hour for overpriced gas, too.” By JIMMY WANG Published: June 21, 2008 —The New York Times If you didn’t read this article over the weekend, you really should. Go straight to The New York Times’ web site and read it from start to finish.

“I invested 80 percent of my savings,” said Wang Li, a 30-year-old manager in Shanghai. “And I’ve lost over half my money now. I’m angry — the government’s measures to keep the stock market above 3,000 have failed.” Seems it’s not just the United States that’s been cultivating a society of entitlement with an unsustainably horrific energy policy:

As a matter of policy, the Chinese government sets gasoline and diesel prices well below international market prices in order to encourage economic growth. In 2007, China’s subsidy of gasoline alone was $22 billion, close to 1 percent of its gross national product.

Somehow, of course, all this will be deemed bullish, although it may not come in time for a few of the local investors:

“When the market took a dive earlier this year, I was really depressed for a while,” he said. “I didn’t go to work several days; I just drank. Now I’m anxious everyday; I watch the stocks and I can’t sleep. I’m just simmering inside with anger. Who knows? One day I might just explode.” Keith Bradsher contributed reporting from Hong Kong. Lucy Liang contributed research from Beijing. The stocks are worth air, and the investors are ready to explode. Good thing everybody over here plowed into emerging economies last year. Jeff Matthews I Am Not Making This Up

© 2008 NotMakingThisUp, LLC

The content contained in this blog represents the opinions of Mr. Matthews. Mr. Matthews also acts as an advisor and clients advised by Mr. Matthews may hold either long or short positions in securities of various companies discussed in the blog based upon Mr. Matthews’ recommendations. This commentary in no way constitutes investment advice. It should never be relied on in making an investment decision, ever. Nor are these comments meant to be a solicitation of business in any way. Inquiries will not be responded to. This content is intended solely for the entertainment of the reader, and the author.

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