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Defensive Investing After the Japan Disaster

Stock-Markets / Investing 2011 Mar 16, 2011 - 07:08 AM GMT

By: Money_Morning

Stock-Markets

Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald has called Japan home for more than two decades - a fact that has given him a view of that country that few U.S. investors will ever have.

That insight - combined with his innate financial acumen - gives Fitz-Gerald an unrivaled understanding of the global-investing climate at any given time.


In the aftermath of Friday's 9.0-level earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan - and the possible nuclear-power plant fallout that's followed - here are some safety strategies that Fitz-Gerald advises all global investors to consider.

•Cover Your Assets: Make sure you have "protective stops" in place for all your holdings. Ideally, you should have these in place all the time - not just when the going gets tough. That way you can use them to capture profits and protect your money. Most people only think of the latter when, in fact, capturing profits actually matters more when it comes to consistent winners.

•Go Shopping: Energy and commodities, in particular, are down hard on the assumption that Japan's earthquake is going to dampen global demand. If that does occur, it won't last as long as the doom-and-gloomers believe. Move in now and profit on the rebound. Fitz-Gerald likes the PowerShares DB Agriculture Exchange-Traded Fund (NYSE: DBA) for agricultural commodities, and Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE: KMP). As Fitz-Gerald says, the logic is simple: "With the former ... people have to eat - even after a major disaster - and with the latter you are looking at a ‘tollbooth' for natural gas and oil that's relatively impervious to the price of the commodities themselves. Plus it pays a healthy 6.2% dividend."

•Buy "Glocal:" If you're like many U.S. investors, who are just easing their way into the global-investing arena, the best place to start is usually with companies that Fitz-Gerald likes to refer to as "glocal" stocks. That's not a typo. That's the term that he uses to describe large, U.S.-based multinational corporations whose global operations include a local presence - especially in the crucial markets of China and Greater Asia. Most of these companies are publicly traded, and have their shares listed on the Standard & Poor's 500 Index today. Also, people forget that 40% of the S&P's earnings already come from overseas - a percentage that's growing every day. Given the current circumstances, the near-term outlook for those companies isn't quite as clear as usual. But if you choose wisely, and are willing to be a long-term holder, Fitz-Gerald says investors can make a great investment case for many glocal shares.

Source : http://moneymorning.com/2011/03/16/...

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