Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. US Housing Market Real Estate Crash The Next Shoe To Drop – Part II - Chris_Vermeulen
2.The Coronavirus Greatest Economic Depression in History? - Nadeem_Walayat
3.US Real Estate Housing Market Crash Is The Next Shoe To Drop - Chris_Vermeulen
4.Coronavirus Stock Market Trend Implications and AI Mega-trend Stocks Buying Levels - Nadeem_Walayat
5. Are Coronavirus Death Statistics Exaggerated? Worse than Seasonal Flu or Not?- Nadeem_Walayat
6.Coronavirus Stock Market Trend Implications, Global Recession and AI Stocks Buying Levels - Nadeem_Walayat
7.US Fourth Turning Accelerating Towards Debt Climax - James_Quinn
8.Dow Stock Market Trend Analysis and Forecast - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Britain's FAKE Coronavirus Death Statistics Exposed - Nadeem_Walayat
10.Commodity Markets Crash Catastrophe Charts - Rambus_Chartology
Last 7 days
Gold’s Major Reversal to Create the “Handle” - 5th July 20
Gold Market Manipulation And The Federal Reserve - 5th July 20
Overclockers UK Custom Build PC Review - 1. Ordering / Stock Issues - 5th July 20
How to Bond With Your Budgie / Parakeet With Morning Song and Dance - 5th July 20
Silver Price Trend Forecast Summer 2020 - 3rd Jul 20
Silver Market Is at a Critical Juncture - 3rd Jul 20
Gold Stocks Breakout Not Confirmed Yet - 3rd Jul 20
Coronavirus Strikes Back. But Force Is Strong With Gold - 3rd Jul 20
Stock Market Russell 2000 Gaps Present Real Targets - 3rd Jul 20
Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) Big Pharma Stock for Machine Learning Life Extension Investing - 2nd Jul 20
All Eyes on Markets to Get a Refreshed Outlook - 2nd Jul 20
The Darkening Clouds on the Stock Market S&P 500 Horizon - 2nd Jul 20
US Fourth Turning Reaches Boiling Point as America Bends its Knee - 2nd Jul 20
After 2nd Quarter Economic Carnage, the Quest for Philippine Recovery - 2nd Jul 20
Gold Completes Another Washout Rotation – Here We Go - 2nd Jul 20
Roosevelt 2.0 and ‘here, hold my beer' - 2nd Jul 20
U.S. Dollar: When Almost Everyone Is Bearish... - 1st Jul 20
Politicians Prepare New Money Drops as US Dollar Weakens - 1st Jul 20
Gold Stocks Still Undervalued - 1st Jul 20
High Premiums in Physical Gold Market: Scam or Supply Crisis? - 1st Jul 20
US Stock Markets Enter Parabolic Price Move - 1st Jul 20
In The Year 2025 If Fiat Currency Can Survive - 30th Jun 20
Gold Likes the IMF Predicting a Deeper Recession - 30th Jun 20
Silver Is Still Cheap For Now - 30th Jun 20
More Stock Market Selling Ahead - 30th Jun 20
Trending Ecommerce Sites in 2020 - 30th Jun 20
Stock Market S&P 500 Approaching the Precipice - 29th Jun 20
APPLE Tech Stock for Investing to Profit from the Machine Learning Mega trend - 29th Jun 20
Student / Gamer Custom System Build June 2020 Proving Impossible - Overclockers UK - 29th Jun 20
US Dollar with Ney and Gann Angles - 29th Jun 20
Europe's Banking Sector: When (and Why) the Rout Really Began - 29th Jun 20
Will People Accept Rampant Inflation? Hell, No! - 29th Jun 20
Gold & Silver Begin The Move To New All-Time Highs - 29th Jun 20
US Stock Market Enters Parabolic Price Move – Be Prepared - 29th Jun 20
Meet BlackRock, the New Great Vampire Squid - 28th Jun 20
Stock Market S&P 500 Approaching a Defining Moment - 28th Jun 20
U.S. Long Bond: Let's Review the "Upward Point of Exhaustion" - 27th Jun 20
Gold, Copper and Silver are Must-own Metals - 27th Jun 20
Why People Have Always Held Gold - 27th Jun 20
Crude Oil Price Meets Key Resistance - 27th Jun 20
INTEL x86 Chip Giant Stock Targets Artificial Intelligence and Quantum Computing for 2020's Growth - 25th Jun 20
Gold’s Long-term Turning Point is Here - 25th Jun 20
Hainan’s ASEAN Future and Dark Clouds Over Hong Kong - 25th Jun 20
Silver Price Trend Analysis - 24th Jun 20
A Stealth Stocks Double Dip or Bear Market Has Started - 24th Jun 20
Trillion-dollar US infrastructure plan will draw in plenty of metal - 24th Jun 20
WARNING: The U.S. Banking System ISN’T as Strong as Advertised - 24th Jun 20
All That Glitters When the World Jitters is Probably Gold - 24th Jun 20
Making Sense of Crude Oil Price Narrow Trading Range - 23rd Jun 20
Elon Musk Mocks Nikola Motors as “Dumb.” Is He Right? - 23rd Jun 20
MICROSOFT Transforming from PC Software to Cloud Services AI, Deep Learning Giant - 23rd Jun 20
Stock Market Decline Resumes - 22nd Jun 20
Excellent Silver Seasonal Buying Opportunity Lies Directly Ahead - 22nd Jun 20
Where is the US Dollar trend headed ? - 22nd Jun 20
Most Shoppers have Stopped Following Supermarket Arrows, is Coughing the New Racism? - 22nd Jun 20

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

AI Stocks 2020-2035 15 Year Trend Forecast

How to Profit from Singapore the New Switzerland of Asia

Stock-Markets / Singapore Feb 24, 2009 - 06:15 AM GMT

By: Money_and_Markets


Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleTony Sagami writes: For years, numbered, Swiss bank accounts have carried the cache of wealth and secrecy.

That is, until recently …

You see, those secret Swiss bank accounts aren't so secret anymore .

The United States government is demanding that Switzerland turn over the names of Americans who have secret Swiss accounts. And it is putting the squeeze on financial firms.

For example, UBS last week reluctantly disclosed that it had reached an agreement with the U.S. to pay $850 million in fines and hand over account details of 250 to 300 American customers — an unprecedented breach of Swiss banking privacy.

Plus, the IRS is demanding information on 52,000 additional UBS customers.

John DiCicco, acting assistant attorney general of the U.S. justice department's tax division, said, “At a time when millions of Americans are losing their jobs, their homes and their healthcare, it is appalling that more than 50,000 of the wealthiest among us have actively sought to evade their civil and legal duty to pay taxes.”

Switzerland may be losing its recognition as a center of wealth and bank account secrecy.
Switzerland may be losing its recognition as a center of wealth and bank account secrecy.

However, the loss of that client confidentiality is so serious that UBS is worried that it could put it out of business!

That's not all …

UBS attorneys claim that complying with the request could force UBS to violate Swiss criminal law by turning over information protected by Swiss financial privacy laws. Such a violation would expose UBS employees to “substantial prison terms” as well as fines, penalties and other sanctions,” the lawyers said.

In the dog-eat-dog world of business, there is almost always a beneficiary of another business' misery. That is especially true of the attack on secret Swiss bank accounts.

Investing in that ‘winner' could be extremely profitable, and that winner could very possibly be Singapore.

The World's Easiest Place To Do Business …

For centuries, traders traveling between the Indian Ocean and South China have sailed through the Straits of Singapore. Its unique position as one of the primary commercial gateways to Asia makes it a key crossroad for global trade.

By the late 1800s, three developments had turned Singapore into one of the most important ports of call in the world:

  1. The advent of the steamship
  2. The opening of the Suez Canal in 1869
  3. And the widespread adoption of rubber

Explaining how each of these factors bolstered Singapore's position is a whole story in and of itself. But suffice it to say that by the close of the 19th century, Singapore was enjoying unprecedented prosperity.

The next major stepping stone came in 1965, when Singapore, by mutual agreement, separated from Malaysia. Its new status as an independent republic only furthered its powerful growth, which continues to this day.

Singapore has the third highest per-capita gross domestic product in Asia, a sky-high literacy rate of 95%, and the highest standard of living in Asia.
Singapore has the third highest per-capita gross domestic product in Asia, a sky-high literacy rate of 95%, and the highest standard of living in Asia.

With a population of about 4.6 million, the country generates $49,754 in per-capita gross domestic product. That's the third highest in Asia, behind only Hong Kong and Japan. Singapore also has a sky-high literacy rate of 95%, and the highest standard of living in Asia.

The World Bank calls Singapore, “The world's easiest place to do business.” The country has gotten that moniker by concentrating its manufacturing base on industries like financial services, biomedical research, technology and oil refining.

American Express, AIG, Boeing, Cargill, Dell, Exxon Mobil, Ford, General Electric, Hewlett-Packard, Merck … they all have significant operations in Singapore.

Singapore used to be extremely dependent on technology exports. But the bursting of the dot-com bubble and the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2003 clobbered its economy and forced Singapore to reinvent itself or die.

The Solution:

Become a Financial Haven For the Rich …

Beginning in 2004, individuals were not charged a tax on the foreign income received in Singapore nor do they pay any capital gains taxes on Singapore investments.

For wealthy investors worried about the IRS getting hold of their not-so-secret Swiss bank accounts, Singapore is looking better and better.
For wealthy investors worried about the IRS getting hold of their not-so-secret Swiss bank accounts, Singapore is looking better and better.

Since then, Singapore has become an economic juggernaut. Its private banks currently manage about $200 billion, or 5% of the world's wealth. What's more, they have been growing by 20% a year.

It sure doesn't hurt that Singapore is close to India and China, the two fastest-growing economies in Asia. However, the real attraction to investors is that Singapore levies NO TAXES on capital gains!

Money is pouring into Singapore so rapidly that there is an acute shortage of private bankers. The business-friendly Singaporean government came up with a solution: In 2004, it funded the establishment of a Master of Science in private banking at Singapore Management University (SMU).

And Credit Suisse was so eager to get in on the action that it recently moved its world private banking headquarters from Zurich to Singapore.

The privacy laws in Singapore are also very strict. Divulging private financial information is now punishable by a fine of up to $78,000 and a prison sentence of three years.

For wealthy investors worried about the IRS getting hold of their not-so-secret Swiss bank accounts, Singapore is looking better and better.

The Three Companies Best Poised To Profit from Switzerland's Loss …

The three largest private banks in Singapore, all of which trade on the Singapore stock exchange, stand to make a bundle off this influx of money and are worth checking out …

United Overseas Bank (U11.SI) is a one-stop shop for the wealthy. It offers private banking, trust services, venture capital investment, merchant banking, brokerage services, insurance, fund management, derivatives and precious-metals trading, along with life insurance.

DBS Group Holdings (D05.SI) is the largest bank in Singapore. It provides mortgage financing, funds management and brokerage services. It is also Singapore's primary dealer of the country's government securities.

Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (039.SI) provides banking, brokerage, corporate banking, asset management, venture capital, and trustee services.

By the way, investing in foreign markets is as easy as buying a stock on the NYSE or Nasdaq. But if you're not comfortable investing in individual stocks, consider looking at the iShares MSCI Singapore Index (EWS).

This exchange-traded fund (ETF) seeks to provide investment results that correspond to the performance of the MSCI Singapore index. And the three stocks I just told you about comprise roughly 30% of this ETF's portfolio making it an attractive alternative.

Now, don't rush out and buy any of these investments. I don't believe the selling is done yet, and I expect all of them to get even cheaper. But when that happens, they could become spectacular bargains and huge winners as billions of dollars flee Switzerland and end up in Singapore.

Best wishes,


P.S. As a regular reader of Money and Markets , I'd like to give you the inside scoop on our new, specialized, free publication, Global Wealth Report , launching Monday, March 2. This daily newsletter focuses on the precious metals, natural resources, Asian and South American markets, and more. The best part? A subscription to Global Wealth Report won't cost you one red cent!

Just click here to subscribe.

This investment news is brought to you by Money and Markets . Money and Markets is a free daily investment newsletter from Martin D. Weiss and Weiss Research analysts offering the latest investing news and financial insights for the stock market, including tips and advice on investing in gold, energy and oil. Dr. Weiss is a leader in the fields of investing, interest rates, financial safety and economic forecasting. To view archives or subscribe, visit .

Money and Markets Archive

© 2005-2019 - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.

Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules