Chinese Culture


(How) Does The Chinese New Year Affect the Economy, Markets and… Investors?

One might be tempted to think that, finally, we have a common denominator when it comes to China and the proverbial West, one pertaining to how disruptive the “holiday” season(s) can be. However, as frustrating as it may seem, things are once again different in China, as this article will hopefully make clear. On the


China’s Luxury Goods Market: Facts vs. Misconceptions

Misunderstandings abound when it comes to all things China-related. For example, through previous articles, we’ve highlighted many manufacturing-related ones, for example the (grossly outdated) idea that China can only put low-quality, low value-added products on the table. Similar outdated stereotypical thinking examples also pertain to the Chinese consumer. To put it differently, China has


(How/Why) Is China Different? “Investor Culture Shock” Explained

On a superficial level, we know or think we know that there can be differences between nations. But do we meaningfully internalize this reality or limit ourselves to superficially acknowledging it? When it comes to most Western investors and their attitude toward China, the latter tends to be much closer to reality. In other words,


Should Investors Learn Chinese?

Perhaps the most intellectually honest manner of starting this article would be highlighting the personal choice of the author. And in my case, yes, I have indeed decided to learn Chinese despite the fact that I have made a name for myself as an economist on the Anglo-Saxon scene. My books are selling quite well


The Three Teachings: From Cultural Foundation to… Frustration Cause?

In previous articles, we’ve analyzed the three most important cultural frameworks associated with China one by one: Daoism, Confucianism and Buddhism. We have tried to understand some of the differences as well as the many similarities between them and all in all, it should be quite obvious that the three thought currents complement one another


Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha) and Buddhism: The Middle Way for China?

A fair case could be made that from a cultural perspective, China is governed by the so-called Three Teachings. Two of them: Daoism and Confucianism, have been covered through previous articles. Today, it’s time to put Buddhism under the proverbial microscope to understand its role in Chinese culture and, yes, ultimately even economic behavior. To


Can You “Get” China Without Understanding Confucius and Confucianism?

As important as it is to understand what made China’s most important leaders tick (especially relatively recent leaders) and as useful as it is to have a firm grasp on history (once again, especially China’s relatively recent history), we need to acknowledge that to truly “get” China, we need to move away from an exclusively


Understanding Laozi (Lao Tzu) and Daoism (Taoism)

There are pieces of information one can consider vital to an economic analysis that pertains to China, pieces of the puzzle without which the final construction makes little sense. China’s population, GDP and so on. There are, however, many tidbits of information in the “nuance” category. In other words, pieces of the puzzle one can