Year of the snake promises calmer HK market

HONG KONG (AP) — As the Year of the Snake slithers into sight, investors should take comfort that the reptile's traditionally negative effect on stock markets probably won't be so big this year.

That's according to the astrological predictions of a Hong Kong-based stock brokerage.

CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets released on Wednesday its annual "feng shui" index. The report is based on the signs of the Chinese zodiac and features lighthearted predictions for financial markets, property and celebrities. The year of the snake in the Chinese lunar calendar begins Feb. 10.

The report said that while snake years usually bring radical changes, this year a good balance of the five fundamental elements will keep any upheaval in check.

Feng shui is the Chinese practice of arranging objects and choosing dates to improve luck.

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