Saturday, February 23, 2013

The Tokyo Marathon, the rise of the Nikkei, and how this could finally be it.



Tokyo is full, with a most eclectic crowd from all over the world this weekend.

There are three big events going on at the same time, at least among the people I literally run around with.

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One is the Tokyo Marathon happening tomorrow morning. Many people from the four corners of the globe have flown in for this and they're all having an early night's sleep tonight and partying tomorrow.

There are quite a number of people from Manila joining the Tokyo Marathon, and that's the main reason I'm here. Although I'm not doing that kind of running.

WAY TOO COLD FOR RUNNING.
OR FOR ANYTHING ELSE. FOR ME.

This weather is actually way too cold for my tastes.


I was on a golden beach in Colombo exactly two weekends ago, and that's still where I'd rather be than here, in terms of weather. The skies were clear and fine today, for instance; but, boy, did that wind bite.

TWO BIG FINANCIAL INDUSTRY CONFERENCES

Then there are two major conferences for the finance industry happening next week, and so many people have flown over for this as well. These annual conferences are pretty big deals, and they get lots of international heavyweights to speak.

So with all of these happening, it's a full calendar of events for lots of us in Tokyo, especially as things are suddenly starting to look very exciting.

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I CAN'T GET THIS OFF MY MIND

Tonight a couple of us went to someone's home nearby for a party.

The lady of the house is one of these strong and enterprising Japanese women who can hold a day job and run a handful of businesses and investments on the side. That's not very usual in Japan, by the way.

She bought a prime piece of land in central Tokyo, built a row of nice townhouses on it, and moved into one of them. Then she rented out the others.

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THIS MAY BE IT...

Anyway, a hedge fund manager living abroad, who is here for the conferences, came along with us to her party as tonight was our only common time left to meet up, with so many things happening and so many people in Tokyo.

This guy is not the most famous fund manager for Japan, but I consider him one of the smartest and steadiest right now, simply because he never takes his eye off the ball.

He's also never lost that hungry spirit no matter how successful he's become. I find you need lots of ego and ambition to be a big deal fund manager. Or to be a big deal anything, for that matter.

As we were walking to the party in that freezing cold tonight, we talked about the new developments within the Japanese government and the recent rise of the Japanese stock market.



With a smile so full of certainty, he said to me: "I'm almost sure this is it."

I have to continue this story in another blog entry.

But, for now, I can tell you that what we talked about set my head spinning -- even while I was at the party talking about Travel and Life.

And also talking about the music of Adele and Foster the People. The whole night, as I talked with everyone about everything else, my mind was on our conversation and its implications for Japan and the finance world.

So many of us have been waiting as long as 20 years. And this could be it.

Good night from Tokyo, living another wonderful day in our never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.




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