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Opinion

Year of the rats

"It is an inauspicious year because the rat year brings about slower world economies where unemployment, money matters and environment matters would be the key issues. There would be plenty of natural disasters/diseases which could affect the world."

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Last year, bank chairmen and chief executives might have given up their private jets for a glimpse of the future. Today, they most probably don’t need a psychic to tell them times are tough and getting tougher. The Year of the Rat started on February 7 and the Feng Shui Queen herself – Master Lynn Yap – can confirm for anyone still in doubt that the new year is going to be one filled with heartbreak for those in the business of high finance.

According to her Chinese New Year forecast, "It is an inauspicious year because the rat year brings about slower world economies where unemployment, money matters and environment matters would be the key issues. There would be plenty of natural disasters/diseases which could affect the world."

Based on Master Yap’s Year of the Rat outlook, this is what some of the luminaries of the banking world can expect:

Alan Schwartz, chief executive, Bear Stearns
Born:
1951, Rabbit

Lucky stars: ★ ★

This is a year where your luck is not very good. Just lie low at the workplace and don’t talk too much, because whatever you say will come true.

Vikram Pandit, chief executive Citi
Born:
January 14 1957, Rooster

Lucky stars: ★ ★ ★ ★

Because of the presence of good stars you are in luck and may strike money. However be careful of unwanted romance, especially if you are married.

Brady Dougan, chief executive, Credit Suisse
Born:
1959, Pig

Lucky stars:

This year money luck is not as good as last year. There are strong competitors trying to grab your money – however you will be alright in the end. Everyone has their own destiny path. Be strong.

James Dimon, chief executive, JPMorgan
Born:
March 13 1956, Monkey

Lucky stars:

There is no money luck this year. All the money this year will be hard earned. Be patient and wait for your right timing to be good.

Richard Fuld, chief executive, Lehman Brothers
Born:
April 26 1946, Dog

Lucky stars: ★ ★ ★

There is lottery money that will come unexpectedly. Career is smooth – however beware of enemies at the workplace.

John Thain, chief executive, Merrill Lynch
Born:
May 26 1955, Sheep

Lucky stars: ★ ★ ★

Money luck is good, so is lottery luck. Avoid lending money to friends. There are opportunities for you to travel or to change job with higher pay, go for it.

Daniel Bouton, chief executive, Société Générale
Born:
April 10 1950, Tiger

Lucky stars:

This is not a good time for money matters. There is no lottery luck. Money is hard earned this year. Be patient and wait for the next year. This is called "looking at the bigger picture". If married, go for a holiday at least once a year.

Marcel Ospel, soon-to-be ex-chairman, UBS
Born:
August 2 1950, Tiger

Lucky stars:

This is an average year for you. At the workplace, you will be very busy, work pressure. Your health is ok. You are advised to exercise or take more vitamins.

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