This Is the Best Time to Invest ... in History

We are experiencing a worldwide economic boom the likes of which the world has never known. Changes and innovations in the first half of this century have the potential to dwarf even those of the first half of the 20th century. And, the opportunities for stock investors may be greater than they have ever been.

But, things seem so bad
How can this be? We are in the midst of a banking crisis that the International Monetary Fund calls the worst since the Great Depression. Oil prices are higher than they've ever been, with no end in sight. Our country is at war. We are facing inflation, high unemployment, and recession. The stock market is going down the tubes. Where's the good news?

Things aren't always what they seem. Sometimes, it can be difficult to see beyond current circumstances. For example, in 1875, the director of the U.S. Patent Office resigned his position, claiming, "There is nothing left to invent."

Can you remember what things were like in 1979? There were high oil prices and gas lines. The economy was in a miserable state of stagflation. The stock market indexes were lower than they had been a decade earlier. In fact, Business Week ran a cover story in 1979 called "The Death of Equities," claiming that stocks were dead and wouldn't come back to life in the foreseeable future. And, if you listened to the talking heads on TV, the smart money was on the Soviet Union to win the Cold War.

What happened to the conventional wisdom?
Who knew then that the stock market in just three years would embark on an epic bull run? Within just a few years, oil prices would retreat. Inflation would all but disappear as a problem and the economy would grow at levels not thought possible. In the following decades, an information technology industry would spring up and propel the market and the economy. And the Soviet Union would no longer exist. What kind of lunatic would have predicted those events?

Few people living during the "Iron Age" and "The Industrial Revolution" recognized at the time that they were part of an "age." Today, we are in the midst of a worldwide economic boom that may well come to personify an age, but few recognize it. The largest population centers are transforming to free-market economies and growing at a staggering pace. Never before have there been so many nations' economies growing and expanding at the same time. Never before has the environment been so ripe on a global scale for the creation of fortunes and innovations that can create new industries. The opportunities in the next five or 10 years could, quite simply, be the best ever.

Where do we look to invest?
Don't be thrown off the scent by today's problems. They can be overcome. We can find some of the best investments by paying attention to global trends. Here are just two examples of bona fide huge trends and some stocks to take a look at.

Alternative Energy
With worldwide energy demand greater than ever and oil hovering above $130 a barrel, the development of alternative energy sources is taking off. At the very least, this industry will be much more relevant than ever before. At most, it could move the world away from oil and forever change the way we live.

This story is obviously already out there. Here are the two-year returns of Motley Fool CAPS' most highly rated Alternative Energy stocks.


CAPS Rating

2-Year Performance

Vestas Wind Systems (OTCBB: VWSYF)



Gamesa Corp.



Sasol LTD. (NYSE: SSL  )



Darling International Inc. (NYSE: DAR  )



The China phenomenon is well-known, but still a huge and continuing trend. China and India are expanding their infrastructures and creating humongous new demands for goods and services. Their economies are growing at rates no longer possible in the U.S.

The Chinese market has experienced a significant sell-off this year, and prices are down. Here are two-year returns of Motley Fool CAPS' most highly rated China stocks.


CAPS Rating

2-Year Performance

Orsus Xelent Technologies (AMEX: ORS  )



Hutchison Whampoa



Sinoenergy Corp. (OTCBB: SNEN)



Hutchison Telecom (NYSE: HTX  )



China Pharma Holdings (OTCBB: CPHI)



This Fool believes that the next several years will provide investment opportunities of a lifetime. You have to get in front of trends, both existing and those yet to unfold. Be flexible. Don't let the current environment fool you. It's morning in the world markets.

Related Foolishness:

Sasol Ltd. is a Motley Fool Global Gains pick and a Motley Fool Income Investor recommendation.

Fool contributor Tom Hutchinson holds no financial position in any companies mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (2) | Recommend This Article (17)

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  • Report this Comment On July 04, 2008, at 7:53 AM, stocksforever33 wrote:

    Here is an unprecedented opportunity:

    THis demo at the moment only works with Firefox browsers but a full version will be out in 2 weeks that will work with IE as well.

    The company behind iGlue is backed by a public company.

    Ticker: PWRV.OB

    I think this will be a huge and PWRV's stock price will appreciate. And they have a lot more in store than iGlue. Take a look at their site.

  • Report this Comment On November 20, 2008, at 9:18 AM, mmadaras wrote:

    No kidding...

    Does the author maintains his views now, a few months later?

    November 2008.

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