Bill Gross isn't happy with how things are going in the world, and he's not afraid to talk about it.

Late last year, Gross talked about many of the problems he has with America and its economic outlook. In his latest commentary, Gross took a wider view to examine whether investments elsewhere in the world can give you a better place to put your money.

Countries going down in flames
As Gross sees it, perhaps the most important influence on an investment's performance is underlying economic growth. Therefore, it's logical to invest wherever the growth prospects for the broader economy are the best, and to avoid those places where economies are slowing. Gross believes that investing in slow-growth economies "lowers returns on investment and financial assets."

Consequently, instead of investing in countries like Japan and the United States that have high multiples of total debt to GDP and high current budget deficits, Gross suggests investors direct their risk-taking towards countries that are "less levered and less easily prone to bubbling." Doing so will keep investors out of a "ring of fire" when those bubbles pop.

Go where the growth is
But Gross does have some ideas about where equity investors should put their money. Like many commentators, he sees promise in emerging-market countries, specifically saying that "China, India, Brazil, and more miniature-sized examples of each would be excellent examples."

Unfortunately, Gross doesn't list any specific stocks he likes. With a PIMCO stock fund currently in the works, we'll soon be able to see how Gross's management team will put his theories into practice. But given how much Gross seems to value strong growth that isn't generated by massive debt, he might like some of the following stocks from those emerging-market countries:


Total Debt/Equity Ratio

5-Year Annualized Sales Growth










Shanda Interactive (NASDAQ:SNDA)









Petroleo Brasileiro (NYSE:PBR)



Source: Capital IQ, a division of Standard and Poor's. *3-year annualized growth rate.

You can't go home again
Gross understands that many investors are more comfortable keeping their money closer to home. However, his recommendations outside emerging markets are few and very far between. From a fixed-income perspective, he likes Canada because, "[i]ts conservative banks never did participate in the housing crisis and it moved toward and stayed closer to fiscal balance than any other country." In Europe, Gross sees Germany standing out as the "safest, most liquid sovereign alternative, although its leadership and the EU's potential stance toward bailouts of Greece and Ireland must be watched."

Still, adhering to Gross' advice leaves investors who religiously avoid emerging markets with slim pickings. Given that most developed countries are fiscal nightmares right now, investing in high-growth emerging markets may actually be the safer play. Gross is by no means the first to come to that conclusion, but Gross's arrival to this party should reinforce such notions.

Do you think Gross is right or just talking up his book? Please let us know in the comments section below.

Baidu and Shanda Interactive Entertainment are Motley Fool Rule Breakers selections. CNOOC is a Motley Fool Global Gains pick. Petroleo Brasileiro is a Motley Fool Income Investor recommendation. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Chris Jones owns no shares of any company mentioned in this article, nor is he short anything. The Motley Fool's disclosure policy is stuck in Folsom Prison, and time keeps draggin' on.