It's not easy being a salmon. When it's time to spawn, visceral compulsions force it to migrate from the ocean to its birthspot. It rushes upstream, battling the rapids, sparring with currents, swimming past all odds to secure its progeny.
The investing sea has many such fishes. When the markets are acting up and investing avenues are frothing with uncertainty, they flow against the prevailing current to secure their finances, to produce unlikely gains. They are the contrarians.
It's not easy being a contrarian either. Refusing to be blinkered by the 'rules of successful investing', this breed taps its rationality, dips into its research and armed with intuitive reasoning, it charts its own course. Often, this strategy yields better results than toeing the cliched line.
The current economic situation is a peculiar one, the result of discouraging global cues, of India's isolated strength, of markets brimming with foreign inflows and an industry trying to turn to profits, a central bank intent on a tightening its monetary policy and real estate still trying to find a comeback trail. Within this financial paradigm lurk several opportunities waiting to be tapped by contrarians.
In the following pages, we tell you whether stocks will give better returns than fixed deposits, if you should let your term plan lapse, whether gold is a safe investment at Rs 21,000, or if renting is better than buying a house. The financial markets are desperately looking for its salmons. Our cover story will tell you how to be one.