Friday, March 24, 2006

Hop On The Seoul Train

Just wanted to throw a company at all of you to take a closer look at... Shinhan Financial Group (SHG).

SHG is a financial juggernaut in South Korea and one of the largest Korean companies based on market capitalization. They own a number of banks in Korea, including their flagship, Shinhan Bank, the oldest commercial bank of Korea, Chohung Bank, and Jeju Bank, a smaller regional bank on the island of Jeju. In addition, they also control subsidiaries that deal in credit cards all the way to the leasing of industrial equipment. The company makes a ton of cash, and they are growing rapidly.

The Korean market has been hot recently. It is up around 40% in the past 12 months. I believe Korea is getting stronger year by year, and I feel that there is money to be made hopping on the back of one of its strongest companies.

SHG trades as an ADR here, and there does not seem to be too much interest in it. Trading volume is fairly low on it, and there does not seem to be much analyst coverage. In researching Shinhan, I noticed that Cramer had actually recommended the stock on his Mad Money show some time in November in the $77-78 range. I missed that episode, and I never did follow up on his recommendation. I think he's right on this one in a big way.

I am going to be looking for an entry into SHG soon. I will probably be buying this in a few chunks. I do hope it pulls back some. Let's make some money.

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