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Neil George's Favorite Global Stock

10/31/2003 12:00 am EST


Neil George

Editor, Profitable Investing

"While the US and Europe have grappled with slow growth since the tech bubble burst, China's GDP has been growing more than 7% annually, on average," says Neil George, global investment expert and editor of Personal Finance. Here, George unveils his favorite global playthe stock he would buy if he could only own one.

"If I had to pick one company to me that represents a global vision, what would it be? It would be a company that represents the idea that when you produce something you have to ship it somewhere in order for someone to buy it. The best company would be one that got paid on every box, on every little container; everything that moves from one country to another–every day, every hour of the day, ever second. You would also want a company that can take advantage of some the major technological changes of the world, such as connecting people. Whether it is wireless communications or fixed wireless communications.

"You also want to have a company that would also have retail operations throughout the globe. You would also want a company with property investments in some of the premier commercial and industrials centers of the world–particularly well-focused within Asia. And one which is respected from Shanghai to Beijing with excellent credentials, but also does very well in the US and Latin America. You can pick any single important market throughout the world, and this company has a presence and an ownership in which it controls what comes in and out of these markets. This company rules the world of shipping; nothing moves in or out of virtually any major port around the globe without paying a toll to the company.

"That company is Hutchinson Whampoa (HUWHY NASDAQ). It’s a Hong Kong-based company, run by Sir Li Ka-Shing , who I consider the Warren Buffett of the world. This guy basically started by fleeing mainland China as a teenager and moving to Hong Kong, where he became a plastic flower salesman. He has since become one of the world’s wealthiest billionaires. He and his sons continue to expand their investments in the commercial shipping industry . If I could pick one global company that I could buy and continually and slowly add to positions, for many years, this is the company you want."

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