Why should I invest my welfare check in a Capitalist country?
"Beijing actively blocks Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube," and Google Inc. has shut its search engine in China, blaming "stringent censorship," the Turner report says. "China shut down 1.3 million Web sites" last year, the Turner analysts added.
How can repression be good for business? Acknowledging that liberty lovers loathe China's "Great Firewall," the authors prefer "a gentler term for these restrictions in light of the Chinese Internet market's potential to blossom: a walled garden."
A garden! China's weedings and poisonings of independent thought and action, to Turner, "serve to insulate domestic Internet companies from the forces of international competition." Sure, there are "dangers in China walling off the Internet, [but] we think they are outweighed by the protective benefits [to China stocks]."
Citing research from analysts at Bala Cynwyd-based Susquehanna International Group L.L.P. and other firms, Turner notes that China search engine Baidu.com collects extra profits because it's free to sell ads without competition from Google. E-commerce deal-maker China Dangdang is sheltered from Amazon. Security specialist NetQin Mobile doesn't have to face Norton. Renren links people Facebook can't reach. Sina Weibo echoes Twitter. Youku.com fills the China vacuum left by YouTube.
The result: Those six companies, based in the political capital, Beijing, not commercial centers Hong Kong or Shanghai, offer the prospect of "double-digit earnings growth annually over the next five years," Turner writes approvingly.