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What's driving returns in Asia ex-Japan - place or sector?

Sector dispersion of returns is rising and closing the gap with country dispersion of returns thanks to the IT sector.

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Active stock pickers should look for "alpha" in places like China, Korea and Taiwan and "micro-driven" sectors such as IT, health care and consumer discretionary with high firm-specific risk.

ASIA ex-Japan equities have posted a stellar performance year-to-date (up 31 per cent in US dollar terms and 25 per cent in local currency terms as of end-September). However, we find that market breadth has been rather narrow.

Breaking the performance down by country, we find that most

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