Stephane Alpern writes: According to the Chinese Zodiac Calendar, this year is the year of the Wooden Horse. Here are some facts for you to help you get the most out of the coming Chinese year:

  1. This year’s Lunar New Year starts on the 31st of January and is typically celebrated for 15 days.
  2. The Chinese believe that the Year of the Horse will be a lucky one, unlike the preceding Year of the Snake that was full of misfortune and tragedies. It’s a good year to be optimistic.
  3. People in China will make about 3.62 billion trips, to bring in the auspicious year with their families. It is the world’s largest annual migration.
  4. The Chinese believe that no one should wash their hair on New Year’s itself because it means that you are washing away all your good luck for the year.
  5. To get rid of evil spirits, you’ll be able to find firecrackers exploding all across East and Southeast Asia that makes for a very noisy, smoky but fun celebration!
  6. Red is a highly auspicious colour and is used to decorate homes for the Lunar New Year. Many also wear red clothes, throughout the celebrations. You could wear red clothes too, to join in the festivities and to try get some of the luck to rub off on you.
  7. The Chinese say that ‘A good horse never turns its head to eat the grass behind.’ So be sure to keep looking ahead and not backwards – a good omen for The Futures Company.
  8. To your Chinese friends, clients and business partners, it’s time to say ‘Xin Nian Kuai Le’ (Happy New Year) and ‘Gong Xi Fa Cai’ (May you be prosperous).

Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Stephane Alpern is the Managing Director of The Futures Company Asia-Pacific, based in Singapore. The image at the top is by ckaj, and is used with thanks.

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