Special Feature
Welcome to the Metal Ox
Welcome to the Metal Ox<br/>喜迎金牛

As we say goodbye to a turbulent Year of the Rat, what do Chinese astrologers expect the new Ox year will bring to Hong Kong and the world? How will our economy and investments fare over the next 12 months? Will it be a good time to set up a business, seek promotion or change career? We asked our feng shui masters what could be in store as the Year of the Ox gets under way.


Economic outlook 

Strong water dominance throughout the Year of the Rat was good news for stock markets in 2020, and this may continue into the early part of the new Ox year. But don’t be too confident if your fortunes soar in the first few months. This cycle of water dominance is coming to an end, which may cause turmoil in the markets, particularly towards the end of the year. 

With markets around the world at record highs, right now may be a good time to realise your gains and hold some cash for a while, as the risk of markets plummeting later in the year is high. Buying property this year is also unlikely to bring you any significant profit in the short or medium term.

If you do want to invest in stock markets this year, astrologers believe that Water elements will enjoy the strongest performance, which includes banking and finance. The aviation and retail sectors come under the Water element, and could do reasonably well as they recover from the shocks of 2020. Fire elements, like energy and electronics, are also a relatively safe bet. However, Earth elements are the weakest, including infrastructure and sectors related to construction, so be careful in these areas.

It is better to think of the long term if you are buying any investments in this Ox year, so you won’t need to worry too much about the volatility ahead.

The Year of the Metal Ox is also a quadruple-sickness year, but you can protect yourself against this through a healthy diet and lifestyle. Southeast Asia could also see natural disasters due to the influence of the Wu Huang star of major sickness.


Personal Ox forecast 

People born in the Year of the Ox may be troubled by an air of pessimism this year, because they are offending the Presiding God. Oxen aged 24 could see relationship, health and career issues, but they should not worry too much as these will turn out to be just bumps in the road over the longer term. Those aged 36 and 48 will be more affected by conflicts and bad luck, as there is more at stake for them. But they can avoid becoming depressed by embracing change, rather than trying to fight it.


Ox years of the past

The previous Year of the Ox in 2009 started in economic gloom, with Hong Kong still suffering from the impact of the Global Financial Crisis. However, the city rebounded during the course of the year, with investment recovering strongly before this Ox year had finished. 

Twelve years earlier was also a time of economic upheaval, with the Asian Financial Crisis taking a severe toll. Hong Kong’s currency peg and financial reserves meant we did not suffer as badly as many of our neighbours, but stock markets plunged and the city was affected by the regional downturn. This was also a key year in Hong Kong’s history, as the city returned to China after more than 150 years as a British colony. The smooth handover helped to ease uncertainty about the possible impact of the change.

In 1985, Hong Kong was shocked by the brutal murder of Kenneth McBride, aged 17, and Nicola Myers, 18. Five young men were later convicted of the murders. Outside of Hong Kong, global news was dominated by the continuing famine in Ethiopia. A number of large-scale concerts featuring some of the world’s biggest pop stars were held in cities including London and Philadelphia to raise funds.

One of the most successful and influential martial arts films of all time, Enter the Dragon, was released in 1973. Its star, Bruce Lee, tragically died the same year, before the film reached the cinemas. Also in 1973, the Hong Kong Government’s New Towns policy officially got under way in the New Territories, with the development of Shatin, Tsuen Wan and Tuen Mun. The success of this policy led to ongoing development, and today, almost 50% of Hong Kong’s population lives in New Towns.

Cold war tensions between Communist nations and western powers took physical shape with the building of the Berlin Wall in 1961, dividing the German city. At the same time, the Vietnam War was intensifying, with U.S. troops arriving in the country to train South Vietnamese soldiers. The first census in Hong Kong was carried out in 1961, which revealed that the city had a total population of 3,129,648.

The People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949, bringing an end to the Chinese Civil War. Many refugees from the Mainland had come to Hong Kong during this period. Ireland and India, former British colonies, both officially became republics during this Ox year.


Personal Forecasts for the Year of the Ox


(1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009, 2021)

Calm, patient, studied character. Takes things slow, steady pace. Is rather dictatorial but very industrious.

People born in the Year of the Ox are offending the Presiding God this year, and may find themselves suffering from mishaps and inconveniences. These could build up over time to trigger pessimism about the longer term outlook. So Oxen should do their best not to get dragged down by small problems. You will not have a lot of support from other people this year, but try not to feel lonely, and instead be proud of what you have achieved by yourself. Taking a trip toward the end of the lunar year will help to lift your spirits.



(1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010)

Very warm, loving. Independent-minded. Pays scant regard to others when pursuing fun and freedom.

This is a good time for tigers to get married or to find a life partner, with the relationship star Hong Luan shining on you. Hong Luan also means good personal relations generally: while you may not work very hard or make a lot of money this year, you will still be able to develop your contacts and create a good impression. This is particularly the case for entrepreneurs and business owners. So it is better to focus on building this network, and don’t make any drastic career changes.



(1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011)

Very sensitive soul. Discreet but quietly ambitious. Self-indulgent.

Rabbits are not in the mood for hard work this year. This may not be a bad thing, as they can take a back seat and consider the situation when upheaval is happening around them. It will also give Rabbits the opportunity to spend time developing business relationships without too much pressure, which will help to build your reputation. If you are still looking for romance, you still have time in the first couple of months before the influence of Hong Luan fades.



(1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012)

Charismatic and colourful. Wants to be centre of attention. Very arrogant, lucky and successful.

This will be a good year for wealth for Dragons, who will benefit from help from others throughout the year, including female figures at work and an unexpected boost from new contacts. But you should probably stay in your current role for the best outcome, and it is better not to launch any new business ventures this year. People born in the year of the Dragon are more liable to minor health issues such as stomach ailments, so should take particular care with their diet.



(1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013)

High moral principles, mostly when applied to others. Sophisticated and charming. More than meets the eye.

People born in the Year of the Snake have a number of unlucky stars in their constellation this year. To avoid being caught out, make sure you don’t break any minor laws, and don’t give colleagues any excuse to criticize you. Employees may still get promoted, however, if they work hard, show initiative and prove their worth. Any positive influence will come from far afield, so stay in touch with overseas businesspeople and make the most of opportunities to meet new contacts. 



(1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014)

Confident and proud, but prone to erratic behaviour. Heart is in right place. Can be flighty and emotional.

Last year’s conflict with the Presiding God will linger into the Year of the Ox for a few months, but things will become more stable as the year progresses. You will make a good first impression this year, so it is a good opportunity for business owners to meet people and develop their social network. Company employees may be able to convince their superiors that they deserve a promotion. Any romantic upheaval of last year is over and single Horses will enjoy good relationships, even if they don’t turn into marriage.



(1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015)

Sensitive, creative and multi-talented. Eccentric. Has much fortitude. Loves to be loved, hates to be pushed.

Goats are in conflict with the Presiding God, which means a year of upheaval. This is not all bad news, as it can mean a positive change such as moving house, a new relationship, getting married or becoming pregnant, or even ending an unhappy relationship. Turmoil in career terms may not be so good, especially towards the end of the lunar year. You should avoid changing jobs, as staying may lead to better career luck. Changes in lifestyle are often expensive, so make sure you keep an eye on the costs.



(1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016)

Wily and cunning. Ignores regimented rules. Free spirit. Loves movement and change. Can be rather selfish.

Monkeys were in union with the Presiding God last year, and their streak of good luck in people-to-people ties will continue this year under the relationship star Tian Xi. This can help in both your career and personal life. But be careful: while everyone may want to be your friend, some of these new relationships may be more trouble than they are worth. Choose wisely. This may also be a good time to learn something new, whether to help in your career development or for general self-improvement. 



(1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017)

Brave and enthusiastic. Notoriously picky. Highly intelligent. Rarely has wool pulled over its eyes.

In union with the Presiding God, Roosters will have a stable year with smooth progression and good relations with other people. This is a good time to learn something new to help your future career development, and possibly to prepare to launch a business in 2022. But don’t forget that investing in education has an upfront cost, even if it pays dividends further down the line. And think twice before lending money to a friend, as you may not see it again.



(1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018)

Honest, loyal, sincere. Believes in justice for all. Fights for principles. Sometimes bad tempered, self-righteous.

People born in the Year of the Dog are torturing the Presiding God this year and have the unlucky star Juan She in their constellations, which means they are vulnerable to gossips. These may affect your ability to grow your business or career, but will not impact your overall wealth, so your lifestyle should not change much. Try to avoid getting drawn into minor disputes, ignore the negative influences around you, and take comfort in stability. Be careful with your diet to avoid unnecessary illnesses. 



(1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007, 2019)

Kind and thoughtful. Sincere and honourable. Self-sacrificing and altruistic. Occasional fits of wilfulness and rage.

With Yi Ma, the star of mobility, shining on you, those born in the Year of the Pig should seize the chance to travel for business or connect with more overseas clients. This could also mean moving home or offices, or a new job, so if such an opportunity arises this year it could be a positive change. You might end up with a heavy workload later in this lunar year, or end up taking on more responsibilities, but you will be financially rewarded for your efforts. 



(1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020)

Essentially charming. Compassionate. Renowned for thrift and love of family. Rather superficial at times.

Last year was a tricky one for those born in the Year of the Rat, so naturally many of them will still be in a downcast mood as the Year of the Ox arrives. However, Rats’ interpersonal relationships will be much better as the year progresses, so they should make the most of these opportunities. This will be a year of hard work, which will benefit entrepreneurs more than wage earners. But keeping busy and achieving milestones at work will also be good for your mental health, even if your pay does not go up much