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Gold Beans, India's Small-Cap Swoon: Saturday Asia Briefing

(Bloomberg) -- This weekend in Asia, we offer a feast of golden beans in China, chrysanthemum tofu in Hong Kong and chocolate soy sauce in Japan. Big Macs, however, were temporarily off the menu. First, though, we head to the land of khichdi and gulab jamun.

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This week’s meltdown in India’s small-caps, triggered by the regulator’s concern about “froth,” is a signal for optimists about the country’s growth prospects: Go large.

Meanwhile, US investigators are said to be digging into whether billionaire Gautam Adani, or people linked to his conglomerate were involved in bribing officials in India over an energy project. The company denied any such allegations.

India will announce the dates of the world’s biggest election by number of voters this weekend, while Russia is currently holding the largest by geographical area. Don’t expect any changes of leadership.

Forget Prada and Gucci. With the worst deflation in 15 years and disillusionment in the stock market, China’s Gen Z is buying gold beans.

For the nation’s $9.2 trillion stock market, the regulator has vowed to tighten listing requirements and checks on publicly traded firms, the latest effort to restore investor confidence.

In the US, a pro-crypto super PAC, Fairshake, has amassed a war chest of around $75 million to spend on US elections, with backers including Coinbase’s Brian Armstrong, the Winklevoss twins and Marc Andreessen.

Down in Texas, the annual mashup of tech, entertainment and ideas, SXSW, has been infused with a debate over AI, with evangelists trying to persuade attendees that it will enhance jobs, and detractors saying it will take or degrade them.

Michelin updated its list of 95 starred restaurants in Hong Kong and Macau, with soybean specialist Mora among the culinary climbers. Or, for a mere $500,000, you can chow down in space.

In other soybean news, an entrepreneur from what is considered to be the birthplace of soy sauce is trying to change the image of the famous Japanese condiment by among other things, adding chocolate.

Have a gastronomic weekend.

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