Business moat

I chanced upon an interesting article by another blogger. In it he talks about business moats (read here). His definition of true business moat is: Brands (eg. Colgate, Swatch & Kao) Scale Eco-system Switching cost Distribution (eg. Facebook, Alibaba, Honda & Johnnie Walker/Diageo for item 3, 4 and 5) The definition of moat by Morningstar is here. Low-Cost Producer or Economies of Scale … [Read more...]

Where did $59,000 Go To In 2014?

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This post is probably at least 3 months late.  But well, better late than never? Earlier in the year, I promised to produce a summary of what the 15HWW household spent on for 2014 and even though it’s already late March, I still remember it and feel that this would be a useful post. Especially for the both of us. In fact, I actually “tested” Mrs 15HWW on this.  I asked her to … [Read more...]

Notes from Pershing Square Annual Report

Investing in individual companies requires upfront effort but also much recurring maintenance effort. Classified as a maintenance effort is continue to learn from some of the best around. I cam across a notification here of Bill  Ackman’s Pershing Square Annual Report 2014. Bill Ackman have been known in the news due to his fight with Herbal Life, JC Penney and Allergan. What is perhaps … [Read more...]

Recent Action – FraserCenterPoint Trust (FCT)

In my previous post about a month ago, I mentioned that I am in the midst of building up some cash holdings (original article here) as I feel the market is somewhat overheated and is due for a correction. I continue reducing my portfolio and in particular for Reits as I feel they are currently in a sector that are exposed to the highest risk (rising interest rate) coupled with an … [Read more...]

Nationhood and What Singapore Means to Me

This has been a week where nationhood has shed new meaning and interpretation in Singapore's history. In one week, the value system of what it means to be a Singaporean has come to the fore.From the 62 year old uncle looking fit and trim in in his Temasek Green National Service uniform, to the uncle and his stiff salute of respect and farewell, to the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Service Chiefs … [Read more...]

Reformulating the Balance Sheet

Most of us are familiar with the classified balance sheet where assets and liabilities are categorised based on longevity – current or non-current. This is the conventional practice, but it is not perfect. For example, in calculating the traditional Return on Assets (ROA) as a measure of operational efficiency, the denominator includes peripheral assets which reduce the calculated value. Companies … [Read more...]

Random thoughts: Self discovery and imperfection

Self awareness can be scary when you don't like what you know as the truth or that your thinking is not "mainstream" In the past few days, I realized:1) Do I love  my mum?I am coping very well with the care-giving of my ill mother because I do not really love her. I suddenly remembered how affected I was when fortune teller predicted my son had a tough life, how uncomfortable I will be if I … [Read more...]

why I don’t take 40k gain off the table for noel gifts?

I started studying this company in detail and buying this counter 1-2yrs ago. I hold about 3/4m shares at ave price 26c. Capital gains of 30-40k so far. One of my old friends said " damn stupid, make money, quickily gia lui n run"  I tried explaining my view to him but i guess he couldn't get my point. Anyway here's my point 1) strong brand n getting stronger 2) sg50 & mas deals … [Read more...]

Why Are Singaporeans Queuing Up for Hours to Pay Their Respects to Lee Kuan Yew?

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A number of people have been asking me if it's worth going to see Lee Kuan Yew's body before he gets cremated on Sunday. Some of the more common questions included,"Can you see his face? Cannot? Then maybe I won't go then...""How long did you wait?""I don't know if I should go down...there's so many things I need to do."With all the media coverage and live updates surrounding the sheer number of … [Read more...]

To him whom you love to hate and hate to love

It hadn’t always been a smooth relationship. When I was young, I respected him as I would to any adult, especially one who so crucially shaped Singapore the way it is today. Back then, he was still the Prime Minister of Singapore and I remembered fondly the crowds that stood up and cheered loudly for him whenever he arrived on national day parade every year. I must be one of the last batches of … [Read more...]

Never Be Complacent – Lee Kuan Yew in the 1970s

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This whole week, Singapore seem to come to a stand still as the nation mourns on the passing of our first prime minister Lee Kuan Yew. The scenes were touching, the support unwavering and the unity is strong. Everyone came or is still coming to express their gratitude in one way or another. How could one man's death have such a huge impact on a country and even impacted the international realm … [Read more...]

This Singapore Savings Bonds: Liquidity, Higher Returns and Government Backing. Dream?

Senior Minister of State for Finance Josephine Teo announced a new type of bond called the Singapore Savings Bonds to help Singaporeans get a better return on their money. There are not much details revealed but what is known is: Principal guaranteed by the government The ability to get his or her money back in given month with no penalty Interest rate that is linked to long term SGS … [Read more...]

The name is Bond, Singapore Savings Bond.

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A new product is going to be available soon for people who are risk averse but are looking for better returns. Enter the Singapore Savings Bond! Singapore Savings Bonds will offer the higher returns of a long-term bond and give what investors call a term premium, while retaining the flexibility of a shorter-term deposit, and the safety of an instrument guaranteed by the Government. (Senior … [Read more...]

Should I top up my CPF-SA, CPF-MA or SRS account?

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This blog post is inspired by a comment by a reader, Lee Jiahui, who thinks that the "SA is last priority to throw cash at", preferring to top up "self SRS or parents or children's medisave account". To read the full comment, please go to my FB wall. Since I always say that we should beef up our CPF-SA and do it early, what is my response to this comment? Well, in a nutshell, what a person … [Read more...]

The biggest impact to saving for your child’s education fund

On occasions I do get a nudge from good friends seeking some financial advice and in a day 2 person have discussed with me plans and ideas regarding saving for their child’s tertiary education in 20 years.The first discussion was more regarding whether to make use of the STI ETF as the wealth machine to build up the sum for the education versus that of insurance endowment. There wasn’t a straight … [Read more...]

Mr Lee Kuan Yew’s legacy for retail investors

Much has been said about the great achievements of Mr Lee Kuan Yew in all aspects of our lives in Singapore. Singaporeans enjoy clean water, clean environment, good jobs, good education, good housing and many other good benefits and these are all Thanks to our founding father, Mr Lee Kuan Yew. As an avid financial blogger who feel very much for the thousands of retail investors here in Singapore, … [Read more...]

Traveling – best life ever?

A commonly heard phrase - getting to travel on business is fun! Or not? Probably only the uninitiated would agree that business travel (at least in an investment banking context) is fun. See the sights, dine on the Company's dime, jet-setter, real go-getter aye? I don't think so... let's set the record straight. Traveling for business is not the same as traveling for leisure, the kind that … [Read more...]

One Important Quality To Have In Investing

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This will be a very short post. Regardless of your investment approach e.g. through tikam tikam, hearsay, Fundamental Analysis or Technical Analysis, there is only one thing is guarantee : you will never be right 100% of time. Even if you are right 100% of time so far, there is no guarantee that you can repeat it in the future. In short, there are times you need to admit "defeat" and cut … [Read more...]

Do you know your HAIR quality?

Big daddy was so impressed with the HAIR model of Shell in recruiting and developing talent that it adopted it for it's own Civil Service. I've never worked for big daddy and I don't think I'll ever pass through Shell's gates. Although I did get to work as a technician at one of the petrochemical white elephants at one of our offshore islands during my "lost years" - that only lasted 1 … [Read more...]