Author: A Singaporean Stockmarket Investor (ASSI)

When not to do voluntary contribution (VC) to CPF?

Reader says… It’s the first time I did a VC to my CPF as I have already hit my FRS. I was surprised to see that part of my VC actually went into my SA account. I thought all of it will go into my OA. I am still employed and I will be getting Mandatory Contribution to my OA and SA. But after going through my last year’s CPF statement, I realised that I am very close to the $37,740 annual limit. I know that any excess will be returned to me interest free next year. My questions...

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Largest investments updated (Early 2018).

My last blog on this subject was published in October 2017. If you don’t remember, see the related post at the end of this blog. After making some changes in 4Q 2017, with the addition of two new members, this is the new A-list of my investment portfolio: From $350,000 to $499,999: AIMS AMP Cap. Ind. REIT SingTel ComfortDelgro I certainly look forward to the dividends from SingTel and ComfortDelgro in 2018 which would hopefully make my primarily income focused portfolio more robust and less dependent on S-REITs. Next up are the smaller but still rather significant investments in...

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Keeping friends without spending money?

Reader says… Can I ask your opinions regarding friendship? I do like my small circle of friends but I am thrifty in nature. Given a choice, I would rather spend money in hawker center rather than places that cost more than $10 or 20 +. And also, things like drinks, movie ticket during peak hours, Sing K and etc can be costly. As such, I have to reject quite a few outings which are not good for friendship-wise. If there are free activities, I am more than willing to go out. Haha. How do you cope with it? And...

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"When can I quit my full time job?" (Keep your needs simple and wants few.)

Reader says… I am thinking of quitting my job when i am 40 years and do freelance work. I am pretty sure my freelance and dividends can cover my living expenses of about $8,000 pa. By 40 years old I will have a fully paid flat, about $120,000 stocks and bonds, $200,000 savings, CPF Oa $100,000, sa $70,000 and MA $52,000. Do you think i can retire from full time work given my financial status? Is my net worth good enough for a 40 years old AK says… If you are not a big spender, I think you can...

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Have your (CPF) pie and eat it (eventually)! …………………….. (AK is showing off his CPF numbers graphically!)

I really like the colorful yearly statements generated by the CPF Board. It adds a dash of color to what is usually a very boring black and white sheet of numbers. I find the colorful statement really pretty and makes my pretty CPF numbers prettier! You like pies? I like pies. Pie chart that shows how much I have in my CPF account, I like even more! For newly minted readers of ASSI, do I hear “Oooh”, “Ahhh” and the more local “Waah”? How old am I?...

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Merger of ESR-REIT and VIVA Industrial Trust.

I have more than a handful of relatively small investments (i.e. anything smaller than $100,000 and usually smaller than $50,000 in size). Some of them are legacy investments (i.e. leftovers from many years ago after selling off most of the investments) and ESR-REIT (formerly Cambridge Industrial Trust) was one of them. The last time I blogged about this REIT was in June 2016. Back then, I added to my investment in the REIT at 52.5 cents a piece. After adding to my investment, still, it remained a smallish investment and I explained why in related post #1 at the...

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Spent money and now will spend more time.

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you must have noticed that I have not been blogging as much as before. If you regularly send me emails, you must have noticed that I do not reply to emails as promptly as before. This has been going on for many months. What have I been doing? I have been spending more time on my other hobbies and the one that is taking the lion’s share of my time is online gaming. Specifically, MMORPG. I have blogged about this before but things are about to get more intense. After...

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Generous monetary legacy for children good or bad?

This chat happened after I shared again a blog on a reader’s intention to top up his new born’s CPF SA account (see related post #1 at the end of this blog). Reader says… Imagine if it works… put 171k at age 0, get 2.18mil at 65, that’s 2 mil from the government. AK says… Haha… it is very amazing. I know Reader says… The figure makes me think that there’s something wrong with my calculation. AK says… If you have money to spare, i think it is ok to do it. It is legacy planning. I dunno about...

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Pay home loan and HDB housing grant fast?

Reader says… I hope you bear with me while I share the info about it – resale flat was purchased at 480k and I got a hdb housing grant of 50k for 1st timer. My fiancee and myself went for a bank loan instead of hdb loan. The loan principle I have to service is 384k. I would really appreciate your advice/guidance to my following questions: a. I thought of repaying my housing loan using cash instead of cpf. I think this is still manageable from my side from a cash liquidity perspective since I could save on the chargeable...

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How to get a 12% dividend yield?

We should know but do we know what to look out for as income investors? Here are the basics. Reader says… Recently, my friend intro my to allianz income n growth. He mentioned that the growth is not a lot but dividend is relatively attractive around 12%.. omg. But i better ask shifu level like u AK says… You should ask 2 very basic and important questions:...

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Retirement money made to last longer without risk.

My mom is now 71 and she has $200k retirement money. She is not on the CPF life scheme but on the past retirement sum scheme. I am trying hard to help her get some passive income. She has parked this money in short term duration funds but the returns has been really peanuts. I am trying to see how to help her. Do you have any suggestions? AK says… I would say that at her age, it is more about capital preservation and she should not take any risk with her savings. The CPF is a good risk...

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Singapore Savings Bond short term more rewarding.

Many readers asked me aboutSingapore Savings Bond recently and apparently it is because the coupon is now 1.55% for the first year which is much higher than what any local bank I know would pay for a 1 year fixed deposit. I was not interested in the Singapore Savings Bond for various reasons and to avoid repeating myself, if you are not familiar with the reasons, please read the following blog (plus details on eligibility and mechanics): Singapore Savings Bond: Good or bad? When I blogged about the bond in the middle of 2015, the bond’s coupon for the first year was...

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My final word on Bitcoin and friends.

“January’s cryptocurrency selloff got fresh impetus on Tuesday when Bitcoin slumped as much as 25 percent, as the prospect of regulatory crackdowns appeared to spread…” This story continues at the end of this blog. AK says… The key is to understand that Bitcoin is for trading. Bitcoin is not an investment. People can invest in Blockchain technology but with Bitcoin, it is really a trading game. There are FOREX traders. There are no FOREX investors. Since Bitcoin is a virtual currency, people can be Bitcoin traders. There are no Bitcoin investors. People who call themselves Bitcoin investors are really...

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Was Soilbuild REIT a shabby investment?

Soilbuild REIT had to juggle not one, not two but three hot potatoes up until last month. With the sale of KTL Offshore’s property to its sponsor, they have two hot potatoes left (i.e. Technics and NK Ingredients). In a blog in September last year (see related post at the end of this blog), I said that with the reduced DPU assumed then, if we demanded an 8% yield, we should only be buyers at 66c a unit. Now, with KTL Offshore gone, with lower income, we won’t be wrong to downgrade the REIT. I wonder also if the...

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8 years AAA bond with 2.5% and 4% coupons.

Conventional wisdom tells us that we should have some investment grade bonds in our portfolio because they help to smooth out volatility. Investing in good quality equities is probably more rewarding in the longer term but we have to develop a stomach for the volatility that comes with the territory. Whatever the case may be, when I turn 55, there is no way of knowing if equities would be in a rough patch or not. So, having some money in investment grade bonds makes sense to me. It gives me peace of mind. The CPF is as good as...

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