Author: Finance Smiths

Taxes Conundrum

The issue of raising taxes in Singapore due to growing government spending on investments and social services has surfaced in the news again. Specifically Income Tax and GST. I always get into an internal conflict with myself when I start to think about where I stand on it. Singapore’s Income Tax Rates is progressive, which means high income earners pay a proportionately higher tax. But with the highest income tax rate at 22%, it’s lower than other developed countries. Same goes for the GST at 7%, which is comparatively lower than other developed countries. Having lived and worked in Australia for a...

Read More

Knowing when to adjust our contributions

I had the chance to meet Michele and Rachel from StashAway as well as Kyith (Investment Moats) during the open discussion earlier in the week. It was great and I enjoyed the conversations we had on investing in general, pros & cons of StashAway, possible improvements to StashAway, etc. Looking forward to attending more of such events! Anyway, I read Kyith’s latest post at Investment Moats on Your Returns if You Dollar Cost Average into the STI ETF with interest. Mainly because I’m attempting a similar endeavour for the next 10 years – mindless investing in the STI ETF via...

Read More

Annual performance review outcome

My wife has completed her 2017 annual performance review and she just received her remuneration outcome – higher basic salary and a bonus. This is a better result than 2016, where she received no basic salary increase and a smaller bonus. That’s to be expected given that 2017 is a better year for the economy and bank compared to 2016. I’m happy for my wife. She stepped up to fill in for a higher level role and worked hard to perform well. Even though she became busier with work, she improved her time-management skills to squeeze in personal training...

Read More

Sell transaction Nov 2017

We have a small portfolio in Australia consisting of 2 individual stocks listed on the ASX. One of them is WorleyParsons Limited (ASX: WOR). It is an Australian engineering company that provides project delivery & consulting services to the resources & energy sectors, and complex process industries. Did you understand what this company is doing from the short introduction? Because I didn’t initially and still invested in WOR. Subsequently after doing some research & analysis, I only acquired a basic level of understanding of what WOR does but wanted to get some indirect exposure to the Australian resources & energy sector. Over the course of a...

Read More

Taking 2 consecutive days of sick leave from work

I finally took sick leave last Thurs and Fri to go see the doctor, get medicine & MC and rest at home. I have been struggling to recover from an initial bout of cough, sore throat and cold but still going to the office. Not because I’m hardworking but because I don’t like staying at home by myself. However, when the illness developed into a secondary and more serious infection, I took my wife’s advice to visit the doctor, take medicine and recover at home for the last 2 working days of the week. This gave me 4 days...

Read More

Cash gift and interest credited from DBS BYOB and SAYE

Back in Aug 2017, I wrote about my wife registering for the DBS BYOB Promotion and opening the SAYE Account. One of the benefits I mentioned was that she will receive a S$88 cash gift for having registered by 30 September 2017. This has now been credited into her DBS bank account. The 2% pa bonus interest on her monthly savings of S$3,000 in the SAYE Account has also been credited into her PayLah account. It’s about time. My wife had to call DBS in September 2017 and check whether the qualifying conditions have been met. Before waiting for another...

Read More

Investments for Oct 2017

Automated Investing for Oct 2017 Maybank Kim Eng Monthly Investment Plan (Maybank KE MIP) Buy 29 units of SPDR STI ETF (SGX:ES3) at S$3.329 per unit on 9 October 2017 Buy 89 units of Nikko AM REIT ETF (SGX:CFA) at S$1.086 per unit on 9 October 2017 Transaction costs of S$2 POSB Invest-Saver Buy 29 units of Nikko AM STI ETF (SGX:G3B) at S$3.45 per unit on 17 October 2017 Buy 85 units of ABF SG Bond ETF (SGX:A35) at S$1.17 per unit on 17 October 2017 Transaction cost of S$1.50 OCBC Blue Chip Investment Plan Buy 429 units of Nikko AM STI ETF (SGX:G3B) at...

Read More

StashAway Open Discussion in Nov 2017

You would think that having worked in an office environment for a number of years, I should be more responsive to emails and invitations to networking events. For some reason, I am terrible at the personal ones that relate to my blog. On one hand, I am interested in connecting with the wider Singapore finance bloggers community. But I find myself hesitating to follow through and show up for such gatherings. I used to think it has to do with not wanting to reveal my identity but that has become less of an issue the more I write. Besides, it’s...

Read More

Sell transaction Oct 2017

I made a sell transaction on Thurs 26 Oct 2017. As I have mentioned before on the blog, I am in the process of restructuring our investment portfolio to make it simpler. There was no particular reason other than a recent price run-up and it’s after the ex-dividend date. Which means I can still receive the latest distributions. Name: Keppel REIT Number of shares sold: 4,100 (Entire amount) Sale price: S$1.185 Net proceeds: S$4,845 Realised profit excluding dividends collected: S$450 or 9% Realised profit including dividends collected: S$900 or 18% It’s a decent profit and beats the unrealised profit...

Read More

Not learning from history

I have always wondered what we would have done during the big market crash in 2008 due to the Global Financial Crisis if we had the same current asset portfolio then. It’s a thought experiment because it’s easy to run through the logical sequence of actions when you are not under pressure. Much tougher to execute when you are actually in that environment. So we can only imagine what it would have been like and how we would have reacted. In 2008, we were in our 2nd year of university with little savings, no full-time jobs, no investing experience and...

Read More

Florence Regency sold enbloc

I honestly didn’t think Florence Regency was going to be sold enbloc after the public tender for the collective sale had closed and the 3 bidders refused to raise their bid prices to match the valuation. To think that a deal could be closed under private treaty with another developer within 10 weeks of the close of the public tender is a good achievement by the marketing agent JLL. There is still some ways to go for the legal completion of the sale but things are about to get interesting for my family. With approximate gross sales proceeds for...

Read More

Back in Singapore after the trip

We are back in Singapore! Flew back yesterday and arrived in the evening. It’s been a great trip and we enjoyed the holiday. Still going through some jet lag and it’s good that we can sleep in today to get some rest. As we get older, the recovery time takes longer, which is why we try to have a full day of rest between the time we arrive to when we have to return to work. We went to a number of cities, towns and villages on this trip and did quite a bit of walking & driving. It...

Read More

Monitoring our investments on a holiday

I just realised I haven’t posted anything yet for the month of October 2017. It was a busy week at the start of the month as we had to finish up our work before leaving for our holiday to France. Anyway, we are here now and it’s been good so far! My wife is still sleeping so I thought I will sneak in a quick post before we drive out later for our day trips. Even though I am on an overseas holiday, I like how easily I can still monitor our investments. Markets have been trending upwards so...

Read More

Shifting my asset allocation towards growth

I just updated our 30 Sep 2017 numbers and these are the percentage increases of our assets and net worth: Cash: +0.52% Investments: +2.92% Retirement & Medical: +1.15% Net Worth: +5.07% It was a significant month for us in terms of investments as we started our monthly Dollar Cost Averaging (DCA) of the Vanguard UK-listed ETFs. In addition to the automated banking monthly investment plans and robo-advisor accounts contributions, we are gradually starting to push more cash funds into the markets. The decision was made to be more aggressive with our investments after reviewing the asset allocation percentages. Despite...

Read More

Evolution of a long-term relationship

I enjoy reading personal finance bloggers’ posts when I have time. Being able to peak into and get a glimpse of what goes on in their lives is a privilege. It gives me insights into how I am approaching my own life, the ways in which I could improve it, why I am doing things in the same or different manner, etc. Learning from others is something I practise actively, which I have mentioned before on this blog. This time round. It’s from Early Retirement SG’s post on Do you live as one entity? It’s about how he manages his...

Read More

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter