CFE post : How SMU can fit into the future economy.

Yay ! Mid-terms are over. Today, I wanted to combine several posts into one. Of recent note, SMU has been on the radar of social media as of late. Exchange student Kerry Dwyer has written very candid comments about her SMU and Singapore experience here. In a mid-term party which was conducted by my JD pals yesterday,  my foreign classmates felt more inclined to agree with Kerry. There are … [Read more...]

Equity Management #2 : What strategies are the real deal when investing in stocks ?

[ This article is based on Chapter 3 of Equity Management by Jacobs and Levy ] It is not easy to tell who is the real deal when they about investing in equities and who is merely making up a story on a good investment strategy ? The really smart quants have a decent answer : Disentanglement. When we say that a low P/E strategy produces returns which are above average compared to the rest … [Read more...]

Quick Personal Update : End of CNY

Just like that CNY is over. I am hunkering down for a week of 3 mid-term exams and my blogging will slow over the next few days. a) Personal Finances It has been quite good for the past few weeks for income investors. We should be expecting juicy pay-offs at the end of this month and, in spite of every negative thing that has been said about Trump, his approach towards the fiduciary rule and … [Read more...]

Equity Management #1 : Ten investment insights which matter

I thought I should look for a more advanced book after reviewing Tim Feriss' Tools for Titans and have settle on Jacobs and Levy's Equity Management which I doubt anyone would read because it is quite an advanced guide and looks like a huge brick. The way I'm going to cover this book is going to be slower, with about one article a week. This book is, upon inspection, quite difficult to … [Read more...]

Chinese New Year as Life Audit.

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Today is the 7th day of Chinese New Year and I would to talk about family visits between relatives. Exchanging notes with my younger classmates, the culture of probing relatives who ask about school performance and marital status is currently alive and well in Chinese New Year and it has created a considerable amount of angst amongst Singaporean Chinese, particularly unmarried women. The … [Read more...]

Channel 8 Rant : Why be a Good man when you can be a Great man !

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A Happy New Year to all the readers of this blog. I've been silent this new year prior to writing this article because I don't really have any mind-blowing content today having initially wanted to talk about elitism, hubris and exclusivity of law schools but that's only useful for a small segment of my readership and not really consistent with the festive mood this week. And then, a couple … [Read more...]

Modern trends in self-help and personal improvement

I started reading self-help books sometime during my JC years, quite a while before Robert Kiyosaki incited me to really take possession of my personal financial destiny. The self-help fare in those days are divided along the lines of the personality ethic books by Dale Carnegie and the character ethic books championed by Stephen Covey. Along the way, Anthony Robbins became a huge motivational … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #45 : The Last One !

All good things must come to an end. This is the last segment on this blog on Tools for Titans. I am only going to do the wealthy section of the book. Starting tomorrow, my priorities are to complete the "Wise" section at my normal pace which means that I would be done with the book over the next few days. BJ Novak is an actor, writer, director and executive producer of the hit comedy The … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #44 : The best way to predict the future is to create it.

Peter Diamandis has been named one of the World's 50 greatest leaders by Forbes Magazine. He is interested in space travel and human longevity. This is a good, solid section that is full of visionary ideas. a) A problem is a terrible thing to waste This simple idea exhorts us to cherish the problems that we discover at work because if this problem is novel enough, it can lead to the … [Read more...]

Tool for Titans #43 :The problem with plans.

Scott Belsky is an entrepreneur, author and investor. a) The problem with plans. Right off the bat, Scott talks about the limitations levied when you plan your life too well. Scott's idea is that if he plans for everything, his life will not exceed his expectations because he loses one source of creativity as he gets jammed less often. We can't really falsify this statement but … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #42 : Inspiration is for amateurs.

Justin Boreta is the founding member of Glitch Mob. I have no fricking idea who this guy is. If you are a fan of his music, please share with me his better songs. Initially, I had half a mind to skip this section because it is not coherent enough to be in this book and the editor should be shot for allowing this to be included. The only statement I will discuss today is the statement that … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #41 : What are their incentives ?

Mike Shinoda is one of the two vocalists of Linkin Park. There is only one major learning from this section of the book. When we engage with someone, the first question we should always ask ourselves is what are the incentives of the other party. For example, how do we know that insurance agents may not have our best interests in mind ? Simple. Insurance agents  make a commission … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #40 : Reject the norms of your time.

This segment is about Neil Strauss. He is the author of the pick-up book The Game. If I were to read The Game in my 20s, Neil might have turned out to be my favourite author. Unfortunately, I learnt of his works through mutual friends who experimented with "negging" women with low self-esteem at pickup bars. ( I don't neg women with low self-esteem. My wife, however, is very good at negging men … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #39 : Gut Investing.

At least according to Tim Ferriss, Kevin Rose is the best stock picker in the start-up world. Compared to the other sections of the book, this section ranks as one of the more important ones for the investing public. When it comes to start-up investing, most value investors who need to look at accounting statements would be quickly rendered impotent because may startups are hardly profitable … [Read more...]

Personal finances when transitioning from single-hood to being married.

Ok, today's article is to simply tie up a loose end from the talk. We failed to address the question directly from a question in the audience who asked us how our personal finance changed when we transitioned from single-hood to marriage. Theoretical answer I will first share a theoretical answer because it is more likely to be experienced by a reader. In the presentation I shared a table … [Read more...]

Tool for Titans #37 : Put the Big Stones into the Jar First

This section is on the father of Progressive House Music DJ Kaskade who was nominated for the Grammys five times. After reading this short section twice, I have no idea why this is in the wealth section. Anyway, I'm just going to talk about that famous metaphor where the professor asks the university students to put rocks of different sizes into a jar. If you put the smallest rocks into the jar … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #38 : The value of "I Don’t Understand"

Luis Von Ahn is a computer science professor and the CEO of Duolingo, one of the more efficient ways to pick up a new language. His section has two key ideas : a) The value of "I don't understand" Luis had a Phd advisor who kept insisting that he did not understand what Luis was trying to say when he was developing the CAPTCHA system. Eventually, it was revealed that his advisor was … [Read more...]

Money & Love Event : My take on the event

The one big talk for 2017 is over. Before I get back into finishing up law school, here are my thoughts on the event yesterday. If I can redo the event all over again, I will make two changes to the programme. First, I will work closer with SDN or ROM to find sponsorship and scale the event to invite a bigger audience. But we are still a bunch of financial bloggers who are trying to bring a … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #36 : Some Quick Tips.

[ I am wrapping my work for today to go to the venue where I will be giving the talk later. Fortunately, today's article is very short. ] Noah Kagan is the thirtieth employee of Facebook and the fourth employee of Mint.com. He is quite short on life philosophy but quite extensive on life hacks. Just three ideas from him : a) Increase your productivity One instant way is to increase the … [Read more...]

Tools for Titans #34 : Build something which have no value in other copying them

Chris Young is an inventor and tinkerer who is co-author of this mind-melting book called Modernist Cuisine. The one single idea in this section which is worth thinking about is a question of what we would build if we have $100 million that would have no value to others in copying. This question encapsulates several more important questions we need to ask ourselves before we get into the … [Read more...]