Crowdfunding : The next frontier in yield investing.

Thanks to the fact that Moolahsense makes all bids to lend money transparent, some readers should be aware that I started participating in peer-to-peer lending. In fact, for folks who have been following, I was able to lend $1,000 of my own money successfully to Leap Networks at about 8-9% interest rate about a week ago. The decision to start investing in crowdfunding platform was not a … [Read more...]

Are you wiser than an ITE student ?

Was attending a wedding last week and was very honoured to have a conversation with an ITE Life-skills lecturer so naturally I became very curious about her work. I wanted to know what would constitute life skills because it would potentially benefit readers of this blog. I was quite impressed when I was told that ITE employed the DISC personality profile system. Having a knowing one's … [Read more...]

If Budgetbabe can save $100,000, what’s your excuse ?

Budgetbabe recently wrote a concise blog article on how easy it is to save $100,000 before age 30. I thought I wanted to join in the fun, so I asked my FB what's their excuse for not being able to save $100,000 before age 30. The results were quite predictable, some friend carefully crafted a life situation which was intelligently distinguished from my life situation or some other financial … [Read more...]

Quick and dirty mental filters when confronted with new ideas.

Just a story to set the tone for this discussion. If you had known me 20 years ago, I was not exactly a charming specimen of the male gender. I'm soft of like Ted, but not cute. A female undergrad once asked me to carry her bag for her. I told her no, "Because scarly I fall down how ?" During my NUS days, I struggled to get a date, then I normally screw up my chances for a second date … [Read more...]

Masterclass in Skepticism.

I noticed that a large number of readers or folks who are interested in passive income or personal finance are also very susceptible to messages from self-help gurus. Some folks I have spoken to have shared personal stories of putting money into the wrong Internet Marketing programs or have been roped into MLM at a certain stage in their lives, others have paid possibly thousands attending some … [Read more...]

Time as an asset class.

Initially the title of my blog post today was supposed to be about RGS and billionaires, but fortunately (or unfortunately),  a series of events has allowed me to interrupt my article planning for something which is more useful to readers. ( Although I think many readers want to know what I think about the assortative mating between RGS and Billionaires as well... ) Two events serve as a … [Read more...]

Why Kim Jong-Un would approve of my insurance planning ?

I spend about $120 a month on AVIVA SAF group term life insurance which gives me about $1,000,000 of protection, this is the only insurance I have. Everything else is taken care by my passive income flow. This is the essence of buy term and invest the rest. Today, I received a letter telling me that I have just received a $570 rebate. I have received this amount last year which has effectively … [Read more...]

Mad Max shows us how the Singaporean Dream can become a Singaporean Nightmare.

I think by now most readers would have watched this face-melting action movie so it's time to write an article on this action flick. Why is Mad Max a teachable moment for the investor capitalist ? The reason is this.... ...If you follow my advice, work hard, save a large chunk of your earnings and learn the arts of investment well, you would be just like Immortan Joe, the villain of the … [Read more...]

What kind of prata does your job resemble ?

The Thosai article has attracted quite a lot of attention so I'd thought I'd follow up with a similar article about career management. This framework is inspired by Robert Reich's The Work of Nations has been explained before in my previous books but I have updated my ideas to include some new insights from Law School. a) Mechanical jobs resemble Roti Kosong I think by now, people agree that … [Read more...]

Why hanker for a safety net or a trampoline when you can have a jet pack ?

Singapore is really lucky, we had a one in a million chance of being ruled by Lee Kuan Yew and after he passed away, we continue to come under the able administration of Tharman Shanmugaratnam. ( I'm not PAP IB, I like Low Thia Kiang's brand of constructive politics as well and actually think that WP will survive the AHPETC scandal. ) Lately Tharman's interview with the BBC at the Gallen … [Read more...]

What kind of thosai does your degree resemble ?

For this weekend, I wanted to write an article on treating a degree as an investment just like a portfolio of stock and bonds. Fortunately for everyone, I was also ordering my thosai while thinking about this idea so I thought I could write an article on choosing degrees and eating thosai. Let's start with some fundamentals. Degrees serve two purposes : a) Equipping you with the skills to … [Read more...]

On IDA, fake degrees, and investing in human capital.

It looks like a previous employer of mine is unable to get itself out of the limelight. First it was Alan Ramos, then xenophobes decided to take issue with the Deputy Chairman's FT status and now there's an issue with IDA hiring folks with dubious qualifications. As Singaporeans, we need to be fair to IDA. Thanks to IDA, we have relatively fast internet connections, just try logging in in … [Read more...]

Of course, most folks do not care about personal financial planning !

The financial blogosphere is suddenly abuzz when Cheerful Egg wrote about the indifferent attitude to personal finance.  Upon reading the article. I wanted to throw my hat into the ring as the article may become quite viral over the next few days. I have only one real point to make. Why is this a bad thing ? Almost all value and yield investors know that the profits they extract come … [Read more...]

Happiness is a Strategy !

I thought I share some of my thoughts with reader John Smith on my views on happiness as he has commented that I seem happy even though I have a fairly busy schedule. a) Positive Psychology guides Happiness For a start, I think I have gone beyond subjective notions and feelings towards happiness, Folks bandy about terms like YOLO and "I just wanna be happy." don't seem to just cut it on the … [Read more...]

What can we learn from Albert, Bernard and Cheryl ?

By now, most readers would have heard of the maths problem which went viral two weeks ago.You can access the information about the original problem here.This blog article is not about the mathematics behind the problem but about the behaviours of the folks who attempted to tackle the problem on social media which I think can teach us a thing or two about failure and living lives of mediocrity.I'd … [Read more...]

Survived another round of exams…

Yipppeeeee ! I just finished my last paper yesterday...The sad thing is that my summer term starts next Monday so I have about 4 days to take it easy and then the intensive reading assignments start all over again. I have signed up for two summer terms, which mean about 9 hours of seminars for 8 consecutive weeks.There is some perverse logic to spending as much time having active lessons every … [Read more...]

Passing of a Giant…

I am writing this article from SMU Labs as I'm in a middle of hell week where I would need to make two group presentations this week.  Ordinarily, there would not be a blog update until I am done with all my work. But today is a very sad day and I think a blog post dedicated to Lee Kuan Yew would be appropriate. I did not start out as a huge fan of our government policies. In Young PAP BBS, … [Read more...]

Update : Chinese New Year is over !

It has been two Chinese New Year holidays since I have left the workforce. Here's a quick update and some thoughts about life  in general. a) Starting community service tomorrow. As a JD student, SMU mandates 30 hours of service to the community service which must be done in order to graduate with a law degree. The Sikh Welfare Council has very kindly given me two students to provide … [Read more...]

The problem with skills-based education.

One of the more populist changes made to the education is skills-based education. Skills-based education is a very attractive idea. If a person is skilled or qualified enough to do the job, he should be entitled to it. The middle class, middle income voter is more likely to support it if it subtly promises to overhaul the perceived unhappiness about the education system or 'meritocracy'. One … [Read more...]

Some thoughts on career management for the New Year !

Happy new year of the Goat ! Gong Xi Fatt Cai ! The financial bloggers were goading me to write something pretty hardcore about Confucius today, but I decided to hold it off until a few weeks later as I think I've got something better to share today. As it turns out, I was quite fortunate to be exposed to some ideas when SMU conducted its networking sessions for the folks in the JD … [Read more...]