Author: Growing your tree of prosperity

Personal Update : Two years have passed since my last paycheck !

It’s time for a another update. It’s been two years since I had a pay-check, if this were a disaster recovery exercise, I would say that it has been rather successful so far as I still did not draw upon my capital. a) My son is not here yet. At the personal level, I am waiting for the birth of my son. It can happen any day now. Right now I am more afraid than my wife who seems to be quite calm. b) Financial markets For all the doom and gloom, the markets did not faze me at...

Read More

Does nobody really owe you a living ?

Mr. Chan Chun Sing, in my humble opinion, may well be the best Secretary General in NTUC we would ever have. He gave a talk in NTUC while I was still an IT Assistant Director there and to get the ball rolling, I tried to corner him with a tough question on social mobility. I felt he handled the question well and from a rhetorical perspective, balanced logos with pathos. He had to bridge the elite-union gap which was not easily done. On the whole,  he was logical but also connected with the union leaders and explained assortative mating...

Read More

Net Present Value of Suffering.

This post is inspired by the large number of articles in response to the release of the O level results. Well meaning educators start to assist readers in choosing between a Polytechnic and a JC. One of the ideas which has been around since I was 16 years old is the idea that if a person is academically inclined, he should go JC and if he is practically oriented, he should go to a Polytechnic. Throughout the 90s, the same argument was used to help A level students choose between NUS and NTU. Before I begin, I’d like to...

Read More

Singaporeans want an Australian Singapore, not a Singaporean Singapore.

G’Day readers ! If you really think about it, these days Singaporeans want an Australian Singapore, not a Singaporean Singapore. The story in the public is that these days is that Singaporeans are clamouring for more work life balance – what is thought to be abundant in Australia. New workers joining the work force are starting to engage the HR departments differently than the Gen-X workers in the past. Gen-X workers like myself want rapid progress and pay escalation, they just want to claw their way up the ladder. The Millenials tend to be more balanced and want to...

Read More

The $5 latte solution is not as radical as it sounds ! [ Yayy ! Got featured on the Business Times. ]

Today is a great day ! My classmate came up to me and told me that I am featured in the Business Times today. Naturally, I bought a copy and as it turns out, I was mentioned in one paragraph on page 12 of the Business Times in the BT-Citibank Young Investor’s Forum in an article titled The $5-latte problem and a radically conservative solution by Cai Haoxiang. The context of the article is to talk about the feasibility of a salaried worker becoming financially independent if one starts saving at a younger age. I thought perhaps I put...

Read More

New free E-Book from all of us financial bloggers !

The folks at BigFatPurse took on the Herculean task to organise us financial bloggers to write a book on investing your first $20,000. I don’t wish to take too much credit for this as I have only contributed one article, so please download this from BigFatPurse website here. I am grateful that in spite of a busy year juggling law school and my family life, I am able to at least contribute to a new publication in 2015. The article I wrote targets intermediate investors and mentions five steps to the setting up a personal portfolio which is as...

Read More

What is the risk of NOT doing something ?

Leong Chan Teik was a great benefactor of mine. Close to a decade ago, Leong helped me promote my first book Growing Your Tree of Prosperity by featuring me in the Sunday Times “Me and My Money” section. Thanks to that interview I had with him, I was able to just make it into the Straits Times non-fiction bestseller lists at tenth position for just one week  – not bad for a rookie who never published a book in his life ! So Chan Teik found that he update I wrote during my birthday was interesting enough to be featured...

Read More

Survived a tough year !

It’s my 41st birthday today and it’s been a rough year, unlike many of the other bloggers, I will not be talking so much about my achievements but more about how taxing this year has been for me. At the end of the holiday season, I will look to 2016 and see what we can possibly look forward to. I joked that I am going through what possibly is the most expensive mid-life crisis compared to most of my peers. If you look at a low-end Maserati Grand Turismo, it costs about $492,000 in Singapore. Law school costs only...

Read More

Philosophy as the Operation System of an Investor’s Mind.

One of the better reads I had this holiday season is Mindware : Tools for Smart thinking by Richard Nisbett. This book  shows folks how to think and draws from various academic disciplines like Economics, Psychology, Statistics and Philosophy. It is a powerful toolbox for a problem solver and contains the keys to resolving many practical issues. The chapter on dialectic reasoning itself should be worth the book’s weight in gold. It summarizes Western Logic into three propositions : 1. Identity : A = A. A is itself and not some other thing. 2. Non-contradiction. A and not A...

Read More

Why Han Solo will be never be able to provide financial security to Singapore women. [SPOILER ALERT]

Let’s face it, if you have daughter, you will never allow her to date Han Solo. This guy has an unstable job as a smuggler and can be a little too trigger happy for your taste. The Force Awakens clearly paints the horrible consequences of dating a an unconscientious male. Han Solo turns out be a worse dad than a husband, so much so that his son Ben Solo turns to dark side and eventually kills him. The charming and flaky male is irresistible to women. TFA’s lesson is that women will go far to mate with Han Solo,...

Read More

Interest Rates Awaken ! [SPOILER ALERT]

The big news in the investing world is that the US has finally raised interest rates. As the markets have already priced in the rate rise, interest rate sensitive investments began to rally and REITs in particular had a great session in spite of an overall down market just now. The overall direction of interest rates in the US is going to be up but I expect the pace to be slower than most folks would expect because the low interest regime is good for growth and there is no risk of inflation as of this moment. The situation...

Read More

What can we learn from the changes to the Accounting profession ?

This is my first blog post using my iPad Pro with Apple Keyboard. I am currently blogging from Yishun Library. One of the more interesting developments in Singapore is the initiative to allow Polytechnic graduates to obtain an advanced diploma while working as an accounting technician to qualify as a chartered accountant without getting a degree. I believe that this news is probably making waves in NTU and NUS where an accounting degree was meant to be an assured ticket to the middle class. Accountants may have some concerns as to how this may impact their earnings capabilities in...

Read More

Lessons for Investors from my last Karaoke session !

Yesterday was the highlight of my school holidays as a very generous classmate took the initiative to organise a karaoke for us. The location was at K Suites at Orchard Parade hotel, as we are all SMU students, we pay $18 per head which was relatively cheap as it is a short walk from Orchard MRT station. As you guys might be aware, there is a significant age gap between my classmates and me. My classmates are mostly over a decade younger than me. Some of them who did not go to a karaoke with me before, and snarkily...

Read More

What Satay Bee-hoon can tell you about your financial future.

As I am still in a holiday mood, I’m just going to write an article about my life in general. The past couple of days have been unusually stressful. As I have only 3 weeks of holidays, I decided to rush through my computer gaming and ended up solving Legacy of the Void in 4 sittings at Casual mode. Playing games at the same intensity in law school is not particularly fun but I think that game wrapped up the entire Starcraft storyline quite well and I’m not too sure whether a Starcraft III would even be possible after...

Read More

On PSLE, self-worth and net worth.

One of the interesting things I’ve notice is that for quite a number of years since the 2011 elections, the reports on PSLE result have changed dramatically. There is no longer an emphasis on raw PSLE t-scores in mainstream media. Instead, newspapers prefer to celebrate students who overcome many obstacles in life to do well in the exams. This is good social engineering. However, starting this year, there is a new kind of phenomenon. Singaporeans are coming out in social media to talk about their so-called poor PSLE results and, in an attempt to make the kids feels good,...

Read More

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter