Author: I

Cost of living in the United Kingdom-Food

Food to me is quite compartmentalized: Eating in at home, Eating out routinely (fast food, hawker food), Eating out at restaurants for occasions and really atas (high class) restaurants reserved for the very special occasion. Eating in at home/Cooking for lunch is cheaper in the UK. Eating out routinely is more expensive and restaurant wise, the prices are thereabouts. Why the disparity? First I have to qualify that with the UK’s rate of VAT. VAT is just like our GST levied at the point of sale. Unfortunately, it is 20% and not 7% like in Singapore. Quite high huh!VAT...

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My cost of living in the United Kingdom- Transport

With Yorkshire not exactly being a bustling metropolis, public transport is sketchy and not to mention expensive. I shall cover 3 aspects in this post, namely, short distance public transport (within the W Yorkshire country), long distance trips cross country and private transport (i.e. cars and taxis) Short Distance Public Transport Now, this is one thing that is extremely expensive in the UK. As people will already know, the London Underground costs 2 pounds per trip within zone 1-2, which is to say about a 16km radius around central London. As for West Yorkshire, buses and trains do not...

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My cost of living in the United Kingdom- Rent and Utilities

In this post I shall touch on the issue of rent and housing. Next year, I am staying with three other friends in a ~1,200 sq ft 3 storey house opposite the university’s main building. Our rent per month for this house, excluding bills, is GBP 1,120. That works out to be roughly 64.50 GBP pppw. Now, this rent is slightly below average for the area; this is because we only have two toilets whereas other more expensive houses have en-suite toilets (this means every room has a toilet). This area is very much more expensive than outlying areas...

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My cost of living in the United Kingdom- introduction

I had an interesting discussion with people recently regarding the cost of living in the United Kingdom. As some may know, I am currently a medical student in England, but I am not in London. I want to dispel the oft-held notion that the United Kingdom is an expensive country to live in. In actual fact, it is not. I would daresay excluding London, it is cheaper (even before taking into account higher wages in UK) to live in than Singapore. (Doctors earn more in Singapore nett, but that’s an anomaly; most other professionals earn more here than in...

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bought tesco

bought Tesco at 317pence. tesco is UK’s leading grocer with 30% of market share in the UK. it is also the second largest grocer in the world after Walmart by profits. it also has operations in America, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Malaysia, South Korea etc. I personally shop here because there is a loyalty card programme and the prices are the same as the other big three (asda-walmart, wm morrisons and sainsbury) here, essentially giving me a 1%...

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Diesel cars

not a investment post but just something I noticed staying in the UK. More than 60% of all passenger cars here are diesel engined, especially newer cars (2001 and newer). Diesel has many pros over petrol especially in a metro driving setting; it has more low end torque (more power at lower revs) and is much much more economical than petrol (some cars like the citroen c3 diesel can get up to 30-35km/l on expressway driving). Not to mention cheaper than petrol (in singapore at least. it’s more expensive in the UK). what puzzles me is why the government...

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Moved all my OA funds to SA

Moved all my OA monies I received whilst working previously to my SA. Reason being I won’t be buying a HDB flat with it in the foreseeable future (at least the next 5-8 years) and the difference in interest rates would mean quite a difference in the compounding...

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Divested Mapletree Industrial

Queued and sold MIT at $1.195 today, giving about a 25% profit after accounting for dividends. Sold as it’s approaching resistance at 1.20 and I’m betting that the downside risk is much more than the upside potential at current prices. Hence, decided to take profit off the table. At $1.20 MIT’s yield is at 6%, commensurate with A-REIT but with higher gearing. Thus I think MIT has gone a tad over-valued. There are better deals out there and I will be looking to put some capital into other counters should their prices fall and value...

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Divested Mapletree Industrial

Queued and sold MIT at $1.195 today, giving about a 25% profit after accounting for dividends. Sold as it’s approaching resistance at 1.20 and I’m betting that the downside risk is much more than the upside potential at current prices. Hence, decided to take profit off the table. At $1.20 MIT’s yield is at 6%, commensurate with A-REIT but with higher gearing. Thus I think MIT has gone a tad over-valued. There are better deals out there and I will be looking to put some capital into other counters should their prices fall and value...

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ST Engineering: Analyst report

Protect your portfolio! This should be the best time to buy STE for its defensivequality in the face of volatile markets. Indeed, its share price has outperformed themarket by 11% in the last three months. With little room for sharp depreciation inthe US$, we are hanging on to hopes of earnings surprises, which we believe canoffer re-rating catalysts. Consensus expects the US$/S$ to hover at S$1.18-1.20into 2012, which would have a negligible (1% or S$6m) impact on STE’s PBT inthe worst case. In fact, we believe current valuations of 15x CY12 P/E (below itsaverage trading band of 16x during...

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ST Engineering: Analyst report

Protect your portfolio! This should be the best time to buy STE for its defensivequality in the face of volatile markets. Indeed, its share price has outperformed themarket by 11% in the last three months. With little room for sharp depreciation inthe US$, we are hanging on to hopes of earnings surprises, which we believe canoffer re-rating catalysts. Consensus expects the US$/S$ to hover at S$1.18-1.20into 2012, which would have a negligible (1% or S$6m) impact on STE’s PBT inthe worst case. In fact, we believe current valuations of 15x CY12 P/E (below itsaverage trading band of 16x during...

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UK Pound Sterling against Singapore Dollar

Period of extreme volatility in the forex markets too. Pound Sterling and Euro have declined precipitously against the Singapore Dollar as I write this. Pound to 1.929 and Euro to 1.69. The former is a historical low (yet again), the latter is not too far away from it’s historical low at 1.55-ish. Swiss National Bank has also publicly stated it will intervene in the forex markets to keep EUR/CHF at a maximum of 1.20, which led to EUR/CHF to drop to… you guessed it… 1.20. It’s also dropped to 1.40 against the Singapore Dollar. Interestingly enough, the US dollar...

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UK Pound Sterling against Singapore Dollar

Period of extreme volatility in the forex markets too. Pound Sterling and Euro have declined precipitously against the Singapore Dollar as I write this. Pound to 1.929 and Euro to 1.69. The former is a historical low (yet again), the latter is not too far away from it’s historical low at 1.55-ish. Swiss National Bank has also publicly stated it will intervene in the forex markets to keep EUR/CHF at a maximum of 1.20, which led to EUR/CHF to drop to… you guessed it… 1.20. It’s also dropped to 1.40 against the Singapore Dollar. Interestingly enough, the US dollar...

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