I knew I loved you before I met you

I knew I loved you before I met you, so goes the song by Savage Garden. When I first heard that song, I thought it's just some mythology that some romantics had dreamed of. I don't really believe in love at first sight. Until it happened to me (okay, technically there's no 'sight'). That little kick, that little tremor, especially at night. The black and white pictures we took every other … [Read more...]

Where did all my savings go?

I started tallying the past records of all my savings recently. My aim is to find out where all my hard earned savings go to. Did I 'waste' a lot of my life energy, which is captured in the form of savings, into frivolous stuff? It's a pity that I only started tracking seriously in 2008. I started work around mid 2003, so those 5 years until 2007 are like my lost yearsThe breakdown over the … [Read more...]

Financial competition

Lim, Tan and Lee sat around the marble table of the kopi-thiam. They are classmates that had not met each other for the past 30 years, so naturally they had plenty to share. The conversation flowed along, interrupted only by the periodic crunch of the kaya butter toasts and the sipping of kopi-o in the quaint porcelain cups, until it came to the topic about their children. Tan started it first … [Read more...]

Networth updates in 2016

Usually I'll do a networth update around end of the year, so with few blinks of an eye, we're here again after 1 yr. This year is a fantastic year for me, but I'll talk more about that when I reflect on the year 2016 and how grateful I am for the ups and also the downs. The last time I did my networth was back in 7th Dec, 2015, here.There are so many ways to calculate networth, but I've always … [Read more...]

ROE vs PB of regional banks

Just out of curiosity, I did a study on the ROE vs PB ratio for the different banks across the region. I fully understand that it's not a good apples to apples comparison because different banks have different regulations and capital requirements, and also different rules to recognise profits, bad debts and so on. But it's still good to see how the banks fare on these two metrics across the … [Read more...]

Capitamalls asia bonds optional redemption

Another bond bites the dust. Don't worry, this is not from the troubled oil and gas sector. It's the optional redemption of Capitamalls asia bonds, CapMallA3.8%b220112 announced from sgx here. I blogged about the bonds here and here. The full maturity of the bond is actually on 12-Jan-2022 but there is an option for early redemption on 12-Jan-2017 and every year thereafter. Since there is a … [Read more...]

Early Retirement Grid

I chanced upon an excellent blog that talks about FIRE (Financial independence Retire early) in 4 pillars. I will take some time to explore the site but I'm liking it already! It's here, called Four Pillar Freedom. There's a post called early retirement grid with the following picture below Picture taken from fourpillarfreedom blog post here Basically it shows you how long … [Read more...]

My 50k savings goal back then and now

I was reading back my previous post on my 50k savings challenge here, and trying to see if there's any difference between then and now. I first started back in 2009, and it had been 7 yrs since. How time flies! Comparing the difference between 2009 and 2016: 1) Shift in focus between 2009 and 2016 I had a plan on how much to save every month back in 2009 and it was further broken down … [Read more...]

Choose yourself!

I am reading this book by James Altucher titled Choose Yourself. I'm still in the midst of it but am loving the message that the book is trying to convey. In this kind of economy, there's not much loyalty for any particular company. Everyone of us has to treat ourselves as a company and behave like we are one! Here's some tips on choosing yourself from my own experience: 1. Have a personal … [Read more...]

Review of financial goals

I wrote about my offensive and defensive strategies two years ago here, but never really got a chance to review it to see if it's still relevant. Let's do it now. In that post, I talked about the dilemma of using cash to shave off interest at 2.6% by doing a partial capital repayment, or using it to invest in the market by getting a return of more than 2.6%. It's not an easy solution and I … [Read more...]

Buy High Sell Low, not Buy low Sell High

We often hear this nails-scratching-on-blackboard phrase "Buy low Sell high" until our eyes roll and our skin crawling with goosebumps. There's truth in it, except that like all aphorism, it's not as simple as it is. Let's deconstruct that phrase. Buy low sell high consists of two parts. Firstly, you have to buy at a low and then you have to sell at a high. But unfortunately, the aphorism … [Read more...]

Money beliefs and habits

When students come to me for help, the solution is not as simple as telling them to study. They are obviously not doing well, and the reason for them for not studying can come from a variety of reasons. It could be low self esteem, seeking attention from parents or peers, trying to fit in with his close group of friends and so on. Unless the root cause of the problem is dealt with, any methods of … [Read more...]

My retirement comes annually

As my work winds down for the seasonal lull, I suddenly have a lot more free time. To the point that I don't know what to do with my time. I'm very used to working 6 to 8 hours of class time on weekdays (not inclusive of preparatory/marking time), so suddenly having only 2 hrs of work or even none takes a little getting used to. Again. Every year end, I'll face the same situation of getting … [Read more...]

The danger of holding too much cash

Today I made a mistake. I was queuing for a counter for about 2 weeks at 1.47. But when the stock started showing surges in its bid and sell volume, I started interpreting it as a sign that the counter will move. Against all reasons, I abandoned my queue and bought at the then sell price of 1.50. It's only 0.03 cts, yes, and I didn't buy a lot (4,000 shares only), but it was still a mistake. … [Read more...]

Phillips money market fund (MMF)

It's been a while since I've talked about Phillips money market fund (MMF). A quick search revealed three articles: 1. POEMS money market fund (MMF) (2008) 2. Phillips money market fund (2009) 3. Phillips MMF (2010) I know, from first look, they are all the same or similar sounding titles. No creativity on my part in choosing a title, haha! For those who do not know, money market fund … [Read more...]

It’s 3 am I must be lonely

Restitutive, Retributive and Reformative. These 3 words keep rolling around in my mind as I woke up in the middle of the night to think about this. It must be around 3am, because that's the time my aircon timer is set and I usually wake up due to the difference in temperature. I must have read it somewhere, but I'm not sure why this suddenly cropped up. Restitution means to restore or repair … [Read more...]

CPFIS-OA investors shouldn’t invest? Really?

There's always a big hoo ha about CPF investors being unable to hit the 2.5% interest rate of ordinary account CPF. The statistics mentioned in this recent news is that over the last 10 years, more than 80% of those who invested their money in CPF would be better off leaving their money in the CPF OA. It's also stated that 45% of the investors made losses in the scheme. I don't buy this. I dug … [Read more...]

How we react to other’s success story

Someone mentioned his success story. You immediately start to think of what are the circumstances that makes him different from you. Maybe he comes from a rich background. Maybe he don't have NS so he starts working earlier by 2 years. Maybe his parents help him pay the downpayment of his property and his car. Maybe he is single so he don't have to pay as much as a married couple with child. I'm … [Read more...]

Principle of Non-equality of Equal magnitude numbers

Hypothesis: Equal numbers a and b of the same magnitude need not be equal i.e 1+1 is not necessarily equal to 3-1, even though numerically they are both equal to 2. Method of proof: By contradiction Proof A: I have 3 million dollars, but I lost 1 million dollars, so I still have 2 million dollars. I might go jump down. If I have 1 million dollar and I made another million, I now … [Read more...]

What’s with the rant against whole life plans?

I bought a whole life plan. In fact, 2 of them. One is a traditional whole life, where you pay until forever. The other is a limited payment whole life, where the payment period is condensed to maybe 5, 10 or 15 yrs, so you pay a higher amount but you can stop paying after. There's so much vitriol against whole life that I thought I should make some statement FOR whole life, just to provide … [Read more...]