How best to utilize the Singapore Savings Bond?

With the recent announcements of the Singapore Savings Bond (SSB) coming up in Sept, which is just 2 months away, there's a lot more thinking on my part regarding how best to utilise this new instrument to preserve and grow our wealth. The advantages of this savings bond is widely reported in the newspaper. It's that you can cash in and liquidate the bond any time without price risk. For bonds, … [Read more...]

What would change if you earn $25k per month?

I saw a newspaper article today here that talks about the difficulties of older aged PMETs who are struggling to find work after being laid off in the last financial crisis. In the article, there are several examples of people earning (to me) an extremely high income. There's one getting $25k a month and another earning $9k per month. On Sunday Times, there are a few woman earning $10k and $9k per … [Read more...]

Should everyone invest?

Before answering that, let's change it to another question: Should everyone have tuition? No. Because not everyone needs it, though most will probably have to seek some sort of guidance every now and then. If you're highly disciplined, understands what is going on in school and has access to occasional help, then go ahead and do it independently! I also don't have access to tuition at all in my … [Read more...]

6 problems that prevent students from scoring

This article is first published in my tuition site here. I thought it'll be great to share this with the parents and students who sometimes read this site.------------------------------------------In my years of tutoring, I found that there are 6 categories of problems that students faced. I’m going to list out all these potential problems and then we will see how we can reduce or eliminate … [Read more...]

Half year review

Tracking is different from managing goals. If you track your goals but didn't do any reflection, then the feedback system is lost and you might not really use the data that you've tracked wisely. You can even say that tracking is a tool to mine data for reflection, so that you can have a better outcome at the end of the day. Time flies, and the more I age, the faster it flies. Days zoomed by, … [Read more...]

HSI free falling -1450 pts

HSI did a good show today. Following the rise and fall of Shanghai closely, especially the latter, HSI went into free fall and dropped a staggering 1450 points, which represents a total of 5.84%. It's a figure that we don't see often and I thought it'll be good to save a screenshot of today's market close for future reference. So here we go: What good is the knowledge of such things? I … [Read more...]

Ethical investing

Do you have a problem investing in companies that does things that you normally don't do in real life? I give an example here. I am invested in HSBC - the world's local bank - for a pretty long time. That was way back in 2007 when I just started this blog. Back then, the financial crisis had not happened yet and in the span of almost 8 years, a lot had changed. The whole landscape of the global … [Read more...]

Do you have more than 1 alarm in your mobile phone?

BULLy the BEAR - dreams10

My student didn't turn up for lessons recently. It's a group session so the lessons went on as usual for the rest. A while later, he texted me, apologised and said that his alarm didn't ring and that's the first time in his life that it happened. It happened for me as well. Usually about once a year, I'll have screw-ups in my gadgets. I usually set alarms in my phone to wake me up in the … [Read more...]

My thoughts on Pre/Post Financial Independence schedule

I read B's post on pre and post financial independence (FI) schedule here. In it, he put in his planned timetable for pre and post FI. He also encouraged everyone to try it and have a little fun imagining what it'll be like upon reaching FI. I thought about it. I'm not reaching FI anytime soon, though I'm sure I'll certainly reach it one day. I'm a full time private tutor. People thought that … [Read more...]

Being frugal with your time

I was discussing some stuff with the finance gang, and we came up with the idea of being frugal. You know the usual stuff about being frugal with money, but there's also another less discussed but related topic - that of being frugal with one's time. First of all, my definition of being frugal is to be efficient and not be wasteful. The action you do must be aligned with your values. So the … [Read more...]

Not a great tech year for me

This year isn't a great tech year for me. First of all, my old trusty desktop broke down on me and I couldn't get it to start at all. I ended up spending about $800 upgrading the entire things. Thankfully my graphic card did work out in the end, and I probably deferred about another $200 to $300. Then, I dropped my handphone and the screen cracked into pieces. I'm usually very careful, and … [Read more...]

If you don’t work for it, you’ll pay for it

If there's a important lesson in life that we must learn, then one of them must be this: If you want to get what you didn't work for, you'll end up losing more than what you hope for. This important advice applies equally throughout different domains. I give a few examples: 1. If you want to get high returns without working hard for it by studying or researching deep into it, you'll get … [Read more...]

Just do it

I remembered the times when I grew up in a world without internet, youtube and (gasp!) google. If I want to find out about things, we have to listen to parents or teachers, whom we presume to know more about the world that we did. Either that, or we have to visit the library to search for the books and encyclopedias that are found there. They still are, just that these days with google, we tend to … [Read more...]

Frasers Centrepoint Limited bonds allocation table (part 4)

Bonds allocation for FCL is out. The allocation table is shown below for future reference: A few observations: 1. Everyone will get something because the balloting ratio is 1:1 2. A lot applied between 41 to 50 lots, including yours truly. 3. The allotment favours those who bid 25 lots and below. If you bid anything less than or equal to 25 lots, you get exactly what you want. Does it … [Read more...]

Fraser Centrepoint Limited 3.65% pa bond (part 3)

Someone asked me what the returns are like when FCL do an early redemption. The bond is widely published as having a maturity period of 7 yrs, but we have to be mindful of the possibility of early redemption. I wrote more about the details here. They have an interesting way of paying back the investor if they do an early redemption. The earliest optional redemption is on the 4th year, which is … [Read more...]

Fraser Centrepoint Limited 3.65% pa bond (part 2)


This is the second part of the Frasers Centrepoint Limited 3.65% pa bond. The first part is here. I managed to get a copy of the prospectus and read it. Hence, for ease of reading, I summarised the main points of the bonds again here, with some additional information: ------------------------------------------------------------- Duration: 7 years until 22nd May 2022.  Option for early … [Read more...]

Frasers Centrepoint Limited 3.65% pa, 7 yrs bonds

I was alerted to a facebook feed regarding this year's first retail bond launch. This is more exciting that the savings bonds thingy to me. Frasers Centrepoint Limited (FCL) is offering a bond, open to both retail and institutional investors. The terms of the bonds are as follows: Duration: 7 years Coupon yield: 3.65% Open for subscription: 13th May 2015, 9am Closing: 20th May 2015, 12 … [Read more...]

Why am I interested in personal finance?

I thought this is a more relevant question that we can answer for ourselves, instead of why other people are not interested in it. As personal finance bloggers, we tend to think that the people from the other side of the fence are not as enlightened, at least in financial matters, as us. I guess those who are not interested in such matters will likewise make similar stereotypical viewpoints … [Read more...]

The price and value of deprivation

Price is what you pay for and value is what you get. Usually this is applied for things that you purchase. But I guess it's equally applicable to things that we choose not to purchase. If we choose not to buy something for $10, then we would have saved that $10. That's the price we had saved. But did we also correspondingly lost $10 worth of value? Rationally, we should choose to deprive … [Read more...]

Is financial freedom a competition?

Recently, I saw this article that resonates deeply with me. It's about how we shouldn't be jumping from the corporate rat race to another unlikely race - that of financial freedom. It's interesting to think of financial freedom as a competitive sports. Not too long ago, there's this massive spontaneous competition, likely sparked by the Sunday Straits times section, where 'competitors' take … [Read more...]