Author: Lazy Singaporean

How to start investing if you don’t know anything at all

Lately, many people have approached me asking, “I want to start investing, teach me how.” To which I ask, “How much do you know?” And the replies will always be, “I know nothing, teach me from scratch.” So I figured that there might be many more people like you out here, who have zero knowledge about investing but want to start. Thus this post, on how to start investing from ground zero. The stock market and other investment vehicles In economics, there is an impossible trinity whereby (1) a fixed foreign exchange rate, (2) free capital movement and (3)...

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How much do you need to buy a resale flat in Singapore?

So you have been dating for some time with your other half, and would like to get married. Most of your friends around you have gone for a BTO flat but you don’t want to wait that long. Somehow, you ponder and think about getting a resale flat, but you are unsure whether you have enough. Many people like you have the same question. That’s why this post was written, to shed more light on how much is actually costs to buy a resale flat, the obligations you will enter into, and what are some potential issues you need...

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Getting things done – the art of stress-free productivity

Getting Things Done, by David Allen talks about how you can declutter your life, and stay on top of your tasks. Be it at work or in your personal life, this book will help you get organised and on task. The book is divided into three parts. What is the system? How to use the system (with examples)? What you will achieve using the system What is the system The system can practically be summed up in this diagram, shown in the book. Whenever you receive something, be it a new instruction, email, or just information, it goes into...

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Running lean – a systematic process for iterating your web application from Plan A to a plan that works

This is a book by Ash Maurya, which talks about how to find and create a product that the market wants. The book is split into three major parts: product/ solution fit, product/ launch fit, and product/ market fit. This is also the book about the Lean Canvas, a modification of the Business Model Canvas by Alex Osterwalder. Product/ solution fit The first part of the book talks about the ways you can make sure that your product addresses the needs of your target market. The key question in this stage is: “do I have a problem worth solving?”...

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Here is why you need and how you can invest

This blog post is for you, to convince someone why and how they need to start investing. Regardless of the person being your children, spouse, or parents, I wish for this post to be useful to you and to them. And, I will keep this post updated and add more research once I have them. Content that will be covered in this post include: Inflation Index investing Long run performance Optimism in investing Value versus growth debate Expense ratio You will, hopefully, become more knowledgeable. Optimistically, your children, spouse or parents, will start to invest. Use this post whenever...

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Venture deals – be smarter than your lawyer and venture capitalist

My friend asked me to read this book in order to understand how the VC industry works. I must say, I wasn’t disappointed with the quality and quantity of content put forth by Brad Feld and Jason Mendelson, who are a VC and a VC lawyer respectively. Venture Deals is segmented into two parts: explaining the term sheet, and other things to take note of. The term sheet refers to a non-binding document containing all the terms before a VC invests into a startup. Other things to take note of includes: how VC funds work, negotiation tactics, how to...

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Is this a way to beat the market? A surprise and a lesson learnt

I was looking for some ways backed by research to pick stocks that beat the market. Somehow, I navigated to my portfolio on Google Finance, and I got a surprise in one of the tests I started. Only take note for the first two stocks: Datalink Corporation and CDI Corp. The other 3 stocks were newly “bought” yesterday. For Datalink and CDI, I bought the stocks on 27 November 2015, and I was supposed to review them at end November 2016. I had bought these stocks based on academic research being done on the NCAV stocks and Piotroski’s F...

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This valuation methodology will work for any stock and company

Everyone values companies and stocks differently yet investment analysts are able to come up with a fair price roughly similar to each other. There must be a framework they use which we do not know of. You will learn about this methodology being taught in my Valuation module. As mine is a Accountancy degree, the Valuation module is more specific and involves accounting adjustments. More specifically, you will learn about these: Methodology Economic analysis Industry analysis Company analysis Accounting analysis Performance analysis Prospective analysis Methodology The first step of valuation is to understand how the valuation works. Using this...

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Purple cow – transform your business by being remarkable

Other than the 4Ps of Marketing, now we have another P – Purple Cow. I picked up this book last week, but stopped it halfway to read another book – talking to humans. Finished it today, which took me around 5 days. Overall, it’s a very light reading. This book is about Marketing, and how do you design, create, market, or promote your product or service in a way that is so remarkable that other people will talk about it and spread the word. Purple Cow isn’t organised by segments of any sort, and it is more of a...

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Why the CPF is bad for you

In September last year, Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said that “over the last 10 years, more than 80 per cent of those who invested through the scheme would have been better off leaving their money in the CPF Ordinary Account“. I have written a post about it: here. The Ordinary Account provides returns of 2.5% for amounts above $20,000. 45% of investors lost money through the CPF Investment Scheme while 80% did not made returns above 2.5%. In other words, unless you are the top 20% in Singapore, the CPF is actually good for you. You are more...

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Book review: Talking to humans

This book is about entrepreneurship, and more especially, about what you should do before starting your business. It originated from a blog post, which received many comments and shares, and thereafter the author, Giff Constable, made it into a book. It is listed at 88 pages on Amazon. It is almost a required reading for many entrepreneurship courses in universities, and highly recommended by Steve Blank, Silicon Valley serial-entrepreneur and originator of the Lean Startup movement. The book is made free by the author, and you can get it from his website at: here. Talking to Humans: Success starts...

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Book review: So good they can’t ignore you

I picked up this work on the 2 Jan this year and finished it yesterday, 10 Jan. On Amazon, this book is listed at 267 pages. I is the (non-affiliated) link from Amazon: here. Without further ado, let’s quickly skim the main points of the book. So good they can’t ignore you: why skills trump passion in the quest for work you love The author segments the book into 4 rules and allocates a 2-3 chapters to talk about each rule and how to apply them. The entire drift of the book is how you shouldn’t find a job...

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Reading goal and book review

After reading this post by LP and how he set a reading goal of 1 book a week, I was inspired. I don’t think I can read that much as I have work on weekdays and sometimes on weekends as well, but I have a Kindle and I will read as much as possible when I am commuting to and fro places. How do you set a goal that will keep you motivated throughout a long period of time, such as a year? I guess setting an ambitious goal, but yet attainable goal would fit. As such, I will...

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Introducing the Envelopes system to manage your entire financial life

The Envelopes system long existed (my grandmother was already using it) but it was Dave Ramsey who popularised it. It works on a very simple concept: every dollar you have must serve a purpose. Let me explain how this can help you manage your finances (without the need of a financial advisor, of course). How does the Envelope system work? Every dollar you have must have a purpose. Take your money and put them into separate envelopes, with each envelope serving their own purpose, say groceries. How much money you put into each envelope depends on how much money...

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Why you should not invest in the STI

Assume there are only two stocks in the world, Stock A and Stock B from Company A and B respectively. Company A is big, owning 90% of the workd’s output, while Company B owns the other 10%. If you were to invest into each company, would you: (a) buy Stock A only, (b) buy stock B only, (c) buy both stocks in the proportion of 90-10, or (d) buy both stocks in equal weightage? Different types of investors If you went for Stock A, you are likely to invest in blue-chips. These companies are stable and give out dividends....

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