Author: Life and Finance

January is coming to an end

When we were asked what we look forward to in the new year, all of us (NSFs) in the unit replied in unison, “ORD!”. The first month is coming to an end soon. It’s been also a year since I started this blog and tracked my finances. In that process, one observation was clear. Your career is the single most important source of building wealth We are told by our parents to study hard and get a degree. Nobody says getting a degree guarantees will give you high income, but nobody is going to deny the fact that working...

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2016’s Reflection

2017 is coming in a little less than 1 month! Hence, it’s time for a reflection to see how I fared throughout 2016. It’s also time to take stock of all my growing up years and plan ahead for 2017. On human capital, In 2016, nothing has changed.I graduated from polytechnic in 2015 and I have less than a year now to completing my National Service. I have been thinking about furthering my studies and it’s an answer that I am still unclear of even after a year into NS. Do I apply for full-time university or join the...

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Value-for-money: Kinokuniya or Booksdepository

Meet Kinokuniya and Books Depository. The former has physical brick-and-mortar and online stores while the latter is solely an online retailer. For all the book lovers out there, I am sure these are some of the places we go in order to satisfy our book cravings. Kinokuniya was where I picked up my first book on investing. I summarised some of my thoughts on that book here. Since then, I have bought at least 6 other books on investment and other genres that cost at least $200 in total from Kinokuniya. Book lovers should also know that Kinokuniya is...

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My Insurance Policies

Too expensive. A waste of money. I don’t need insurance. I don’t know how much I’m covered. My parents bought insurance for me and handles it.  These are just some of what people say. I’ve had some friends who said that when the topic is broached. Insurance isn’t easy to understand at all! So many policies, so many insurers. To be honest, I’ll still choose to let my parents handle it all. But I’m no longer a little boy. I took it upon myself to understand all my policies that my parents bought and which are the policies that I bought...

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Thoughts on the Book: A Random Walk Down Wall Street

Random Walk One in which future steps or directions cannot be predicted on the basis of past history Around late last year, I sat down with my first ever book on investing/finance: A Random Walk Down Wall Street. I didn’t know what to expect then. At its core, the book says you should just buy index funds and make it the core of your portfolio, manage it passively. Of course, then buy some individual stocks if you want the excitement. In other topics which stood out the most to me, The Fitness Manual presents exercises such as: You must start to save...

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POSB Invest-Saver RSP Update

If I am to describe myself as an investor now, I will probably be an index investor. It has since been about 9 months ago that I subscribed to Invest-Saver. There were a couple of reasons that got me started. Firstly, I wanted to get started with stocks, secondly, learn about investing with a small capital and lastly, to discipline myself financially. 9 months on, how did it fare? Dollar-Cost Averaging $100 goes into the RSP monthly, except for June’s amount of $200. Total Investment Costs and Cumulative Portfolio Value as of 30 July Capital Gains/Losses as of 30...

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A Savings Account for National Servicemen (NSFs)

  Good news for us in NS! Other than putting the allowance into other savings accounts that offer meagre interest rates, we have this option now! An option to save for the 2 years or 22 months of service. Introducing the POSB Save As You Earn (SAYE) account. I was truly excited for this when I got wind of this. Looking deeper, I made some comparison. I thought the CIMB FastSaver might serve as a useful comparison as well. POSB SAYE 1. Saving At the end of 2 years Good for new enlistees who just wants to save a fixed amount every...

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Check your Eligibility for GST Voucher 2016!

Come 20 June 2016, Singaporeans can check if they are eligible for the GST Voucher 2016 handout! You can check it here: GSTVoucher2016. On top of the regular GST voucher, there is a one-off Cash Special Payment this year. I was surprised that I was eligible for it last year even before crossing my 21st birthday. I’m all hands up for handouts! I hope I am eligible again! Of course, it must be done with consideration for the country’s wealth. I’m confident that the government has considered that. The additional one-off voucher (which will costs $280 million) will help Singaporeans...

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Share the love!

After opening a FastSaver account with CIMB 6 months ago, I can say I am a satisfied depositor. I took home a good $10 cash gift. I shared that happiness with my family and friends. Of course, some scoffed at the promotion and interest rate. I tried to convince them. I failed. That’s alright. They are happy with POSB. Probably they didn’t understand inflation. They didn’t think $10 is worth the simple 6 steps process. In this 6 months, the coffee prices increased by another $0.10 at a nearby kopitiam. Just last month, one of my army mates got...

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Survey: 2 in 3 young people have not started investing

Gen Y or Millenials (the cooler sounding name). That’s me! Picture from Huffingtonpost An article (see here: Survey: 2 in 3 young people have not started investing) in the Sunday Times by GYC got me thinking. I am unsure of the intent of the survey but I assue that it is meant to set younger people thinking about the purpose of investing and hopefully, more will be receptive. If the earlier generation, say, the parents of millennials are already finding it difficult to save for retirement, I can’t help but fear how we, millennials, will fare. Not knowing how to...

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My Financial Goals

I have been without financial goals for most of my life up until 7 months ago. I began tracking my expenses on Excel and keeping a record. I also made it a point to read posts from bloggers and the Invest section of the Sunday Times regularly. The idea of indexing and passive income was something new and I am glad it came into my life now. All this reading have helped me along the way to better understand the need to save and set financial goals for myself. So what will be my financial goals be for the short...

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Putting Into Perspective

I first came across this promotion shared by a financial blogger. This promotion was actually on the bank’s page for quite awhile. I was excited. Like any typical Singaporean, I love freebies. Let’s be realistic here. It’s not some goodie bag, but actual cash. Sounds too good to be true? In this case, it is. The requirements are so simple. If you already have existing savings that you won’t need for 6 months, you can just open it. I decided to open the eMSA account. Sharing is caring. So I shared this with my friends. Mehh, it’s only $20,...

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Book: Hard Truths To Keep Singapore Going

This book, by Mr Lee Kuan Yew, is one of my most loved books. While I should just share my thoughts after reading it, I want to also pen down the reason why I picked it up.  In March ’14, I went to Taiwan for a graduation trip with my friends. On the way to the hotel, upon knowing who we were, the taxi driver initiated a conversation about Mr Lee Kuan Yew. “It is the luck of Singaporeans to have him as our statesman and his achievements in bringing Singapore to where it is today”, the driver explained....

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Going back to the reason why

On a lazy Sunday, I aim to write about topics which I feel strongly about. There’s just one problem, however. Right now, I have about 4 blog posts to write about. I have written numerous drafts and then deleted them. I did a mindmap for one topic, then went on to another topic because I was stuck in the first. It was like the days in secondary school where I wrote essays for the English paper. I crumpled and threw away easily 7-8 sheets of foolscap paper into the bin. It took an entire night easily. I had hits...

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A Thought-Provoking Word of Why

Do we all not ask ourselves “Why” every day? Why do we have to study? Why do we have to work? Why do we invest? Why are you here reading this now? One word. A word that fires up the neurons in the brains and forces us to put into perspective of why do we do the things you and me are doing, even right now. Why did I pen down my thoughts on what I felt about this video? Personally, I feel that this commercial by the Ministry Of Education was tasteful and well-executed in its intention. I...

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