Author: My 15 Hour Work Week

Four Integrated Services by NTUC To Reduce Cost of Living

NTUC is not resting on their laurels. They have been actively collaborating with both the public and private sector to provide relevant products and services at a lower cost. All these to reduce your cost of living and improve your lives. I truly believe that NTUC’s efforts are underrated and not fully appreciated by most Singaporeans. Don’t believe me? I am willing to bet that you have not heard of ALL 4 initiatives that I have written below. Read on and find out what you have been missing! Case Study 1: Kampung Admiralty This is by far my favourite...

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Portfolio Update: June 2018

It’s been a couple of horrible months for the stock market. Our portfolio was not spared as it went down by more than 1% even after a few thousand dollars of capital injection. So kudos to those who manage to grind out a positive return during this period. But was May and June really bad for ALL investors? For investors with lots of cash on the sideline, this could actually represent an opportunity to plow some funds back into the market. I am not sure about the US market, but the index feels reasonably priced for the Singapore and...

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The Art Of The Good Life #7: The Ovarian Lottery

  I first heard about the Ovarian Lottery when reading Warren Buffett’s autobiography. He is an extraordinary investor, but he himself remarked that if he had been born somewhere in the middle of Asia, he would be destined for a life as some type of labourer. Most likely, he would end up very very ordinary since he would not be able to utilise most of his innate talents. This kind of thinking helps Buffett to justify pledging most of his wealth away and also motivate other billionaires to follow suit. So basically, the aim of this chapter is to...

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5 Reasons Why You Should Get A Seat For Investors Exchange TODAY!

After overwhelming response and a very successful pilot run in 2017, BigScribe is back with another edition of Investor Exchange this year. You can find out more about the event from this link. Investors Exchange 2018 will be held on 14th July 2018 (Saturday) from 1 pm to 5 pm. If your schedule is open on this day, here’s 5 reasons why you should immediately reserve a seat right now! 1. Learn Applicable Strategies To Beat The Market It’s not impossible to beat the market. But it’s incredibly difficult. If you are picking stocks to supercharge your returns, you are...

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Expenses Update: May 2018

It has been quite a hectic month. I was kept busy with the Crazy Rich Asians trilogy and also spent a week overseas at a resort. This helps to explain why I have not been blogging much lately. With the June holidays here, I can finally catch a breather. Since most of the expenses of the trip (resort stay & air tickets) were already accounted for half a year ago, we only spent an additional $400 on a day trip out snorkelling and on some other miscellaneous expenses like food. Therefore, it’s not surprising that the expenses barely passed...

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Why I Like And Use NAV

I really like the NAV initiative… almost up there with strawberry champagne on ice 1. Helps Set Budgets & Track Expenses Tracking expenses is a big part of this blog. In fact, I have been consistent in publishing our monthly expenses for the past 5 years. That’s about 60 updates so far and this also shows you how much I believe in this habit. Well, whatever gets measured tends to get optimised. Not surprisingly, I have had quite a few readers asking me which budgeting or tracking app I would recommend. I don’t always have a good answer but...

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Portfolio Update: May 2018

This is a pretty good month for the portfolio. The USD and HKD finally appreciated against the SGD and some of the DWI picks also rebounded. Organically, the portfolio was up by close to 1%. It was also a very active month as I sold quite a few counters to take some money off the table and lock in some gains. This trend will likely continue in the upcoming months if the market continues its upward climb. I am also trying out “lower commission” platforms like the Vickers Cash Upfront option (for buying local stocks) and the FSM One...

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The Art Of The Good Life #6: The Negative Art Of The Good Life

This is definitely one of the most useful chapters in the entire book. In many aspects of life, doing or even ascertaining the “right” things is notoriously difficult. However, the “bad stuff” to avoid would receive almost universal nods. Therefore, there’s alot more utility to be gained from eliminating the downsides. Diet Should you follow the Healthy Plate recommendations from the Health Promotion Board or maybe you should adopt a Keto diet and eliminate carbohydrates from your diet? Maximum of 2 eggs a day? Or even up to 4 is alright? And are fruits a healthy snack or are...

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The Art Of The Good Life #5: Counterproductivity

This is one of the few chapters in the book that resonated really strongly with me. Counterproductivity is a natural phenomenon that counteracts measures/behaviour that attempt to raise our productivity. Cars increase our transportation speed but we are staying further and further away from our workplace. Computers, emails and smartphones make us more productive at work but we are spending more and more time on them. The most classic case of counterproductivity in personal finance is painstakingly setting aside cash into a saving account that yields 2% while servicing debts at >10% interest at the same time. This concept...

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Expenses Update: April 2018

April is my birthday month. In fact, I just celebrated my birthday less than a week ago. However, instead of splashing out on a meal, we kept it relatively simple this time round. A $50 dinner, a few slices of pandan chiffon and a free ice cream sundae from Swenson’s. This is the first time we didn’t order anything to go along with the free treat. So one more image below for you, Swenson! It was my preferred option since we had already spent quite a bit dining out this month, falling victim to birthday month promotions at places...

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The Art Of The Good Life #4: Black Box Thinking

I have a few students who confided in me that they were apprehensive about their upcoming vacations during the June holidays. You see, they are afraid their flights will end up like MH 370. Four years on, I am surprised of the effect the incident still had on the masses. Doing the best I could, I tried to reassure them that flights are actually statistically safer than cars. And that’s all because of the near indestructible black box, which records all the data of the flight. “With each crash, future flights become safer”. This is the chapter that justifies...

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The Art Of The Good Life #3: The Pledge

I have not played any form of electronic games for more than half a year. Whether it’s on mobile phones, gaming consoles or computers, I have literally banned them from my life. You see, games are one of the biggest time suckers and my experience tells me that I lack self-discipline to control myself on this front. When I had my six month sabbatical some years ago, there were weeks when I spent more than 10 hours a day hooked to the PS 4. I believe overall, my quality of life has increased from this particular pledge. So the...

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The Art Of The Good Life #2: The Fine Art Of Correction

I vaguely remember drawing up some grand plans 10 years ago. I think it probably included a career as a high-flying civil servant, a lovely/capable wife along with two beautiful kids (preferably a boy and a girl) plus staying in a condominium with a continental drive readily accessible in the car park. Except for the wife part, the rest have not been on point. And 22 year old me definitely did not make any plans to become a full-time tutor or adopt an online persona as Mr 15HWW. Things just “happened along the way”. In this chapter, author Rolf...

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Portfolio Update: April 2018

With decent income and very manageable expenses recently, we were able to inject close to $5k to the portfolio. But unfortunately, the portfolio did not rise by that much. Even after a couple of very good days in the market, the portfolio still took a small hit due to the poor performance of a couple of stocks. The appreciating SGD is also a drag on the foreign holdings. I am still ambivalent towards the direction of the market since I have enough invested and also have abit of cash to take advantage of any weaknesses in the market. Overall...

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The Art Of The Good Life #1: Mental Accounting

About a few weeks ago, I decided to take an evening jog to Punggol East and indulge myself in some Popeye’s chicken after the run. I stuffed two $10 notes in preparation for the sinful meal. However, after the run and meal, when I cycled back and reached home, I realised that I only had coins left in my pocket. The other $10 note was missing. I probably accidentally dropped the other note when I was digging into my pocket to pay the cashier. (Er hem…  btw the Mrs doesn’t know about this incident) So how do you think you would...

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