Thursday, September 17, 2020

Where Do You See Yourself In 5, 10 or 20 Years Down The Road?

"Where Do You See Yourself In 5, 10 or 20 Years Down The Road?" 

This is a favourite question that is often posed to a candidate during an interview process.

But do you ask that about your own personal life?

Frankly, not many people have thought of it deep enough to make a serious call on a decision they make today.

Looking at the situation today, COVID-19 has inflicted incalculable social, economic, and structural damage to the country and its citizens.

With most segments of the society struggling with the impact on the economy resulting in job losses, pay cuts, and retrenchment, COVID-19 has clearly exacerbated the situation for the lower-income group with the government requiring to step in to provide income and job support.

According to the study, almost half of the low-income earners (those earning $2,999 & below) experienced a drop in salary during the pandemic. Out of this population, another half of the group saw their income decline by more than 50%.

Take a look at appendix 3 appended below, for instance, 42% of the population who has experienced a decline in their income has less than one month of personal savings while another 22% has only between one to three months of cash flow to tide them through.

This is clearly well below the recommended 6 months of emergency funds that most financial planners would advise.

What lessons can we learn from COVID-19 that can enable us to make better informed financial decisions in the future? How do we impose a back-up plan to prepare ourselves sufficiently for future recessions? These are some hard yet realistic questions that we have to ask ourselves.

Thankfully, with the enhancement of digital innovation such as the NAV Planner, an individual can now project their finances simply and effectively.

Appendix 1

Appendix 2

Appendix 3


Map Your Money

DBS has launched Map Your Money, a new feature in NAV Planner on DBS and POSB digibank.

This new feature allows users to have a holistic view of their overall net worth and cashflow projection through the interactive dashboard. It allows users to plan to see how much they have spent and how much income and savings are required to sustain the same kind of lifestyle, not just for months but also years ahead.

In the event of having to face an unprecedented crisis like today - which results in a likely scenario of pay cuts or retrenchment - the user can navigate the planner to see which expenses are discretionary in nature and can be cut back. The planner would also show how many months of cash flow is needed to survive comfortably.

Users may also set a few short and long term goals to look forward to.

For instance, setting aside $3,000 for a winter trip to Seoul next year can be considered a short term goal while longer-term goals can include things such as setting aside university fees for kids' education.

The CashFlow projection chart is split into 2 stages:

i.) Before Retirement - Accumulating Wealth
ii.) After Retirement - Drawing down wealth

The colored bars indicate the income stream which includes salary, rental income, dividend, CPF payout, and SRS payout. NAV Planner even takes into account all the complex CPF rules so your forecast is as accurate as possible.

The black line indicates the current expense today and the projected future spending after retirement.

The line turns red if there is a gap between the red line and the bars, indicating a shortfall that you have to bridge to get back on track.

Let's look at the 3 different scenarios below:

Scenario 1:

Let's make the following assumption under scenario 1:
  • Current Age: 35
  • Retirement Age: 65
  • Life Expectancy: 90 Years
  • Monthly Cashflow Income at age 35: $14,800 (includes salary, rental, dividend, interest)
  • Monthly Cashflow Expense at age 35: $10,000 (includes home loan, groceries, transportation, and all other expenses)
  • Monthly Cashflow Expense at age 65 (retirement): $3,000
Scenario 1 is a conservative figure where I decide to continue working until the retirement age of 65, where my working income will then start to taper off, and only rental and dividend income remain. The current monthly cashflow income at the current age is $14,800 which includes salary, rental, and dividends. The current monthly cashflow expense at current is at approximately $10,000 which includes the big chunk of home mortgages and kids' activities and expenses. By the time I turned 65, I am expecting the monthly expense to drop to $3,000.

Based on the Map Your Money analysis, it looks like financial freedom is on track based on the retirement schedule I've provided. I can take a huge breath of relief knowing that my financial planning is doing well.

Scenario 1



Scenario 2:

Let's make a little tweak on the assumption under scenario 2:
  • Current Age: 35
  • Retirement Age: 40
  • Life Expectancy: 90 Years
  • Monthly Cashflow Income at age 35: $14,800 (includes salary, rental, dividend, interest)
  • Monthly Cashflow Expense at age 35: $10,000 (includes home loan, groceries, transportation, and all other expenses)
  • Monthly Cashflow Expense at age 40 (retirement): $3,000
Now, let's assume in scenario 2 that I would like to get a bit more adventurous by retiring earlier at the age of 40 instead of 65 years old. 

I would like to retire earlier so that I can spend a bit more time with my children.

I wasn't sure though if this is a good move and if my cashflow could last till 90.

Oh well, Surprise, Surprise!!!

Based on the Map Your Money analysis, it looks like scenario 2 still fits well with my retirement plan and schedule. It means that I have the green light if I choose to do so.

Scenario 2

Scenario 3:

Now, let's make a step more aggressive on the assumption under scenario 3:
  • Current Age: 35
  • Retirement Age: 40
  • Life Expectancy: 90 Years
  • Monthly Cashflow Income at age 35: $14,800 (includes salary, rental, dividend, interest)
  • Monthly Cashflow Expense at age 35: $10,000 (includes home loan, groceries, transportation, and all other expenses)
  • Monthly Cashflow Expense at age 40 (retirement): $6,000
In this scenario, I have assumed that not only do I want to retire at the age of 40, but also doubled my expense from $3,000 to $6,000 after I retire. Perhaps, I wanted to enjoy life a little bit more by staying at a 6-star hotel and travel more after I retire.

Based on the analysis, it seems like my dream looks a little distant from my current profile. It appears that my cashflow would not be able to last me until 90 years old.


Conclusion

Your goal tomorrow is the hard work and effort of what you put in today.

The "Map Your Money" function in the DBS Planner is a simple yet effective tool to help users visualize their current and future situation and make the required changes to financial planning at any point in time. 

For young individuals who are working employees, the tool can help to project how much savings they need to accumulate before meeting the recommended emergency funds or before hitting important milestones such as marriage or buying their first home.

For individuals who are nearing retirement, they can utilize the tool to see if the funds can last them long enough, and if it can withstand the stress of times during an outbreak like today. For example, in the event they lost their job due to retrenchment, they also could utilize the tool to see how long their funds would last them.

What I like most about the NAV Planner is that it is flexible enough to make adjustments and changes based on our circumstances and goals in life, and it is not static. Because of this, I am able to make smarter decisions in my financial planning and enjoy the fruits of my labor in the later years to come.

To find out more about DBS NAV, click here! Otherwise, you can go straight to planning - simply log in to your DBS/POSB digibank and click on the 'Plan' tab.

If you need more help assembling your retirement plan, you can refer to the DBS' "DIY Manual" on retirement here.

Disclaimer: This is a collaboration with DBS on the navigation of NAV Planner and the features it can help users to achieve greater retirement planning. I loved this feature so much that I project a lot of scenarios on my own. All scenarios projected above are based on my own pure experience using the feature.

Thanks for reading.

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Wednesday, September 16, 2020

The Singapore Market Still Provides Immense Value To Investors

Patience is one of the key traits in investing.

But we hardly see them after the resurgence of tech investing these days.

Patient investing does not necessarily mean you have to hold the shares in your portfolio for the long term or infinity period. 

I get a sense that many people are misinterpreting this as they thought the longer the hold the better the returns will be. Not every investment will fall under this natural cycle, as they are many factors, both internal and external that would affect this. For example, companies in the oil & gas or property cycle are likely to be cyclical and regulatory in nature so the underlying fundamentals will shift with the circumstance.

STI Component

The STI Index has not been doing "particularly well" if we compare where they are today versus where they are 5,10 or 13 years ago.

This hypothesis is likely to change as the situation for the Covid-19 gets better over time. For instance, if the STI managed to recover back to 3,000 over the next year, it might suddenly look not so bad, as investors who put in money during the 2016 or 2020 would have reaped the benefits of their investments. 


The same hypothesis applies to every investment in every market.

If you managed to put the bulk of your money in Tesla in the first half of the year and ride the noises, you'd be sitting on a pretty nice gain even as they are undergoing a little correction now. However, if you purchased and FOMO buy at the peak on the 31st Aug, you'd like to be hitting yourself over it. It'll probably take a while before Tesla will reach your break-even price.

For sake of reference, the Nasdaq and most of the tech companies peaked during the dotcom period on the 10th March 2000 at 5,132. By the time the bubble bursts a year later, Nasdaq was at 1,100 by October 2002.

Companies like Amazon lost 90% of its value and it took 15 years for investors who bought at the peak to breakeven.

I'm not saying it will happen this time around too but there is always the risk of such a possibility happening in massive liquidity pumped the market like what we are seeing today.

Tesla's Performance (https://pyinvesting.com/3Fs/)

You might think and ask what about say the performance of banks since the STI component is heavily geared towards a bank play, it would make sense to consider banks' performance throughout the different markets.

Turns out that almost everyone is struggling thereabout.

If we take a look at the YTD performance, banks are minimally 20% down. It doesn't matter if you are owning banks in Singapore, Hongkong, China, or the US market. This is mainly due to the fact that banks are the barometer of the economy and most banks are being asked to cap some sort of profits, dividends, or share buyback in their respective market.

This means banks are currently in an overhang situation and becomes a recovery play in the short term when things clear up. Meanwhile, banks are still raking money in through lending and wealth management even though NIM is mostly down and the reduced payout will only make their balance sheet stronger for the eventual recovery.

DBS vs BAC vs BOC (https://pyinvesting.com/3Fs/)

DBS vs BAC vs BOC (https://pyinvesting.com/3Fs/)


Can Investors Still Find Value In The Singapore Market?

My answer to that is a resounding Yes!

There are still gems across the Singapore market that are providing good short-term, mid-term, and long-term strategy to investors.

Obviously, not all the gems have to be part of the STI index, so you'd have to look a little harder outside and consider the alternatives.

A good example of short to mid-term recovery value is a company like Comfortdelgro, a public transport and railway local company which I wrote not too long ago back in Jul (article link here). It is important for an investor to consider such a company as a recovery play and not a long term compounded growth because the two metrics and thesis are completely different and hence the strategy has to be considered differently.

If you are looking at a longer play theme in the local market, there are still companies that are revolutionary in nature such as IFast or Micro-Mechanics. Both companies are riding the revolutionary trend of digital innovation. IFast, for example, has consistently grown its AUA since IPO and are gearing up for a potential digital banking licence in Singapore. 

Both have also done very well in the last 1 year - while STI is returning negative -23%, the strategy combined for IFast & Micro-Mechanics are returning 142.7%. 

Strategy (IFast & Micro-Mechanics) vs STI ETF (https://pyinvesting.com/3Fs/)

Final Thoughts

There are many investors, friends and bloggers in the community who've been investing in the local Singapore market and still make it past financial independence and become very wealthy today.

The key is to find the right segments and the right companies to invest.

While this year the economy has been plagued by Covid-19, most of the outperforming segments are in the technology space and this might be the hot sectors that everyone wants to get into now that it is getting crowded.

But the time will come when recovery sectors and companies in the muds will outperform, and that takes patience to unravel. Meanwhile, I'll stay to my strategy by pumping a heavy amount of capital into some of the unloved names and hope it will bear fruits sooner than later.

Thanks for reading.

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Saturday, September 12, 2020

3 Little Encounters I Have With Apple This Week

Apple Inc. became the first U.S company to hit a milestone of market value above the $2 Trillion on the 20th Aug 2020.

Since then, the shares have led the general correction retreat close to 20% since hitting the peak of $134.18 on the 1st Sep 2020.

It closes at $112 on the Friday trading session on the 11th Sep 2020.

In today's article, I wanted to talk about the 3 little encounters I have with Apple this week. 

1.) I Became A Shareholder of Apple

This is nothing out of ordinary since half of the world's investors are probably vested in Apple one way or another.

Since we have what I think is a retracement rather than a reversal in Apple's share price at the moment, I decided to purchase a small tiny bit of Apple shares to become a shareholder this week. I am pretty confident that once the retracement is over, the shares will continue to hit all time high once again, which probably is going to give quite a decent gain over time.

Apple has a few catalysts in the next few months with the release of the new Iphone 12 sometime in Nov later this year, and based on what is projected so far, it looks like it will be a big hit again.

In the recent annual developer conference held in Jun, Apple also shared that they are likely to transition from Intel processors which they have been using the past 15 years to its own chips for the next batch of Macbook Pro sometime in Q4 2020. GP Margins and flexibility are likely to increase as they are able to control their own cost production of its own chips and delivery schedule but it remains to be seen if they are into these highly competitive space.

2.) I Visited The Iconic Floating Apple Store Opened This Week

The iconic floating Apple store at Marina Bay Sands opened this week hits most of the headline as it became one of the most anticipated opening since it opened its store in Jewel last year.

There was no walking-in allowed in order to maintain crowd control.

It was only strictly by appointment only which you have to register online which is based on a first come first serve basis. Appointment slots tend to be filled up pretty quickly.

Turns out crowd control was awesome. The store looks really magnificent and not overly crowded

I was served by an Apple store salesperson called Nick.

In the past, I didn't realise what's all the fuss about when it comes to Apple salesperson waiting in front of the store waiting to serve each and every customer they bring in. After experiencing myself, I finally understood why.

Apple is not just selling a product.

I don't think their product value proposition offers the best out there in terms of both quality and price but today we are staring at one of the world's most prominent brand in the history of mankind with the highest market cap.

Look at those devotion towards Apple stuff. I've never seen them so focused before...


Apple is essentially a CULT!

That devotion when someone feels when owning an Apple product or when the salesperson starts to speak and explain all the single details about the Oculus on the ceiling or the fact that they make exactly 114 glasses on the iconic wall that represent something I could not be bothered myself.

Their goal is to turn you into a convert if you have not been one, and you'd be sucked into this group of cult really proud of the products you are using.

In the finance unit economics terms that analyst usually use, we called this the "Lifetime Value" of the customer. It is one of the most commonly used valuation to value an E-commerce, Tech and SaaS company.

For an e-commerce company, the Lifetime Value (LTV) is usually highly dependent on the promo codes the company is offering. For companies like Apple, once they turn its customers into a convert, the customer will likely to return to purchase other products such as Ipad, Iwatch and other subscription that the Apple stores are offering. The LTV for a company like Apple is likely to be sky rocket high.


3.) I Purchased an IPhone 11

I was an Android user for the past 4 years but before that I was an IPhone user for about 2 years.

I used to own a Macbook Pro long way back when I was studying in my Uni but that was about all the Apple products I've ever owned.

Since my current Android phone has been with me for over 2 years and is quickly spoiling due to heavy usage both for work and entertainment, I have been looking for a new phone out in the market lately but couldn't decide what I should get.

I don't have much preference over any brands in particular, but in terms of specs I would like to have a decent battery power, a nice camera megapixel and a good storage (minimally 128 GB) - that's pretty much it.

So after an introduction from Nick and what I see in the specs for an IPhone 11, I decided to purchase one right at the store. 

Frankly, I was probably buying more for the experience rather than value. 

I wanted to experience what was it like buying an Apple product right at an Apple store versus through a second hand shop or Carousel.

New IPhone 11 with free gift

Final Thoughts

So that was it.

I finally became a shareholder this week and now a proud owner of my new IPhone 11.

I don't think I'll ever be a convert dedicated to one brand in my lifetime but we'll see how these things will influence me.

In any case, I'd like to think that my new IPhone 11 will probably last me more or less 2 years, and in that timeframe, my Apple share is likely to appreciate more than what I have paid for the phone. 

So Thank You Apple.

Rock figures!

Thanks for reading.

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Saturday, August 29, 2020

35th Birthday Edition: Inverting To The Middle Ground

I can't believe that I'm finally turning 35 years old today.

If you have been following and reading my blog, you would probably have known how significant this number is for me. After all, I started this blog more than ten years ago with a vision and mission statement (or whatever you want to call it) that the race and pursuit towards financial independence were on and I gave myself a ten years timeframe to achieve or at least get close to it by the time I turn 35.


The past birthday edition articles can be found below:

33rd Birthday Post: Officially 2 Years To Countdown

32nd Birthday Post: A Year of Milestones

30th Birthday Post: The Official Big 3 Is Here

29th Birthday Post: What's The Next Target

28th Birthday Post: Growing My Wealth

27th Birthday Post: The Year We Got Married

This blog has been my companion almost through my entire adult life experience which includes a few of the successes but also the hiccups along the way. When I looked back at the past 10 to 12 years, it has been rather fascinating to see milestones unlocked such as journaling my first portfolio updates, hitting my first $100k when I turned 27, handling expenses after marriage, the addition to our family members, buying our first property home, and then achieving the equity reach of $250k milestone, $500k milestone, $750k milestone and $1m milestone respectively before we decided to invest in a second property which we currently let out for rental income. I also documented the unfortunate episode of how my Dad got a stroke last year and we had to fork out a $200k bill for his hospitalization expenses.

If you are a new reader that chanced and came across this for the very first time, chances are good that you're looking to escape the corporate rat race, like I did years ago.

Since I started writing this blog, my main thesis for achieving financial independence as soon as possible has been on the premise that working for an employer generally sucks. The night burning and years of stresses that come with it have been building up and because of this, I've been putting my aggressive hat for the past ten years focusing on many financial aspects that would accelerate my net worth so that I could one day "escape" if I wanted to.

Maybe it's a common theme that you find comfort in realizing that there is someone else out there who felt the same as you do right now. Perhaps, at one point in your life, you really like working for your company. You were good at what you do and think you'd devote your entire life and soul to the company until you realize that some external circumstances like COVID crashed the dreams both you and the company once had.

Most of these dreams are built upon the assumption that everything is going to take care of itself, so most people think it is okay to be delaying their financial planning when the sky is clear, consuming an excessive amount of debts to purchase material goods and lifestyle to keep up with the rest of their social media friends.

Inverting To The Middle Ground

I was once the same person like them.

The 5 Pillars of Life - Wealth, Health, Work, Familyand Time (Autonomy) were the entire factors that I wanted to gauge my success.

Each of the 5 pillars started from a low score because I was just not satisfied with how things were then for me. I knew I had to make radical changes to everything I did, including my lifestyle, spending, growing my asset and capital, looking for an employer that can give me more autonomy in doing things, and things that would suit my style for the better.

Report Card

Health:

My health has been generally poor since I was a kid and I was often sick that my parents had to bring me to doctors for frequent cough, flu, or gastric issues.

I've also had multiple stress issues due to work in some part of my career which leads to a couple of sleepless nights. It was a horrible feeling and one that I am glad I am finally out of the ecosystem. Hence, because of this, I have ranked my health score as 3.

Pro Tip: There are always better employers around. It might not be immediately available but keep continue looking hard for it. Don't overstay in a toxic environment that leads to nowhere.

Getting older as the day passes is not a joke.

Since turning 32 a couple of years back, I've consciously alerted myself to get a sufficient amount of sleep and exercise. Since COVID started which altered the way we work, I have been scheduling fitness into my calendar. In the morning, I tried to slot in a 45-minute schedule to swim or run (alternate days) before I start my work. After a while, the body gets used to it that the ache started disappearing and it feels different from the body with adrenaline pumped up.

I have also been cautious and consciously adding superfoods to my diet, ordering the likes of blueberry, ginger, walnuts, tomatoes, celery, kale, spinach, green tea,  turmeric, and salmon or sardines on my order lists at the shopping cart.

Morning Breakfast Routine - Oatmeal with eggs, spinach, kale, blueberry and a follow-up Turmeric or Ginger Drink
Morning Breakfast Routine - Oatmeal with eggs,  chia seeds, spinach, kale, blueberry, and a follow-up Turmeric or Ginger Drink

Verdict: Health rating moved up from a score of 4 to 7 out of 10.


Work:

Work is the part I dreaded to talk about it the most because this is the main presumption of all the things that are happening that leads to this whole pursuit towards achieving financial independence as soon as possible.

Work used to rank really low in my dashboard because of some really unfortunate experiences that I had in one or two of my previous employers. Perhaps it was an environment that didn't really sit well with me, which leads to an increased amount of stress built up over time. This, adding on to the morning hour rush commuting of 7-10 hours per week, formal office attire, two young children, a blog to maintain, and a mortgage to finance piled on the stress level for me.

Thankfully, the new way of working due to COVID has changed the most part of this and I must count myself really blessed and lucky to have secured a role right before the whole pandemic season began (speaking of market timing huh).

The new permanent working from home at my current company is a blessing in disguise as I get to escape the morning hour rush, work in my comfortable homey clothes, dictate my own schedule, getting more autonomy, and at the same being able to get some good amount of exercises and interaction with the kids. 

Standing Workplace at Home
Standing Workplace at Home

Verdict: Work rating moved up from a score of 3 to 7 out of 10.


Family:

Family time used to be restricted to mostly an hour at night and weekends.

I would come and rush home at about 7 to 8ish in the evening to have my wife and kids greeted me waiting for me by the door.

Since the permanent shift towards working from home, things have taken a 180 degrees turn.

For the past couple of months, it is my turn to be the one greeting them by the door in the afternoon at the time they came back from school.

In the evening, we also have time to hang out more and engage in some activities like playing tennis or riding the bicycle before having our dinner together. My kids are also jigsaw puzzles trained so recently we have been challenging each other to do higher each time.

During my off days, I get to sneak out with my wife when our kids are in school to the cafe below our place to chill, at times catching up on writing this blog before fetching the kids back from school.

Art Drawing We Did Together During The Circuit Breaker


Wealth:

The wealth financial planning side is doing fine over the years but we are currently rebuilding it on a restart mode after purchasing a second home last year. We pretty much blew out our entire capital used for equities when we used the funds for the property.

The stock market today due to COVID has given a tremendous opportunity for me to build-up once again, given that the STI as of writing is only at around 2500. My goal is to hit an equity minimum of $250k in market value at the end of the year and then possibly looking at $350k when the economy recovers by the end of 2021. Meanwhile, my strategy is to keep piling onto some of the very undervalued names such as Comfortdelgro, Lendlease Reit, CDL Hospitality Trust, Starhill Reit, Jardine C&C, and many others while waiting for the eventual recovery to come. I'll provide some of these insights more in my next portfolio updates for the month of Sep.

Currently sitting at about $200k worth of stocks at a yield of about 7-8%, it is only giving us about $15k/year in dividend income, on top of the rental income we received. This is still not sustainable on its own as we still have heavy commitments on our liabilities.

Equity Portfolio: Aug'20


The CPF portion is one that I rarely talked about because I'm simply letting it accumulate passively for a number of years now. 

I'm currently still relying on part of the OA portion for the home mortgages and occasional top-up to the Special and Medisave account every now and then but that's mainly because of the tax relief. Other than that, I just treat it as my "life insurance" policy to my wife in case anything happened to me.


12 Years of Working. 
10 Years of Top-Up Contributions & Transfer
1.5 Years to FRS Target


Verdict: Wealth rating moved up from a score of 2 to 8 out of 10.

Conclusion

Thank you for all the birthday well-wishes from families, friends, and readers out there.

The last 10 years have been transformational for me for all the steps and direction which I took, and hopefully, it's the right step too. 

I also wanted to thank all the readers for the encouragement and words, and for the journey that some of us took together.

The next 10 years is one which I think will be transformational but one which I really look forward to as well. I haven't thought of anything major to announce yet but I'd try to pen through as I move along the next phase of my next 10 years going into 45. By then, my kids would have been at college-age so it is quite fascinating yet scary to see how fast time flies.

A Happy Birthday to myself once again.

I'll start afresh Day 1 tomorrow from my 35th birthday.

P.S: Since I'm sharing the same birth date and month with unarguably the greatest investing guru of all time, Warren Buffet, I'd also like to wish him a happy blessed birthday and a fortune of health.

Thanks for reading.

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Thursday, August 27, 2020

3Fs - Come and Join The SG Active Trading Tournament 2020

The SG Active Trading Tournament 2020 is one of Singapore's most anticipated trading tournament and it is back this year.

This is a special trading tournament organized jointly by Investing Note and Societe Generale, together with SGX that focuses on the trading of Daily Leverage Certificates (DLCs). For new joiners who are not familiar with the product, it is essentially an exchange-traded financial product that magnifies the leverage exposure to key Asian benchmark and individual stocks such as Wilmar, DBS, Tencent.

You can read some of the tutorials here on some of the DLCs trading strategies.

While DLCs are considered leveraged products, they are listed on the cash market of SGX, and because of that, there is no risk of a margin call. This could suit the appetite of some investors who would like to magnify their positions without having the risk associated with margin calls.

The entire tournament period runs for about 1.5 months from the 10th of September to the 23rd of October 2020. The details of the schedule are further appended into:

  • Elimination Rounds: 10th September - 30th September 2020
  • Final Round: 12th October - 23rd October 2020

To register, click here.


How I Fared In The Last 2 Tournaments

I have participated in the last 2 tournaments conducted in 2018 and 2019.

In 2018, I managed to come in 2nd place in a heavily contested 136 participants competing for the main prize.

I was tossed on the last day by Thebearprowl, who leaped into the 1st position on the very last day of trading. We became good friends since until today.


2018 Trading Tournament

In 2019, I came in 246th position with an overall 5.8% return (Geez, everybody is so damn good).

If my memory served me correctly, there was a twist in the leaderboard tournament in the very last few days when Temasek announced that it will do partial offer to Keppel Corp which sends its price flying high the next day. Those that are holding DLC Keppel long position goes straight into the leaderboard position.

So there's a real good chance that you may come out on top based on any single position you take.

Furthermore, tech stocks have lately been on a tear run as well, so it might pay off to have them in your portfolio as well ;)

2019 Trading Tournament

I think the tournament is a good simulation for learning and understanding how the DLCs product works. It follows a real-live trading simulation that are based on each day's closing price, so you can see how you perform and the emotional aspect of handling it.

So do join the tournament by clicking here and I'll see you at the top with the prizes.

Thanks for reading.

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Friday, August 21, 2020

Policywoke - Resale Insurance Policies Broker

For this month's collaboration schedule, we managed to tie up a partnership collaboration with Policywoke which you can sign up here.

I've also had the privilege to review their offerings and manage to chat with one of their co-founders, Jimmy to understand better about the product offerings and services they have.

Who is Policywoke?

Policywoke is a resale insurance policy broker that is run by three co-founders who are frequent members of the Seedly community and have been commendable in their impeccable servicing of their clients.

Services

Policywoke is a one-stop service where they help clients who need financing to sell their existing insurance policies up to 10% above the surrender value.

The surrender value is the actual sum of money a policyholder will receive if they try to access the cash value of a policy. 

There are many reasons why a policyholder chose to surrender his or her existing policy.

Reasons can vary from the inability to service the premium, loss of a job, or sudden need of cashflow (especially during Covid-19 situation like today).

The surrender fees will typically eat up and reduce the surrender value if a policyholder chose to surrender within the first initial stages/ early years and gradually goes down over the years.

Policywoke buys over these policies typically at a reduced margin (lower profits to them) and higher surrender value as compared if you are surrendering to your insurer broker directly. As a policyholder, it only makes sense that you surrender your policy to the highest bidder in the market.

For each insurance policy that was sold to Policywoke, they will then re-sell them to prospective clients as high-interest savings plan with a shorter duration since individuals who are taking over the policy and remaining premium are considered as resale. This way, you get a higher IRR out of your capital investment than had you purchased it from the commencement of the policy.

You may view a list of all their endowment and high-interest savings plan lists here.


For instance, if you are interested in buying over the resale policy #211, your capital outflow will be $41,890. You will then continue to service and pay an annual premium of $12,074.20 for the next three years starting 12 Dec 2020, then hold the policy for the next five years, after which your projected maturity on 12th Dec 2028 will be $105,771.

In summary, your total capital outlay would be [$41,800 + ($12,074 x 3)] = $78,022 for the first three years and your projected maturity after eight years would be $105,771, translating into an IRR of 4.0%.

Do note that like most endowment policies, the participating endowment policies on the projected return listed above consist of the non-guaranteed and the guaranteed portion. So, it will still pretty much depend on the performance of the funds.

This figure is updated as of 16 Aug 2020 so some of the figures might vary accordingly. Their consultants will be able to provide you with a clearer view of the latest figure when you approach them.

Disclaimer: This post is written in collaboration with Policywoke and contains affiliate referral links that go to maintain the sustainability of this blog at no additional cost to you. This article is meant purely for informational purposes and should not be construed as financial advice.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Aug 2020 - Portfolio & Transaction Updates

No.

 Counters

No. of Shares

Market Price (SGD)

Total Value (SGD) based on market price

Allocation %

Category

1.

Wilmar

  17,000

S$4.80

     81,600.00

22.0%

Momentum

2.

Comfortdelgro

  40,000

S$1.41

     56,400.00

15.0%

Recovery

3.

Lendlease Reit

  55,000

S$0.63

     34,650.00

10.0%

Dividend

4.

CDLHT

  20,000

S$0.97

     19,400.00

5.0%

Recovery

5.

Jardine C&C

    1,000

S$19.0

     19,000.00

5.0%

Recovery

6.

Micro-Mechanics

  11,300

S$1.95

     22,000.00

6.0%

Dividend

7.

Tencent (HK)

       400

HK$519

     37,000.00

11.0%

Compounders

8.

JD (HK)

       500

HK$240

     21,580.00

6.0%

Compounders

9.

Alibaba (HK)

       500

HK$240

     21,580.00

6.0%

Compounders

10.

Carnival (USA)

       700

US$16

     15,680.00

3.0%

Recovery

11.

Bank of China (HK)

  20,000

HK2.60

       9,270.00

2.0%

Dividend

12.

GA Pack (HK)

    9,000

HK3.00

       4,675.00

1.0%

Dividend

13.

Ho Bee Land

       300

S$2.12

          636.00

1.0%

Leftover

14.

Warchest

  

-

     30,000.00

9.0%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Less:

CFD@3.2%

 

 

(155,000.00)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total

 

 

 

   218,470.00

100%

100%


A blink of an eye and we are suddenly in the month of August.

The past few weeks have been very hectic for me in terms of work and other personal life but there's the rainbow after a poor month in Jun and Jul.

With a lot of businesses coming back up after reopening, work volume has increased quite substantially. The good news for us is we managed to secure a new substantial investor and our businesses have quickly picked up to pre-COVID levels so from the month of August our salaries will be restored back (after a 30% cut in the last 2 months). This will greatly help my own finances with more cash in hand that I can pump in more into investment.

On personal assignment, I have also completed 3 assigned sponsored articles in the past month which took up quite a bit of time. There's usually the time committed to meeting, research, write, edit, and review but all in all it was a very decent paid assignment that helps our finances during my period of a pay cut.

We have also been busy with the primary one registration for our child which we registered during the assigned registered phase. We are also letting the kids train out with the bicycles on the playground more frequently these days which also allow me time to breathe in the evening after office hours.



Portfolio Updates

Okay, so back to portfolio updates.

This has been a very good month for the portfolio and there's plenty to good news to cheer from.

In fact, I managed to scale up my positions quite significantly into more recovery and dividend plays this month as we get closer to more vaccine news and development. Already, we've heard about how Russia managed to approve its first COVID vaccine in their own country.

As some of you might know from the previous update last month, I managed to divest both one of my largest positions in Lendlease and CDLHT at an average price of 73 cents and $1.10 respectively. I was blessed with the timing as these two positions continued to drop over the next couple of weeks on second wave news which resulted in both of the counters correcting by about 20%. I managed to buy them again at an average price of 62.5 cents and 98 cents after both have announced their results.

I have also added Micro-Mechanics at an average price of $1.85 after a couple of very strong showings performance from the other semi-con companies such as UMS, Frecken, and AEM. I'll classify this as a dividend play for now in the portfolio as it provides both the dividend and the growth factor needs that are evident going into 2021 with 5G infrastructure in play.

On Recovery plays, I have further added to my position for Comfortdelgro to make it 40,000 shares after the share price dropped close to its previous low at $1.33. With that, my average price now stands at $1.54 which I think is decent enough to wait for a recovery. 

I have also added a small stake in Carnival cruise at an average price of USD14.50 for potential recovery plays. My thesis would be that I think recovery plays present a good risk-reward at the moment given that the markets have mostly factored in the continuing rise in cases and there's a very good chance we might hear something on the vaccine development (phase 3 trials results), even if these are only 50% effective.

On Compounders' play, I have also added the three Chinese giants for longer-term compounding plays. The timing of these entries was not exactly good as there has been much turbulence since the purchase. The biggest one was the news that Trump has banned Wechat and Tiktok from operating in the US, which sends spirals down to the Chinese tech stocks across. I guess I'll just have to wait for it longer for their next upcoming results which I am anticipating.

If you are keen to buy some of these companies and have not opened a trading account yet, you might want to consider signing up with Tiger Brokers. I have used it myself to buy HK and US stocks which now offers a lot of good deals on the reduced commission fees.

2020 Networth Updates

The portfolio has rebounded strongly this month from the previous month of $201,556 to $218,470 this month due to the number of factors.

The biggest factor comes from the upsurge momentum of my largest position in Wilmar, which announces very good Q2 results as well as a successful approval from the committee regarding its YKA IPO which brings it closer to going public.

The second biggest factor comes from the successful divestment of Silverlake after it managed to a run-up in the past few weeks. It appears that momentum is still very high on the radar right now so I figured I might have sold it a bit too early, but oh well.

The portfolio continued to inch a step closer to the target of $250k I have at the end of the year.

With income starting to go back to full force from this month, my gameplan is to allocate it to use as much as I possibly can as in my opinion, both the HK and STI are still at an attractive level to invest.


Cheers and stay safe everyone.

Thanks for reading.

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