Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Happy new year to all!


One thing that I learned this year is , never be scared to try. And usually it turns out fine. =)

If you have something that you really want to do, just do it. Instead of regretting not doing it 50 years down the road.


For the new year, I plan to execute the ideas I have in mind..mainly business ideas...


**As for one of the ideas,I would require the help of people who fit this description

  1. Have the technical expertise to make a website
  2. Business minded
  3. Dedicated ( as I intend to make project really big, if possible)
So if you fit the description, feel free to contact me at my email. I shall explain to you more about this business idea.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Business/MLM/network marketing


Met up with a friend yesterday to discuss about business stuff. Essentially an MLM / network marketing model.

I personally have been to many MLM talks. And frankly, the first MLM talk that I went to spurred my interest in fiance.

The thing I like about MLM is the education behind the system. They always educate the 'downlines' about financial planning, encourage them to read widely on financial stuff, plan their financials early and to have passive income .Hence the need to work in MLMs to create this passive income. Such companies include Amway, Sunshine empire ( scam company) etc.

However, most of the time they do not teach their downlines how to do business. The system of how your earnings is generated is important. However I believe how to go about doing this business is more important. Recruiting people to be you down line is one way, however in my opinion, for such a business to succeed, the products that they are selling have to be good. Or at least comparative to those presently on the market. I.e. the ability to sell the products is very important. Without sales, there will be no commission, and hence no income.

Therefore, every time I think of a business plan, I will always feel that the point where the money is transacted is crucial. You can have a wonderful business plan, but if there is no one to buy your products/services, it is a lousy business plan. Great care and effort has to be made on this part of the business plan.

We also talked about many other stuff that are related to investment and finance. And I suddenly realized that by setting up this blog, I myself have learned a lot. Though this blog is only around for few months, I have learned much due to the need to read widely to do my posts.

Finally, I hope that everyone who comes to this blog learn a little a day. Remember, every little bit counts! =)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

What to invest in 2009?


Personally after looking at so many reports and their respective analysis. I feel that buying soft commodities might still be the best investment for next year. Some possible soft commodities include Soya bean, rice..etc.

These are some reason why i think so :
  • China/India's population is still growing, hence there will be more demand for this.
  • Supply of these soft commodities will be reduced as farmers will not be able to get loans from banks to buy fertilizers to increase their yield.
  • With more demand and less supply, price can only go up.
  • AND!..personally I feel that soft commodities is not as widely covered in the news as other stuff like oil/stocks/properties. Hence there is room for the price to run up. ( Because the best stuff to buy is not when the price has stared to go up, but rather before the price starts to go up)

Next, if you are interested, oil seems to be a good buy too. Downside risk is low also, as the price now is really low. However if the economy does not recover, the demand for the oil will still remain low and hence you will not get as much returns. But if you could also make a short term lost, if the economy gets worst.


Following, stocks seem to be quite a good buy. However practise dollar cost averaging over the next year. I personally will start buying in slowly after march, and on dips. Buy using TA to try to catch the uptrend, but if I fail to get the uptrend as I actually intend to keep these stocks for long term.

Finally property. In Singapore, it might not be a good time yet. Approximately 44% of homes bought last year will TOP in 2009. If people who bought homes last year, and are not able to pay, most probably they will have to sell these homes at a lost.


*updated the other blog of mine at http://thepowertotrade.blogspot.com/

Friday, December 26, 2008

List of stocks

Here is another list of companies with ratios.

If I were to select good companies to buy here is what I will look Add Imageout for
  • Big market capitalization
  • Price/Cash Value
  • Price/NAV
  • Div yield
However it is still important to look at the financial sheet before buying the share as these ratios could be good due to alteration of the financial reports.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

USD to weaken?


Just saw a report from DBS.

Looks like we are expecting the USD to SGD to weaken over the next year.

Here is how it is expected to happen :
  • US will be deleveraging itself ( which is happening at the moment)
  • People will sell off their assets and pay back the loans used to buy the assets
  • Since the loans were in USD, the people have to buy USD
  • This cause a shortage in USD in the forex market, causing the USD to appreciate/rise at the moment
  • However, since Japan is also deleveraging itself, but at a slower rate, people will sell off their USD for Yen as the 'Yen carry trade**' was widely used in the past.
  • This in turn will provide the supply of USD in the currency market and cause the USD to depreciate/drop
  • On the other hand, as of Oct 2008, Singapore has shifted to a zero appreciate of its SGD
  • So with respect to USD and SGD, the USD is expected to weaken


**More info of the Yen carry trade at :http://ntuchartist.blogspot.com/2008/11/how-world-is-deleveraging-itself.html

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Cash Rich Companies

There is actually quite a few companies that are trading below their net cash per share.

SO in theory this could happen:
  • Own the company by buying all the stocks in the company for say $1
  • Sell off all the assets and get the cash
  • This amount ( the net cash) is higher than $1, so..say $2
  • You pocket the $1
However this does not happen, because the big boss in the company will not sell all their shares to you.

Hence you can start looking into this companies for long term investment, as it does not make sense for the company to trade below its net cash for a long time. ( That is provided the company does not start losing all its money over the next few years.)

Here is the list of such companies

source : Bloomberg

source : shareinvestor.com

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Dividens

Was reading though some reports from different brokerage firms. Personally, even though I think it will be safer to buy starting from around May next year. We can start looking out for blue chips. Personally I have greater confidence in large market capitalization companies that are Singapore based.

I will also look out for stocks that have high dividen yields, as these stocks are in genereal more defensive in nature, their stock prices should drop as much, if the economy suddenly turns bad.

Here are some companies that I feel are worth considering with their respective projected dividends

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Indices

Indices of a stock market is a basket of stock that is chosen to represent the general stock market. They are usually chosen based on their market capitalization ( how big the company is), how important the company ( such as banks, telecoms etc.) and other factors.

Here is some values of the major world indices.


As you can see, Singapore has dropped one of the most in the world! So technical speaking, if you have faith in the Singapore economy , you should start investing in it. Because it will most likely bounce back, and gives the highest gain. This can be done by either buying straight into the stocks, or buying Singapore ETF ( exchange traded funds) which tracks the Singapore Index directly.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Auction

Once again there is another auction. The things up for auction includes rolex watches, other branded stuff and jewellery.

I personally think, those with a good eye should take a look at the auctions, and you might be able to find a good deal..and thus treat it as in investment.

Details as follows.

Date: 21st Dec 2008, Sunday

Venue: Hilton Hotel, Ballroom 2, Level 3, 581 Orchard Road Singapore

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Rolling $$ across credit cads 2

Remember my post previously on rolling $$ over credit cards. The problem with that was that we are usually not able to draw cash from one credit card and use it to pay for the other credit card.

However, it is actually possible to so called 'change' your debt from one company to another. And in the process reduce your monthly 2% interest to a one time admin fee ( from 1.5-6.5%) for 6-24months. I.e. you pay less for interest by shifting your debt around, then letting one particular credit card company charge you interest.

Here are the rates.
* Gotten from The Sunday Times on 14 Dec 2008

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Shorting

After the gathering on Sunday, I learned something really useful from one of the people who turned up. That is shorting in the market.

Shorting in very real in the market. And there are ways to find out whether there are genuine sellers in the market, or are they people who are simply shorting the market to make a quick buck.

Here are a few ways
  • Big sell down in price, but no substantial shareholders are doing the selling
  • Shorting facilities stop allowing people to short. For example CFDs stop the shorting of a particular stock
Anyone who has any more ideas? feel free to comment!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

PhillipCapital Weekly market watch

This is a video by Phillip securities

Summary:
  • Investors worried that FED is printing too much money to do the bail outs, hence weaking the US currency
  • Vicious downward spiral. Cause by drop in property prices hence bank lending, followed by consumption, business and equity assets looping back to property prices again.
  • Market outlook for following months to be sideways with high chance of going down
  • Possible write down of USD 7.5 trillion from various sources, like the CDOs which are causing the banks to go bankrupt.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Successful networking/trading session!


Even though in the end we only had 4 people at the session. I would say its a successful one. It is really not the number of people at the session, but rather the content/scope/depth of the discussion.

Topics that we talk about include
  • Risks in trading
  • Simple style of trading
  • Ways the stock market is being manipulated
  • Technical analysis opinions
  • Commodities trend
  • Currency trends
  • Property trends
  • World economic trends
  • And many many more...
For me, its my first time having this sort of discussion. Though I have only met these people for the first time, we are still able to chat as though we know each other for quite some time already.
It is really surprising how easy it is for people of common interests to get engross in talking about something that there are so interested in, although they are from different age groups.

Once again I thank them for coming all the way down to NTU on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

Cheers!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Meeting today!

Looking forward to today's meeting. Shall update the outcome of the meeting when its over.


Hopefully it will be a successful one!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sunday's meeting

I haven really come up with a good solid plan for Sunday's meeting. This is because I am not actually 'running' the meeting. But rather, I feel that I am facilitating the meeting of people with common interest.

Hope the topics that I choose will appeal to the people who are coming.

If any one has any good suggestions for stuff to discuss about besides the one I listed, feel free to comment. Thanks!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Trading team/ networking session this sunday

Yup, this Sunday's meeting is confirm. We have a handful of people, but it is enough to get a small meeting going.

These are the things that we will be sharing/discussing
  • Trading Methods
  • Trading Platforms
  • Markets that we trade on and the pros and cons of each derivatives
  • General View of the market and the any sectors
  • Financial Views for the next few months
  • Do simple stock picking and discuss..
  • Set up means of keeping in touch..maybe through this blog? or mass email
  • And others...
So those of you who are coming...yup you might want to think about these stuffs, so that we can share it with each other on Sunday.

Cya!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Jewellery Auction

Yup, there is another jewellery auction for any one who would like to buy cheap jewellery.
I was actually thinking, if you are really good at valuating jewellery..you might actually be able to go the auction to get a really good deal and sell the items that you win to pawn shops of cash converters? It seems possible.

Also, yesterday's newspaper talks about some auctions giving really good deals like brand new Nokia handphones at $70. Only downside is that it was stolen and was recovered by the police.

Anyway..here are the details for the auction



Venue: Hilton Hotel Singapore, Vista Room, Level 3, 581 Orchard Road, Singapore
Date : 14th Dec 2008 (Sunday)
Time: Viewing at 11am, auction at 1pm

More info at : http://firststateauctions.com/auction.asp

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

CPF 101: Knowing your CPF account ( Part 2 )

  • When you reach 55, a Minimum Sum will need to be set aside. The Minimum Sum is currently $106,000. This sum will gradually increase to $120,000 (in 2003 dollars, i.e it will be further adjusted according to inflation) by 2013. The excess can then be withdrawn in one lump sum.
  • The Minimum Sum may be used to purchase life annuity with participating insurance company, placed with a participating bank, or left into your Retirement Account (current interest rate: 4%). Monthly payments will be made from age 62 until the Minimum Sum is exhausted. With life annuity, your monthly payments will continue for life.
  • These are the very basics of your CPF account. More information, such as on housing schemes and the various types of investments you can make with your CPF savings, is available on the CPF website, www.cpf.gov.sg.
  • You may check your CPF statement and make transfers from your Ordinary Account to your Special Account simply by logging in on the CPF website. All you will need is a SingPass (apply online), which will be mailed to you within a week.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

CPF 101: Knowing your CPF Account

Today's post is contributed by a reader.


CPF contributions by yourself (20% of monthly wage) and your employee (14.5% of monthly wage)* are allocated into three accounts: 


Ordinary (66.7% of contribution*, interest rate: 2.5%) – for insurance, investment, buying a home and education 


Special (14.5% of contribution*, interest rate: 4%) – for investment in retirement-related products 


Medisave (18.8% of contribution*, interest rate: 4%) – for hospitalization expenses and approved medical insurance 


You may wish to transfer some of your money from the Ordinary account to the Special account in order to enjoy better interest rates.


*Rates are for those below the age of 50 who are employees in the private sector, Government non-pensionable employees, non-pensionable employees in statutory bodies and aided-schools, or Singapore Permanent Resident employees from their third year onwards. For others, see http://mycpf.cpf.gov.sg/Members/Gen-Info/Con-Rates/ContriRa.htm 


Voluntary contributions beyond your monthly CPF deductions are also possible. You may also choose to contribute to your parents’, spouse’s or siblings’ CPF accounts. These contributions may grant you tax relief. However, do note that any transfer is irreversible, and should thus only be done if you are sure that you will not need the money for buying a home or your children’s education etc.


Using the CPF caluculator (https://www.cpf.gov.sg/cpf_trans/ssl/financial_model/oa2sa/oa2sa_cal.asp?prof=&src=RNR), you can estimate how much more interest you can get by transferring money from your Ordinary Account to your Special Account.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Jewellery Auction

Once again there is another jewellery auction!

Details as follows

Venue: Sheraton Towers Hotel
Date : 7th Dec 2008 (Sunday)
Time: Viewing at 11am, auction at 1pm

Friday, December 5, 2008

Lehman Brothers Balance Sheet


Got this from an email that i received..


.Auditor's one line report on Lehman Brothers Balance sheet:

'There are two sides to a Balance Sheet:

- Left & the Right (Liabilities and Assets respectively)

on the Left side - there is nothing right

and on the Right side - there is nothing left


We must still keep our sense of humor in times like this! =)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

PhillipCapital Market Watch 1-5 Dec

This is a video by Phillip securities

Summary
  • Dec might rally because fund mangers will try means of boosting their portfolio, as they need to close their accounts.
  • The rally could go into Jan, because of the Singapore bail out plan which is expected to be good and Obama's possible economic policies that he might implement when he goes into office on 20th Jan.
  • The US having to fund for all the bail out has 3 ways to raise cash
  1. Increase tax, but this will not be good for consumer
  2. Issue Treasury bills. But in this current credit crisis and the amount of money that is needed, this might not be a good idea
  3. Printing more money. This will cause the currency to devalue. Hence if this happnes, its time to move out of USD based assets.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

REITs


Got this off 'The Edge' Magazine.

It seems like the yields of REITs now are crazily high..up to even 30%.

However we must consider how they calculate these value. It is done by taking the latest dividend in absolute dollars divided by the current share price.

So a stock that was $1 yielding a 5% dividend would be yielding 10% dividend if the stock price drops to 50cents.

Also, before plunging your money into these stocks, you must first do your research on these companies..as many factors will affect the future potential of these companies.

For example :
  • Where are the properties in the asset based? Their properties might not be all based in Singapore. Places like China will have a higher risk, as their government might have a sudden policy change, be it tax laws and such.
  • Their gearing. I.e how much debt to asset that they have. This is because in times like this when credit is difficult to get, they might get into trouble if they have too much debts.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Interest rates


I was observing the interest rates lately and find that Fixed deposit rates are dropping really quickly and normal saving rates are going up.

Banks like UOB has upped their basic savings rates and banks like HSBC has even made it more complicated by pegging it to the 1 month Singapore Interbank rates. Pegging it to the Interbank rates is a really smart idea. Not only do you make depositors happier, you reduce your risk greatly, as the banks will not ever have the chance of 'over giving' money to you, as the interbank rates are ever changing.



Also, while reading today's business times, I found out that currently, DBS bank has the lowest lending interest rates as compared to other banks. Its rate is 4.5% as compared to other banks which are around 5-6%. This shows that the Singapore government is really making an effort to make credit readily available to the Singapore companies at the risk of their own banks having profitability problems. This might/might not be a good thing. If these companies happen to default, DBS is going to have lots of write downs, and create a mini Singapore financial crisis. However if all goes well, DBS will come back really strong as compared to the other banks, when the overall market turns around. ( So if you really have confidence in Singapore companies in general, buying DBS shares will be a really really good investment for the long term)