Friday, December 31, 2010
Sunday, December 26, 2010
To check out the various stock picks by these analysts for the year 2010, you can look at the following links:
1. DBS Vickers Small/Mid Cap Strategy
Friday, December 24, 2010
The reasons for exiting it are mainly twofold. While it is a healthcare REIT, it does not really have a parent company to back it up. That is unless u consider Lippo to be its parent. The other thing that weighs heavily on my mind is that majority of its assets are based in Indonesia. There are thus country risks involved. And that is perhaps the reason why it is trading at a seemingly more attractive valuation than the other REITs counters. Personally, I did not want to hold something that was overly exposed and narrowly focused. And that was why I decided to exit it. A stock is cheap for certain reasons and the same applies to First REIT. It reminds me a bit of various s-chip shares I had held over the years because it was cheap when compared to its peers. Remember Unifood and Pfood?
The decision I took then was to start investing in blue chip companies and avoid stocks that were of a higher risk. And that will remain my strategy at least for the time being. I hope to liquidate my small cap stocks slowly and transfer them to bigger and better blue chips. Of course, we are in the midst of an expansion right now so I will perhaps wait a little longer before I start refocusing my efforts.
Though I was tempted to enter into First REiT recently, I shall resist it for the moment.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Well, the price is 7 bucks for a very normal looking cup of iced caffe latte but I must say that it tasted superb. Coffee sometimes tend to be too sweet or bitter but the cup that I drank was perfect. Perhaps I managed to add just the right amount of syrup to my drink. I was actually quite worried at the start as there wasn't a single soul in the cafe. But that was probably because I had an early dinner and it was probably dinner time for most people when I bought the coffee.
Continued my festive spending by spending over 40 bucks on a book from Prologue. Was pretty fascinated by the wide variety of books there. Almost comparable to Borders and Kinokuniya. I could have spent the entire night there and would have bought a truckload of books if I wasn't reminded by the fact that I still had a huge number of books waiting to be read at home. Anyway, the book that I bought was by a previous permanent secretary, Ngiam Tong Dow, and the book is titled "Dynamics of the Singapore Success Story". I must say that I have always had a certain fascination with how policies are made in Singapore and the various issues involved for a single policy. This book should keep me busy all the way till the New Year.
Have been splurging quite a bit recently with some mini-retreats planned towards the end of the year. Christmas is really just round the corner and I am sure I will be lamenting how soon it is over. Saw a decoration today that read "Christmas is Love". Indeed, Christmas is all about love if one understands the true meaning of why we celebrate Christmas and give gifts to one another.
Wishing all readers a most Blessed Christmas in advance. Take time to smell the roses and spend time with those you love.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Picking up my courage, I called the hotline expecting to have to make another of those threats to cancel my credit card to one of those innocent call operators. I was almost reciting the exact words to say to the operator.
To my surprise, I realized that it was now automated and just by punching in a few details, I got immediate confirmation that my annual fee for my credit card could be waived. All this without speaking to a human being. The banks must have been getting lots of phone calls and have thus implemented an automated service!
I really wonder whether there are people who actually pay annual fees for their credit cards nowadays. Almost everyone I know of does not pay their annual fees anymore. If that is the case, why don't the credit card companies just waive the fees once and for all?
Monday, December 20, 2010
There are however also many reasons not to buy car. And I wished that someone had told me this before I bought my car.
A car is expensive to upkeep. For a fresh graduate working in Singapore, buying a car can easily cost you up to 1000 dollars per month. Do not be fooled by the monthly installments alone. You still have to take into account petrol, insurance, parking, repairs. And all these add up to easily 1k per month. Think about what you can do with 1k extra cash every month! Even if you do not save it, you can use it to go for a short holiday trip. That is a serious tradeoff you would like to consider.
A car is like a drug. Once u own a car, you will most probably be addicted to it and will keep on driving for the rest of your life. Driving is a habit that is hard to kick. And it is a very expensive habit to maintain.
People are not impressed by the car you drive. Stop thinking that people are going to be impressed by the car that you drive. Seriously, most people are not even envious and do not even take note if you change a new car. Spending so much money to impress people is also not worth it. You could use that money to treat them to expensive meals every month if you really want to impress them. That includes impressing potential girlfriends.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
No way! That wasn't what I signed up for. I have big dreams for my life when I was little. And big goals too. And I shall not let anyone dampen my spirts or kill my dreams. Yet, there are moments in life when I feel discourage and feel like just moving on with the flow of life. You know, stable job, have kids, watch them grow up, get promoted, etc, etc. Basically, it means walking the path which millions have walked before me. And why not, I have a comfortable path or life laid up ahead of me. All I have to do is play by the rules and I am more or less guaranteed a cushy job that pays relatively well enough.
So why risk it all?
Because I believe that each individual's greatest fear is that he/she is immeasurably more powerful than we dare imagine. And we are afraid that people we know will look at us with doubting eyes and wonder: "Is this the XYZ that I really know?" We are bounded and held back by the chains that imprison our minds. We refuse to move ahead because others expect us to stay where we are in life.
After all, "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure."
How does this link to innovation?
Well...innovation is all about creativity and doing things differently. That includes living life differently. And I believe that Singaporeans are generally an innovative bunch. We have managed to solve many problems even when faced against great odds.
But can we really think differently to create a global company that is as distinctive as Apple or Microsoft or Google or Facebook? Why does the United States churn out such billion dollar companies with seemingly brilliant ideas at such pace and with such ease?
Why is our Singapore economy so still reliant on exports for survival? Why are we reliant on MNCs to set up their bases here? Where are the thinkers of this generation? Where are our Bill Gates and Steve Jobs?
Is the reason we fail to innovate caused by the fact that we live too similar lives to all those around us? In fact, I am almost one step closer to making the sweeping statement that "having a university degree is almost a sure way to kill innovation." (But of course, I know that is not true and many graduates are truly innovative people but perhaps not in the billion dollar kind of way. That's why I said I am still one step away. ) But getting a degree makes one afraid to take on the path least travelled. Afterall, why risk a good job and pay when it is all laid out in front of you. Why be different?
Think left not right & Change the World at the same time.
Think out of the box. That is what they taught us in school. But why did we even assume that there is a box in the first place? The statement " Think out of the box" highlights the fact that there is a box and somehow we need to think out of it. That goes against our logical mindset. We are too used to giving the earth is at the centre of the universe kind of answers that we simply dismiss the possibility of our CRAZY ideas. You don't want to look crazy in class..and definitely not in front of your boss. Our "outside the box ideas" are actually still very much within a larger invisible box. In fact, the sure way to kill creativity is to ask someone to "think outside the box" or "think creatively". You see, the crazy answers are often so CRAZY and out of this world that noone will even root or vote for that idea. Not even your boss. Cos he/she doesn't want to look stupid infront of their bosses. (okay, I admit, some ideas are really too crazy and probably lie close to the realms of pure stupidity)
And so the phenomenon is that crazy people will hang around with crazy people and make billions of dollars while changing the world at the same time. Their ideas tend to be so revolutionary that they end up changing not only their immediate surroundings but the entire world. What problems are there in the world? What crazy solutions are out there?
How Am I Different from 5 Million People in Singapore?
Yes, Singapore is getting crowded. So what makes you different from all the rest of the people on this tiny island? Of course, we all are uniquely different in terms of our experiences, skills, education, personality, etc.
The question then is not about being different but differentiating oneself from the rest of the population. One thing is for sure: If you are doing the same stuff as everyone else (study hard, get a job, work, go home, sleep) , you can't expect a different outcome.
The craziest thing in this world is to do things in a similar manner and expect a completely different outcome. How is that for lunacy? (Sadly, many of us still fall into that trap)
Friday, December 17, 2010
I shall not count my kindergarten days as part of the sixteen years. After all, this phase of my schooling was not really compulsory. But as both parents were working, and also because it is the norm for kids to attend some kind of class before formal education truly begins, I was enrolled into kindergarten. To think of it, I do not remember much of my kindergarten except the place and the person who I attended it with. It was located some distance away from my house but near enough to my mum's workplace so that she could pick me up after work. A babysitter would pick me up after lessons and I would eat lunch at the place followed by a really boring wait for my mum to end work and pick me up.it was that boring I remember. There were no toys there and I literally whittled my afternoons away just sitting at the living room all by myself.
That perhaps explains a lot about my personality now that I think of it. I like my own free time and quiet space. Now I know where this habit came from!
Seriously, I do not remember much about kindergarten or what I did or learnt. I guessed I must have learnt something useful but then again I am not sure. All I remember were the recesses,the sports days, birthday celebrations, having to sit cross-legged on the cement floor.. There were no air-conditioned classrooms then so u can imagine how uncomfortable it got.
Fast forward to primary school.
I seriously was blur during my primary school days. For the first year, I literally did not know things like homework were meant to be completed and that the spelling lists was meant to be revised. I failed my spelling tests horribly and then only realized that the list of words the teacher had given out days before were the words she was reading out loud in front of class! I still remember the first spelling test when the teacher just walked into class, announced that it was time for spelling and started reciting the words out. Before I knew what was happening, she had already read out two words. By the time I got out my exercise book, she had read through almost half the list! Not that I could spell the words since I did not even know what a spelling test was and the need to do revision. It was only after like two or three spelling tests that I plucked up the courage to ask a classmate what the heck was going on and how on earth he knew how to spell . He then looked at me quizically, took out the spelling list and showed it to me. That was when I finally understood what the whole thing was about. For two to three weeks, I had been wondering what the teacher was babbling about and how she even expected us to spell the words when had i never heard them in my life.
Primary school got more fun when I started making friends and getting a hang of schoolwork. I hated doing homework though and remembered the times I used to leave it to the last minute before completing them. Sometimes, I was even doing my homework in the bus! But primary school was fun for all its innocence, the silly games, the ghost stories we made up, the canteen food and of course, the bus ride home. The exams were killers but I got streamed to EM2, just barely making the grade for EM1 by 2 marks. I was in the second best class and studied really hard for my PSLE. I never had much ambition and thought that my highest score could get was 230. We did not do mock tests then so there was no way of knowing except through the school's internal exams before PSLE. I also did not have any tuition so I was not expecting much. My parents also placed little pressure on me and just asked me to do my best. And then, there were also the many nights spent arguing with my parents that algebra was not allowed and could only draw boxes to work out the answer.(my parents still taught me algebra and told me to use it to double check my answers. ) till today, I am still not sure how to use the stupid boxes to solve a problem! To cut a long story short, I got 262 for my PSLE, straight 6 points for my O levels, fumbled my way through junior college and graduated with good enough results to be hired and paid reasonably well.
And till today, I am not sure what knowledge I have gained during my schooling years that I have used in my career. My wife told me that all the schooling has taught me to think. But I really wonder whether it has. One thing is certain though. Employers do look at your results and the better your results are, the more doors will open. But guess what? All the successful people I know in my cohort tend not to do too well academically but still managed to excel in their respective fields.
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Not too sure whether it is worth the investment but guess I can see whether it works out in the end and then decide a year later whether I still want to keep that domain name.
Anyway, it was really troublesome setting up the account and stuff. I was using GoDaddy but was fumbling through it and wasn't really sure how to get the Wordpress up too. I made a fatal mistake in that I did not configure Wordpress on the root directory and ended up having to delete it and reinstall it again. That was like the killer move which wasted a few hours of my precious time.
Hopefully all this will be settled and I can unveil my new site soon. (Or if the way things are going, it might be weeks or even years =)
Oh well, guess that is all part and parcel of life. Sometimes, things just move slower than we expect them to take place.
I am not really sure that I enjoy weekends anymore. I mean, I don't really enjoy going to malls on weekends as they are just so crowded. And crowds tend to make my blood pressure go up. I just need my own personal space. And sometimes, it is difficult to find that space during weekends as every single place I can think of is often so crowded. So staying at home sometimes works best for me.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Alot of work is actually not work. Stop acting busy. Just being busy the whole day does not mean that you are doing real work. You can be very busy but not be getting any real work done.
Most work can get done when we talk. If we talk, we can actually get much more work done rather than emailing.
You are probably uglier and stupider than you think you really are. Most people think that they are above average in intelligence and looks. That surely cannot be the case.
If you are employed, you are most probably being paid for your time. We all are paid differently for our time. The high income earner works probably the same amount as a normal person. But his relative income is much higher. Does your boss pour in more hours than you? Unlikely. He probably works the same number of hours as you. Why is he paid more? Food for thought....
Do you really want to climb the corporate ladder and have less time for your family?
Monday, December 6, 2010
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Friday, December 3, 2010
MADRID - AFTER billions of years the Sun finally has an owner - a woman from Spain's soggy region of Galicia said on Friday she had registered the star at a local notary public as being her property.
Ms Angeles Duran, 49, told the online edition of daily El Mundo she took the step in September after reading about an American man who had registered himself as the owner of the moon and most planets in our Solar System.
There is an international agreement which states that no country may claim ownership of a planet or star, but it says nothing about individuals, she added.
'There was no snag, I backed my claim legally, I am not stupid, I know the law. I did it but anyone else could have done it, it simply occurred to me first.'
The document issued by the notary public declares Ms Duran to be the 'owner of the Sun, a star of spectral type G2, located in the centre of the solar system, located at an average distance from Earth of about 149,600,000km'.
Ms Duran, who lives in the town of Salvaterra do Mino, said she now wants to slap a fee on everyone who uses the sun and give half of the proceeds to the Spanish government and 20 per cent to the nation's pension fund. She would dedicate another 10 per cent to research, another 10 per cent to ending world hunger - and would keep the remaining 10 per cent herself. -- AFP
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Monday, November 29, 2010
Saturday, November 27, 2010
What stories do I have to tell?
Many. But are they interesting enough? And what should I tell since there are so many?
It is kindergarten. I am catching a ride from my neighbour's Mum. We attend the same kindergarten and it is quite often that I catch a ride from them. On this day, I get into the car first. Thinking that he would go in from the other side, I proceed to close the door.
Unfortunately, he doesn't go in from the other side. He uses his hand to stop the door but the door slams on his fingers. He screams in pain and starts crying out. His mum inspects his fingers and says it is alright. But that doesn't stop him from being angry with me. And I am too afraid to say sorry. He ignores me for the rest of the day.
Why do I even remember an event like this?
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
I have also received over USD$250 from selling some adspace on my blogs. This is still stuck in my paypal account as I have no idea how to transfer it out to my bank account yet.
The weekend has been great thus far. Lots of lazing around and trying to figure out what I want to get out of my life. Been thinking about this a little more the past few weeks.
Today is a hot day so we are staying indoors most probably. The family is taking its afternoon nap but I do hope to be able to go out and get some fresh air, clear my head, and get myself all geared up for the new week ahead.
Friday, November 19, 2010
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Lately, I have been thinking about philantrophy and how I could incorporate it into my life or maybe even incorporate it into part of my family's legacy. This was after reading the news about the Khoo's family donation to NUHS.
The act of giving is something mysterious and lovely at the same time. Personally, I have found that giving away my money to charities makes me feel that all my work is not in vain. At least I am helping someone who is needy.
Meaning of Philanthropy
"We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give." - Winston Churchill, British prime minister (1874-1965)
The word "philanthropy" is derived from the Greek word philos (love) and anthropos (mankind). Loosely translated, it means "love for mankind". The act of philanthropy can thus be generally defined as the giving of one's money, time, information, goods and services, voice or influence to the general improvement of the well-being of humanity.
If you have given away things before, you ought to understand that there is a certain joy that can be derived from giving.
How much to Give?
How much one should give is dependent on many factors. Giving money away can sometimes be as complicated as making money! Here are some general guidelines when it comes to giving:
1. Know your income level and how long you wish to continue giving. No point giving away everything till you go broke. You should find a level that is comfortable enough. You can't match the millions that the rich are giving away, but surely a few dollars can be spared? While some people might choose to make monthly contributions to their charity of choice, others prefer to make only one-off donations. This all boils down to preference and comfort level.
2. Identify areas you are passionate in. Giving is much easier if you are giving to an area you are passionate in. If you like children, donating to a children's charity makes sense. The key idea is to donate to causes which you believe in and are passionate about.
3. Read up, Track progress, Be clear about expectations. There are just so many charities out there. Just the other day, I learnt about this new charity called the Rainbow Club. I have never heard of it before had I not started the blog post asking readers for suggestions. This goes to show that there are so many organisations out there and it might be worthwhile to read up more, track each of these organisation to see what they are doing differently from the rest and also tailor your expectations on how your money will be put to good use.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Monday, November 15, 2010
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Sunday, November 7, 2010
I read the news recently about the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona being restored and how the first mass is going to be conducted there. I remember travelling to Barcelona sometime back and took some pictures of the Sagrada Familia. It is really an impressive looking building. Too bad the pictures I took had all these hovering cranes around the building as they were still working at restoring it.
Friday, November 5, 2010
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
The MRT is filled with people dressed in their office wear, all geared up to go to work. Some of them look confident. Others look tired.
When I look out of the MRT, there are blocks and blocks of HDB flats. Each block probably containing close around 1000 residents. And I am but an insignificant person living in one of those flats.
It makes me wonder how different I am from each of these individuals. How do I make myself stand out from the crowd? Am I a better person compared to the person standing next to me? How do I differentiate myself from all the other people around me? In short, what are the skills and experience I need to acquire to ensure that I stand out from the rest of the crowd?
Of course, there are the days when I just can't be bothered and resign myself to fate that there are probably zillions of people who are much better than me in every aspect. And perhaps, I should just be contented to live my quiet and peaceful life... Not to seek fame and fortune but to live a quiet and happy life with my family.
Monday, October 25, 2010
Sunday, October 24, 2010
The worldwide economic crisis has caused an enormous number of citizens in high-income countries to become over-indebted, even though they may have severely reduced their standard of living. The rise in personal debt has corresponded with a parallel rise in stress levels, resulting in widespread lack of sleep. Now it appears that over-indebted people have one more worry to add to their list: they are at risk of becoming obese.
A study was conducted in Germany a few months ago that showed a relationship between over-indebtedness and obesity. Dr. Eva Munster and her research team at the University of Mainz have concluded that extreme debt obligations result in more than twice the likelihood that a person will be obese or overweight as compared to a financially stable person
The study defines over-indebtedness as the inability to make timely payments on one’s debts due to the imbalance between income and the cost of living. Low socio-economic status has long been considered a contributing factor to the worldwide epidemic of obesity. However, a direct relationship between indebtedness and obesity had not been considered prior to Dr. Munster’s study.
Are Over-Indebted People More Likely to Become Obese?The goal of the study was to measure the general health of individuals who are over-indebted. Two German population-based surveys provided the data. The first was a telephone survey, which included 8318 respondents from the general population. The second was a questionnaire distributed to the clients of debt counseling centers, to which 949 over-indebted people responded. Both surveys obtained information on socio-economic status including age, sex, education and income. Information was also collected regarding body mass index (BMI, a measure of obesity that is based on one’s height and weight), smoking behavior and depression levels.
Males and females were found to be equally over-indebted. Many of the traits that are common to people of low socio-economic status were present: lower education levels, lower income levels, greater depression levels and greater quotidian tobacco consumption than would be found in the general population. However, the over-indebted subjects were younger than people of low socio-economic status usually are. Also, they were more likely to be overweight or obese.
Obesity A Corollary To PovertyPrevious studies have shown an association between low financial status and being overweight. However, this is the first study to show that financial belt-tightening, in the form of serious indebtedness, could result in a literal belt loosening. One reason is the diminished access to healthy food, researchers speculate. There is an inverse relationship between a food’s caloric content and its cost. High calorie (energy dense) food, such as fatty snacks and sweets, generally costs less. On the other hand, low calorie (low energy) food, such as broccoli or carrots, tends to cost more.
Impoverished people tend to eat low-cost food that has a high-energy content while they simultaneously reduce their energy expenditure – participation in leisure and social activities tends to be curtailed when on a budget. Another factor that contributes to higher BMI may be psychological distress. A person who is in a depressed emotional state may increase food intake to achieve a sense of well-being. Therefore, over-indebted individuals may self-medicate with food to improve mood.
In Germany, approximately 7.6% of households are over-indebted and 33% of residents are obese. Germans have the reputation of being the fattest people in Europe and the government has launched an anti-obesity campaign to address the issue. If it is determined to be so and if the German government is successful in its campaign to end obesity, the people might experience an improvement in their financial condition.
It is not clear from Dr. Munster’s study, however, what the causal direction of the observed relationship between a man’s waistline and his financial stability is. It is not clear if being indebted is a risk factor for becoming obese or the other way around. It has been suggested, for example, that obese individuals face greater difficulty finding a job that will pay the bills, simply because they face psychological (negative body image) and social (prejudice, stigmatization, etc) barriers that are uncommon to normal-weight people.
Extrapolating The DataThe medical community is considering whether the results obtained in the German study can be applied to other countries. In the United States, where the number of people who are over-indebted is on the rise, the study’s results are cause for concern.
Currently, obesity in the United States affects one in four people. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) describes America as obesogenic, which means that society has created the conditions that promote obesity. This is due in large part to the congressional farm bill, which subsidizes the production of fattening food like corn and other grains, keeping unhealthy foods inexpensive. There is also a suburban culture that mandates long commutes by car and discourages walking. Furthermore, many jobs in the modern, technological workplace are sedentary.
Could over-indebtedness be another obesogenic factor in American society? According to a recent report, more Americans filed for bankruptcy during March of 2010 than any time since the overhaul of the federal bankruptcy laws in 2005.
Implications of the Obesity-Debt LinkThe German study shows that over-indebted people are more prone to obesity. If this is true, with over-indebtedness on the rise in high-income nations, a corresponding rise in obesity should be anticipated. Since obesity is associated with serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain forms of cancer, a healthcare crisis should also be anticipated. As developed countries struggle to mitigate the parallel epidemics of obesity and over-indebtedness, access to healthy food by people of low socio-economic status must be considered a top priority.
Matthew Stathis, PhD, is a young entrepreneur who recently left his career as a research scientist at Washington University in order to learn and apply simple business and investment principles. Alarmed by rising rates of obesity in the United States, he maintains a blog where he shares and explains scientific information that can address this issue. Matthew has identified 3 clinically researched diets in the US, including Weight Watchers which you can read about here. Other diet programs that Matthew recommends and features in his site are Medifast, Bistro MD, Diet to Go, and eDiets
During this kind of weekends, I will usually splurge a little. We will have nice little breakfasts and brunches at nicer places rather than hawker centres. We will eat a little more, and likewise, spend a little more too with some shopping for home stuff or books or whatever retail therapy that suits us.
I have sort of figured that each weekend, I can easily spend close to $200. This includes meals which usually add up to over $150 over both Saturdays and Sundays. The other $50 will usually be used to buy miscellaneous items like books, clothes, etc, etc. This is usually retail therapy as the more I walk around the shopping malls like ION or stuff, there are just so MANY things that I want to get.
It means that weekends tend to be much more expensive for me compared to a normal weekday. But I guess it is worthwhile. Afterall, such weekends are precious to me and I am willing to spend just a little bit more of money for the ambience and the mood to make sure that the weekend is well-spent.
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Now, the latest news is that Alex Ferguson and Wayne Rooney are going their separate ways. After some weeks of denying that Rooney wants to leave, newspapers today reported that Wayne Rooney had asked to leave Manchester United. That's after he had spent almost 6 years at United since moving over from Everton. Job loyalty? Just throw it out of the window. Here comes the mercenary. Well, at least that's how the newspapers were reporting it.
Who amongst us dares to say that we have sticked with one company for 6 years? Most people don't even practice job loyalty nowadays yet when soccer players want to change clubs, we suddenly call them mercenaries and blast them for being selfish, money-faced and what nots.
This is incredible considering that many people today do not even stick with a company for 6 years! Most people I know have only been with their company for less than 4 years. In fact, it seems common for people to change companies ever so frequently nowadays. Job loyalty? It seems that people nowadays are no longer loyal to only a certain company. After all, no company today dares to promise its employees lifelong employment. What they can guarantee is lifelong employability and not lifelong employment.
Considering that soccer players have only such a short career span, it definitely makes sense for them to eke out the best opportunities for themselves before they hit the "official" retirement age of 35. To be left on the bench for a season is almost akin to loosing your work experience for like 10% of your working life.
Job loyalty certainly does not exist in work outside football so why do we expect this kind of standards from footballers. Give Rooney a break.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
I stood at the block and looked up. A sense of nostalgia hit me. I wondered what these childhood friends were doing now. I have lost contact with every single one of them. The last time that I saw one of them was more than 10 years ago in late secondary school on the bus. Even during that time, we had already drawn apart as we only stayed in touch till around early secondary school.
Standing there, I felt like going up to each of the house to knock and ask whether so and so was still staying there. After all, I missed those carefree days when we roamed around and I really wondered how they were getting on with their lives. The last I heard, some of them went overseas to study, some went to work, and some... I don't know. I tried looking up to see those houses and whether there were any lights in them. Have they moved out? I don't know. What do they look like today? I also do not know. After all, we were all in primary school during those days.
But I am certain that they had lovely memories about our childhood. And I do hope that we will be able to meet up one day. Unfortunately, there is almost no way to trace where they are now. Even with facebook, I don't even know their surnames or last names to be able to track them down. After all, in the past, we only used our names and were not too concerned about each other's surnames.
Childhood memories. Sweet childhood memories.
Monday, October 18, 2010
I guess it is really a pity that our very own Singaporean billionaire did not get the chance to be the owner of Liverpool FC. Imagine the limelight it will throw on Singapore. A Singapore owner for one of the top football clubs in Europe and England! What a pity. I guess most people underestimate how such things can actually bring so much other untold benefits to Singapore.
For one, readership of this blog went skyhigh during the news of Peter Lim making an offer to buy Liverpool. My readership for this blog hit record highs for a few days consecutively. Too bad the news has died down almost as fast as it started. And I am sure many Singaporean Liverpool fans are sorely disappointed.
I guess we can only think about all the "what ifs" now.
Perhaps Manchester United next ? =)
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Well done! Our very own Singaporean billionaire who can afford to buy over a well-known English football club. I wrote about Peter Lim some time back under this post.
So how will this impact me?
Well, just yesterday, I saw my blog views on this blog jump to over 2000 page views in a single day just on that post alone.
I guess the hype about this new potential owner of Liverpool has got many people Googling his name and landing up on my blog.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
It is not surprising that in my first post in IMSavvy, I decided to write about whether one can trust your financial planner. I wrote that post because I cracked my head hard to think of a posting that would truly be timeless in a certain way. And I have been proven right in a certain sense. There are definitely conflicts of interests in the financial advisory business where the salary model is that of a sales business (i.e. commission based). A lot of unethical people lurk in the insurance business where the entry into business is easy and the rewards are high.
No matter how hard you try to argue that there is no conflict of interest, this conflict of interest will exist.
But I guess in the AIA agent's case, this has been brought to a whole new level. Selling non-existent insurance products! Who is to blame? Surely not AIA. Which insurance company can actually stop its agent from selling non-existent products? This is just an outright scam and the agent involve just lacks the ethics. It could literally happen anywhere and it is just unfortunate that this happened in the insurance industry AGAIN.
So what can the consumer do?
Simple. Just make sure that whatever contract you sign is really legal and is from the insurance company. Letter heads can be faked and so can many other things if the agent is out to cheat your money.
Another way is to not pass hard cash and when in doubt, call the customer service for info (yes, please get the customer service number from the website and not from your "trusted" agent)
Saturday, October 9, 2010
- Financial protection against death and terminal illness
- Guaranteed renewability
- Guaranteed premiums for the coverage term
Friday, October 8, 2010
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Young man: So you buy and sold a lot of properties?
Old Man: Yes. A lot. In the past, just buy and then sell, and you make lots of money.
Young man: How much money do you make per sale?
Old Man: Good money.
Young man: So 30K?
Old Man: No lah! 30K is peanuts. I am talking about 6 digit here man... 30, 40K is peanuts!
Young man: Wow. *suitably impressed
Old Man: In 2007, any property on the market, you just buy and sell. Surely make money.
Young man: Wow. So you must have made a lot of money.
Old Man: Enough to survive lah. Nowadays it's just consolidating.
Young man: So how much do you make from all your transactions? Got 200K?
Old Man: No lah! Please! 100-200K is peanuts I tell you. Chey..200K is nothing man, I tell you.
Young Man: Wow....
Even when I heard this conversation, I was like "Wow". 200K is peanuts??
Some people do not even earn $200K after working for ten years and here was a man talking quite loudly in the MRT about $200K being peanuts and how he has made a lot from flipping properties.
Food for thought!
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
I have just discovered that it is very hard to live within one's means. As one climbs up the career ladder, or as one ages, one feels obliges to spend more on certain stuff. This can range from food, clothing to holidays even.
It is difficult to live within your means when everyone else is spending like there is no tomorrow. It is difficult to live within your means when friends and colleagues are always nearby and offer a good comparison of the things that you have versus what you do not have.
In fact, I am almost certain that it is not your absolute income that makes you happy. Rather, it is your relative income that makes one satisfied.
The simple lesson: Stop comparing and live the life that you really want to. Comparing gets you no where and only makes you desire for the things that you do not have. The reason why we fail to live within our means is because we keep comparing and our expectations go up. We expect to be able to own certain luxury goods that we could easily do without.
I have failed in this area too many times. This entry is just a reminder to myself and to readers to Live Within Your Means.
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