Investing our nest egg

I give up!!!

I just lost the comments I made for this post… really silly and

I wanted to look for a recent comment on a past investment-related post…
and I just couldn’t find it despite trolling through pages of comments and
months of post topics.

This lady wanted to know if it is a good time to buy bank stocks now; I guess
she means Singapore bank stocks. I think she deserves a response but I cannot
give more than a basic answer:

I think you can buy Singapore bank stocks but use only up to 5 percent of
your investment capital. Can Singapore banks fail? If they do, you’d only have
lost only 5 percent of your investment total.

I want to urge other SHC members who are more savvy about the market and
investing to give their comments and suggestions. The present economic and world
situation is getting very critical: EU and US financial systems are breaking
down, Mid-east tensions with Iran, world economic slowdown or even depression,
rising inflation and costs: How should we view these and what should we do?

Can we have some views from our SHC gurus?

66 thoughts on “Investing our nest egg

  1. Hi Kenneth,

    During these few weeks, I guess the markets are picking up, short term, as Greece has just been given some breathing space. I like to look the medium term. Maybe because I tend to see more of the positive side of governments and the business world. In the medium to long term, I believe governments wont knowingly try to screw up their economies. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done.

    For us here in Singapore and the rest of Asia, over the foreseeable years ahead, I am less confident with the US and EU economies. I think it is wiser to invest in Asia, within 2.5hours of our time zone. Perhaps, wise to invest here long term, maybe for our children or our retirement.

    In the really short term, like now, I rather be concerned that there will be 600,000 Singaporeans over the age of 65 within the next 10 years. I am one of them. So, if we were to invest, I rather look short term, and watch the US and EU markets jump up and down every few days.

    Terence Seah

  2. Obviously there are no real investors in SHC or they are keeping very quiet! Who wouldn’t, if you’re sitting on a nice pile of moolah!

    Haha! Only joking, but I do wish that somebody would come up and say: Hey! Here’s a way for us SHCs to make a little bit of money with little risk and little cash and little brain power!

    I know… There are only two sure ways to make a small fortune:

    1. Start with a big one!

    2. Marry one!

    Terence: You’re right, we should address the longer-term issues of aging and retirement. And I hope that SHC will play a key role in this: beyond the karaoke, dance nights and merry-making.

    I wanted to address retirement living issues; and I wanted to contribute by exposing SHC members to the possibilites of living overseas. That was a reason for me to promote and take groups to Thailand. Many other SHCs have their own favourite places (like Feztus and Malcolm) and we should support their efforts.

    We have more than “Twenty Good Summers” and we should do as much as possible to live our dreams!

  3. Hi kenneth,

    I did send you something to share ..though i
    am not active in equities any more..Do you know WHY no one response to your Investing postings ??

    Because you know EVERYTHING and no one dare to teach Grand-father to suck eggs ..You should share all your experiences
    with us ..You know when our Grandfather talks, we ONLY listen !!haha joking only..In think it is better you organise a tea for further discussion ..

    No one is for sure he/she has 20 summers left or not..I always feel may be Tomorrow NEVER COMES…20 summers quite a
    BIG BONUS for me just like a Special DIV paid out….
    Heard from a seasoned investor that “OIL stocks in US” is good and give good dividends..WHY don’t you check it out..

    You forgot to post the last resort :
    Aim to be “pRESIDENT” as you only kiss babies & shake hands
    and you are paid $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

  4. Hi Kenneth,

    Sorry typing error ” In think”..mean to say, i think it is better you organise a tea for further discussion..You should have come to the meeting yesterday at sure you can
    enagage this issue…

  5. Hi Ivan,

    Thank you for reminding me the MOST important duty..haha
    i was responding to Kenneth in between preparing a 5 course
    japanese Saturday Lunch for the family…

    I just finished Dessert and your reminder almost choked me to death by the green tea Mochi ..

  6. Hi Felice

    I was serious about my questions and not trying to intimidate anyone. I am not all that savvy with investing and it is not my intention to give the impression that I know everything. What I wanted is for others to come forward and share ideas for building our nest egg.

    Twenty Good Summers is a book on retirement living written by Martin Hawes, available in the library. I recommended it in a post some time ago. It addresses the stage when you’re in the last 20 years of active life; and you’re wondering how and what to do, your philosophy and approach. This is the stage I happen to be in… and many others will approach this stage in life before we become weak, unable to live life fully, and really ready for that retirement home. No, I’m not in a depressed mood; we must face reality and takes the steps to address the retirement and aging issue.

    Oil stocks?? Yes, there are many promising companies now that oil is touching $110 per barrel. Maybe a conservative way to play this is with a unit trust in like the First State Global Resources Fund which is available in Singapore.

    And, no, there can only be one president for Singapore, and he’s already a Tan! Hopefully he can do more than just wave!

  7. Hi Kenneth,

    Thot I will make some contribution here.

    For the serious investor who is looking for high growth and to be rich, he has to borrow to scale up. His exposure will increase and if he is right, his profits will be magnified and he will be accumulating capital. Of course he can be wrong in which the reverse will happen. This is just pure maths, nothing magical about it.

    How does he control his exposure? By assessing his risks. He has to know the value of his investment, and the risk areas they operate in. He has to know how much of a buffer he has, if he is wrong or even if he is right but his timing is wrong. You can make a very good buy but be impacted by an earthquake, a war or even SARS.

    He has to have a Plan B, ie an alternative when his plan goes awry, and it will.

    He has to be disciplined and objective. Lack of these will cause him to be less confident, even if he is right. Discipline, like any sport, is essential, even in sex, isn’t it true?

    To do all these he has to have information. That is key. Financial info, current developments, management integrity and philosophy are all relevant.

    Unfortunately my experience in dealing with SHC members is the reverse. They will scoff at financial reports, saying they are outdated, deride and twist mgmt philosophy, assessing mgmt etc. If they have no clue about the biz, nor the mgmt, they should not be leaving their money with them. Of course everybody will make mistakes in their assessment, but it is better than going in blind and living on hope.

    Timing is everything, easy to say but impossible to do. Best timing you can have is as an insider, but that is illegal and certainly not recommended. BTW I know of insiders who bet the house, because ‘as sure as the Sun is rising….’, this thing will happen… Even insiders die, financially, I mean. So never be too cocksure and test God, especially when you are doing something unethical.

    Best way to time, you have to know your chart theory. You don’t have to know, like some chart purists say, “leave them in a room, devoid of any news, save for their charts, and they will make money..”.

    But you must have some understanding of charts, they must be able to tell you a story, which you can corroborate with news, financials, to per-empt a cash call, bankruptcy, or just pure market manipulation. To make it easier, just know the classic, tried and tested formations and build on your collection of chart theory.

    For the second group, those who are not hard core investors, but part-time and senior citizens, like us, with different jobs, interests etc, what to do? See next post. Have some guests now

  8. Aiyah, Charles

    Yes, you have to be some expert in order to invest like you… but I’m talking about the rest of us:

    Simple, unsophisticated investors, more likely to be swayed by the “flavour of the month” unit trust, jumping at hearsay to cash in on the next rising stock, believing as gospel truth the drivel that newspapers and magazines publish to sell their publications and please their advertisers.

    What should we do to protect our hard-earned savings, beat inflation and the obscenely low interests that banks pay out, and yes, come out ahead with a little more to sustain our retirement lifestyle?

    Waiting desperately for your next post and hopefully a solution!

  9. Hi Charles

    Thanks for sharing, and agree most of your points, especially the following:

    Timing – timing may be not so important in investment, but is very important in trading. When to buy (or long) is important, when to sell (or short) is also important.

    Discipline – May be it can not make you win much, but it sure can make you loss less.

    To know some TA technique – I don’t like news, because I don’t know how to interpret them. How can the equity market going up so fast after the S&P downgrade the rating of 9 Eurozone countries??? So I prefer TA. I agree the chart purists say, “leave them in a room, devoid of any news, save for their charts, and they will make money..”. Because if you know how to use the tools in TA, they tell you the story and the trend. The news will confuse you if you don’t know how to interpret them.

    Just to share some of my experiment in the TA. I have traded the MSCI Singapore index. I use a very simple TA tool – the moving average. I use the 60 min candle chart and 3 moving average – moving average of 5 candles, 21 candles and 84 candles. My method is simple, if the 5 and 21 lines is above the 84 line, I long. If the 5 and 21 lines is below the 84 line, I short. Of course we have to look for the enter point carefully lah. Not always right, but I found the chance of win is bigger than loss in this way.

    But you must have some understanding of charts, they must be able to tell you a story, which you can corroborate with news, financials, to per-empt a cash call, bankruptcy, or just pure market manipulation. To make it easier, just know the classic, tried and tested formations and build on your collection of chart theory.

  10. Hi kenneth,

    I have read twenty good summers briefly some yrs ago…and now i am trying to get hold of “when the time comes”…It
    offers a realistic look at the challenges of care givers..and helps us to be mentally prepared to the needs
    of frail & aging family member…

    I sincerely think you are a seasoned investor who are
    serious to share your knowledge with us..and every one is just waiting for you to recommend something good to build
    up the nest eggs..Of course,you suggest this posting with
    kind intention and so no one is feeling intimidated…..
    Thought injecting some humour would start the posting going….sorry you have missed the grandfather humour…

    My 88 yr old friend always cautioned with this saying when
    there is a crisis/crash…we have to know when to to cut
    our losses ..”It is better to cut the fingers rather
    than chopping the arms later..” This statement always make
    everyone laughs…

  11. Hi Kenneth @ #10,

    Many years ago a good friend told me about the 70/30 rule. It starts off by saying 30% of the clients, in any industry, provide 70% of the revenue or budget. This 70/30 rule can be representative of many situations in our life. So let’s cut to the chase and concentrate on their application to the stock market. The rule simply means 30% of market players make 70% of the gains generated in the market. The other 70% lose 30% of their capital or exposure, depending on how you calculate. After many years that statistic has been revised from 70/30 to 80/20 to even 90/10. Take your pick. It is not important where we are now but that the market, being dynamic, will concentrate on winning models and discard losing or marginal models till only the best (a few) makes the bulk of the earnings.

    Look at the sports stars, If you are in the top ten, you will probably make 90+% of all earnings. This is the case be it golf, tennis, football, EPL, La Liga or whichever football league you may choose to illustrate. Everybody loves a winner and you are remembered, (and paid accordingly) only if you are no 1. Singapore has many examples of the very successful vs the mediochre.

    Many years ago proprietary traders in Singapore were making big and easy money. Then the firms started to ‘professionalise’ these traders (by importing foreign traders from bigger and more established markets). The result? Only a few made very large sums of money and local proprietary traders (generally speaking) lost out.

    Do you remember the excess rights system I described to you? Many years ago you could have made steady but small, but more importantly low risk money, from diligently subscribing to these rights. The further back you go, the lesser the participants, the lesser the competition, the greater the pool, hence the greater profits.

    The same goes for the IPO game, the conversion of foreign registered shares, odd lotting etc. Over time more people get to know about it, more participation, smaller pool, lower profits.

    This only illustrates the dynamic nature of the market.

    So if anyone thinks he can make good serious money by trading, given the number of professional traders in this overcrowded country, he should rethink his capabilities. Of course insider trading is not included. That is a crime, punishable with hefty, multipled factored penalties and maybe even jail time.

    But I know this type of advice is never accepted. Everybody loves to trade. The thrill, excitement, short time frame, the thought of beating the market, making money from nothing, is too good to resist. There are some, the intelligent ones, who are objective, learn fast, and faster from their losses/mistakes, have a good memory bank to archive their mistakes/experience, remain focussed, forward looking, naturally pre-emptive, always researching new models, black boxes, to beat the market. They can make. But at what cost? Their time belongs to the market, they have no social life, they are completely focussed and obsessed with trading. They want to trade all day, no holidays, because trading is their fix. They also know they cannot last, at least not at the pace they were doing. When they make some serious money, their strategy changes from profit maximisation to some form of capital protection. And so they should.

    For those who want experience trading, despite the odds, fine, go for it, make your best shot. Because if you don’t, you will always be asking the question, “what if…”.

    But be objective. Do a list of your net worth, as of a starting point. Decide how much of that net worth you want to put to invest, which asset class, property, commodity, bonds or fixed income and equities. Say we forget about fx for the time being, to simplify our model. Execute your asset allocation plan. Under equities, split the amount allocated to trading, and investments.

    Review this asset allocation plan every half year for 3 years to see the results. Examine yourself to re-jig the asset allocation plan after 3 years to decide the next 3 years or even 4, if you so wish. Ideally your quantum of years should approximate the business cycle of the asset class, eg if you think this equity market has 3 years to hit bottom, then fix it at 3 years.

    See how well your net worth has grown after these years. See which asset class has performed best, and which you ae most confident in. This helps you know yourself, before you decide to re-jig the asset allocation.

    For now, interest rates are the lowest in the our generation. Clearly the posted sub-par rates for FDs are a recipe for slow death. So if you intend to keep your money n FDs for any defined period, you should be saying the rationale, is to anticipate a massive fall in the prices of the asset class you chosen NOT to invest. The longer you are prepared to wait, the higher your opportunity cost.If you think the BIG Fall is coming in 1 year, you should park your finds, in the interim in a better yielding instrument. It need not be for a year, but perhaps for 6 months. If you are expecting the BIG FALL, then your expectation will be enhanced when the market is high, like now, then when the market is low, like last quarter of 2011. So now your risk model is being developed, Market high, pe high, price to book ratios high, prices high, relative to historicals, etc, risk high. The opposite ie also true. If the market risks are low, you should take a bigger exposure to compensate for the lower market risk, and vice versa.

    If you complement this with the inherent assets of the share, eg stable earnings, discounts to book/market value for their assets, low beta stock, good, honest mgmt, natural barriers to entry, 20 year historical lows, even in the worst crises, then it should give you more confidence in developing a ‘what-if, or PLan B’ alternative.

    Invest in such shares and compare them over the next 3 years and see the difference, objectively.

    Gain from your experience, and re-allocate. I am willing to bet that your investment class will do better than the trading class. Don’t forget to include the dividends.

    To make a long story short, if you ae given a chance to co-invest in a business, at a discount to book value, and a bigger discount to the market value, with a trustworthy, credible and experienced mgmt, which has weathered the financial storms of this generation, say for the last 20 years, that pays you a dividend yield exceeding many times the paltry 0.25% on the FDs, are you afraid to take that decision? Is there a better alternative?

    If you have answered that question correctly, you should make money over the 3 years. That is half the problem solved. THe other problem is more difficult, which is when to sell, when you are sitting on a gain.

    Just a few benchmarks to note. Risk-free to almost risk free deposits range from 0.25% to 4.0+%pa. Borrowing costs range from 1% to 5.5%pa. With these 2 parameters you can start to choose from the universe of (how many thousands) of stocks/pref shares/bonds/FDs available. Don’t consider equity linked notes, ETFs, CFDs, options, warrants. If only to simplify your model and make your decision making easier. If you want to buy a car, to serve as general transport for your family, don’t look to assessing the Porsches, commercial vans, and motorcycles. Just zoom in to the continentals, and Japanese. You won’t be far wrong.

  12. Hi All,

    For those who still do not really know the meaning of “investment”, below is a write up from wiki:

    Investment in financing terms is putting money into something with the expectation of gain that upon thorough analysis has a high degree of security for the principal amount as well as security of return, within an expected period of time. In contrast, putting money into something with an expectation of gain without thorough analysis, without security of principal, and without security of return is speculation or gambling. As such, those shareholders who fail to thoroughly analyze their stock purchases, such as owners of mutual funds, could well be called speculators. Indeed, given the efficient market hypothesis, which implies that a thorough analysis of stock data is irrational, all rational shareholders are, by definition, not investors, but speculators.

    Life is all about making choices. Lifestyle may change owing to our age, financial assets or change in our marital/occupational status. But still we have to make choices on how to spend meaningfully and happily (maybe) our last twenty good summers on this planet we called “earth”.

    If you have read the book titled, “The Secret” (which I was informed is mainly about Positive Thinking), you will realize that the secret to achieve all your dreams is to quit having people telling you what to do and make up your mind yourself. Only then, you will blame/celebrate yourself for making the wrong/right decision. Our experiences are through our own process of making our life choices and perfect it to suit our own lifestyle.


  13. Hi guys!

    Thanks and keep your responses coming… I’m having to read carefully and digest what has been said, especially by Charles, before I can make any comments. There are, of course, many diverse views offered, and we can only learn from them.

    Investing is a very personal business: we may not want to share what we’re doing, we do not want to look silly or embarass ourselves, we do not want to reveal our personal wealth, we may be very humble and discreet and not blow our “investing success” trumpet, etc.

    But what I’m about is for us to share our experiences, both good and bad, in regard to investing. And what we can do to address the current economic issues. What can and should we do in the low-interest high inflation climate? What can we do to protect ourselves from the coming collapse of the Euro and US dollar?

    Yesterday’s Sunday Times had a very remote report on Forbe’s rating of Singapore as the third wealthiest country in the world after Qatar and Lichsteinstein. Now we have the most millionaires per square km and also the third highest GDP per capita (according to Forbe’s rating).

    Then there is China, which is now the second (or leading) economy in the world. And their surreptitious buying of gold and gold miners throughout the world, China is rumoured to hold 3,000 plus tons of gold and the country’s currency reserves are $3.2 trillion. Is China trying to establish the RMB as the leading trading currency and displace the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency?

    So, beyond the mechanics and technicals of stock investing, what can and must we do in these interesting times?

  14. hi kenneth,
    It is a very STRONG possibility China is looking at that directions ..if you read into their’ hangovers’ of the
    Western Invasions & the humiliation that they had to suffer since 100 yrs ago.
    They WILL do it IF given opp to do so…AT ALL COSTS ! Just
    as we all can see how Super Rich Chinese buying back all
    the Imperial Treasures that was looted from China for their
    government..from all the auction houses all over the world.

    haha ! there Can be another Tan president in 4 yrs time !!
    His name is Tan -ku-ku !!

  15. Hi Hew Lee @#15,

    I refer to your attempt to classify market participants as speculators, gamblers or investors.

    I would venture to say that thee is a fine line that divides gamblers, speculators and investors, even they all try to beat the odds, meaning they try to win on the outcome, despite the risks, ie the uncertainty.

    In gambling, the outcome is unknown, there is no certainty. You have no way of knowing the next throw of the dice, or even sucessive throws. I would classify the bet as completely ‘blind’.

    In speculation, the risks are slightly better, because you are betting on a certain outcome. Eg the economy is strong, all commercial activity is full and bustling, you have noted it from the news, your friends who work in certain industries, your social observations, etc. And you ‘bet’ that the results for a consumer type company, say will be better, because the results are announced in quarterly or half-yearly periods. If your outcome is correct, results are better, market responds, you take your profit.

    Taking the same example, but as a chart purist, you see all the indicators showing an upward movement, RSI climbing to 60s, MACDs upturn, short-term crosses up, stochastics up. In fact, you do not even have to know how all these works. You could easily overlay all these indicators and see a positive correlation, which in previous situations, would pre-empt an upward movement. And you buy/bet. So perhaps, 7 times out of ten, it happens. You are not going for the bet, ‘blind’, ie there has to be some indicators, to reduce your risks, before you bet on the outcome.

    To give an easier example. you could say, property is going up because there are no new buildings in in the pipeline. Usually because sales are so bad, that no developer is building. And you have observed that there is some encouraging activity in new home sales. So you buy/bet on the developers or construction companies. If you are right in your asessment, you will make money. If you are wrong/delayed in your assessment, you will lose if you sell, ie lose confidence in your assessment, or get delayed in your assessment, eg new home sales are delayed because of a SARS outbreak, say.

    But at least you are going in with a plan or with 2 plans. You are not subject to the inconsistency of a random throw. Your risks has been reduced.

    If you have even more info than the speculator, ie know the real value of the underlying share, their biz cycle,their landbank, their strategy, etc. You would have reduced your risks even further. You would have ensured you had a buffer, an advantage, to further reduce your risks. Then I would rate you as an investor, ie by varying degrees of risks taken.

    For the reduced risks, the rational approach would be to increase the risks, by betting more. Does that make sense?

    You mention ‘efficient market hypothesis’. Which says all risks are reflected in the price at any point in time, therefore all analysis is a waste of time. This sounds like the random walk theory of some years ago.

    Consider, the best performing fund is run by some Princeton professors fund, averaging 17% pa for close to 80 years. I don’t think that sounds very random to me. I know of people who make nothing, lose everything, and make all their net worth from the market. I don’t think there is any randomness about them. On the contrary, they are very consistent, those who don’t make anything, those who lose, and those who make.

    Professionals who take risks, (stock market risks, say) don’t like to quibble over definitions of players. As long as you make consistently, over a prolonged period, you have the right model, the X factor, way to go. You are a winner, and should be celebrated. If you are good in trading, speculation, gambling, investing etc, way to go if you succeed. Nobody will listen to you if you don’t.

    If you are a gambler, don’t listen to the investor, you may get confused. Stick to your own model and have confidence in yourself. Ditto for speculator, ditto for the investor.

    For older people, like SHC types, no offence here, their energy levels require them to be more prudent, more conservative, lower beta personalities.

    But know the different shades of risks, it is not all black or white. If you don’t know, find out and understand, don’t write off everything as a Lehman product.

    BTW, before the Lehman Bros saga, Lehman was a very impressive name, so was Citibank, so was DBS etc.

  16. Kenneth

    Your post have attracted a lot of what sounds like very clever comments. But I have difficulty understanding most of them. They are too ‘cheem’ for me. Maybe the bad Chai Tau Kway has done permanent damage to my small brain.

    But mostly, I cannot figure out why do we have to invest our nest egg if we already have one.

    If we have worked all our life and accumulate a nest egg. Why do we still have to keep investing and trying to build the nest. What about laying eggs and producing chicks? Or is building the nest egg the end game and that is what life is.

    One very intelligent guy quoted here ‘Money is not ours unless we get to spend it’ So when is it time to spend our money before they become not our money?

    All of us have worked the last 25 years or more. Most of us have a nest egg but very very few of us knows it is there and continue to build it like in a daze. It is like a stupid bird that keep building its nest and don’t know that he needs to get a mate, lay eggs and propagate…that is why he build the nest in the first place. The cuckoo bird is the most ‘uncuckoo’ of all birds. It just lay its egg in another birds nest and the other stupid bird will incubate the egg and bring up the young not realizing that it is not his own young. Sorry I digressed.

    How big a nest we need depends on how many eggs you want, you need a bigger one if you want the feed other cuckoos as well.

    That is why clever people like Warren Buffet and Bill Gates are now spending time just spending their money for charity. They have great wealth and if they spend it on themselves, there is a good chance they would have gone the way as Elvis Presley, Bruce Lee, Micheal Jackson and Whitney Houston. They want to put their money into good use and not waste the results of the brilliant working carrier.

    We are not that much different, in fact we are luckier, we may be able the spend our little sum on ourselves and still be alive.

    The biggest problem is to time it so that our nest is empty only on our last day. That is what we should figure out.

    I like mindless discussions like this. It keeps my mind alive.

  17. Hahaha!! Tian Soo

    Now you know why I need to grow my nest egg!

    But, seriously, the comments are really very “cheem” as you say, and I too, have a problem to understand them.

    There are obviously many different kinds of investors or speculators or gamblers. We may fit in between somewhere… but where exactly??

    Charles has labelled us SHCs as older, more prudent and conservative, “low beta”???

    Andrew is a pure chartist, Hew Lee has fundamentals first, and Charles is an analytical risk taker, Tian Soo is the Warren buffets of Singapore.

    But are speculators and gamblers the same?? No, the gambler is like the casino addict and no, the gambling outcome is definitely known and certain: the casino wins!

    Yes, the speculator makes a play based on his research, observation, industry contacts and knowledge. He bets big and wins big.

    What I would like to hear, or rather see, is the personal views and actual experiences of the investor or trader. And how they have managed to make their money or lost. What lessons have they learnt and can give us to help educate even guide us.

    What about gold and silver? I sold option puts on silver last week anticipating a moderate price rise… can and should we invest in precious metals and commodities?

  18. Charles Chua (#18)
    Tian Soo (#19)
    Kenneth Tan (#21)

    What I like to add is that a person with a lifestyle passionate with getting involved in investment has to spend time personally himself/herself to be informed what he/she is going into. The other point Tian Soo brought out is why still we have to invest our nest egg (at our twilight years)? – Especially those who has not done it during their prime years.

    In speculation – you, as a private investor, depend on reliable and timely information. The quality of information is directly related to the cost of information (e.g. hearsay information is free and with no responsibility tag to it) but structured and officially released on-line reports by so-called “research” houses or institutions are costly and beyond reach of the common private investors. Nowadays, in any technical/financial evaluation/review, we are no longer looking for a single change, we are now looking at a “pattern” change – can be 3-dimensional.

    What is “analysis”? Analysis is by best “inputs” drafted by humans, run within a computer program, designed by humans, to output likely directions the events will happen. Percentage of risk it may or may not happen may also be known. The key word here is “humans”. How ethical and experienced is this human working in the research house or financial institution. The Company may be well known, 100 of years in existence – must be doing the right thing, but with one bad apple in the company, this company can also go under. So, if you are familiar with Murphy’s Law (Anything that can go wrong will go wrong) you will know why sometimes Market do crashes.

    Investors must be well informed and not rely solely on hearsay information, before they start parting with their disposable monies. What can be achieved in the past, with nice prepared charts, does not necessary mean it can happen again in the present or in the future.

    In any real life adventure, we normally hear the success stories. We seldom hear the failure stories. You will never get one salesperson or investment agent telling you the product he/she is selling how bad, the possible risks the product may have. In life, you have to find out the risks yourself before you decide to part you money to obtain the product.

    There is one saying in the casino market – the only way to win in the casino is to be the “owner”.

  19. Hi Silverhairs,

    Initiated and instigated by Wall Street since the late 80s,
    financial markets have become increasingly speculative (casino-style) driven by very short-term-profit expectation and quite easy-to-get leverage from banks and brokerage companies.

    Probably now there are more than a thousand young locals-age mid20s to mid30s whom are professional traders in stocks and forex. So long as one is not over-greedy and do not overtrade, one can profit up to $2k or more monthly from the markets. Yours truly in a joint-a/c trade in a very kiasu-way, profitting not more than $300 monthly.

    For investments, my take is to stick to the GLCs. Do monitor very closely when one is into China stocks.


    Abel Tan

  20. Tian Soo – Your comment at #19 –
    Quote – “Your post have attracted a lot of what sounds like very clever comments. But I have difficulty understanding most of them. They are too ‘cheem’ for me. Maybe the bad Chai Tau Kway has done permanent damage to my small brain.
    But mostly, I cannot figure out why do we have to invest our nest egg if we already have one.
    If we have worked all our life and accumulate a nest egg. Why do we still have to keep investing and trying to build the nest.” – Unquote.

    Tian Soo – Thank goodness for your comment at #19. Reading all those others comments, I was wondering if my brain cells have died so much, that I have become stupid. And, that thought made me feel depressed…

    Whew… I’m not depressed any more. So happy to know that I am NOT the only stupid one.

  21. Hi Jac @24 quote “Whew… I’m not depressed any more. So happy to know that I am NOT the only stupid one.”

    @19 quote “I like mindless discussions like this. It keeps my mind alive.”

    Within That Mindlessness, Tian Soo’s mind have been kept alive. That’s the profoundest situation I’ve ever yet to encounter or comprehend. If Tian Soo is brian alive, then all participants in this thread are brian dead LOL!!

    If the hint is correct, then Tian Soo’s farm is indeed existing purely for a noble cause, the bringing back of human kind to it’s organic origins.

  22. Those who don’t understand the “cheemness”
    The least you can do is not coming in here to express how stupid you are.

    Those who want to play “banluck” go to the “banluck” table, mahjong table is for mahjong player mar LOL !!!

  23. Geraldine, thanks for your email, but there’s really no need to email me. Kindly refrain from doing that again. “all discussions, jokes etc etc shud be posted here” sounds familiar?

    BTW Geraldne, wht’s the function of a manager in a setting like here?
    I always wondered, like to enlighten us. thanks.

  24. Henry

    There is certainly a need to ask if we do not understand, that is how we learn. I think stupid people do have a place here. This is here where we learn to be a smarter person.

    People who post here usually want to hear more views. They just don’t want to play mahjong only. The more different and opposing views we hear more we learn. But we have to be civil if we do not agree with others. This is because we are all civilize adults and should behave as one.

  25. Henry #25

    I don’t understand what you mean. It is indeed too ‘cheem’ for me. So I shall leave it to the other readers to interpret.

  26. Thank you Tian Soo,
    at least we agree on something.
    quote”but we have to be civil if we do not agree with others. This is because we are all civilize adults and should behave as one.”

    Thank you LOL we all keep learning.

    Have nice week ahead

  27. Great, Henry, good to know that you prefer to have discussions out in the open.

    You’ve brought up a good question.

    A club manager in a setting like this is to maintain the peace, chat with members, encouraging them to chitchat here, signing up for and organizing activities, giving credit to deserving members and not hesitate to deal with problematic members whose agenda is not here to make friends.

  28. Tian Soo @19

    First, I thought I’d better post something before this topic is relegated to anonimity by the newer posts.

    Second, your view that if we have a nest egg than there is no need to invest it and see it grow.

    We may all have a nest egg but it may not be a very large one: mine could be the size of a pigeon’s egg while yours could be as abig as a dinosaur’s.

    I can think of several very good and important reasons why we need to build this nest egg of ours:

    We are facing longevity issues, by that I mean we (generally), because of better health and medical advances, have an increased lifespan. We are going to face many more years of living whether in good or in poor health. This means we are going to need money to finance many more years than usually planned for.

    Now, we are also facing rising costs of food, housing, transport and medical. The very low interest rates paid by banks are a pittance. The alternatives offered by financial institutions entail more risk and longer time frames. Inflation takes a big chunk off our savings so we cannot just stuff our nest egg under our mattress.

    I started this post to learn or get suggestions from other SHC members about how they are addressing these issues; I tried to needle some to come up with their investment philosophies and strategies.

    While I appreciate humour when the time is right and also to inject some laughter into this boring subject, there should be some sensitivity and contribution made to the subject. We had a personality once who upbraided and used his twisted humour at the expense of others; I hope that such comments and posts be discouraged.

  29. Hi Kenneth, Tian Soo and many others who have retired partially or fully,

    For me, I think that by the time we retire, we have a nest egg, pigeon or dinosaur size. So, by 55, 60 or 62 or even 65, there is an egg. And, I believe that we must have an idea how big this nest is, before we reach one of this age. In your post, you are looking at “How to invest this nest egg?”. Yes, I too believe that there are ways, we should invest this egg.

    I have a slightly different thinking, which could be another way of “How to invest our nest egg?”. And, this is to keep the nest egg as it is, high up in the trees where other birds cannot reach. It stays there warm and safe.

    But, this bird should go out and start to bring back the twits and leaves from the ground, and bring them back to the nest egg. Let’s say the bird needs 20 worms a day to feed herself and her children. The idea is not to use the nest egg to buy worms to feed herself or the children. But, to fly out of the nest and look for fruits and little cockcroaches, bring them back to feed the children and herself.

    This might sound too fanciful a comparison. But, if after we reach 55, 60 or 65, and we need say $50 a day, and if our legs permit, then we should now go out and make effort to make that $50. I am a firm believer that SilverHairs should continue some form of work, even including part-time or work out of home type of work. This keeps the nest egg safe and sound, even though it may not grow bigger over time. The bird also lives longer, still gets to see the outside world and maybe enjoying doing something never done before.

    This is my idea of how to invest my nest egg. If it grows, grow it. If it cannot grow, don’t let it go smaller faster than ever. Fly out and be happy, look for some part-time work, and use what you make to live your new life.

    Terence Seah

  30. Kenneth #34

    What you say in your last para about twisted humour at the expense of others is correct. I read back what I wrote in #19 and realize that there is a element of that in my writing. My apologies to those who had contributed to this thread before #19, especially my buddy Charles Chua. I promise not to do that again.

  31. Hi Kenneth, I want to say a heart felt THANK YOU for starting this thread, & all who have contributed constructively.
    This topic have & will continue to keep senior Singaporeans challenged.

    Although there seems to be a handfull of writers only, but there are the unseen & unheard silent majority out there like me, who may be loath to write but appreciate vm the efforts of good writers like Charles Chua. Kudos to you Charles hehe.
    Have a beautufull Sunday all cheers!

  32. Hi all,

    Although reading all the posts on this thread, I am not really keen on “INVESTING” my nest egg regardless of whether its a pigeon egg or an ostrich egg.

    I am more interested to learn and share how we can stretch our (whatever) dollars that we have to last still what? – Kingdom cometh as some may say. Aka learn and share how to cut-down our (monthly/yearly) expenses which is more within our own control rather than re-INVESTING it where the end result is unknown till you terminate/cash-in/sell-out etc..

    To me (at this stage of my life), ALL these info in hand; be it technical, fundamentals, insiders, concepts/theroies, social or pure sciences etc – they are still but just info only. Because the final shot/decision is still AN ART as you do not know or have any control on the outcome …. at best you can only say MOST PROBABLY the reslut will be like that.

    But for expenses, if I decide NOT to spend my 1 dollar now – my control over the outcome is DEFINITIVE.

    Anyway, unlike TS, I would prefer that my last dollar be remaining (as inheritance … ya, stingy bugger) or buy that cup of (cheap) cofi for my thrower on the day AFTER my ashes are thrown between Pulau Subar Darat and Pulau Sakijang Bendera …… instead of into the Neighbourhood Long-Kang…..hahahhaa!

  33. Hello,all SHC members, calling those who have retired and have no other income/s and depending on their annuity alone I would like to interest them on earning a small monthly income by Trading Forex only.
    Initial capital is a just USD $1K.
    NOte: I have in the past wrote about this FX trading strategy but had poor response. If you are thinking to get a big return investing in stocks and some other trading instruments then be prepare for big surprises. Investment today is different from 10 yrs ago.
    Today, big investors, with multi-millions to invest are calling the shots. Price movements are under their control.
    Trading is different from investing!!!!!
    That’s all for now.

  34. Ivan @28

    Yes, we all want to know what to do to stretch our dollar. Investing is not what it was… with the volatile market, uncertain economic climate and the threat to the world’s security over the Iran and North Korea nucleur issues.

    Let’s have some ideas of how to stretch our dollar… spend less and save more.

    Can we have some contributions please?

  35. Hi Kenneth,

    I try to relook at this topic “Investing our nest egg”.

    Very likely, the topic indicates the person is already fully retired. The nest egg is not being topped up because there is no income. Therefore, the person can only spend less and the nest egg gets smaller.

    But, if a person has already made his plans, way before he retires eg he has annuities, rental income, money from children, insurance maturity, etc, then his nest egg can remain the same size.

    We seem not to have other ideas. I have an idea, since interest rates are not helping. How about 4D and toto? Invest in gambling. I think most of us will think it is a silly suggestion.

    Really, I think if one has a big nest egg, just still warm on the eggs in the nest. If not, I would support continued working. At least, the nest eggs stays the same size.

    Terence Seah

  36. 30% cash,30% Singapore blue chips and 40% for local bank’s preference shares. That is how I allocate my nest eggs. Average return about 4%. Please advise.

  37. Hi Tan TH @ #41,

    Good one. At least you are thinking.

    Just some accounting before we start. Average return 4%, prefc shares 4%, cash say nil%, ie realised gains + divds from blue chips must be 8%pa. Only a/c for realised gains. Can a/c for unrealised gains/lossess too but must be consistently applied.

    Say 4% pa for 4 bad years or average of last 8 yrs, both good and bad.

    Inflation, say 5%. So your egg is shrinking by 1% pa. Still ok because you are not going to live for a 100 yrs, so you will still have a large egg in spite of inflation, even after 30 yrs.

    Therefore say you are happy with 1% loss through inflation.

    Say you want to improve/finetune. Remember, cost of funds range from 1%pa to 5%pa say. Anything more is unsuitable as your benchmark returns is 4%pa. COF is factual, so if can borrow at 1%, can yield at 4%, another possible risk asset. Agreed? Risks must be acceptable, ie can only buy bank backed prefc share/bonds to cover borrowing collateral. If bank calls, sell prefc shares, return loans, make residual.

    If you don’t lioke this idea because risk/rewards not acceptable, also good, because you are still thinking/exploring.

    Assume your cash balc is investible balance, not the type you set aside to pay your cah expenses, returns say nil.

    But if you plan to use this portion, in anticipation of a crisis/opportunity buy, also can, but what was your return for this asset allocation for the last 4 years, pa? If 4% or better, good, because your plan and execution is in tandem. If less than 4%, than not good enough, according to your plan. You have to agree, there were many opportunities in the last 4 years, this is an objective way to know yourself and how you react to the opportunities that happened in the last 4 years.

    If your plan was to leave the 30% dormant, that is illogical, and costly, say 4%pa.

    Can you find an asset class or asset instrument that you are confident of generating 4%pa, with a very low risk, say as good as cash? IMHO there are.

    I cannot say more because I can be accused of promoting the stks, but that is the principle, where the risks is low because of the strong asset value, discounts, low valuation and high earnings and divd yield. I am sure you already know some. But structuring these risks against your lowest risk class, cash, and looking at the historicalearnings for the last 4 years, say, would give you an objective assessment.

    Actually, i cannot say more because I had typed a reply which got lost in cyberspace when I tapped the wrong key. I took 1 hour to type this reply.

    Cheers and good luck

  38. Hi Tiang Soon #39,

    In the past, we have always rejected such programs on Forex trading on this website. We will still continue to put all such programs/comments/posts on moderation.

    However, as we are giving ourselves some new thoughts, this comment will be released. All members participating in such programs are advised that they do so at their own risk. Tiang Soon, you are also advised to ensure that participants are aware of the risks involved.

    Terence Seah

  39. Hi Tiang Soon

    I remember that many months ago you’d brought up the idea of forex trading to make a small daily income, and even showed us briefly on your computer the trades you can make.

    Thanks again for your kind offer and I’m sure that many SHCs would like to attend one of your discussions to explore this avenue. Please start a post on this.

    Yes, trading is not investing but, with the present market conditions, the “buy-and-hold” strategy would definitely not give the same returns as before. And, add to that the computer high-speed trading systems of the big boys, the small retail investor has a slim chance of making it.

    Charles: Your approach is fundamental analysis coupled with good assessment of risk-reward. But I think that we need a better return than 4% to really grow our money. Singapore stock market lost 18% last year, so how to overcome this loss is an issue.

    Also, when we talk about investing it is usually stocks, bonds and insurance. These are “paper” assets: can we also consider other assets like property, physical gold or silver, art even, to broaden our base and exposure?

  40. Hi Tiang Soon #39

    I am willing to lose 1k, do keep me informed if there is a SHC session on your Forex strategy or email me for further discussion.


  41. Hi Kenneth @ #45,

    Good to hear from you. I am not suggesting any approach as THE one to follow, simply to correlate your risks. Take an eclectic approach, understand the different risks that will impact your egg so as to pre-empt future risks, be it political, geo-political or company specific, etc. And also to calculate as best we can our returns so we can track and learn from it.

    It’s interesting that you mentioned the Sgp mkt lost 18% or so last year, so TH Tan’s 4% return on his portfolio is encouraging.

    But this is not to pat anyone on the back. Rather that when he started 2011, he did not target any returns, he just took whatever risks he thought was acceptable. This was the same for 2007, 08 and for all the years following. I would again stress this point, not to have any pre-conceived targeted returns, just take any risks inherent in the asset instrument and make sure you have a Plan B.

    If the risk-reward is too low, look for another to surface, benchmark against your actual cost of funds.

    Arguably the last 4 years were lousy but the return was still closer to inflation. So everyone should assess themselves against their previous years. Not to pat themselves but rather to understand if the risks they took, for the last 4 years, was acceptable, objectively. You have to learn why you took the risks, whether it worked out, or why you did not take any risks, and how much has it costs in opportunity terms.

    I think TH Tan was commendable in his 4%pa return for the last 4 years, given his stated risk profile. I don’t think he took inordinate risks. I would assume, confidently, that he slept well at night, had some pre-occupation with the market, some plus and minus moments, generated 4% pa, and rewarded himself with a good lifestyle with the surplus thrown up by working his money.

    Of course there are other asset classes to consider, property, commodities etc. Happy investing and good luck to All.

  42. Hi Kenneth,

    It would be educational for all/some here to reveal their their portfolio % returns.

    Not that we are spying, but only to see what was achievable by common people like us. And also for those who trade, fx, commodities and equities, what were their returns like over the last 8 years, 4 years good, 4 years bad, and he last 4 years, all bad, say.

    Then we can have some honest solid, benchmarks to discuss.

    If too confidential in public forum, then don’t put name, like my wife,son,daughter,gf, bf,etc trades and …..etc,etc. I am just curious.

  43. Hi, all.
    Here is a hint: tonight 3 nations, UK, EUR, and CAD, are going to announce the interest rate.
    If u stay and watch during the release time and be prepare to enter a trade u will get 10 to 20 points. 1point will be @ $1 or $10. 20 pts will get u $20 /$200, depending on yr capital that the broker allows u to play. All this will happen in less than 30 mins.!!!!
    Take the profit and sleep peacefully.

  44. Lim Tiang Soon & Lim Tian Soo sounds the same. With poor eyesight and poor memory, we seniors could easy mix up the two of you. May i humbly suggest one of you add a logo or photo to your name to differentiate.

  45. Hahaha!! Fancy mixing up two different guys just because their names are quite similar…

    Charles: Poor eyesight and poor memory?? Come on… you’re very much more active and alert and certainly very fit and healthy!

    Geraldine: And you want to introduce 40-year olds? Tian Soo is like Jim Rogers and Tiang Soon is George Soros…
    cannot mistake or mix them!

    Tiang soon: Please post your forex lesson/s for those interested to learn or get an overview. I think many SHCs will be keen to learn from you.

    Forex trading has some negative connotation because of the risks and losses possible. But a closer examination would show that forex is no different from stock and derivative trading. Yes, the risks are there and also because of the high leverage but they can be controlled or reduced.

    At this juncture, I would like to address the issue of having a disclaimer clause in our postings:

    Nothing in this post or comments should be construed as giving specific financial, investment, trading advice or taken as recommendation to purchase or participate in any scheme. Any post or comments made is for entertainment purposes only.

    With the above disclaimer I think many more SHCs would be willing to come forward with their ideas and strategies, and share their successes and failures.

    So, Charles, you may get more people coming forward to reveal their portfolio returns.

  46. Oh, oh!

    I just realized that there are two Charles’ses…??

    OK, the first Charles who I referred to is Charles Wee, the strong and fit gentleman.

    The second is Charles Chua, the ultimate investing guru and bean counter.

    Ok, all these comments are for entertainment purposes only.

  47. Haha Kenneth

    Great entertainment purposes.

    You know, it’s easy when it comes to Charles Wee and Charles Chua who have different last names whereas Tiang Soon and Tian Soo (with the same last name) is easy to mix up at first glance.

    Reeli! For me, that is.

  48. Tiang Soon

    How did your trade go with the news on interest rates?

    Let us know how you did and do post your intentions to conduct a briefing or class on forex.

    I would like to note that the $1,000 Tiang Soon suggested is for starting your forex trading account (not the amount of money that you should be prepared to lose). And, I am sure that he has good trading plans and money management to manage and cap your losses.

  49. Hi, all shc members.
    I believe that there are some of the members attended talks and /or courses on Forex trading.
    So for FX trading, the one piece of news that all FX traders is waiting every mth is the interest rate announcement.
    This the period when the price movement is fast and big.
    As yesterday there were 3 nations involved I chose one, EUR/USD. the movement was about 40points, i managed to get 20 pts. in 15 mins.
    This is one strategy to trade FX.
    I have a few others, but they require some monitoring. As a retiree the are plenty of time to monitor the movement.
    U don’t trade every day as some days there are no economic reports and so, trading will not be profitable.

    Hope u all understand the explanation.
    By the way tonight is USA Non-farm payroll and this is another big price mover.

  50. Tiang Soon, Tiang Soon

    I have tried to nudge you into doing some kind of forex trading lesson/s for us SHCs, but you’re still not taking the bait… can you and would you??

    I don’t care if there are some who have taken courses or dabbled in forex. What I want is someone who can tell us a little of what forex trading entails and a little bit of the strategies used.

    If, as you say, we can make 10 to 20 points easily, then we could well be on our way to financial independence. Trading a standard contract three times a week for 20 points is around $200 profit per trade… that’s a nice small monthly income I’d like!

  51. Hi Tiang Soon

    You have another willing student here who would like to come by and listen even if it means just having an idea of what forex trading is all about. Hope you’ll oblige and that it’ll be held at a date/time that I can attend.


  52. Hi, all SHC members.
    I welcome yr questions on the trading strategy.
    Of course, u must be conversant with trading FX.
    I trade the EUR/USD, and GBP/USD pairs mostly. And i have been tracking them all the while.
    But it does not mean that other pairs are not tradeable to be profitable. It’s that I am not tracking them closely.
    The EUR/USD is the most volatile and profitable.
    Novices should trade the news break-out to be safe.

  53. Hi Tiang Soon,

    Personally for myself, I usually monitor the following pairs:

    – EURO/SGD
    – USD/SGD

    The main purposes is basically to manage currency risk for my biz, especially for those project proposals offered in Euro or USD…

    I personally found that the EURO/SGD movement, on a weekly basis last few months, is either a “Bell-Curve” or an “Exponential-Curve”.

    For the USD/SGD movement, its more unpredictable….and sometime I found it more “Stable” due to Gahmen monetary intervention i.e. “Flat-Curve” or a small “Incremental-Curve.

    From the above, if you are trading FX, I think there are opportunities for “risk-free” FX trade EURO/SGD/USD triple pairing but the window or trading fees or FX spreads may wipe out your “profits” since you are price takers and not price makers – I stand corrected as I DO NOT do FX Trading…. and dun have the time or $$$ either….

  54. Hi, Ivan.
    In trading for profit traders don’t hold the position more than a an hour. As I have said that trading the news breakout is most profitable and safe because of high volatility.
    Another point of interest is that u must trade thru a broker that gives low spreads. EUR/USD and USD/JPY always have spread of 1 to 1.5 pts.
    So u see it is very safe when u decide not to hold a position after opening a trade.
    Local brokers don’t give u such low spread. EUR/USD is always 3 pts. Very disadvantage.

  55. Hi Tiang Soon

    This forex thing has become too complex for those who don’t understand a pip from a tip…

    So, are you going to conduct a simple introduction to forex trading or not?

    It is no use to talk about spreads to those who think it is some kind of fruit jam, or points… 3 points is what I got for Chinese in my younger days.

    Sorry, I just would like you to take us through the basics of forex trading and how we can possibly do it to make a little pocket money.

  56. I am writing this more as a personal thot than anything else.

    Neither am I writing this to seek advice nor to give advice, least I am deem to be pompous and callous….

    There is a small part of my little nest egg that I am totally ignorant and had totally neglected it for (God knows when!!) like 15++ years. Its only late last year that I was given a wake-up call when an old lady that I know, partially off-loaded her holdings of this asset……

    As an illiterate with a mop of pure-white silver-hairs ….. she has done very well indeed, in fact exceeding well, in my opinion!!

    This asset that I am referring to is GOLD. Although its only a small single digit percentage of my little nest egg (ya, my better half when to the safe-deposit box to see what’s there late last year because of this old lady too – so I know its a small single digit percentage – hahaha!!). I realised that it actually help a lot in keeping some inflationary pressure away from the total net real value of my nest egg…..

    From a macro-perpective, I think its good to have some GOLD as part of your nest egg in the short to medium term. With all the printed paper-money debts that the FIAT Money System is generating (and still generating if QE3 is released + the trillion that the Euro needs to be printed) on this planet earth … its scary!

    With the interest rate at next to nothing. Many are seeking better return for their CASH via corporate bonds, country bonds etc …. but this are at its highest price since Bond price and interest rate has an inverse relationship. In the medium term, Bonds prices are likely to fall and it being more illiquid to off-load. Chances are you will get caught in a BUYER’S Market in the future mediun term. NOTE: This is my personal thot – it got NOTHING to do with anybody whatsoever.

    With these uncertainties in mind, I am seriously reviewing this part of my little nest egg to hedge against these uncertainties. But will not be looking at buying now since some real smart alexs in the gahmen is removing the GST come 01Oct2012.

    I am quite sure the gahmen is not Koo-Koo and its a real smart move….WHY? The gahmen borrowings is more or less equals to our total reserves….so what better ways to increase the TOTAL GOLD HOLDINGS (indirectly) in the vaults (of Singapore Banks etc) …. remove the GST and encourage better “participation” by the local residents …. in case the FIAT Money System collapses …..

    So, the next few months till 01Oct, I will be looking at GOLD in a different light and will try to learn as much s possible how to manage it and use GOLD to hedge against all these uncertainties.

    I am not looking at making BIG Money or Betting on GOLD or “Profiteering” but as a safe haven tool to keep my nest egg’s real value sane …. I think I will like to push it from the current low single digit percentage to a near/low double digit percentage levels.

    That’s all and these are just my PERSONAL Thots. TQ.

  57. LOL!! At the time of silly me writing the above personal thots, I did not know or read the article entitled “Golden Gold” in today’s Straits Times paper in the Money Section until now when I was browsing through the papers…

    OMG!! So, I better put this “clarification” down in writing too!!

    What a moron – rite? LOL!!! Hahahahaha!


  58. Hi Ivan

    It’s actually “great minds think alike” or a golden co-incidence.

    Yes, I, too, believe that we should put some of our money in gold as a hedge against what financial catastrophe can happen when the bubble bursts.

    China is now the “numero uno” of the world in every way and term, and the US and EU at the edge of a collapse of their economy and monetary system. And, they are buying gold like nobody else: they are building up their reserves to launch the Chinese yuan as the reserve currency. Already they are using the yuan to trade with Russia, Brazil and Thailand. They are buying up all the gold in the world, the gold mining companies in Australia and Africa. They are starting their own gold exchange in competition against the world Gold Exchange.

    How to buy gold? We can buy physical gold or gold ETFs. Or we can buy gold mining stocks. Don’t forget that physical gold was confiscated from the US citizens when they went off the gold standard. Can China or even our government do the same? I think it is possible whens it comes to the crunch.

    Gold price is now hovering around US$1,700 but some are predicting it to go to $2,000, even $3,000 or more. The price is obviously still controlled by the Gold Exchange and countries interested in maintaining their position. It would be interesting to see what happens when China starts it own exchange.

    Newspapers and magazines all have trumpeted gold or some other investments. They have to support their advertisers and cannot write negative things. It is often linked to some bank, insurance or financial institution.

    Just read the weekly newspaper articles about the successful investors: some are already rich to begin with, some have a backer or husband behind their investments. The stories are meant to project the successes of Singaporeans (or foreigners) and the opportunities the country offer. But read further or between the lines: Can we identify with these people? Can their monthly expenses or credit card spending elicit admiration from the common citizen?

    We are responsible for our future and our retirement. Each person’s needs and objectives are different; there is no “one-size-fits-all” which is what the financial industry promotes to us: “Just buy this unit trust or insurance policy all your financial needs are solved!”

    We owe it to ourselves and our families to plan and invest our hard-earned money the best way possible.

  59. #56, #59, #61

    Hi Tiang Soon,

    I am new here and I am a student of FX trading. From the above, I gathered that you have been successful in trading the news. I hope you can share with me (us) your strategy as I have been searching for it for a few years already.

    I have been exposed to Kathy Lien (GFT’s Chief Currency Strategies), Wayne McDonell (FX Bootcamp), Robert Buroskys’ (AmazingForex)news trading strategies including a few others. While some strategies appeared to be gambling others have shortcomings.

    Hence, it would be most appreciated if you could share with elaboration, with reasonable details on how you would decide to buy/short, your rational of the entry point, setting your stop loss (as in the case of the last NFP on 6 Apr, the WRB of USDJPY was 124 pips for the 1 hr bar of which setting SL is near impossible without accepting losses)and your rational of taking profits.

    For me, trading the news is highly risky as at that point the spread would be wide, slippage of as much as 20 to 30 pips do happened and the rapid formation of the WRB could result in a hugh loss, if on the wrong side. I usually close my position before then or otherwise I will hedge, to tie over that period.

    You have my admiration for trading GBPUSD during the intra-day as I have always considered it and USDCHF to be wild and difficult to manage.

    BTW do you use MT4 and also, what indicators are you using, if I may asked?

    When you suggest $1000 as capital, I supposed you are suggesting that members trade in Micros, as in Minis, they will face ROR in no time, of a few losses/mistakes.



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