Best time to Invest Now?

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More often than not, I read articles and comments and many people ask about if it is the time to invest now. Markets are too high…What asset class to invest into and should I invest now? I only have $100, $500, $1000 (It doesn’t matter how much you have. It matters to start early and depending on which stage you are at. It might be better for you to start an emergency fund first before you invest)

Just this morning, I was listening to Kiss 92 radio channel and I heard that there was a miracle. A fan fell down and went into coma for 23 days. While he was a in a coma, the morning show DJs started to call and talk to him. While they wished  for a miracle, they kept it real and thought that it might not happen. This then sparked a little thought – something we all know but fail to execute.

The story is such a good one that it kind of send me teary eyed for a short while. While we know that miracles do happen, we also know that miracles don’t happen all the time. However, it is important to keep believing that thing will happen the way you want it to no matter how far it seems. Never say never. Be practical but sometimes there are no explanations.

When is it really time?

You will never know when is the time you may lose your loved ones so treat them well and shower the love. Similar to investing, we will never have the crystal ball that tells us the future. If you do have one, I think there isn’t a need to seek financial independence anymore. No matter how accurate, lucky or correct one can analyse – there are no shortcuts. All things take time.

Spend time not focus purely just on money

Spending time on your loved ones is more important than making money. Money as what I alway advocate accelerate the process to many other things. Spending that time not also allows one to connect socially with family as well as reconnect with the young and old. Crossing generations also gives you fresh perspectives and new ideas. Don’t write them off.

Investing takes up a lot of brain cells if you are always exploring for new ideas. These perceptions will provide options and aide in that journey.

Family is family

Whatever your situation is family is always family. What you represent eventually will be translated down to the next generation. There isn’t a guide or way to do it but everyone is a parent for the first time so cut some slack on yours. After all, they were in different times as we did today. Family time provides connectivity that helps one mentally while providing that support. Some may call it safety nets in the finance world but personally I prefer to call that emotional support group. Perhaps friends might be as close to family but everyone’s comfort level is different.

With a section of the mental support covered, naturally one’s focus will be freed of distraction. However, there should always be a balance.

Is it the best time to invest now?

It is hard to say all of that with so many conflicting articles that talk about an all time high and that an impending correction is coming soon. That is all technical and feel. There are no scientific rules as to why markets goes higher or lower. Only interest rates and bond prices are inversely proportional. Other than that, there are no fixed formulas and no one can single handedly control or manipulate the markets.

As always, you can choose to put in some during the initial phase and stagger the investment on a regular basis. This is what most people know as dollar cost averaging.

The other way is really to split the amount that you wish to invest into 3 or 5 parts. Every time the market drops, just diligently put some in.

What ifs?

What if the markets were to increase by another 5% or 10% and you are not invested. That would mean that you will always be missing the market rallies. A medium and long term view of the market will definitely help in the long run.

The excuse

The contradiction will always be there. When you are young, your commitments are lesser but the disposable income is lesser too. Moving into middle age, your commitments increase but your disposable income depends on what you need to spend on. When you are slightly older, your commitments decrease but your risk level should not be like 20 years ago.

The concept

The whole idea is to really to invest early and invest regularly. A miracle happened for someone today but that doesn’t mean it happens to everyone. Some people missed their chance or opportunity and that would have been too late.

Disclaimer

This is purely my own opinion after using their service and/or products. If you like what you are seeing, do remember to check they out and do your diligence. There is no one size fits all investment strategy.

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes here at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/ for the services.

The pictures were taken from website solely for the purpose of illustration. Remember not to be a slave of money but make as much as you can so that you can make use of money.

Autowealth Robo Advisors – Performance (Oct 2020)

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So, it goes on and on for robo advisors. Many would probably be tired of hearing this. I mean, this is pretty normal. Unsexy stuff is not always exciting than the buzz of trading. Just only a couple of years back where i left the financial industry, I seem to be able to take a step back and think about what is an investing portfolio.

From where I came from, building a long term portfolio is very rare. The emotions, drive, passion and revenue counts a lot. Customers want quick and fast trade execution with low rates and high profits, sometimes it comes with terms like low duration and low risks. Let’s face it, people are a greedy bunch – most people just want guaranteed returns, beat the system, make huge profits and take low risks. I rather people show me how to make those returns guaranteed and i’ll put money with them instead.

I get it that property, gold and some asset classes do generate huge returns over the past few decades. That is history and history doesn’t mean it will return the same going forward. All these talk, there can only be a process when there is a conversation around planning, finance or even trading. Most people are just classified under the one way channel.

Investing especially in spot market is a tough business. Most people cannot accept fluctuations in their portfolio. Autowealth is yet another solution for me. Just that this time around, this is for my kid to start out her investment journey when she can. Teaching financial literacy is something I would recommend to anyone.

Why Autowealth?

My two reasons for doing so is really just (a) try out one more robo advisor and (b) segregate this fund for any other purpose other than the kid’s investment journey. We shall talk about if robos die off in the future but this is conversation for another day.

My take about the investing journey has been the same since day one. Don’t sweat the small things, the costs of robo are so low. We are talking about a 15-20 year horizon here so heck those low costs. You need to pay them to keep their lights running. For companies like Endowus and StashAway, these guys have the experience and passion and these translate into action.

Perhaps Auto Wealth is in a different segment all together but they are the ones I see positively after the other two. After signing up in June I finally got to funding the account in September and October when markets were on the downside. The idea of doing this over the long term is to really to buy in when markets drop. Down the naysayers, just take a look at this historical S&P 500 chart for the last 50 and 100 years. Markets will go up and each time it drops, just pick some up and let the robots do the work on balancing and re-balancing. As long as fees remains low, the portfolio will grow over time and over a longer period. It should remain in the black based on some backtesting.

For a 50 year horizon on S&P 500 (roughly around 1970 to 2020):

Big time hedge funds and billionaires made their market on the equity markets during US boom time. Naturally, capital market are still the source of capital funding even till today.

For a 100 year horizon on S&P 500 (roughly around 1920 to 2020):

From 1920, US markets isn’t that global and the equity markets isn’t that advanced so there is a long plateau. There are more factors than not being global as capital raising. It is not a popular medium since investors are less savvy as well.

Performance

Looking at the portfolio, it looks pretty nice ahead of the 15-20 years horizon. This is a portfolio which is set at roughly 40% equities and 60% bonds. The investment vehicles will be through ETFs. It does look like it can withstand long term peaks and troughs. What i really like is that i can switch between the SGD and USD currency performance portfolio as well as the impact on USD SGD forex on performance. I wouldn’t say this does as well as the portfolios but to be fair, markets were already slightly upwards and I would like to deploy funds out into the market in tranches over time.

+3% absolute is decent in my view and this is as at 16 Nov. If markets drop, the rule is to fund the account more. Do note that all of these will have USD exposure. Time versus DIY – it is really about what is important. I usually will want to see the ultimate end goal whenever I start anything.

Disclaimer

This is not a sponsored post. This is purely my own opinion after using their service and/or products. If you like what you are seeing, do remember to check they out and do your diligence. There is no one size fits all investment strategy.

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes here at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/ for the services.

The pictures were taken from Auto Wealth website for this article. If you need a referral code, drop me a message and you can indicate my full name during registration. From there, both of us will  get $20 each to supplement the fees.

 

Stash Away (Sep & Oct 2020)

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I’ve not been diligent in posting my performance that i invest into Stash Away. It has been positive so far (the experience) and I’ll say it is on par with what Endowus is providing. In my own words, I’ll say that they complement each other and offer different perspective. I do trust and believe their views on certain aspects of investing and hence, SA shall be the second robo advisor that I will build a long term goal with over time.

I have since adjusted the risk index to below 20% as I felt that there isn’t a need to go all out Risk On. Having calculated risk per $ makes more sense in my opinion as news and information goes on a random rampage. Most importantly, I am invested – So if Mr Market decides to go up that is fine too. If Mr Market decides to go down, then it will be time to put more funds in. After all, it is a long game.

Retirement Portfolio A (risk-14%)

The SRS account since deposit is currently at +2.46% as on 5 Nov 2020. It’s one of those that I went in February 2020 before the crash came in March 2020. Nonetheless, I believe in the long term strategy that S&P 500 or index generally rises over the longer term so I have a super long horizon on this. I haven’t decide if I should fund more SRS monies into SA or Endowus. We shall see how things turn out.

Education Portfolio B (risk-16%)

This is something I set on a 15-18 year horizon. It is at +5.06% as at 5 Nov 2020 and I think that is a good return in my view. I have been averaging in whenever there are market dips. The risk index is at 16% and I will adjust from time to time as I do believer that by doing so, you sell some assets while buying into a new asset class based on the risk you set so in a certain sense, I can take profit while increasing or reducing my risk. Try not to touch any of those if you don’t quite understand how that works. There is some level of punting involved.

Education Portfolio C (risk-20%)

This portfolio has a shorter horizon of 12-15 years so I feel that I need to take on some risk to achieve my goals. This SA risk index is currently at 20% and will take on to be one of my riskiest portfolio. More funds will be added over time to achieve my targeted invested goals.

Conclusion

So far StashAway has not failed me in a sense that it fits in to my investing style and logic. I wish to put more into the accounts but I cant bring myself to invest when prices are going higher and higher. Instead, when things come down I find it easier to put money in.

To sign up or try out Stash Away, visit the website and use my referral code at Stash Away Referral

We’ll both get up to $10,000 SGD managed for free for 6 months which is a good deal.

Disclaimer

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes for other services at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/

The pictures were taken from the Stash Away website for this article.

What Will I Invest with S$10,000

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I realised that such posts actually attract more viewership as compared to technical breakdowns. I get it that most people want a quick and fast way to read content and download views. The first 3 seconds of every post will most likely decide if the reader would like to continue reading, be skeptical or just scoff at it. In my earlier posts, I talked about having an emergency fund. It takes time to build such things so don’t forget, the little things count.

In this article, I’m going to discuss more about what to invest and why especially for folks who just got out of school. When I graduated, I remember vividly that it seemed to be pretty hard to save money. A few years on, I realised what constituted the bulk of my spending and why I could not save more. These life experiences cannot be bought so I would say the money spend networking and forging friendships are my human capital.

Going back in Time

Going back to 5 years ago, there wasn’t many choices to invest extra funds into. It was the standard brokerages, fund houses or at most bank/custodian brokerages. There wasn’t a lot of tools to invest in and let’s be honest, the retail bankers can’t be too bothered with a S$10,000 fund. It just isn’t worth their time. So, like many others who preaches, I shall say it again – If you do not care about your own money, no one will. I remember I used to buy funds via FundSupermart, trading some Forex with CMC Markets/Saxo Capital and used Standard Chartered Brokerages to buy US/SGD equities. Nothing fancy that you can really do though.

Moving forward 2020

With the current options we have available, traditional investments seems really cool. (At least it is for me) I really like the options out there for me to pick and choose. You can Insurance Tech, Robo Advisors, Cryptocurrency, Real Estate Block-chains, ETFs, Leveraged Equities/Indexes and many more. With the upcoming digital bank in Singapore, I think that this is going to be great for consumers. The key problem now is to get more people interested in their own personal finances.

What to do with S$10k?

We are going to take away the cash solutions for this since this is on the assumption that cash funds are kept away in a safe place. With the new funds, this is money that you can afford to lose. I used to know something who likes to take a punt, he would leverage and buy options on the same counter without considering the risk. Well, he wanted to win big but eventually his portfolio became pathetic and he lost his job while these options expired and markets dropped. The objective of sharing this story is to always abide by your investment discipline.

I am reminded of the rules:

  • No one has the crystal ball and you will never know when the markets decide to be green or red.
  • A small amount of leverage is fine but not when it is concentrated into one counter. Remember to diversify but not over diversify.
  • Always use option to your advantage, not to speculate.
  • When you lose to the market, blame no one but yourself because no one forced you to invest. You can keep cash and seek cash solutions but if your cash deflate, that’s on you and no one else.

With a S$10k portfolio, I would split it up into a few tranches.

Robo Advisors

  1. Robo Advisors are a great tool if you do not know what to buy or when to buy. The whole idea is to buy when markets go up or down. The entry level for robo investing is so low that anyone can invest. Let’s also be real, all platforms have a cost upkeep so fees are unavoidable. For this I would Assign at least S$6k (~60% – 70%) into such funds and this forms the Core part of the long term portfolio
    1. The first option can be Endowus (USD ETFs) which i discussed before here at Endowus
    2. The second option can be Stash Away (USD ETFs) which i discussed before here at Stash Away
    3. The third option can be Syfe (For SGD related equities or the Global Equity Portfolio) which i discussed before here at Syfe

Now, you must not forget to top up your investment on a monthly basis. Treat that as a form of savings. The earlier you save, the faster your will reach your retirement goals.

From the robo advisor portfolio construction, you can choose a partial bond|equity balanced fund. This is where your bond exposure comes in. Do not waste your time with SGS or SSB during this period because they returns are not great.

Cryptocurrency

2. They say that trend is your friend. The trend now with all the hype is about Cryptocurrency. I can’t help but would add a small amount to the portfolio. They are supposed to act different as compared to fiat currencies. For this I would assign at least S$1k (~10%-15%) and i consider these as alternative asset class.

    1. The first option is to buy Bitcoins. They are by far the largest Cap in the Crypto World.
    2. The second option is to get a foot in to Crypto.com. I previously discussed about this as well here at Crypto.com App/

Funds

3. Personally, I like income or dividend equities or funds. If you are more risk adverse i would suggest to put some money into the PIMCO income funds. They are just the best in class for bonds. Depending on what you like, the average dividends is roughly around 3-4% p.a. For this, I would assign at least S$2.5k (~25%-35%) and these are supposed to be a stable source of dividend funds.

Trading

4. Finally, what fun is there if you leave everything in the Core Portfolio. The balance 15% of funds (~S$1.5k) can be use to buy in specific equity counters in the SGX. (for e.g. bank stocks or reits whenever there is a market pullback) If you really wish to fully invest these monies, just put them back into the Robos or ETFs.

What other options would you do or suggest to do? Feel free to comment. The whole idea of writing is to really share about opinions and you never know when an idea strikes you.

Disclaimer

This is not a sponsored post. This is purely my own opinion after using their service and/or products. If you like what you are seeing, do remember to check they out and do your diligence. There is no one size fits all investment strategy.

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes here at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/ for the services.

Images seen in this article were take off the relevant websites for illustration purposes only.

Singapore Reits or not?

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Singapore Reits is something that many Singaporeans understand and take heart to. Some folks actually build their income/passive income via this source and I can see why.

My take on Reits on SGX

a. First it is based in Singapore – There is this local bias that it can do well given most people like to see for themselves if the malls are working out well in terms of retail quality, crowd, spending and how many shops are still in business.

b. SGD payouts avoids the currency risks. For a retiree or someone drawing on income from dividends, this payouts serve as a source of bill payment.

c. An alternative and cheaper way to enter the real estate market in Singapore is really through the reits/stock exchange. I know that people will argue that it is different but technically in my view, it is the same (And you do not need to pay stamp duties, get a mortgage and pay sales charges)

d. It is more liquid than real estate.

For a long time now, Reits have been growing big and popular within the investing community. Again, all investments comes with risks – Most people have more comfort in dealing with things they can see or get a sense of. For a long time, there have been plenty of wins for reits but as you can also see, the Circuit Breaker period in April through May have affected them in a way or another.

Diversification?

So again diversification is key to investing once more. If you put all your eggs into the Reits for passive income, then with such dividend cuts your bottom line is definitely affected. Currently, it doesn’t seem like this Covid situation is going back down or slow down whatsoever so dividend cuts is going to be prolonged in order to save businesses and jobs. Then again, there are certain sectors who might see a booming business such as Data Centres or even certain suburban reits. Sub-urban malls are definitely crowded but the former shopping aisles in orchard and high end malls are definitely missing the tourist crowd which rakes in the cash and spending. It is no wonder why people are worried about their livelihoods.

It is not all doom and gloom. Sectors will emerge while some will recover. It is definitely time to pick up some if you did not have any. The idea is to really have a long-term goals when you pick a stock and stay disciplined. Once you sell it off, you may never be able to pick back the company at their valuations again.

The Passive or Lazy Choice

If you are lazy, let Robo-advisors do the trick for you. For e.g. Syfe. https://www.syfe.com/ Initially i only took on the Reit+ portfolio some time in April 2020 to test it out so that I do not need to manage the portfolio and incur those trading fees. They have expanded other products such as a Global ARI portfolio (Long term investment into equity,bonds and commodities) and Equity100 portfolio which is 100% into global Equity ETF (US and UK listed ETFs)

Auto-rebalancing

Syfe has invented their ARI (Automated Risk Investing) methodology, which is a risk-based rebalancing strategy, which changes the allocations of your portfolio according to changes in risks in the market in order to limit your losses. In short, once it triggers a certain level, the system will trigger an alert and things start to sell off to re-allocate. It also means that over the longer term, you will naturally see a better performance of the portfolio.

Every rebalancing of course depends on what portfolio you choose from so everyone is different. I personally like the idea of investing into a portfolio of reits instead of picking it on my own. In terms of fees, it depends on your investment amount with them.

In terms of pricing, I think it is cost effective. Do find out more about it here https://www.syfe.com/pricing

a. Management fee per year is at 0.65% p.a. for investment amounts S$0 – S$20k.

b. Management fee per year is at 0.50% p.a. for investment amounts S$20k – S$100k.

c. Management fee per year is at 0.40% p.a. for investment amounts S$100k and above.

Do use my referral code to get some benefits when you sign up a new account with Syfe. Referral Code: SRPTSMQ5J

You will get (Find our more about their referral scheme here https://www.syfe.com/magazine/how-can-i-invite-a-friend-to-join-syfe/) :

a. S$10 bonus if you invest S$500

b. S$50 bonus if you invest S$10,000

c. S$100 bonus if you invest S$20,000

Disclaimer

This is not a sponsored post. This is purely my own opinion after using their service and/or products. If you like what you are seeing, do remember to check they out and do your diligence. There is no one size fits all investment strategy. 

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes here at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/ for the services.

The pictures were taken from Syfe website for this article.

Term or Participating Life Plans?

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Term Insurance or Participating Whole Life Insurance? This is the question that I often ask and discuss with my other half. Typically, people seek value when they buy or invest in something. For insurance, value seekers would prefer a cash value. Cash value is what you have contributed over the insurance tenor. These sum of money, deducting the cost of insurance, the fees, commissions, salary and what nots will be invested by the insurance company Fund Managers (Whether they choose in-house or external fund houses) – In short they are known as participating life insurance.

Term and Whole Life Insurance

Term Insurance are policies that do not have a cash value. They are typically cheaper than Whole Life Plans (Otherwise it wouldn’t make sense to get term insurance). For example, they cost $200 per annum for a coverage of $200K and it depends on your age at point of inception. They may or may not be renewable yearly, meaning that the premiums will increase with age and each individual health condition.

In my personal opinion, I think that a Whole Life Plan is really expensive. You pay premiums and the first three years, there is literally no value to your assets. Then your participating underlying investments are handled by someone else who tries their best to beat benchmark and regardless, they get paid in fees and costs.

Buy Term, Invest the Rest?

There is a famous saying, buy term and invest the rest. Well, I don’t have a view on that. It really depends if you want to leave some legacy behind for your family/kids/relatives or it may even be transitory. For e.g. used to cover debts such as a new house, a new car or assets. In order not to complicate matters, I’ll leave illness out of the equation and discuss solely on the death benefit. Generally, you need to cover your liabilities so that in the event of death, your family members not only are rid of their stress and pressure from the loss of a loved one as well as the financial aspect of it. To a certain extent, I believe in covering at least 2x of your liabilities so that there is comfort in dealing with more financial freedom.

The other stuffs to take note of

For a typical household, i believe that health insurance is the first thing you need to seek coverage on, followed by life plans but everyone’s scenario is different. In finance, there is a phase that all of us has to go through which is also the toughest and it is called wealth building. I’ll leave it for discussion on a separate day but my point is, you buy insurance based on what you can afford and not because it is cheap or time is not on your side.

For me, I take the approach of covering term as well as whole life plans. The hybrid style works for me as I am pretty savvy with financial contracts and insurance. In my own time, I am qualified advisor for insurance and more qualified than many out there but I never once worked for any insurance company. Though finance is my forte but there are too many products and innovation in this field that you cant keep up. So, you need to have someone in there to guide you along. It is annoying to talk to agents so you need to have someone you trust.

Let me just plant some ideas – If it make sense. It isn’t all encompassing but just to point things out.

Term Life:

A. A Substitute for liabilities (Housing loan, car loan, personal loan, student loan)

B. A transition phase which you do not mind protecting until that period is over. As term has no value, it is similar to a no-contract telco plan and you can get rid of it anytime (if the time period is short)

C. Supplement for a shortage of coverage that you have for your whole life.

Whole Life Plan:

A. It’s just for lazy people. Buy/Save and pay the premium for a period of time. Leave it there.

B. Buy at a young age and the premiums stay really really low which is smart. Consider your finances too as you need it to be as affordable until you have served the payment term.

C. If you have a young kid or elderly who are not working. You, are the income holder needs to be insured. When you are gone, the young kid and elderly will not be able to work to give you an income.

Above all, health is of the utmost importance. You will never know when or what hits you. Even then, your state of mind will be in a mess. So, no matter how prepared you are, no one will ever be prepared. All these little steps and conversations must eventually turn into real action. When shit comes, it comes and there is no point saying “I should have”. Don’t just listen to your agent out there. Seek alternative, ask and learn. No will will care more about your money more than you will – These life skills will bring value to your own life and frankly I can’t see a life with no planning and no one should.

Disclaimer

These are just solely opinions of mine. Different people have different needs, requirement, financial situation and views. For me, this is what I would do if I need to deal with buying insurance for myself and my family. There is no one size fits all – different strokes for different folks.

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes here at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/ for the services.

The pictures were taken from the website for this article.

New Changes to MoneyOwl Fees

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MoneyOwl is an initative from NTUC Social Enterprise. They are sort of a Robo-advisor coupled with a suite of wealth planning tools such as will writing and insurance solutions. What really attracted me is their rather simple way of investing and using Dimension Funds as part of their portfolio construction.

As a retail investor, you will most likely not be able to access such funds. When the market tanked sometime in Feb 2020, I picked a few Robo-advisor to invest into and look into performance a few months later. Almost six months has passed now and I will most likely show some of the performance in my later posts but I must say, by doing nothing much, all advisors reported positive returns as compared to my own stock picking.

Changes to MoneyOwl

Recently, MoneyOwl announced that they have lowered their investment advisory fees as well as absorbing the platform fees.

a. For Asset under management S$10,000 and below, there will not be any fees through 31 December 2021. This fee will be rebated back to the portfolio. So take note that only Cash investments are eligible for this rebate. The cash management accounts do not have these in place and your total portfolio value has to be above S$50.

b. There is an introduction fee of S$99 which is worth about S$535 for a comprehensive Financial Planning. Money Owl’s advisors will sit down with you to review your portfolio with detailed report and recommended next course of action. (~2 hours)

c. Additionally, they are introducing free financial resilience workshops to focus on cash flow management and debt management. Likely through Webinars and anyone can join in.

It is nice to see that as a partner to our national social enterprise, they are making moves to help Singaporeans. The reduced fees on investments which is one of the key points in long term investments. The more fees you pay, the more it affects your own portfolio performance.

However, they should really look into improving the interface. (for e.g. making it into an app) They also introduced a referral fee scheme or some promotional fee scheme for new sign ups. Not much complains other than that.

Follow us visit my blog if you like what you read at https://lifejourney.blog

Disclaimer

This is not a sponsored post. This is purely my own opinion after using their service and/or products. If you like what you are seeing, do remember to check they out and do your diligence. There is no one size fits all investment strategy. 

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes for other services at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/

The pictures were taken from Money Owl’s website for this article.

When is it time to invest?

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We hear a lot of this all the time. Our parents, our friends, our colleagues and everyone. There isn’t any in my opinion. Some may beg to differ but there really isn’t any the way the see it. There is an actual science to this because it really depends on what kind of person you are. No one will manage your money better than yourself. There are three dimensions to this how I see it.

Your Life Cycle

Life-Cycle – Depending on which part of the cycle one is in, you will change the way you invest and how you want to invest. Different stages in life provides you with different perspective and capability to do certain aspects of financial tweaks. Some get a head start while other don’t but that is not the end goal. It is your objective that is key – No one should just carbon copy a portfolio or process. This is customised and should be based on your own circumstances.

How much you have to invest?

How much you have – This is really a sticky question because the real fact is that no one knows. I am of the mind that your own networth and liquidity is for your own to know and manage. Unless you own the millions that you can’t manage because time is what you need, this would apply to at least 90% of the folks out that. How much can you afford to save or take out that does not affect you paying off your bills on time depends on your financial situation. I remember when I first started out, the salary I have is for my own takings. The very first thing I did was to spend almost all of it. It isn’t smart but we all learn.

Paying yourself first

Paying yourself first is essential in building a bigger pool. The first $1k, $10k, $25k $50k, $100k will be exponentially easier with every milestone. However if you don’t start, then the milestone will not be met. Regular saving plans/investment does help in this process. Using the envelop technique is also recommended for guys who are really starting out.

Time – This is a large and essential part of everything else.

First, you need to find time and give time to learn and experience. No one grew up knowing everything, all of these lies with exposure and experience. Some gets it faster than the rest while others manages this slower. Like an exercise buddy, the journey is long but if you persist and encourage one another, it will ride for a long time.

No excuses – Is Netflix and the next PlayStation more important every other day? Educating and understanding finance takes time and effort. Even if you hate it, try it in a smaller scale model and gradually increase it over time. I can certainly say that over a time period, it will become second nature.

Second, You do not have a warchest overnight. You need to build it. No one knows when is the next drop, what is the next promising industry to go into. No one knows who is the next unicorn or donkey but through time, you will eventually find out about your own strength and sense of investing.

My four points on a good time to invest

These four points in my opinion sets the basis of what is a good time to invest. TLDR:

a. Anytime is a good time to invest as long as you have a plan and you know what you are doing

b.Do not invest more than what you require to pay your bills.

c. Start early, start young, the later you start – the tougher it is. It is never too late but the results will be less than one would expect.

d. Learn as much as you can so that you are well-equipped. Today, there are too many tools around to learn and see.

I also do understand that by saying “When is a good time to invest?” It will attract criticism as to “timing of investment”

Timing the Market?

I would also want to address this issue of timing. It does no one any good if you time the market. No one has the crystal ball.

a. Start by splitting your warchest into different portions. Be disciplined and when market drops, buy some then don’t expect these to turn unto profits overnight.

b. Keep an eye on what you are investing especially if you are buying into a company. Investing into index funds leave you to a more passive investor. We shall not talk about Core and Tactical management of investing this round.

c. Regular investing also helps. Find mutual funds or portfolios who have in-lined principles to what you belief and stick by it.

d. Remember to always review. Things change and so do us as humans during different life cycle.

Small Note

P.s. As you can see, my beliefs is as such that all things work in an ecosystem (Before it gets disrupted). Smaller efforts gives greater confidence and these translate into positive energy, mindset and clear mind. Then, this brings you to another aspect. When this Eco-system is in place, many of the things we have discussed earlier will be a second nature and you would know how to react accordingly.

My Take on Robo-Advisor

Personally I like to use some form of Robo, systematic investing such as Endowus. It also cancels out my liking of timing my Buy-in timing.

  • Most importantly, the cash related funds uses a big institution related fund manage such as Dimension Fund which is not readily accessible to retail investor.
  • They have shown that they return the rebates they receive from the fund houses instead of absorbing it to pay fees to Banks/Financial Institutions as recurring revenues
  • All funds invested are held on behalf by UOB Kay Hian and held in my own name so funds are safe I say.
  • My only grip is really about the buy time which I have no control over. By the time the markets drop, I’m not sure when my funds are invested but on the bright side, it means it is consistent and disciplined trading.
  • Relatively lower management fees which means more compounding interests for all. That is good news.
  • I also like that they only debit the management fees at the end of the quarter instead of taking money at the start. Tells a lot about how they want to be different. Say no to upfront fees.
  • The first Robo-advisor to be able to invest using CPFIS. I think they were also the first to be able to use SRS to do so as well. That makes one more level up as CPFIS only approves certain funds that you can invest in. This makes it flexible to invest using Cash, SRS and CPFIS.
  • If you use my referral code to sign up and invest minimum S$10k, we both get $20 each which can be used to offset the management fees to keep their lights running: https://endowus.com/invite?code=EDZ8M

Disclaimer

Money is not everything – They say (Who? I don’t know). Without Money, there are lot of things we cannot do. With proper money management, these will slowly go away and your mind’s will be clearer. With a clear mind, things unravel. An end is always where new things start. Be positive and do not be bound by just money.

This is also not a sponsored posts. I used it and I like what I am seeing.

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes for other services at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/

The pictures were taken from a few websites for this article.

Get $5 when you sign up with Google Pay & make a transaction (Until 31 July 2020)

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This is really a quick kill for a good deal. It is the usual way of spending money to get more users. This is pretty straightforward and it is an easy one to get. All you need is just to sign up for google pay using this link here https://g.co/payinvite/t74cf8f

All the way through 31st July 2020, when you download Google Pay from this referral link, you will be able to receive a free $5 cash after performing an eligible transaction.

Referral Programme (until 31 July 2020)

a. You earn $5 once your friend makes his or her first payment using Google Pay. The transaction must be at least $10 to qualify. (or PayNow to your friend)

b. You can earn the reward only once for each friend whom you have successfully referred. There are no caps.

Once you have signed up using my link, you can then continue sharing your own referral link to as many friends as you would like. In return, you and your friend $5 cash each for each successful referral! 

How it works?

Send your invite link for everyone to download Google Pay.

For invitees who are on IOS devices, they must enter their mobile number on the Google Pay page that is prompted before installing the app. The login must be the same as Google Pay to qualify.

You can insert a referral code if you have downloaded the app however you must not make any transactions on Google Pay before.

You will then earn S$5 and your friend S$5 if they make their first payment of at least S$10 on Google Pay by 31 July 2020 23:59 Singapore time and payment is successfully process. Also, assuming that it is a first time user as well as a first transaction.

At the time of writing, you can do this by linking your PayNow account to OCBC account (Currently that is the only way to do so) and make a transfer from there. This is the easiest and fastest way to get the perks.

It’s quite easy and simple to do. Although it takes a bit of an effort but I think it is worthwhile while they still have marketing expense to spare. Have fun referring! Please do use my referral link if you think this is of value to you. Sharing is caring – Cheers!

Disclaimer

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes for other services at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/

The pictures were taken from Google Pay website for this article.

A low cost Brokerage option? Tiger Brokers

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In the last few years, we have seen quite a number of independent brokerage firms popping out of nowhere. The idea that their platform charges an extremely low brokerage fee seems to make us think about their sustainability and how they are make money to survive the long game.

Low Cost Brokerages

Well, for consumers and folks who are talking about low costs – such competition will only benefit retail consumers and I will definitely take them into consideration. Interesting enough, the backers of Tiger Brokers are a Chinese online security brokerage firm in Beijing founded in 2014. Their investors are Interactive Brokers Inc, Jim Rogers, ZhenFund and Xiaomi Inc. Tiger Brokerage is listed on Nasdaq under ticker: TIGR.

Tiger Brokers

In Singapore, Tiger Brokers is under their subsidiary, Tiger Brokers (Singapore). The biggest sell for them is their 0.08% fee on the share value with no minimum fee for equities on SGX. They also do not charge a custodian fee.

The on boarding process is pretty simple and easy. You can also use SingPass to ease the sign up process. For funding purposes, SGD transfers takes only an hour or so during the weekdays. I transferred some funds to the platform at around 7.30 pm and funds were approved at around 8.15 pm. At the same time, I also tried out their withdrawal process. It takes about 24 hours to receive the funds in the bank account. It could be due to a first time withdrawal but I shall try it out to find out more. One important point is to deposit and withdraw funds in the same name as the one you use to register for the platform otherwise there will definitely be delays.

An impressive in-depth study on Tiger Broker can be found on Seedly article here: https://blog.seedly.sg/tiger-brokers-review/ and one of the key points about custodian was discussed in the article.

Mentioned on one of their paragraph: “Unlike the other brokerages operating in Singapore, Tiger Brokers does not have a custodian license and has to rely on a third-party broker or bank.” It means that they use a third party custodian bank and specifically two other banks (ANZ and CIMB). It also means that you do not need to worry about Tiger Broker going default since banks are holding your securities and funds.

I think that they are a good platform to invest some funds in but definitely not your core or bulk of your funds.

TIGER Promotions

There are some promotions for new signups which doesn’t seem too shabby:

  • Free level 2 data on US or HK stocks for 30 days after registration
  • Commission-free for 1 order of US&HK stocks in 30 days after opening an account
  • Get up to $100 worth of stock vouchers when you deposit funds or transfer shares
  1. Fund account with SGD 2,000-5,000 to get Stock Voucher worth SGD 30
  2. Fund account with SGD 5,000-10,000 to get Stock Voucher worth SGD 50
  3. Fund account with SGD 10,000-30,000 to get Stock Voucher worth SGD 70
  4. Fund account with more than SGD 30,000 to get Stock Voucher worth SGD 100

Referrals

  • Get an additional $100 worth of stock vouchers when you refer friends
  1. Invite a total of 5 people to own SGD 10
  2. Invite a total of 9 people to own SGD 20
  3. Invite a total of 12 people to own SGD 30
  4. Invite a total of 15 people to own SGD 40
  5. Invite a total of 25 people to own SGD 100

If you find this as something interesting, please do use my referral code link here: https://www.tigersecurities.com/accounts?invite=S5LTM6

Here you can also find a funding guide from Tiger Brokers: https://youtu.be/AmgLNhDvA68

Disclaimer

If you like what I am sharing or if it resonates with you, do use my referral codes for other services at https://lifejourney.blog/contact/

The pictures were taken from Tiger Brokerage website for this article.