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Anthony Ong

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Anthony Ong

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Anthony Ong

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Bonds

Investments

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 18 Mar 2019
As an investor, financially, in Singapore? Probably none, and I don't think there has been any research done to suggest that returns from green bonds are more negatively correlated to other instruments (compared to other bonds) and so provide greater diversification benefits. However, your investment might help push capital injections towards "green" projects and reduce funding gaps, so "green" projects that might otherwise not have occurred will occur. So, if both fixed income instruments are equal except that one is green and the other is not, you might as well invest in the green bond and reap the karmic benefit at the same time! :)

Career

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 15 Mar 2019
To leech off Gabriel's answer, and to give you the best of both worlds, you can also suck it up and continue, while searching for another job / revenue generating business outside. This helps monthly cashflow, and also helps signal your continued attractiveness to potential employers. This financial consideration should then be weighed against the mental toll the current job and unhappiness is having on you - is it leading to severe depression / impact on interpersonal relationships; or is the unhappiness still tolerable, even if undesirable?

Career

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 15 Mar 2019
Unfortunately without the benefit of hindsight, there is no absolute right thing to do. Assuming a usual median salary (so the 20% works out to about $800 a month), that you are young and that this is one of your first few jobs in the chosen career, I would ignore the pay and benefits for now, and focus more on how the 2 companies can impact on your potential career path. This will mean, among others, consideration of the skills you are likely to learn, what you would think you would like to do, the industry you will be gaining exposure to and what your potential next promotion / move to another company will be. If the decision is to take the better offer, please deal with the MNC nicely and professionally. There is unlikely to be any legal repercussion on you breaking the employment contract since you have not started work, but they might be less receptive if you ever need to work with/for them again in future.

Investments

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 15 Mar 2019
I will disagree with most other people here, and say that "just enough" will be enough, because the money should be put to more productive uses and generate returns (particularly if you are putting this towards investment). From that perspective, the reserve fund is just to ensure that you are not forced to sell off your investments and/or make bad decisions just to keep yourself afloat. However, what is "just enough" then depends on your personal circumstances. 3 to 6 month household expenses , and not salary, is a useful rule of thumb because it allows for you (and your family) to survive in the event you do not have salary come in as monthly cashflow. To be conservative (and in case you have an extremely low cost of living), this amount should also be able to cover any co-payment or excess requirements under your available insurance policies. To further lower the "just enough" threshold, you can also consider including availability of outside sources of money you can rely on if required (e.g. parental help, although you really should try not to).

Trading

Stocks

Investments

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 15 Mar 2019
This is a serious topic, so providing you with a serious answer. To help assess whether this is insider trading (quoting from the SFA): 1. is this information not generally available? 2. do you know this information is not generally available? 3. If the information were generally available, would it reasonably be expected to have a material effect on the share price? 4. do you know that if the information were generally available, it might have a material effect on the share price? Insider trading is where all 4 questions above are answered "yes", and because the consequences can be severe, you should be more conservative such that if all questions are answered "yes" or "maybe", you should not act. To add, the SFA prohibits not only the actual trading based on knowledge, but also the communication of the above information to a person who might trade on it, so do not spread the information further as well. Also the usual disclaimer that this is not intended to be legal advice and you are not entitled to rely on it etc etc.

Lifestyle

Family

Credit Card

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 19 Feb 2019
Congratulations! There a few things that you will need to keep in mind for the wedding banquet payments (and maybe generally): 1. Take advantage of credit card promos where possible! This may mean cancelling the cards you dont use now (such that in 2020 you and your spouse both qualify as a "New cardholder" which most promos are targeted at), or making early payments or splitting into smaller amounts to take advantage of periodic promos (e.g. Citi and ApplyPay last year) 2. Hotels tend to have milestone payment plans - try to structure / ask for flexibility in these so you can take advantage of good promos as and when they pop up 3. Plan your cashflow - if you manage to pay big lumpsums in your credit card in one go, make sure you have enough cash to pay the bills when they are due! As an example, my wedding was late last year and what we did was: 1. pay the initial deposit through a general miles card (there were no good promotions available at that time) 2. make early payment of the 2nd milestone with Citi because it had an ongoing single transaction bonus spend promotion available 3. sign up for the Krisflyer ascend with my wife and take advantage of the sign up offers they were running for the final portion Not related to them, but I scan the milelion once in awhile to keep track of ongoing promotions etc. Good luck! :)

Investments

General

Coffee Meets Investing

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 08 Jul 2018
Something slightly contrarian to the usual diversification response, but I would suggest concentration only on 1 or 2 investments, even if the investment can be a diversified investment (i.e an ETF). There is no need to split the amount across 4 or 5 investments at this stage as this increases your transaction costs (brokerages charge a minimum transaction fee) which in turn increases the return you need to achieve in order to break even. Also, assuming you are continuing to save, this 10-20k will not be the last investment you are making and so you can use your later investments to diversify. On details, maybe you could consider 1 ETF and 1 stock to split your initial sum. The ETF can give you some diversification, and the stock can give you some practice in analysis and choosing shares to invest in, which will help you in the longer run as well. Good luck! :)

Lifestyle

Wedding

Credit Card

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 08 Jul 2018
To add on the Albert's answer, if you want miles, you can also consider using the Krisflyer ascent (promo for new sign ups and above $10k spend), or the Citibank rewards , prestige (if the venue accepts apple pay, for 8mpd).

Bank Account

Credit Card

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 21 Jun 2018
If your intention of using the bond component in your investment portfolio is to lower some risk in case of a downturn in equities, CPF can serve the same function, particularly for the longer term. At the end of the day, CPF is meant to be for retirement planning after all (same as the purpose of your investment portfolio presumably). However, in addition to the illiquidity and requirements to pay back CPF used for housing (if the house is sold later) as mentioned by Brandan and Chris, you might also wish to consider (especially if you are young) that CPF policies might change over the next few decades and so impact your retirement planning. The exchange for that illiquidity is that CPF is almost risk free. If CPF collapses, all of us will have much bigger problems to worry about than retirement :p

P2P Lending

Investments

Anthony Ong
Anthony Ong
Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 21 Jun 2018
P2P lending fills a need for these businesses that cannot get loans from a bank. Of course, as these are seen to be riskier, the return from funding (i.e. interest payment) is also generally higher than a bank loan. The generally shorter tenor of the loan, and some limited DD by the platform also helps somewhat mitigate risk of default. That being said, whether it ultimately takes off is a separate matter from the riskiness of the loan. If there is sufficient demand for the risk-reward levels provided by P2P lending, no reason why a P2P platform cannot be successful.
Level 3. Wonderkid
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