Showing posts from February, 2023

Portfolio Update for February 2023

This will be a relatively short post, just to update on the transactions for the month. For the month of February, the tables seemed to have turned once again.  A totally different atmosphere and sentiment overshadows the market, especially after the release of the January CPI data, followed by the PCE data later in the month.  The data seemed to suggest that inflation is going to be way more sticky than expected, and thus the peak for the 10-year yield may end up higher than currently expected.  As such, the price pressure returned for the REITs.  This is very much in-line with what I have written in a post earlier this month regarding the performance of Singapore REITs.  I believe that at least for the first half of 2023, performance of REITs will remain subdued.  Now, with the release of sticky inflation numbers, I do not see meaningful turnaround of the REITs for the whole of 2023. Another important event that happened this month is the integration of ChatGPT into Microsoft t

With Rising Property Prices in Singapore, Will Freehold Condominiums Gain Popularity Soon?

In the past year or two, we keep hearing "frightening" stories of resale HDB flats, which are public housing in Singapore. They are called as such as they are constructed by the Housing and Development Board (HDB). These homes are affordable and can be easily purchased by the average Singaporean as they are subsidized by the government and are offered with housing grants.  The flats all come with a 99-year lease.  As clarified by the government, once the 99-year lease is up, the flat will have no value and is reverted to HDB, which will in turn surrender the land back to the State. I use the word "frightening" because how one views the situation depends on which group the individual belongs to.  If one is a owner/ seller, such news of million-dollar resale HDB flats is definitely great news to them, who is able to cash out from the sale, and use part of the proceeds to apply for another new build-to-order (BTO) flat, and the rest can be pocketed as profits (or retu

Importance of Insurance as Part of Personal Finance

I have never talked about insurance as part of my personal finance, because this is the part that I have failed.  I actually bought my first insurance at a relatively young age of 20.  However, I was ignorant at that time and my head told me that I needed help to be more disciplined in saving.  To do that, I needed money to be "kept" away from me, limiting my access to the savings.   I believe if you read to this part, you would have shook your head at my failed decision.  Yes, I went for both endowment plan and investment-linked insurance.  Worst case of all is, even after my agent (who is still my agent currently) tried to convince me to get hospitalization plan, I rejected the idea due to lack of funds, and at the same time, thinking that I was still young and things are alright as time was on my side. When it comes to insurance, things are always fine until they are not.  The drag continued till the day I was unfortunately diagnosed with chronic condition, and so, all hea

Is the Worst Over for Singapore REITs?

In the previous post , I talked about whether the worst is over for the market, as US equities has rebounded strongly in one month, and even STI climbed by approximately 4%.  This makes me wonder if the largest sector in my portfolio, REITs, is enjoying the same upward run. As one who has a dividend portfolio that is rather concentrated in Singapore Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), my portfolio was badly beaten down since April 2022, where the downtrend aggravated since August 2022.  As seen below, the CSOP iEdge S-REIT Leaders Index ETF fell from a peak of SGD 1.018 in April 2022 to a low of SGD 0.769 in October 2022, which is a drop of 24.5%.  However, since then, the S-REIT index has slowly but surely crept up to SGD 0.888 by the end of January, which represents an increase of 15.5%. So, is the worst over for the REITs?  Has the impact from high interest rates been priced in fully, and hence, it's just upside from this point onwards?   Personally, I think there is still un

Is The Worst Over, Or Is It Just A Trap?

Just for the month of January, the markets are so green that it almost made one forget how bad 2022 had been (with the exception of the last 2 days in January where the markets decide to lock in profits before the FED meetings).  The S&P500 and NASDAQ has jumped by 6.60% and 11.53% respectively, while the DOW climbed by 2.87%.  Even the STI has propped up by 4.08% just in January.  Hindsight is always 20/20.  It is at this level where there are individuals saying they should have injected their capital into the punished stocks in late December to capture the rise in January.  However, who would have known what the outcome would be, especially with so much discussions regarding the looming recession.  So is this the start of the new bull, with investors looking forward to a FED pivot, or is this just a trap, where the FED members will jump in the next meeting with their hawkish tone to punish the markets again (though FED sounds rather dovish in February meeting, which caused the ma