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Thursday, 23 March 2017

What's the most difficut thing to Plan for our Retirement?

No, its not your rate of investment returns.

Nope, its not the rate of inflation that will eat into your rate of investment returns above.

Or for that matter, what withdrawal rate to use? (Friend, its not that birth control technique)

Ah... You almost got it if you say how to plan whether at 65 you'll be still healthy to do line-dancing, marathons, and overseas travelling; or will you have an Eldershield kind of lifestyle...

Are you ready?

Please tell me when you intend to see your maker?

If you got 2 more years to live, I suspect you'll discover you have enough right here, right now. Can quit and do the things you wanted to do all along but always no time...

That's the acid test to find out whether you love what you are doing right now.

Anita Mui sang till her last days. She no need to quit and do what she loves. She is already doing what she loves!

If you believed you will live till age 100 and beyond, have fun moving your goal posts!

At this rate, you'll never have enough!

There is no such thing as foolproof or "bao jiak" when it comes to the vagaries of life.

That's why people through the centuries have engaged in astrology, palm reading, and all sorts of voodoo...

Will I win the battle tomorrow?

Will I succeed to the throne?

When will I die?

I find it quite amusing. Some even use astrology to speculate in stocks!?

But then, seemingly savvy and literate investors also exhibit similar behaviours by believing in investing myths...

Prostrating before the god of compounding (mixing up compounding interests with compounding returns).

Blind belief that forgoing a cup of "atas" coffee a day will make you financially rich.

I would have thought its more about wisdom and luck. 

(Any hipster café owners reading this? I can bring more business to you by organising our kopi sessions with fellow journey companions at your joint. Just write to me at the bottom. Wink.)

And this fable I liked the best!

If you fail to plan; you plan to fail. (So those O&G companies on the verge of bankruptcies never planned?)

No need to look at your parents and wonder why they never did more "planning". Just look at your own lives. Did it turned out how you have planned?

I know. You feel like giving a slap to that pimply-faced young graduate who tells you the reason you're still working at age 65 is because you failed to plan in life...

Sounds familiar?

Yes, it's your fault!


  1. Not sure. Stay in middle path so we cannot be too wrong or too certain.

    1. CW,

      That's the wisdom and path our Buddhists friends seek ;)

      Non-Buddhists are welcomed to this path too. Buddhists don't qualify with "born and bred" in the same sentence :)

      The guitar string wound too tight or too loose would not be in tune with what's happening around us ;)

      Awareness of the here and now can be more useful than trying to live my life 30 years from into the future...

  2. Smol,

    U change the word "retirement" to "life" in your title and the message still stands

    Go get them lol

    1. Sillyinvestor,


      When it comes to philosophy, you definitely more than my equal ;)

      Eh, taking profit on your Venture and YZJ now does not look so bad right?

      Let's see tonight whether Congress will repeal Obamacare. If no, look out below!

      I bet you don't know and don't care about such "macro" events. Who cares when bottom-up stock picking makes 30-40% in one year or less!


    2. Hi SMOL,

      U praise me lei, I shy. I actually care about these macro events. Of course, I hope Obamacare dun get repeal. I would rather see trump get tump in the face. But I know if it get repeal, supposedly it will be bad for markets and given my position, should be happy?

      Today just had an intellectual exchange with my tutor. Going to blog about it. I would rather shut up, but since she ask, I reply. She poke poke poke, I fire fire fire.

    3. Sillyinvestor,

      I'll patiently wait.

      Not everyday can watch dragons cross swords!

  3. Till now, i don't have any real solid plan.

    i just plod along my life base on principles of living.

    And guided, and protected by my faith most of the time.

    Really if incident/accident happens, it just happens.

    Don't think anyone can prevent it almost 99.99% of the time

    胡 丽 胡 图 也 过 一 生.

    1. temperament,

      Your 胡里胡涂 powderful!

      Just like my focus on entries and exits, if I am a believer of the cross, I would do my best to be Christ like; and do no evil.

      Whatever happens, I'll submit to thy will.

      Sometimes things just happen...

      To a believer, you'll say its a trial or test of faith.

      To a agnostic like me, I'll say its an opportunity for me to find out what I'm made off ;)

    2. Ha! Ha!

      This "胡 丽 胡 图" i got it from google's translation.

      See i am really (Your 胡里胡涂 powderful!) 也 过 一 生.

    3. temperament,

      Well, now we know Google translation is not foolproof ;)

      Sometimes it better to be 难得胡涂!

      Can sleep like a baby :)

      Know too much like those financially literate ones - worry about inflation, interest rates, policy changes, moving of goal posts, capital losses; etc...

      How to sleep like that?

    4. Ya lol.

      When i first started investing 29 years ago, know nothing, ka ka foot kar liu.

      Now, 4Ks liu.

    5. temperament,

      I think we need testosterone therapy!


  4. Hi SMOL,

    Just nice, I watched this ted talk from here (http://www.fourpillarfreedom.com/2017/03/23/conquer-your-finances-to-give-your-future-self-freedom/). The video talks about the psychology of your future self - how we consistently underestimate who we will be in the future.

    I'll go with that - the hardest thing to plan about retirement is who we will become in the future. All the calculations in our best laid plans are based on the assumption that we remain who we are at the time we're planning for our retirement.

    I think having options is the best thing we can do to prepare for an unforeseeable, unpredictable future :) Do our best and hope for the best haha

    1. LP,

      Thanks for the video link!

      Its nice to explore from this new angle - the future me may not be the same me of today!?


      I remember the first time I was learning how to arrive at fair valuation from using the Discounted Cash Flow method.

      It all seemed "logical" and "scientific" until I said, "Hang on! We are making so many assumptions that its really no different from plucking a figure out of thin air!"

      Yes, the more options we have, the more free we feel.

      Some people have less options:

      What? Ask me to drive a taxi? That's beneath me.

      Be a waiter or salesperson? So "malu". I can't bring myself to "serve" others...

      You must be joking! I am a manager! You want me to re-start from the bottom all over again?

      That's why I poked at FB. What they want is to have business or first class retirement.

      If have a change of heart or when circumstances change, they want a guarantee they will not "lose face" if they have to return to work...

      Is going back to work AFTER retirement so "malu"???

      Feel like working; work.

      Don't feel like working; stop.

      Now this is options!

  5. SMOL

    Are we planning too much and forget to live?

    1. Blursotong King,

      You have a Buddhist foundation, I guess.

      Dogen from the Rinzai school of Zen Japan said to his mother as a child, "Its meaningless. What's the point of reaching paradise AFTER death?"

      I think some of my Buddhist friends spend more time "planning" for their next reincarnation or what they will do in Pure Land than living in the here and now...

      What irony!

  6. SMOL,

    Yah, I have my Buddhism roots ingrained in me.

    No one plan to die
    Everyone plan to live
    How many are living now?

  7. Planning give you better chance to succeed. However too many cooks can be a problem too. :-)

    1. Cory,

      Just like Charlie Brown's friend Linus with his security blanket, I guess if planning gives comfort and the illusion of control to some, so be it ;)

      To me, its more about seizing of opportunities when they appear :)


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