Friday 26 June 2020

Buy New, Repair, Or Throw?

What an interesting turn of back-to-back events!

First, my digital watch which I seldom wear - the one with thermometer, altimeter, compass built-in - has the liquid crystal leaked so that the display is now a black smear...

I went to the internet and saw we don't repair watches anymore; they simply change the whole module. 

The damage would be $100 to replace.

Let me see... I bought this watch for $250 more than 10 years ago, thinking how cool it is the wear it for my long walks. 

But then, when was the last time I used it to tell the temperature, direction, and elevation during my city walker treks?


Guess what I did?

I threw the watch away. 

No replacement with new as I have another 3 watches anyway.

Then my instant water heater died on me last Friday. 

Come on! 

I'll be moving to my en-bloc new flat end of this year. Die on me now?

I have no problem showering in the cold, but mom needs her hot water showers.

Had an argument with mom who insisted on repairing, while I wanted to buy new.

Mom's generation had the repair mindset, thinking repair is cheaper than buy new.

I had to prove to her no one repairs instant water heaters; its always replacement. 

What the repairman will do is to say come repair, then say cannot repair and suggest a replacement unit - that's how they snake oil uninformed housewives who are now captive customers... 

Hello, I work in this home appliances industry remember?

Found a cheapo China brand online for $70, install $50 - so $120 for 6 months of use max. I just treat it that I've "rented" this instant water heater for 6 months.

Guess what?

Dad called me in the morning just now. 

Yup, his fridge went to sell salted duck eggs...

Son, do you know anyone who can change the Freon refrigerant? 

Dad, can I buy you a new fridge this weekend at my workplace? One that's more energy efficient? 3 ticks?

Your that ancient antique fridge for more than 20 years is bloodsucking your energy bill every month... 

I pay lah! (That's how you win the argument)

You know what?

I realised the above 3 scenarios can be applied to our stock investing journeys. 

The problem with investing is we often let emotions get in the way of logic. 

No wonder more institutions have moved towards systematic and algorithmic trading strategies...

Can you relate them to your existing stock positions?

Tuesday 23 June 2020

Strange Weather; Strange Markets?

Is it just me or the weather these few days a bit strange?

It feels like year end December rainy season right? And I thought June is supposed to be one of those hotter months...

Not that I am complaining. 

I'll chose the cool weather over hot and humid any day! That's until I ran out of underwear to wear...


No dryer lah. I old school. My laundry all sun-dried. Love the smell of sunshine on my clothes.

Quite interesting reading the US financial news recently.

It seems retail is beating the professionals 1st half of 2020. Especially the millennials with their Robinhood accounts!?

What you expect?

Talk about the strength of youth!

Their advantage is they don't know what cannot be done. Wink.

The fastest bear market from January to March has given rise to one of the strongest US bull market since the lows in March! 

Hey! Buy The Freaking Dip is still alive and well!? 

Even more impressive is all this despite the Wuhan virus (I'm a cat person), the lockdowns, the massive layoffs, and the economic pains in the real US economy....

Of course its never about I can do it, so can you...

Last week, a reader SMS me a story about a young 20 year old US trader who killed himself after amassing a $700.000 loss trading options...

But it will quickly be forgotten. 

Market participants know for every tragic story like the above, there will be an "inspirational" story on the other spectrum about that trader in his early 20s that grew his Robinhood account from less than $10,000 to over $2 millions in slightly more than 2 years! (Yup, in percentage terms beat Warren Buffett hands down; trading power or what?)

Make a guess which story will snake oils peddle to wannabes fearing they will miss out?


I wonder whether our local millennials over here are also beating the professionals recently since March?

Or are they like the old fogeys, waiting to breakeven one day....

Saturday 20 June 2020

I'm so happy! Back to work today!

Yeah, I'm still alive and kicking. 

Nope, did not go sell salted duck eggs yet.

Took an extended 2 months spring break from blogging. 

In case you were wondering, I was heavily involved and distracted with mobile gaming. I think this market got potential to beat console and PC gaming one day...  Or maybe it has already? 

Was pleasantly surprised on the quality of games you can play on a mobile phone nowadays! IT dinosaur me...

Got a call from my company to report to work Wednesday. Only difference now is I can't jump from store to store like before. Must stay put in one store. 

I believe one fast food operator got into trouble when they rotated staff to different outlets; and the price they paid was ALL outlets have to close when their staff got infected. Ouch!  

Containment. Ringfencing. 

In investing/trading, we call it Position Sizing.

I tell you. 

I was lucky to be paid while sitting at home during the weekends for these two and half months. But when everyday is Sunday, Sunday soon losses it meaning...

I noticed there's a psychological impact/toll on me too.

No fun in roaming around Singapore when I can't eat out. Takeaway bring home already cold and not so nice to eat.

And without my 2 days of "rest" during the weekends by working, I've noticed I'm getting a lot less patient with mom during these 2 months.    

Let's hope things will slowly get back to normal.

Be safe. Stay healthy.

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