google-site-verification=712oIJF418hawgQCKbg_mamDrNMGUJiu1w6-eA5D08M

Sceptical About Stock Market Investment?

Are you sceptical about stock market investment? Should one rely solely on a robo-advisory wealth management platform or personally invest in the stock market to grow one’s wealth?  If you believe in integrity, would you invest in a company that display a lack of ethics?

Read what Timothy Teoh has to say about investing in the stock market in  True Meaning Of Investing which appeared in the New Straits Times on Sept 15, 2021.

This was my first article for the NST-Tradeview collaboration, which featured Timothy, a Malaysian tech whiz who had started his career as the technical director and initial web developer of Nuffnang, which was founded in 2007.

Sceptical About Stock Market Investment? Timothy Teoh

Since Sept 15 till to date, I have interviewed a total of 20 personalities.  In this post, I’m recalling the stories of Timothy, Muzahid and Adam.

“It’s normal to have profit and loss, ups and downs – as everything carry a certain degree of risk. It’s part of life. It’s important to understand why you’re investing in the first place and what kind of core values resonate with you. For example, if you believe in integrity, would you invest in a company that display a lack of ethics? I take these principles and embed it into my life and business endeavour,” said Muzahid Shah Abdul Rahman, the chief executive officer of a digital transformation company called SteerQuest Sdn Bhd.

His story A Corporate High-Flyer Turned Entrepreneur Believes In Malaysia’s Economic Potential appeared on Sept 22, 2021.

Sceptical About Stock Market Investment? Muzahid Shah Abdul Rahman

After Muzahid, the third story Treat Stocks Like Business focused on small business owner Adam Yeap.

With his annual sales of RM2.5 million dwindling to zero due to the Movement Control Order restrictions, Adam Yeap was glad he had invested some money in the stock market as it was generating some passive income.

Adam grew up in a household that did not have much faith in the stock market. His relatives and friends previously had bad experiences with investing in shares.

“Hearing all the negative stories about the stock market made me sceptical, too. I tried investing in the US stock market in small quantities but I was not an avid retail investor back then. I always believed that my own business ventures would deliver the best return on investment,” he said.

However, the pandemic reshaped his perspective. Apart from business, one should have passive investments too.

Sceptical About Stock Market Investment? Adam Yeap

Latest stats reveal that there are 801 companies listed on the Malaysian stock exchange, the Bursa Malaysia. Of these, 305 stocks are Shariah Compliant.

Stock investment lets common investors participate in the financial achievements of the companies, make profits through capital gains, and earn money through dividends—although losses are also possible.

Thai Massage To Rejuvenate And Recharge Mind And Body

Looking for a place to recharge and rejuvenate the mind and body?  Perhaps you’re craving for a traditional Siamese Thai massage?

 

Thai massage to rejuvenate and recharge mind and body Thai massage to rejuvenate and recharge mind and body

 

The health and wellness centres in Malaysia which have gone into “hibernation” since the national lockdown in March 2020, will be re-opening its doors for business come Oct 1.

 

Founder and director of Noi Siamese Traditional Massage Sdn Bhd, Tan Aun Gim says only local masseuses who have been trained by qualified Thai trainers will be serving customers at its outlet in Midlands Park (1-Stop) Centre in Penang.

 

The masseuses have certification from a reflexology/massage training school approved by the Ministry of Education in Thailand.

 

The services range from reflexology to full body oil massage, traditional whole body massage and ear candling, among others. The price range is from RM25 to RM97.50. Senior citizens age 60 and above will get to enjoy a 10 per cent discount for all the services.

 

Noi first started operations on Christmas Day in 2015 comprising of local and Thai masseuses.  But all the foreign masseuses returned home during the first Movement Control Order.

 

The masseuses will be using techniques such as energy line work, pressing, stretching, among others, to rejuvenate, revitalise and recharge the mind and body of the customers.

 

Thai Massage To Rejuvenate And Recharge Mind And Body

Thai Massage To Rejuvenate And Recharge Mind And Body

 

Opening hours: 10.30am to 7pm (daily)

 

Address: 488G-43, One Stop Midlands Park Centre, Jalan Burma, 10350 George Town, Penang.

 

For more information, you may also check out their FB

 

Watch The Squid Game, If You Haven’t Yet

 

Investing is a personal thing, just like seeking a religious path.  There are various schools of thoughts.  You just need to pick the one that is best suited for you.  At the end of the day, we just want to have enough money to do the things that we like and want to do.

 

Work when we want to, not when we have to.

 

Recently, I attended this webinar where the speaker was telling people to buy a stock when the price has achieved a “new high” in the market.  This was different from what I would do, as I would look out for stocks which are “dirt cheap”.

 

But it was interesting.  Both ways are right.  When you buy at “dirt cheap”, you need to wait a long time for the stock price to rebound.  When you buy after the rebound, as the price is rising, then you don’t need to wait that long.  So it depends on whether the investor has the patience to wait or not.

 

Investing can be boring at times, but it’s a safer bet.  If you want fun, go to Genting.  Or you can play   Squid Game, if you have the guts!  Just kidding.  I just started watching this Korean drama last night.  It only has 9 episodes but it’s really good.

 

Watch The Squid Game, If You Haven't Yet
The Squid Game

 

 

Among the cast are Lee Jung-jae (whom I first saw in New World) and Gong Yoo, who is my favourite.

 

Money makes the world go round, but please don’t lose your humanity for it.

First Collaboration As A Columnist

This is my first collaboration as a columnist with The New Straits Times, and Tradeview, the author of Once Upon A Time In Bursa.

 

Together we will be churning out weekly stories featuring retail investors who will talk about their investment journey, personal finance, portfolio diversification, among others.

 

Money and finance have always been my favourite subjects.  “Money no enough” (钱不够用) is a popular Singaporean film which came out in 1998, followed by a sequel in 2008.  The movie resonated with a lot of people.

 

Moreover, my name is Meijin (美金), so I guess money or finance should be my niche.  Meijin means US Dollar.

 

I was a journalist with The New Straits Times from Oct 1999 to Aug 2017.  I then joined Forest City – Country Garden Pacificview Sdn Bhd in Sept 2017, and left the corporate world in Nov 2019.

 

From NST to Forest City … from journalist to columnist.  I like the way my life is unfolding.

 

Most importantly, I hope you all will like this collaboration.

 

Since 2019, I’ve been trying out content creation, affiliate marketing, e-commerce and I write every once in a while.  There are endless things to learn, and learning keeps you young or at least makes you feel young.  So one should never stop learning and investing in oneself.

 

Back to the collaboration with NST and Tradeview, let’s get to know  Timothy Teoh a little better.  He’s a software architect at REA Group Asia and a tech whizz who co-founded KitaJagaKita, PulangMengundi and also the former Chief Technology Officer of Nuffnang.

 

 

Timothy Teoh, the tech whizz
Timothy Teoh, the tech whizz

 

 

Investing
Picture Byline — feels like coming back home again

 

This is the first collab, and hopefully it won’t be the last.  Anyone out there in Malaysia  who’s passionate about money, especially if you’re a retail investor — whether you have a good or bad experience investing in stocks —  do get in touch with me at

 

 

 

 

We’d love to hear from you.

 

Don’t Get Scammed!

Don't Get Scammed!
Photo by Anna Tarazevich from Pexels

 

We read about scams, we hear about friends getting scammed, and we always think it won’t happen to us.

 

But there are many ways to skin a cat and scammers prey on our emotions, so even people who are intelligent, streetwise, knowledgeable and (maybe they were curious) sometimes let their guard down and fall for it.

 

Like many others, I’ve received wierd messages via WhatsApp, Messenger, Instagram, etc.   I’ve also received phone calls from the LHDN (Inland Revenue Board).

 

And there was one time when “my uncle” sent me a message in Messenger asking me how I was.  The person had hacked into my uncle’s account, and after a brief exchange I knew it was not my uncle.

 

With so many types of scams mushrooming, one really needs to be very. discerning and alert.

 

These scammers also employ phishing attacks, so be aware of those too.

 

Besides money scam syndicates, love scam syndicates, there’s also a sea of fake gurus lurking in every corner.

 

It’s time people learn to separate the real deal from the fakes.

 

ACCESSTRADE Malaysia, a popular affiliate network, was also not spared  and in case you missed the story, read about it in the link below.

 

SCAM ALERT! ACCESSTRADE Malaysia Is Not Involved In Shopee/Lazada Online Affiliate Marketing Scams

 

It’s good that the scam victims came out to share their personal encounters.  Sharing is caring. Please learn from others’ mistakes, and do not believe that it will not happen to you.

 

Stay safe!

 

(This is a media collab with ACCESSTRADE Malaysia)

The Prime Minister’s Three Main Challenges

The newly-appointed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob is faced with three main challenges, which includes fighting the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Kluang Umno Division Chief Datuk Hj Md Jais Hj Sarday, who is also the state party’s treasurer, in a statement today said Ismail Sabri made history as the first non-party president to hold the post of Prime Minister, thus opening a new chapter in Malaysian politics. It also meant a return to power for Umno, which was ousted in GE14.

 

Md Jais congratulated Ismail Sabri as the country’s 9th Prime Minister and  stated the 3 challenges.

 

Datuk Hj Md Jais Hj Sarday

 

The first challenge is for the Prime Minister to remove netizens’ connotation of BN, PN and GPS being a “failed government”, and he should refrain from using the name “Perikatan Nasional (PN) government”, as PN is a coalition of the government.

 

The second challenge is for the government to win the Covid-19 war which currently has a daily infection rate of over 20,000. The rakyat’s concern is not solely the pandemic but how to survive with unemployment, managing household expenses, paying debts, among others.

 

“The economic sector has to reopen following stringent SOPs so that the people can go back to work and earn a living. The government should organise awareness campaigns on Covid-19 and carry out enforcement that is not excessive so that the people can adapt to the new normal.

 

“The education sector has endured 2 years of study from home. Based on feedback from teachers, it is said that more than 50 per cent of students have dropped out of the education system. This is due to the unavailability of WiFi and mobile data, especially in the rural areas, B40 families or students who lack discipline and those who have to work to help with household expenses.”

 

The third challenge is to maintain the stability of the coalition government. He must not repeat the mistake of the previous administration, especially those related to appointments and the formalations of new policies. Ismail should form a joint special committee comprising of representatives of the 3 coalition parties (BN, PN and GPS) to steer the ship until the next general election. This will also restore the MPs’ integrity toward their respective parties in accordance with the agreement of the coalition parties to form the government.

 

What the people want is for the government to be truly transparent in resolving the 3 major crisis — national politics, economy and welfare (including people’s health). Of course the cabinet that will be appointed is not just to fulfill the party quota but must have integrity and their own credibility.

 

Target Red Zones For Lockdown

Only red zones should be locked down while businesses in green zones should be allowed to operate in order to revive the economy.

 

Target red zones for lockdown
Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels

 

By Michael Tay, who is the Johor Covid-19 Pandemic Taskforce chairman, and also Johor MCA Government Coordinating Chairman.

 

It is not logical nor does it make economic sense to lock down the safe zones or compare Johor with other states that have a high Covid-19 infection rate.

 

I would urge the Federal Government and also the Johor Menteri Besar to allow eateries, hair salons and shopping malls which are not in the red zones to reopen.

 

It’s not about getting vaccinated anymore.  People’s savings are depleting due to the pandemic.  Some have already started using their retirement funds.

 

We should follow Sabah’s model.  The Federal Government should not impose excessive restrictions on any state which do not have a high infectivity rate.

 

I once again urge the Federal Government to let the Menteri Besar and his committee of health professionals from the state to draw up their own SOPs in battling the pandemic.

 

The Menteri Besar should know the red zones, the safe zones, and the landscape and demography of his state better than anyone else.  If the Menteri Besar of a state is not a health expert, then the health personnels from the top hospitals should be tasked to advise him.

 

The public would thank the Federal Government if businesses can re-open, as many entrepreneurs and industries are hanging by a thread over the continued lockdown.

 

Food court and restaurants that offer only takeaways are not earning enough to sustain their business.

 

The Federal Government should adopt a decentralized approach.  Let each state have its own SOP.

 

I sympathise with the healthcare workers but I also hear the pleas of small business owners and those who have lost their jobs, who have depleted all their savings and are turning into paupers, some are resorting to a life of crime while some are contemplating suicides.

 

It has been reported that textile and apparel factories have ceased operations since last year, leaving about 6,000 employees retrenched.   The chain reaction of that was numerous small-medium enterprises have also shut down or downsized causing about 15,000 to lose their jobs.

 

The problem with Selangor having such huge spike in the number of Covid-19 cases is because of the foreign workers in factories.  Many of these workers are believed to be illegal, so they try to avoid getting caught.  Majikan perlu ambil tanggungjawab saring pekerja asing

 

Factory owners should conduct tests at their own premises and isolate the workers who tested positive.  This would prevent the infected ones from spreading the virus to others.

 

Targeted lockdowns should be practiced, and those who have received two doses of the vaccine should be allowed more freedom, if they are well.  So, please don’t miss your appointment if you have been called up.

 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in Your Say are those of the contributor, not the blog owner.

 

BNPL: Boon Or Bane?

BNPL: Boon or Bane?
Me Playing Darts

 

I came across a RM800+ dart set recently and saw that it could be bought with BNPL (Buy Now, Play Later). As BNPL is currently trending, I’m just wondering if you think the facility is a boon or a bane?

 

It made me 心痒痒 (heart itch) when I saw the merchant offering this facility.  But then, with so much economic uncertainty, unemployment and animal shelters needing help in our midst, buying a dart set really shouldn’t be a priority, especially if you’re looking at BNPL.

 

I decided to write about this because a BNPL provider had approached the company I work for recently.  I had attended the webinar and everything looked groovy, like the zero per cent instalment and how merchants could gain the competitive edge if they have this alternative payment method.

 

Sure, I could own the dart set by paying in instalment but I’ll also be getting myself into a debt trap. Besides I still owe the vet RM4,000.  My previous story Precious Furkids

 

So buying a new dart set is a definite “No No”.  Don’t even think about it!

 

Think of instant gratification vs delayed gratification everytime you look at something which you want but do not really need.  The brand new dart set may make you very happy today and the next day, and maybe the next three days, but three months later, you would be eyeing something else that you think will make you happy.

 

BNPL is also not regulated by Bank Negara by the way.

 

If you were to miss a payment, you will have to pay additional fees.  Because the facility is so user-friendly, one might use it without a second thought, and easily spend more money than one should.

 

So many people are borrowing against the future, and they may not even know it.  Or maybe they know, but don’t care.   With life being so uncertain, they just want to live in the Now.

 

What are your thoughts on this? Do you see BNPL as a boon because of the flexibility it offers or as something to be avoided?

 

Here are my affiliate links in case you’re in the mood for some online shopping.  Spend wisely, not extravagantly!

SHOPEE

LAZADA

Analyse Company Before Investing

Analyse Company Before Investing
appeared in the print version of The New Straits Times (July 12, 2021)

Analyse Company Before Investing

 

KUALA LUMPUR: It has been almost 24 years since the 1993-1997 Bull Run that the Malaysia stock market witnessed such a huge influx of retail investors.

 

Many new retail investors are turning to the stock market due to the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown, seeing it as a way to ease their financial constraints.

 

However, this has also prompted many opportunists to emerge on social media platforms taking advantage of retail investors.

 

“Many retail investors are genuinely good, hardworking people who are just trying to live a better life. Sadly, they fall victim to those who consider them as “lambs to slaughter” and capitalise on their lack of knowledge,” said financial columnist and author Ng Zhu Hann, better known as Hann.

 

Hann is the author of Once Upon A Time in Bursa – The Money Equation.  Before writing the book, he had blogged under the pen name Tradeview and is well known among retail investors.

 

Little was known about the writer behind the moniker until the launch of the book in May 2021.

 

Hann, a lawyer by profession and formerly the Chief Strategist of a Fortune 500 Corporation, was referring to the recent viral video clip where a radio host had received a distress call from someone who was contemplating suicide after following the advice of a group of “fake gurus”.

 

The victim had purportedly lost his job due to the pandemic and was hoping to make some income from stocks.  However, he lost all his savings after allegedly following the advice of the “gurus”. The man then thought of taking his own life so that his aged parents would get the insurance payout.

 

“Many say the stock market is a zero sum game designed for the rich and powerful.  I beg to differ.  If one were to invest in well-managed companies for the long-term, one’s investment will grow along with the companies’ earnings at no one’s expense.

 

“The stock market only becomes a zero sum game when people adopt a punter’s mindset. I grew my investment portfolio by setting aside some money to invest in companies that I like every month.

 

“Of course I made plenty of mistakes and lost money as well but learning from your mistakes is crucial,” Hann said.

 

Hann explains that the stock market was originally premised on harnessing the collective strength of investors to help fund a company’s growth.  However, what started out as a good idea morphed into something that can also cause tragedies, owing to man’s greed.

 

“Often it is the common people that suffered the brunt of any stock market collapse or pump and dump schemes.

 

“In spite of all the tragedies, many retail investors still hope to “get rich quick” speculating in the stock market leading to a vicious cycle. Ignorance is not wrong but ignorance coupled with greed is a lethal combination,” he said.

 

Fake Gurus and The Real Deal

 

“These fake gurus mostly rely on social media platforms to draw in unsuspecting victims by flaunting their expensive watches, cars or mansions.

 

“Truly successful investors on the contrary are humble. Warren Buffet, Peter Lynch, Dr Neoh Soon Kean and Fong Siling are good role models,” he said.

 

Hann’s Once Upon A Time In Bursa hit the bookstores on May 30, making it the only book by a Malaysian author to top the MPH Bestsellers’ List for Business Reading in June.

 

Publishing company AcePremier chief executive officer John Lim said financial education is still at its infancy stage among Malaysians, and this was a cause for concern.

 

He started AcePremier 12 years ago and started specialising in the publication of financial books two years ago.

 

“While scouting for a financial author, I came across Tradeview’s articles and I like the way Hann shares his own investment journey. He encourages people to analyse a company before investing in a stock.

 

“Instead of opting for a shortcut by going to an investment guru, why not learn how to analyse the stock yourself and make an informed decision?”

 

Meanwhile TED Optimus Sdn Bhd chief empowerment officer Warren Mak, who is former Bursa vice-president (Investor Education) said the Securities Commission is doing a good job updating the public on the latest scams and unlicensed entities.

 

“However, people always think they will never fall victims to scams.  Sometimes the people conducting investment courses may not be “fake gurus”.  They may have the theoretical but lack the practical knowledge.

 

 “Then of course there are the “syndicates”, or what we call the “Big Boys” who show up on social media platforms to offer free training only to lay market traps for unsuspecting retail investors,” Mak said.

 

With 28 years of investment experience, Mak’s advice for retail investors is not to be emotional.

 

“Do not panic when the share price goes down.  If you invest in a fundamentally strong company over the long-term, one almost always makes money,” Mak added.

 

Analyse Company Before Investing
Article appeared in Business News (July 12) of the New Straits Times
Research Stock Before Investment
Thank you NST

source: New Straits Times

Related link

Once Upon A Time In Bursa – Book Review

Thanks MITEC Vaccination Team

I would like to thank Life of Annie for mentioning me in her latest post Thanks UCSI Vaccination Team.  She even featured my Instagram post.  As my vaccination was done at another center, I would like to thank the team at MITEC.

 

 

Obtained My Covid-19 Vaccination Digital Certificate 

 

I had a very pleasant experience with the MITEC vaccination team.  MITEC stands for Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre and I received both of my sinovac doses there.

 

There was a heavy downpour yesterday as I was on the way for my second dose. I was quite worried whether the 2nd vaccination was going to be as smooth-sailing as the first.

 

My 1st dose on June 19 turned out pretty well.

 

In fact, I would say the 2nd appointment was even better, as the team was more gracious and friendlier than the one I met during my 1st appointment.

 

Making A Living

 

On my way to the vaccination centre, I had a wonderful chat with the Grab driver — a young man who was in the sales line before he lost his job.  Now he drives Grab for a living.

 

“We all just want to make a living.  We don’t even dare to dream of prosperity anymore,” he said, adding that even those who currently have jobs are feeling insecure.

 

“A company that used to have a sales team of 10, for example, will bring the number down to 5.  These 5 will still get the same basic salary but the sales target set by the company will be two-fold or three-fold, making it almost impossible to hit.  So it’s a “take it or leave it” situation, and most will accept it if they have a family to feed.

 

“If you say the target is impossible to achieve, the company will say you’re now given the accounts of those colleagues who have left, how can it be impossible?”

 

The Grab driver fears that the wealth gap would only widen in the near future as the rich will have the opportunity to buy over a struggling enterprise.

 

Save The SMEs

 

SME Association of Malaysia president Datuk Michael Kang Hua Keong also said in a Nanyang Siang Pau (July 10) report that SMEs will choose to sell or close their business if they can’t see a future beyond the pandemic.

 

He said the closures of SMEs will cause a chain reaction as large companies will lose the supply chain and this could lead to layoffs, bankruptcies and a wave of unemployment.

 

Kang said the initiatives introduced under the National Economic Plan for MCO 1.0 and 2.0. cannot be copied and regurgitated for MCO 3.0.

 

Life Is About The Giving

 

That’s all for today.  A prayer for everyone in the world battling with Covid-19 right now.  May you recover soon.

 

Those who are in a position to help should lend a helping hand to those in need, and many Malaysians are responding to the White Flag movement.

 

Giving is its own reward, and life is about the giving not the getting.

 

White Flag Movement
People queueing for food items contributed by a restaurant here.