Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Random thoughts: Being thankful in a crisis

Not sure if some will find this post insensitive, but here goes.

In this crisis period, I am thankful that I am reasonably safe with my job. I might get a pay cut if this crisis drags on, but it is still less painful than what is going on with many sectors. I was taking taxis today, as my car was sent for repair. The uncles all told me earnings are halved. 

I am glad that I am not fearful of this Covid19. I am not sure how this sound to u, but I have cut off completely any entertainment or meeting of friends. I dun really eat out, except for wee hours in the morning, where I indulge in a hot bowl of noodles before I go to school. There is hardly any crowd in the morning.

I washed my hands frequently, and has a santitizer bottle with me. I avoid air-conditioned staffroom and usually mark around the study areas of the school. 

I did these to be responsible to my family and also to my kids. If despite my best intentions, I am infected by it, I leave it to fate/god to go through it to the best of my ability. 

I was rather panaroid and fearful at the beginning. I do get a bit worried once in a while, but I am rather at peace now. I know there are many around me who do might not feel the same way. Perhaps it was a defiance trait, and I think somewhere is February, I suddenly heard a loud internal voice, " F*@ it, living in fear us worse than dying", thereafter, I try to focus on my work and enjoy my work.

My work has become more enjoyable. I enjoy the company of my P6 pupils. My P5 pupils did not do well in the CA test, and some parents are losing confidence in me. I was demoralised but it is just a passing cloud that I know will not pull me down beyond one day. 

Financially, I have only about 30 percent cash left. My portfolio is 12 percent in the red. I could pump up the cash to 40 percent if necessary but I do not really wish to activate my reserves. ( Reserves are not emergency fund,these are No-No) I am thankful that as I look at my bleeding portfolio yesterday, I could think clearly and objectively which companies are my priority to buy if prices continue to head south, how much sizing is too much of a risk, which counters to use CPF to stagger the buying etc. I was not so Zen in the 2008 bear. Maybe that is because I know I have some funds to tap into if markets really continue to go south and I have already built up a reasonable emergency buffer. 

I am thankful that my family are still in good health. 

Lastly, I am not sure how true the reports are, but with the drastic reduction of human activities, it was reported that pollution has decreased and mother earth is healing itself. Protests in Hong Kong has died down. I am under no illusions that the problem will resurfaced after the virus, but I think this cooling off period might actually increase the number of people willing to take the middle ground, and reduce plain exploitation of certain interest groups that are too radical.

Covid 19 is a mirror. I saw the ugly side of me. Its fine, I can live with being ugly. 

I am thankful, I am not blind 

28 comments:

  1. Hi SI,

    That's not an ugly side, that's a calm side.

    The ugly side belongs to those people who switched to panic mode and go with the crowd to snatch up groceries or hoard more sanitizers than they need.

    If we are still having a relatively stable life during this time of crisis, we should be thankful.

    Only 12 % in the red, I think you are pro compared to the average long investors already.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i already blue black eye lah.

      SGX and NYSE

      Delete
    2. Hi rainbowcoin thanks for your kind words. Those active investors will do a lot better in other times and might have make their pot of gold many times over earlier.

      Me not jealous, just seeing things in perspective.

      A close friend says he wanting to invest ... His record the best now. Lol

      Delete
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      Delete
  2. But no worry, still got a lot of capital to heal the Blue/Black eye.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Uncle temp, I believe this equity market is just a hobby for u and your bulk of retirment fubd is somewhere else ...

      U will do fine. Enjoy the bear

      Delete
  3. Remember when we met few years ago, you told me that you really wanted to leave your job and wanted to start some biz using your savings.

    Good to be thankful of your job which I always felt is one of the most enriching. One day, I will love to be imparting knowledge to the young, when I am old and retired.

    Just a small advice my friend: be more patient and do not look at the stock market everyday. Maybe see it once a week, bi-weekly or once a month from now until next 6-12 months. Otherwise our itchy mind and fingers will click Buy too often!


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Ha!

      That's me lol since 1987/1988.

      i have been watching the market without fail.

      Maybe that is why i am still in the market.

      But my "feels" of the market is getting better, only thing is to applying more anti-itchy-fingers cream lol.

      Especially this time, someone already compare this market to GFC's market lol.

      How bad is GFC's market?

      How much drop from it's peak?

      And for how long b4 rrecovery?

      Getting very lazy liu, excuse me.

      Delete
    2. Hi Rolf,

      Hey thanks for remembering what was said a few years ago. I still remember your sharing of your miracle too.

      Not sure if u know that I stepped down as department head and focus on teaching. It makes all the difference, IMHO

      I see this bear market as a zen practice. Can I look at the bleeding portfolio and think clearly, without fear or greed.

      Can I read the news and continue analysing companies without biases. I think it easier said than done, but I am quite happy with it.

      Money lost can be earn back. This opportunity is perhaps once in a lifetime, to understand myself better

      Delete
    3. I do not know you stepped down. I think it is a good decision to focus on teaching rather than the politics. This is wisdom! This bear market looks more scary than GFC! By scary, it does not mean bigger stock drop, because I believe govts will do all they can to pump it up with steroids, but it can mean brewing more troubles for future Greater collapse as worse as G. Depression.

      Yeah, the many intangibles miracles and many lows in my life change my mindset about life and about my view on finance. As you may have know I always give priority to my H2F3, Health, Family, Finance, Friends, Hobbies.

      Looking at the bleeding portfolio is super tough. And then you still have to average down is even more tough. It is not as easy as what they say, Greedy when others is fearful.

      The newbies in the market are going to be worst, because all the Gurus teaching them how to earn big bucks and retire early in the last 2-3 yrs and now they are seeing all their hard earn money wipe off! But that is a learning experience. Not always bad to fall down.


      Delete
    4. Hi Rolf, everyone has to go through this rite of passage if they want to be equity investor.

      Property investor downside is lower in Singapore, but u have the leverage risk.

      Got a lot of money, play property.

      Yes, peace at heart is priceless. I think I put too much focus on my work than my family at times.

      But when holiday come, I dun feel.like working... Hahaha

      Delete
    5. "Property investor downside is lower in Singapore, but u have the leverage risk.
      Got a lot of money, play property."

      Agreed! My ex big boss doesn't bother with equities; he has three investment properties in SG as his retirement fund and income. He won't be reading any headline news that his three property value are crashing or will be crashing soon. No hearing bad news now and then; mind may be calm unlike investing in stock market.

      Delete
    6. definitely! I also waiting for property to decline and will scoop one more.

      So if gold or stocks increase, sell and buy property.

      Delete
  4. Hi SI,

    Thank U for allowing me to use your blog's space without 1st asking your permission in response to people who blog here.

    Old- man got nothing better to do, excuse me and give me some allowance.

    ReplyDelete
  5. i think will be like 2008/2009 but recovery may take even more years to happen.

    And recovery will be V, some respectable Gurus think.

    i a nobody don't think so because.......

    ReplyDelete
  6. i mean watching the market daily without fail.

    Not only that reading anything that has a connection to finance, investment, etc daily.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sure uncle temp, feel free to comment.

    I believe is a V shape recovery though. Because... ...

    Why u cliff hanger hahahah ... Say la.

    I believe it is V shape because China and Korea has shown that it can be contained.

    The west didn't bother to contain it... Hence the big no.

    Now, there is almost a sync lockdown. And after peaking, it should coincides with the warm summer. I know people says summer might not kill the virus, but I optimistic. If not, I will not be accumulating shares.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In my humble opinion, anytime like this time is a good time to accumulate but in your own ways. Regardless of how the market going to pan out. U only must have 3 to 5 years foundation to see U through besides your steadfast conviction. It means conviction is never enough with a foundation.

      i have said i have been doing it myself since 1987/1988. So U don't believe me or have not really read what i had said earlier.

      If not now the most opportune time to accumulate then, when?
      Wait for the next Black Swan or the next New Virus Pandemic?
      Remember the clique saying, "Ëveryday is not a Sunday"
      LOL!

      Remember in your own ways, always as far as stock market is concerned.Though we all can shared our experiences.
      But in my opinion, U still should have many Black Swans to watch out for, if really believe in Path2, as U defined in one of your blogging.

      Shalom.

      Delete
    2. ...conviction is never enough without a solid foundation.
      Otherwise how can U sleep everynight for 3 to 5 year's nights.

      One would surely goes mad without surrender what U are doing.

      Delete
  8. It is not going to be V because,

    1) this time there should be a World Wide recession, even a depression if COVID 19 continues for about 9 months or more in Euro and US, Middle East, Russia, etc...

    2)Just imagine If China can contain COVID 19, and their economy recovers 70/80% within 6 months to 9 months, what about the rest of the World.

    And i think, Euro or US can not mobilise their people like China did. The rest of the world will be still trying to contain the Virus i supposed.

    3) Even if a vaccine is available within 9 months to a year, what is the time needed for the each country's Economy to re-start and synchronised within itself before ea country's economy can synchronised with each other again.

    Another words it is quite a slow process to start a Golbalised Economy again".

    China maybe the first to be ready economically, and it shall be, what about the rest of the World? i don't think they will be ready at the same time. So what's the use U are ready when others still in the toilets? Still have to wait lah.

    2 cents worth of idea - No zero cents (non-cents lah)

    LOL!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Uncle temp,

      What u say means sense too. Will be careful.

      Delete
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