Sunday, January 04, 2009

First Post Of 2009!

Here we go! Welcome to the new year everyone! Hopefully it'll be as good if not better for all who read this post!

Let's start off with Resolutions 2009! Somehow I came up with five three days ago but until now I can't remember what's the last one, so I've just replaced the fifth resolution haha. If I can't remember it then it might not be as important as I thought, no?

1) Eat healthier
More fruits, eat more breakfasts,and less fast food. Thats after watching the Mock-umentary, Super Size Me (I recommend that everyone should watch the show at least once). Probably the aim is to have fast food less than 4 times a week.

2) Improve level of exercise
I achieved my aim last year but this year we gotta take things up a notch. Exercise at least 3 times a week. The weekly corporate games are still there and the weekend soccer's still there, so that leaves time for one gym workout a week. 'Least I gotta do is make use of the gym more than just for after-work baths.

3) Spend more time with family
A married man is a family man. Less time partying outside and more time making home a warmer place than it currently is. Also more time with parents, siblings and in-laws. This calls for the entertainment room to become a reality!

4) Make more money from investments
Since the job now pays me a fixed salary, I can't expect to grow this aspect much. The other way to increase income is via investments. Hopefully 2009 will ring in good returns! Target to increase investment return by 100% by year end.

5) Less alcohol consumption
Beer is an acquired taste. And I have acquired a favourable taste for beer. Time to cut that down along with the hard liquor. Time to cut down the hardcore parties as well. Will try to party less than once a week = only one day a week of hard liquor consumption.

My economic analysis for 2009

Looking forward, given the current economic situation and the brewing war in the Middle East, I figure things will still be bad for a while. There's probably gonna be another leg down for the stock markets before any signs of recovery. Most Q1 reporting will be quite dismal from the fallout of the credit crunch (even locally) so I think we're headed for another major selldown quite soon (in the next couple of weeks?).

Probably wanna stay away from property till after mid '09. Alot of talk that property prices will crash in 2009 given the huge supply and the pulling out of alot of hot money. Corporate cutbacks also mean firesales and less expats coming over to look for a place to rent. Alot of property companies also overbidded beyond their means to secure alot of enbloc sites, expect consolidation in this industry when they run out of money to develop these sites. Office rental to come down as well given the glut of office space. There's so much new space being built in Raffles Place but all I read about are companies pulling out or cutting down on staff here.

Still maintain that cash is king for now, but by Q2-Q3 can consider getting slowly back into the stock market. Look for companies with strong cashflow and as little debt. Think of what can survive over the next few years and go defensive (SingPost, ST Eng anyone?).

Asian currencies should get stronger. An escalation of war may power the USD, but it is still fundamentally weak. EUR which looked good when the USD was getting beaten up looks overvalued given its exposure to Eastern European drag. Expect alot of volatility. GBP may be abit oversold for now at 1.45. AUD and NZD looks to have limited downside, can consider getting some exposure given that they yield the highest interest rates of the Majors for now (AUD ~ 2+%, NZD ~ 3+%). Fixed deposits or a nice resort in Milford Sound isn't very expensive anymore.

Just watched Bedtime Stories staring Adam Sandler. Didn't really like it. Not much in the news except for the turmoil in the Middle East and Thailand. Dunno how to continue business in Thailand if things are looking so bad. And the worst is probably not over.

Man U has its own cafe in Singapore down at Boat Quay! Will definitely go visit soon.

Nothing much has happened over Christmas and the new year. Spent it quietly with the wifey and the family.

Looking forward to buying a new TV and the XBox asap for the entertainment room!

Just bought a giant 2,000-piece jigsaw puzzle and the wifey's spending alot of time on it! Gotta contribute abit though all I get to do are the boring parts like the plants and the brick wall :(

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