Friday, 6 January 2017

Good Bye 2016, Hello 2017!

This is the first week of 2017. Happy New Year everyone! 

2016 ended remarkably well for me and my family as far as intangible non-material aspects of life is concern. My family is healthier both physically and spiritually. Relationships in my house improved tremendously too. Above all, we were blessed with a godsend baby boy due in few months time. Financially, while income and investment returns fall, overall financial status and net cash inflow (income minus expenses) for the year are very healthy. 

The year also ended well with a close to three weeks break from work for me and my wife clearing year end leave. This resulted in a family stay-cation at Sentosa and several gatherings with friends and siblings knitting closer relationships.  

2016 at a Glance

Before we start recapping year 2016 notable events for the World and Singapore, I wanted to clarify I am not a pessimist. As far as I could, I tried my best to uncover more positive events but sadly there are few. I am not going to list down too many events, but in general 2016 is really not a fantastic year for the World and Singapore.

World News

•    Donald Trump victory

•    Brexit and second ever female UK PM

•    Oil price stayed below $50/b and below $30/b at one stage

•    Increasing scandals and controversies of world top leaders – Trump, Clinton, Presidents of S.Korea, Brazil, C.Lagarde, 1MDB and the lists goes long…

•    Terrorists attacks intensified globally - US, Brussels, Turkey, Berlin, Parkistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Thailand, attacks etc.

•    Many earthquakes – Ecuador, Japan, Taiwan, PNG, New Zealand etc

•    Zika virus

•    Hanjin bankruptcy

•    Fed did not hike rate in 2016. BOJ, ECB & PBOC continued loose monetary policies

•    Portugal won Euro 2016 and Liverpool FC relatively good run under Jurgen Klopp 


•    Singapore’s first year without LKY

•    SR Nathan died

•    Singapore first Olympic gold from Joseph Schooling in Rio

•    TPP deal likely to be called off

•    Finance minister Heng Swee Keat collapsed during cabinet meeting and PM Lee trembles during NDP speech

•    Beleaguered O&G sector - Swiber and Swissco’s JM

•    California fitness closed in Singapore

•    Pokemon Saga

•    STI relatively unchanged ending at 2880.76 in 2016 compared to 2882.73 in 2015 year end closing. 

Rolf Suey's H2F3

Using H2F3 and comparing to what I targeted in 2015 (refer here),

Very good health in 2016 compared to 2015. Medications are no longer necessary for my gastric and chronic-sinus sicknesses, which tormented me for years. My BMI was maintained in very healthy range of 24. Quitted smoking completely including those during social events. Wife encountered a glitch in health during pregnancy but it was completely healed without medications or operations. Kids are all healthy too! 

Existing hobby in 2016 such as Gym, Jogging, Swimming, Reading and Blogging still stay the same. Discover a newfound purpose or hobby if you will like to call it. This is definitely more important in life. Hence I will backslide on Blogging going forward.

Relationships – Family and Friends 
Last year I ended the similar post yearning to build strong and quality relationships with people around me in 2016. 

I must say I was blessed to be on target. 

I experienced hugely improved relationships with families, friends and colleagues. There are more gentleness and meekness in my life compared to the past especially towards the end of the year. I learn also to respect opinions more than before. The result – more peace and joy, expressed through love.

Last year I mentioned my career objective for 2016 is just to keep my current job and to continue to have sustainable income.

I did it!

Nonetheless, it was a painful year, as I witness not only departure of many friends in the industry, but also almost all colleagues in my division in Singapore. I am the last man standing in my division. For how long, I do not know!

TOTAL INCOME from decrease 12% in 2016 yoy. This is due to lesser bonus in salary as well as lesser income stream from writing free-lance O&G articles, and no baby bonus which was received in 2015. 

TOTAL EXPENSES grew however by 7% because of sale of car and fully paid car purchase, house renovations and income tax paid which was waived in 2015 because of newborn tax rebate. However because car is fully paid almost until 3Q2017 and there will be rebate of OMV, the savings will be realized in 2017. This means that 2016 expenses could have been lower. 

NET CASH FLOW decreases significantly by 33% due to lower income and higher expenses. 

MY STOCK PORTFOLIO fell, because of my
exposure primarily in Swissco which had enter into JM. Incurred realized losses after dividends of 2-3% of entire portfolio. Including unrealized losses, TOTAL losses of portfolio accounted for 6% of entire portfolio! 

I had been reducing my exposure in stocks gradually throughout 2015 & 2016 and now my stock portfolio is only a mere 7-8% of my entire portfolio. Out of it, a large portion is invested as stocks in my SRS account. 

In view of the unstable environment, I feel more comfortable to hold 50-55% cash, 8-10% bonds, 33% precious metals in my overall portfolio. 

Dividend income dropped >50% due to the hoarding of cash and precious metals. 

NET ASSET VALUE rises 11% due to income consistently exceed expenses and also because debts are pared down as I continue to pay down my mortgage loan without taking any other loan. 

Peek into 2017

My objective in 2017 as follows.

Good health, both spiritually and physically. Definitely strive to have continuously improved relationships with people around me with more love, peace and joy.

Lead a frugal lifestyle striving to have no lacking in life and no debt (except for housing).

Look forward to our newborn!

Be a better person who can be blessings to others.

Continue to build up the wisdom and knowledge in life. And to be at the right place at the right time and to do the right things at the right time also. To learn about the past so as to see into the future and always be orderly and plan ahead. 

That said, I will not worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

I wish everyone the Best of Health, Relationships & Wealth in 2017