Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Pains & Fun Of Stockmarket

Introduction


Pain or Pleasure is determined at the moment in decision-making.

When small countries collapsed, few blink an eyelid. Zimbabwe collapsed financially and Vietnam revalued her Dong. Stockmarket sharp correction is irrelevant if it did not happen in unison. Nobody seems to get hurt; at least not the majority!

Asia had her Financial Crisis in 1997/98 and the Financial Crisis 2007-2010 burned through US to Europe. While the former is a result of ignorance and blind expansion, the latter is the result of greed; Predatory lending, reckless valuation and leveraging, inaccurate credit ratings or selective ratings, off-balance sheet financing, Regulatory avoidance, you name it, you have it; greed under the cover of 'financial products innovation'.

If DEBTs can be used as collaterals to borrow more, if Insurance Company callously INSUREs 'vested interest' instruments larger than itself and Credit Rating agencies rate institutions who support their livelihoods, who rates them? Capitalism at its extreme breeds greed and selfishness.

Looking Back ...


Wall Street has its fair share of superlatives in gainers and losers:

Top Gainer                                           Top Losers

        %    Date                                        %     Date

1. 15.3    15 Mar 1933                          -22.6   19 Oct 1987
2. 14.9    06 Oct 1931                           -12.8   28 Oct 1929
3. 12.3    30 Oct 1929                           -11.7   29 Oct 1929
4. 11.4    21 Sep 1932                            -9.9     6 Nov 1929
5. 11.1    13 Oct 2008                            -9.9    30 Aug 2010
10. 9.5    31 Aug 2010                           -7.9    15 Oct 2008

US, being the world's largest economy, influence other nations and they dance to her tune.


Now ...


When the US was overwhelmed with toxic financial instruments, off balance sheet financing and creative accounting, tsunamic bankruptcies of established, old-name institutions threatened to send US into a financial ice-age. The US and the world, China in particular, went into overdrive with massive expansion of credit, fiscal, monetary and physical policies. That save the day; or did it?

Well, if you pour enough blue ink into the ocean the color of the water will turn blue!

The world has starved the ghost of recession from appearing momentarily. However, it won't be long before we hit the skids again. The Political will to spend and expand is constrained by competing needs and every country, big and small, is faced with the challenges of creating employment, feeding the population and maintaining social-commercial-political balance.

Protectionism has reared its head as have screams to cut spending (deficits), cut costs (buyers market) and raise taxes; its lowballing.

Future ...


The world-over is filled with unemployment, under-employment and mismatched and displaced workers; tertiary, urban, sub-urban and others. Income gap have widened and rising costs have made living edgy.

As more are forced to save, or to save in anticipation of tough times; even to minimize spending whilst expecting the costs of living to ease (due to deflation), the result is alot gloomier.

Coupled with above, nations are forced to look inward and care for their wards, by extension their political survival. Many a political brinksmanship is not about nationalism but about political survival.

Conclusion ...


The stockmarkets is/are still benefiting from the expansionary programs instituted during the crisis. Growth, including abnormally high growth, is the norm but will NOT lasts. Technically, most indices potentially can challenge its/the previous high but NO economy can continue expanding with unemployment and underemployment in its background. Lightening up seems an ideal choice (on the upswing).

Reality is always cruel; Excessiveness will stop sooner rather than later including fanciful Dubai's palm-shaped man-made islands and Ordos city in Inner Mongolia.

Cyclically, quarterly low is expected in October. For those who profited/benefited from this (October) downswing/upswing, good luck. Watch out for the next change of events towards/during the Total Lunar Eclipse on 21 Dec 2010.


Forward ...


Nobody goes broke by taking profits. When you make it, help the poor; spare some for the less fortunate.




Note: This Is NOT An Investment Advice; read to agree or disagree - no prize for correct guesses!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Good Times & Bad Times

When Darkness Falls...

Prussian military historian Friedrich von Bernhardi wrote glowingly of "the inevitableness, the idealism, and the blessing of war" whereas Dwight D Eisenhower penned "I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its futility, its stupidity"

"Evils can never pass away, for there must always remain something which is antagonistic to good" Plato

The samurais and bushidoes sworn on total loyalty and will die for their beliefs, however, brutal and foolish.

If Man lives to rebel against, and does not respect, reasons, they are blind followers of Faith.

If the Japanese did not surrender after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, does it mean Japan will be bombed and wiped out of the surface of Earth? Probably not. There were many more casualties in their assaults on Asia  as a whole than the numbers killed by the two bombings.
It was plainly cool, calm reasons; to avoid further bloodshed and the awakening from foolish belief of being engaged in a supposely God-like mission that stopped the war.

Do not follow Faith blindly
Neither do you accept Fate with blind obedience

Everyone will want to have advantage over you; better still, if you are completely submissive

The World will never be equal and fairness is relative; so is suffering

When your chips are down, lie low, be patient and live within your means
Nothing is permanent
Someday, somehow, the good days will return

Like Yin & Yang, Day & Night
Fortunes come and go

With reason and fortitude, life is a fairy-tale in itself
Suffering? What suffering? If you don't taste bitterness, how do you know what sweetness tastes like

Daylight is not far...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Laughter

Laugh Away Your Worries...

Whether you live or die, it is about the last breathe
- as long as you are alive, you can choose to be happy and spritely or dead as a dodo

If you are deep in depression, you immobilize yourself
- worse than Bangkok's traffic jam, time moves and day turns into night; you are still in living Hell 

If you worry yourself dead, nobody is able to extract you from the pit
- worrying never solve problems; seek solutions, not indulge in worrying

When the boss screams and you whine, both will lead to deeper discord
- discord strain the mind and relationship and is 'bull in a china shop' 

The body decays and releases toxins as you worry and built stress within
- nuclear fussion and cancer is less destructive than stress; toxins within is a silent killer

Instead of worrying, free the mind and you free your soul
Laughs away your problems and critics
Bend like the grass in a storm than to be the fallen old oak tree as dead man tell no tales

Fight or flight; better be a living coward than a dead hero
Winnings do not necessarily go to the fittest, tallest, brightest person...it goes to the person who lasts
Laughter costs nothing and gives vibrancy and lightness of being

If you complain that life is difficult and tough, why make it worse? Be the happy, charming and bright spark that everybody crave to be with
Or be in self-denial and live a hundred years in misery

Laughter - the best medicine that the Body & Soul can have without any side-effects

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Grouses

What Is An Incentive And What Is It A Right...

Cars are expensive and are depreciating assets yet there are more families owning two cars or more despite rising COE, ERP, road tax, import tax
Petrol prices go up and hardly ease
Car owners swallow them all with ease only to complain about the lack of car park lots
Such complains are music to the ears of car park operators who with a stroke of pen raise carpark charges 

Housing Development Board (HDB) used to built in anticipation of demand and to make living affordable, if not cheaper 
With a shift in demand patterns, Asian Financial & 2007/08 Financial crisis, HDB shy away from basic homes provisions to 'design & built' and 'built to order'
Coupled with added demand from foreigners and new citizens-to-be, prices spiral upwards
You want better homes, latest designs, quicker completion; there is a price to pay

Instant gratification is almost always expensive

We like to have taxis when we raise our hands
We like the train to breeze by and send us to our destination swiftly
We want the buses to be comfy, speedy and timely
You can have all if, and when, the price is right

It looks like every where/countries you go, there are lesser jobs/opportunities available
Job enlargement and job enrichment have 'eaten up' jobs
Recession and deflation have extinguished many jobs/positions
Like In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF), the creme positions are wrestled and dominated by the chosen ones
Like million of sperms swimming toward One egg; the winner is the survivor

Why is life getting tougher and rougher?
It has always been the same

Early man fights the animals for space and food
Modern man fights each other for the same reason

Life, and living, has always been the same

Except with globalization, internet & communication, frequent and cheaper flights
The World seems smaller, space dwindle, emotions become rowdier or less containable

Complaints by all means if you can
But, differentiate between Incentives and Rights
Rights is a given
Incentives depend on the givers

I have no grouses; I enjoy the incentives and keep my rights

Friday, September 3, 2010

September 昨天,今天,明天

Two third gone and one third towards NewYear...


Time and tides wait for no man
Everyone has a great plan with each and every incoming new year
But few crystalize it when the year is out

It is not for lack of effort or interest but it certainly lacks follow through
Success includes the ability to ride the dynamism of environmental changes and the ability to adapt and change according to the new terrain
Do not be disheartened...'cos success is almost always within reach

Sixty percent is gone with 40% to go yet you still have a 100% chance of succeeding base on the 80/20 rule - 20% of mass can carry 80% of mess
Pull up your socks, run the final lap with zeal, oomph and style...success is within your reach
Its fine to slack but its time to wake up to reality

September - when Autumn seeps in and Winter is near the doorstep
I enjoy the Autumn breeze, reminize and retrospectively look at my footsteps behind me
I see none...

I remembered GOD walked with me throughout... Four footsteps, His & mine,  at a time but none to be found when I looked back
'Cos the sands of time have smoothern and bury all
Every step I take is new and everyday is a new beginning

Seize the opportunity and blessings are abundance 
Life is not a blame game but a game where every players have a choice
Take the winnings or stay on whining

I was lost for 60% of the year but the 40% is for me to think, tweak, adapt and SUCCEED

I never think I am smart but I try hard
I never dwell in senseless fights, baseless rumours and clueless leads
I give myself the very chance that NO one will; the chance to turn Winner - from trash to cash, from whining to winning, from nothing to something  

Tomorrow will come but was never promised
Between your promise and cash, I take cash

I live simply and smartly; aboveall, I must be LUCKY

With luck, my life is more peaceful, fulfilling and satisfying
And my heart is lighter...smile and the World smiles with you

Quote

“To understand that hardship is a matter of fate and success is a matter of the times; and to able to face enormous difficulties without fear or terror is to have the courage of a sage.”



知穷之有命,知通之有时,临大难而不惧者,圣人之勇也。