Sunday 26 April 2020

Circuit Breaker extended to 1 June 2020

The circuit breaker (CB) was extended on 21 April 2020 till 1 June 2020 as the number of cases that we get each day are still pretty high. With that also came more measures to ensure that the amount of people out and about is reduced.

Bubble tea and standalone stores that predominantly sells certain items are to be closed to reduce the amount of traffic everyday.

I do understand the strict measures and extended CB because the Government really wants the numbers to be reduced so that people can get back to work and our economy can start again as certain industries are really hit hard by the CB.

With the Government's job support scheme (JSS), jobs are still secured in a way as there is relief provided to the companies where the Government will co-fund the first $4,600 of gross monthly wages paid to each local employee for 9 months. There are three levels of support for employers in different sectors as mentioned here.

Even if we start work on 1 June 2020, I believe social distancing will still be in place to ensure that physical contact can be reduced. For companies that have large amount of employees, alternate teams or worksite might be in place.

Life will not be like it was before the virus until after a period of time. During this period, everyone has had to be very agile as announcement and changes were made very frequently and even more so for foreign workers with work passes as MOM releases a lot of different advisories for them to follow.

Yesterday, there was the singalong to 'Home' where everyone would sing in support for our frontline and migrant workers. I have to say that I was touched when I heard people singing along and flashing their flashlight as it seems that everyone was in unison and wanted to really get this whole virus thing out.

At times like these, even the slightest encouragement can mean so much, just a nice gestures to someone can definitely brighten their day. We are now allowed to hang the Singapore flag as support and I do think it is a good initiative. My friends and I havent really video call each other as we are all kinda passive when it comes to initiating but I took the courage to video call them today and they really liked it. HAHA, I think I might video call them more often.

Almost half the year would have passed when 1 June 2020 comes, time flies and 2020 has really been crazy so far. Take care and enjoy the time at home.  

Sunday 19 April 2020

How did I get started in investing and POSB Invest Saver Review

POSB Invest Saver was what I started my investment journey because it was that easy to get started on it.

Most people in Singapore will have a DBS or POSB account and that is just what you need to get started.

It was really easy getting started with POSB Invest saver, you just had go online and under the Invest tab, go to more investment and click onto 'Set up Exchange Traded Funds Regular Savings Plan (RSP)'.

When I first got into it, I knew that the STI ETF is made of the 30 largest and most liquid companies in Singapore. It is a really easy starting point and it links to your POSB account so dividends are directly paid into your account semi-annually.

When I started this RSP, I was just started and really read up more and found out about SPDR STI ETF. I knew that the one that Invest Saver was Nikko AM STI ETF. So I went to find out more about the difference.

Seedly has released a comparison between both which is really neat and simple. 

The main thing was that in 2018, the expense ratio was 0.33% for Nikko AM STI ETF and that SPDR STI ETF has an expense ratio of 0.3%. I was looking to switch to SPDR STI ETF as I already had it automated so I still stayed with POSB Invest Saver for sometime as I was investing only about $100 per month.

Read more: Switching from POSB Invest Saver to FSMone ETF RSP

Over time, I wanted to increase my investment size and also go more into other markets besides Singapore so I decided to move onto FSMone.

However, if you are just wanting to get started somewhere and want something automated and simple, getting started with POSB Invest Saver is really not bad, in that it can be easily set up and it is just that first step you need before you can advance to many other things.

POSB Invest Saver can also be linked to your DBS Multiplier account and fulfills the invest category which can really help push up your interest rate. 

Do remember that it is listed on the Singapore exchange and you can lose money from it as it carries risks, it is always advisable to invest with money that you do not need in the short term.

Wednesday 15 April 2020

Having Anxiety and How Do I Cope With It

Yes, I do have anxiety about various things in my life and especially if I feel stressed during that period, my mood can be significantly affected by it.

I think a lot about stuff and I worry lots, it's just like that and I can't really help it. When I first started work, I was okay but as the workload increased, I did find myself losing appetite and feeling sluggish. I even felt like vomiting every time I went to office to work.

I know some people tell me not to think so much about it or like to ignore it. I did try and it was ok for a period but as I kept thinking about my work, it got worse. I didn't have the vomiting sensations or loss of appetite on weekends so I knew they were somehow related to work.

During this period of working from home, I do find myself better because I am not physically in office and do not have to deal with many other stressors unlike when I am in the office. To be honest, I am actually working better from home.

I am someone who cares a lot about what other thinks of me and I think the impression that others get of me can affect my thinking and mood.

I wouldn't say that I am in a bad shape but recently it got pretty bad and I knew it was affecting my daily life.

With this nice break from working in the office physically, I do feel a lot better and hopefully when I get back to office, everything can also be good and I will be fine.

I do worry about many things and Covid-19 was also on my mind when it came up but I have learned to managed it. I think an important thing to managing your anxiety is to let yourself know that the stressor is some thing that you can control or can't and from there you can identify it and use various coping mechanism to handle it.

I have a daily routine that I try to keep to and I hope it helps in the long term. Being able to write it all down here and sharing it also helps me in a way that I can express it because it's really difficult to share it openly with people around you. So thank you to everyone who is here reading this :)

Sunday 12 April 2020

Working from home and updates on circuit breaker

First weekend of the circuit breaker! News all week was all about covid-19 as measures like the fine of $300 after your first warning if you are still seen loitering around and on your third, you will be charged in court. *Changes to it now as more people are ignoring it, first timers get fine $300 straightaway and subsequently, to be charged in court or pay more.

Stadiums have also closed due to the large amount of people going there to exercise. My aunt went to a park to exercise one evening and she mentioned that the amount of people there was really quite large.

A new record high of 287 was recorded on Thursday, 9 April 2020. A huge area that we did not pay attention to were the dormitories of our foreign workers. This has caused a huge increase in number as the dormitories are really places that the virus can spread rapidly considering the proximity and number of people staying there.


Work has definitely lessen in terms of workload. As a few projects within the company has been put on hold for re-prioritization, I do find that I am not having as many meetings and workload has decreased.

I feel a little worried that I am not as busy as previously but I do know that it is normal during this period of time. 


Staying at home definitely isn't a huge problem for me as usually, I love staying at home and lazing around. HAHA, I am taking some simple course online to keep myself occupied.

Most of the time, my mum cooks for our meals especially during the weekdays, we pack back food during the weekends for my mum to take a break from cooking as she mentioned that cooking everyday is pretty taxing for her.

My brother and I do some simple sweeping and mopping to help my mum with the workload at home. Though some times she complained that we are not doing a good job as per her standard.

Videos calls with my friend has been more frequent and I think it is a good alternative to texting. Being able to see each other and hear makes a huge difference.

Sunday 5 April 2020

Losing your job during this period

I came across this article by Mr and Mrs Budget recently about what is important right now is job preservation.

And I couldn't agree more to this because judging from the current situation, losing your job right now would mean it will be tough finding another.

Of course, in the article, there were some tips given that can help you keep your job but there are certain industries where headcount had to be cut no matter what due to the industry being hit.

For my cousin, he works in the hospitality line and they have been hit really hard! He now takes a 80% pay cut and works only 1 day per week. As a sideline, he applied to be a temperature screener to earn some extra cash on other days.

He has a housing loan and both his parents are not working at the moment so if this continues long term, he might find it tough.

My uncle, who owns a small cafe, mentioned that so far he has received 10% rental rebate from his landlord, he is waiting for the Monday's budget to see if he will be getting any extra relief. He will have to turn to takeout style to accommodate the circuit breaker measures introduced on 3 April 2020. 

As a contract staff myself, I know that our jobs are at a higher risk of being gone because at the end of the contract period, if the situation is still bad, they can choose not to renew. My contract will end year end and to be honest I do think that if this situation continues till year end which is very likely  as other countries are still struggling and it will take awhile before people really start going out like we used to do every weekend, my contract will not be renewed and I will lose my job too. 

At work, there are a number of us on contract and we do worry if we can keep our jobs, my boss hasn't mentioned about cutting headcount and I guess what we can do now is to work as per normal from home.

With the circuit breaker measures introduced by the Singapore government on Friday, schools will be closed from Wed, 9 April 2020 onwards and everyone is to work from home unless they are under the essential services from Tues, 8 April 2020 onwards till 4 May 2020.

This period will be crucial as contact tracing for the unlinked cases will be done and more cases will likely surface. We saw more panic buying also on Friday way before the announcements were made.

My mum was pretty confused with what was going to be closed and she asked me," Will Uniqlo also be closed?" I told her, " Yes" not that she wants to go shopping but she was shocked. I guess she didn't expect shops to really close, we will also be packing back much more as no dine-in will be allowed in food establishments.

Ending this article with something by PM Lee on Friday, "But if any country can see this through, it is Singapore. We have the resources. We have the determination. We are united. By helping one another through this, we will prevail, and emerge stronger."

Thursday 2 April 2020

More changes for DBS Multiplier on 1 May 2020

There have been many revisions to interest rates by the banks recently. For me, I opened the DBS multiplier account when it first came out and most recently the Standard Chartered Jumpstart Account. I also have another POSB account and a UOB One account.

The accounts which I put most of my money into are mainly DBS Multiplier and Jumpstart. After changes in Feb 2020, another round of changes has arrived for Multiplier come 1 May 2020.

Read more: DBS Multiplier changes and what might be my next action

Everyone can really easily qualify for DBS Multiplier's criteria and I guess that is why they had to combine the categories in Feb and now with lower interest. As per below, effective 1 May 2020 the interest rates would have some adjustments with total eligible transactions of $2500 to $5000 having the biggest cut of 0.25%.

For me, I still think it is a good account that pays above average interest rates. So, I will still keep a portion of my money there. Also because, I am under 29 years old, there is no fall-below fee required which is really great. So not much changes on my end and also because my savings are not so robust that the changes will have a significant effect.