Sunday 25 June 2023

What’s after $100,000? | Living more in the present and focusing on my social connections

With my recent hitting of $100,000 in liquid assets, which you can read here, I did mention that my next step is to obtain $100,000 value in my investments alone. It’s quite crazy thinking that I have managed after a few years to hit $100,000, it feels long yet short at the same time, long because in numerical form, $100,000 doesn’t feel much in today’s time especially with inflation and property prices in Singapore soaring high.

When you hear people talk about millions in property, rich individuals setting up family offices in Singapore to manage their wealth (although I won't reach there but), $100,000 feels small and like not enough? Short because I mean, I have been working for about 4 years plus full time and I have managed to hit it before age 30, so give me another few years to hit $200,000 and then half a million?

Focusing too much on the numbers might not be great

In my first few years of investing, I was so obsessed with checking my investments, looking and opening my apps multiple times in a day to check and of course, the values didn’t even fluctuate much and I was not even planning to sell or buy anything. After some time, I realise that there really is nothing much I can do by checking the prices every few minutes and so I loosen up.

Now, I usually take a look when my automated buys are done, to key them into the spreadsheet and at the end of the months to keep tabs. The fluctuations nowadays are also more exciting than when I first started, partly because of the stocks I hold (Us versus SG stocks when I first started) and because the value has increased, 1% of $80,000 is different from 1% of $5000.

Living my life towards the next $100,000

I have decided to live my life more and so, making changes and putting myself out there. Financial goals are kinda like the main important thing in my life because it can give me freedom in my later years but I realised I don’t want to miss out on other things as well.

Travelling more is one thing and also expanding my social circle, I am currently working in a company that is flexible and allows me to WFH most of the time which is great but I kinda don’t know my colleagues on a deeper level even those based in Singapore. So besides working connections, I think socially, I wanna work on expanding and knowing more people.

It takes some effort to keep connections with friends and especially so after some time, I do have to admit that I don’t always take the initiative to connect but hope to do so more in the future. I think I am in a good financial position so far, single, no debts and with a not bad job that allows me to save. So on this trajectory, I think I should be able to build up my portfolio if nothing bad happens along the way (job loss or health scares or sudden commitments).

Been a good ride for 1H 2023

The portfolio has been performing well for 2023 so far especially in Q2 and I would guess so for most of the people, 2H 2023 is still unknown and might have a lot more downside, considering at least 2 more interest rate hike by the FED and the FED being very much persistent that this will not be the end as they will want to observe inflation numbers before putting out any further action/interest rate hikes. Also, the macro environment and country’s relations are also top of the mind issues for 2H 2023.

We do see some recovery overall in the markets but people are starting to be wary as the FED seems insistent on pushing inflation down back to 2% and we see UK facing inflation numbers that are still high hence they are also raising rates to combat inflation.

I have been investing in REITs and it has been volatile, prices are very sensitive to news especially on rate hikes and pauses, I am still continuing as I don’t think high interest rates will remain forever, good to buy in when the prices are depressed although diversification matters meaning not all into REITs. 1H 2023 is almost over and it has been a great ride, from the downs in Q1 2023 to the AI boom in Q2, looking forward to the the rest of 2023. How are you positioning your portfolio? And what is your outlook for 2H 2023?

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  1. Congratulation, this is a great achievement.

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  2. Hi there,

    Congratulations once again. Achieving your first $100K in liquid asset at such a young age is no small matter. So yes, do enjoy the pride and happy feeling. You have earned it!

    Setting targets is a very good way is get yourself something to work towards. After setting the targets, the next thing is to have actionable plans that can be executed to achieve those targets.

    Dont forget to build up your CPF savings too. You will greatly appreciate it when you are near to retirement. Start with the following targets for CPF :

    1. To hit FRS in your SA (the FRS for 2023 is $198,800)
    2. To hit the BHS in your MA (2023 BHS is $68,500)

    These two savings accounts give 4.01% annually compounded. So aim to hit the max as soon as possible to let the magic of compounding interest do its work. They are safe and not subjected to market volatility.

    And as you rightly pointed out, a 1% gain or loss of $80,000 is very different from a 1% gain or loss of $5,000. So as you can imagine if your investment capital reach $1M or more, the gain or loss from market volatility is going to be much more impactful and painful. To keep a calm mind during market volatility where the market can go up and down by 30% or more, with a $1M portfolio, you would be looking at +/- $300,000 loss or gain, you would want to have a big buffer of savings elsewhere. That "elsewhere" would be the CPF savings. With a big safety buffer of savings in the CPF, it will help keep you calm and make rational decisions including buying stocks during market crisis when everyone else is panicking and selling!

    You can follow this technique of wealth building called the "kueh lapis" way. Basically it is about building up your wealth layer by layer starting with a strong and safe base layer.... the CPF. Then you stack on top of it, the other layers of investment such as bonds, stocks, property, cryptos (should be at the very top because it is very risky) etc..

    All the best!

    1. Love your advice, optimising is important too to make sure every cent is working! Will definitely stack them up!

  3. Congrats! Now you are only S$900,000 away from becoming a millionaire.

    1. Should your Tesla stocks hold up its values, of course. With Twitter in such a big Threads trouble, I don't know what Elon Must might do to his Tesla stocks. Selling shiok, I guess?