Fed just miss the best chance for a rate hike

As expected, Fed decided to stay put. A wrong decision as Donald trump will win the presidential election in Nov 2016 and thus put to rest any hopes of raising rates this year. As for next year, if Donald trump get his wishlist of firing Yellen, expect more turmoil. Fasten your seatbelts, we are in for a rough ride.

September 22, 2016 at 4:02 pm Leave a comment

An overdue self-criticism

It’s been a long while since i wrote about my investment blunders. Here’s one, i sold all mine HTL international shares in 2013 after holding it for about 5 to 6 years. At that time, prospects for HTL was poor and leather hide price was sky-high. In other words, i was impatient and had better ideas for the money(should have stick to my blog title marathoner).

Little did i know that the catalyst for this net-net stock came in 2015 when a China buyer wanted to takeover the company at a price that was higher than even the highest price i paid for the stock. Lesson learnt: As long as the stock balance sheet is fundamentally strong and undervalued, don’t sell the stock since a catalyst could arrive although when it will arrive is unpredictable.

It’s no use crying over split milk, time to unearth another HTL which rose from the ashes.

July 30, 2016 at 4:26 pm Leave a comment

Watch out! Market crash ahead

As US stock markets and treasuries bond markets reached record levels, watch out. Any single event will trigger a sharp sell off.

July 13, 2016 at 3:04 pm Leave a comment

China manufacturer for MTR secretly recalls 35 SMRT subway trains after cracks found

From Factwire:


“A source from the mainland railway industry told FactWire that Singapore’s subway operator SMRT Trains Ltd (SMRT) was secretly shipping defective trains back to mainland China for replacement and repair by manufacturer CSR Sifang Locomotive & Rolling Stock Company Ltd (CSR Sifang).

However, multiple sources from mainland China and Singapore have confirmed to FactWire that problems have been found with C151A trains since they began service in 2011. Sources said the trains are of poor quality and that the glass next to passenger seats has repeatedly shattered due to shoddy workmanship. In 2011, one of the trains’ Chinese-made uninterruptible power supply batteries exploded during repair. While there were no injuries, Kawasaki Heavy Industries-CSR Sifang replaced all of the batteries made in China with ones made in Germany.
In December 2011, serious malfunctions occurred on the SMRT’s North South Line, which the SMRT suspected were caused by C151A trains. A subcontractor responsible for supplying train components to CSR Sifang admitted to FactWire that after the malfunctions, SMRT significantly reduced the frequency of C151A trains and asked to delay payment for extra trains of the same series, greatly impacting the subcontractor’s cash flow.

The mainland railway industry source stated that quality issues with the Chinese-made C151A trains began to worsen in 2013. They said cracks were found in structural components, including the sub-floor – a compartment under the passenger floor holding the equipment box and electrical wires – and bolster function parts connecting the car body to the bogie, the latter having the most serious problems.”

FactWire contacted several retired Singaporean subway staff. One of them said: “I’ve never encountered a situation like this in all my decades of working in railway construction. Replacing the whole frame [of the train] – you can tell how serious [the problem] is.”
Another former SMRT worker admitted that the C151A train model had quality issues in its propulsion system, engine system, and other components. “It’s not a complete failure you know, it’s [that] the [train’s] life is so much shorter, maybe about half [of the normal lifespan]. [For instance], if normal trains can [run for] one million km, but this one can only do 500,000km.”
He said that Kawasaki Heavy Industries-CSR Sifang had been providing “after sale service” for the trains and sending staff to Singapore to “troubleshoot”. “[Chinese-made trains] are very cheap. How can you have [something] that is very good and pay a very cheap price? So this is [the] trade-off.”

July 5, 2016 at 2:31 pm 1 comment

Why Eu yan sang declaring rare 2.5cents interim dividend?

Eu yan sang just announced its result. Despite still having a weak balance sheet with November 2016 notes to be redeemed, it has instead chosen to declare a rare interim dividend of 2.5 cents. I used to own Eu yan sang shares, dividend is always declared after 4th quarter results but this year it is declared after 3rd quarter results. Anyway, it has announced a halt to trading of its shares after SGX query on the sudden rise in share price. Businesstimes has postulated that EU yan sang is preparing for a privatisation move.

If so, then it makes sense why a rare dividend is declared now, so that the majority shareholders can have more money to privatise the company.

May 15, 2016 at 10:15 pm Leave a comment

Neratel sale of payment solution business, is it good?

Disclosure:I am vested in Neratel, so opinion will be biased.

I attended Neratel AGM yesterday, management seems quite confident of expanding the payment solution business(in fact, new subsidiaries were set up last year to expand this business segment), so i was surprised that today neratel announced that a third party has approached it to buy the payment solution business, though no agreement has been reached yet.

If payment solution business is sold, Neratel will lose recurring revenue from lease of POS system. Although the sale of this business will reduce capex, but Neratel turnover will become more unpredictable. Of course, every business is for sale at a good price. Let’s wait for further developments.

April 29, 2016 at 3:06 pm Leave a comment

A year to forget for Minister Khaw

Another major disruption for SMRT. Minister Khaw who recently celebrated 100 days of no major incident for rail travel surely is not pleased now.

Let’s see his incomplete bazi
壬辰    壬子    戊子
大运:癸丑  甲寅  乙卯  丙辰  丁巳  戊午  己未  庚申   
    11岁  21岁  31岁  41岁  51岁  61岁  71岁  81岁  
始于:1962  1972  1982  1992  2002  2012  2022  2032  

Looks like his 忌神 is water. This year forms a 三合水局.

April 25, 2016 at 10:37 pm Leave a comment

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