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Showing posts from 2014

Why John Oliver Is A Must Watch Show ...

The comedic talents emanating from the cavernous  cave of illicit intellectual masturbation that is The Daily Show, have sprouted wings to conquer the airwaves and brainwaves as well. It all started with Jon Stewart, who is actually a less angry incarnation of the indefatigable late George Carlin, the father of honest/rude/crude/intellectual/in your face commentary that happens to be extremely funny. From The Daily Show, the first to sprout wings was the "hard to box in" Stephen Colbert, who may have sold his soul a little to take over David Lettermen's show.

The third member who left The Daily Show was John Oliver and his Last Week Tonight with John Oliver is a must watch for his incisive commentary of what's wrong with politics, people in power, people and corporations that make stupid decisions, on the often anal attitudes of some Americans and the general riff-rafts that make you shake your heads. Its highly educational, informative and brilliantly funny.

Here are …

Following On The 11th Commandment ...

Even if you are financially successful or career wise or has been able to involve yourself in sustainable charitable works ... I can safely say that you will not necessarily have great relationships. Its not a matter of acceptance or the need to endure, most of us just do not have the 'bigger perspective', the devotion needed and the "hows" to nurture loving relationships. Anyone, and I do mean anyone getting married will have a 5050 chance of getting divorced, with another 20% ending in listless, loveless, cumbersome ties. I am no expert but the 11th commandment and the two things below would really sum up what we lack.

Science says lasting relationships come down to—you guessed it—kindness and generosity. Every day in June, the most popular wedding month of the year, about 13,000 American couples will say “I do,” committing to a lifelong relationship that will be full of friendshi…

The 11th Commandment .....

This is a great truth, and would go a long way to saving, healing, mending your many relationships ... In fact the most enduring relationships reside with those who totally get this truth ...

The First Time ...

I am going away for a short trip and just left my dog with a reputable (high cost) pet hotel. It comes with different sized rooms, some with fans, some with aircon .... so I got the best they had at RM125 per night. Seems like more expensive than Tune hotels but they wouldn't take my dog I think. It seems expensive but its guilt-fees I think. 

Though I have traveled before and left my dog behind before, ... before it was always with my mum back in Ipoh or the numerous times when I had a maid in the house (who loved Dali anyway). Now my maid has ran away a few months back and mum is tagging along in the trip ... no choice. First time at a pet hotel.

I guess its the same kind of feelings when you leave your kids at kindergarten for the first time ... or even leaving your kids for the first time to travel. No matter how well you plan it, the guilt is enormous.

I can still see it in her eyes when I ushered her into the 'new room' ... its the "don't leave me here look&quo…

Why S&P500 Keeps Rising

by Charles Hugh Smith

As long as corporations continue borrowing money to buy back their own stocks and the yen keeps dropping, the SPX will continue lofting higher. The unmanipulated sector rose a bit, while the stock buyback crowd soared:Why is the S&P 500 rising, even as valuations are getting stretched, profit growth is declining and sales are stagnant? Two charts explain it all. Here is a chart showing the S&P 500 companies that have been buying back their own stocks (often by borrowing cheap money to do so) and companies that haven't bought back hundreds of billions of dollars in their own stock.
Source: Business Insider Here is the S&P 500, with red lines marking its recent lows: Here is the Japanese yen ETF (NYSEARCA:FXY), with red lines marking its recent highs. The correlation is near-perfect: when the yen drops, the SPX rises. This is a function of the carry trade, in which speculators borrow money in near-zero interest-rate yen and buy U.S. stocks with the ca…

Will We Have A CNY Rally (Gulp)

What an untimely... or timely seminar on the local bourse!!! Please note that the seminar will be largely in Mandarin and Cantonese.

Money vs Currency

Currency performance is but a true reflection of the underlying dynamics of economic growth, inflation, a country's competitiveness and revenue streams ... among others. The table below reveals all that in one go. 

HKD is on a false sense of security. It is tied to the USD and will bring about havoc in its economy as it does not deserve the "low interest rate environment couple of good economic recovery", all the while the HK side has to contend with a slowing China economic engine  plus a deflated shipping industry,and a flattening housing/real estate market in China". The strong USD basically causes a highly uncompetitive kick to its travel/conference industry. Its a false sense of security which translates into a housing market that is primed to go off a cliff anytime soon - what with the usually strong currency, a crackdown on corruption in China (which ay lead to cash withdrawals).

IDR - Still on a high from the recent elections with a promise to reduce corruptio…

KopiSusu ... The Musical

Its about Nanyang music ... the era of 50s-60s ... Nanyang basically referring to Southeast Asia. The influence of the music from Shanghai's decadent years and HK's frolicking years meshed with the local musicality of Chinese emigrants to Southeast Asia.

Hotline: 016 238 6513

The Road Is Long .. and Many A Winding Path

Let's be clear here, I am not criticising the planned road name changes. Just offering suggestions on why and how things could be better. It does not matter if the changes were to recognise the past rulers of our beloved country.

a)  We can and we should and we have recognised many historical figures including rulers of our nation. Let's re-examine if naming roads after them is such a good alternative. Roads are meant to describe and place a location. If its too long, it adds enormous difficulty in remembering, mentioning to friends and other practical uses. It becomes impractical which defeats the purpose of naming roads. Jalan Tun Perak is great, so too Jalan Sultan Ismail or Swettenham Road or even Birch Road. But when a name gets too long, it becomes self defeating - the very intention to honour becomes an opportunity to ridicule.

b) By all means, recognise our past historical figures in other ways, such as buildings, statues, gardens, fountains, mosques, bridges ... its not…

The Wayang Kulit Behind Oil Price Gyrations

Is there a puppet master, I mean nothing much has changed for much of 2014, so why the sudden drop in oil prices over the past two months? One can cite US production of shale oil but thats not like something happened overnight. All knew the numbers coming on from shale oil. So what gives?


Opec divided on oil output
LONDON: The Organization of Pe- troleum Exporting Countries (Opec) oil producers cartel will hold one of its toughest and most significant meetings in recent years as, faced with sliding prices, its members must contemplate whether to cut output.
Ahead of Thursday’s Opec meet- ing in Vienna, its dozen member countries are split on what direction to take after a 30% drop in crude prices since June has slashed rev- enues.Opec’s poorer members, led by Venezuela and Ecuador, have
called publicly for a cut in output, while Iran has hinted at a need to reduce production.
But the cartel’s Gulf members, led by kingpin Saudi Ar…

The Truth Hurts ...

Canto-Mando Movie Reviews

Time to bring up some movie recommendations cause there are a couple recently that piqued my interest. The first is Kung Fu Jungle, its a badly titled movie in English, sounds so much cooler in Chinese. Its a great kung fu movie but its significant for a lot more than just entertainment. 

If you remember the comedy classic Kung Fu by Stephen Chow Sing Chi, where he tried (successfully) to incorporate the many popular kung fu techniques and "fantasy kung fu stuff" into a well woven comedy. In many ways its a great tribute and acknowledgement to the discipline in movie making.

Well, KFJ is like Kung Fu except that it took the more serious route, and the kung fu is a lot more realistic and authentic. Besides entertaining audiences, KFJ roped in as many as possible the HK kung fu movie stars from the late 60s, 70 and 80s and gave them roles in it. In many ways, its an excellent tribute, as the story goes about a guy wanting to be the ultimate kung fu master and he goes about it by…

So Bad, Its Good ...

“Chick Chick” by Chinese pop group Wang Rong Rollin from China I think. Its Old McDonald's Farm on acid ... Its pretty ridiculous but fun and hypnotic. A kick ass music video... I predict this will be very big globally for a few months. Being different makes people sit up and take notice as we all get jaded with what is out there. Of course some will say that its a ripping off from Ylvis' What Does The Fox Say ... if you put the two side by side, you can say some parts were similar but 'greatness' often results in copycats, and Chick Chick is a lot more fun, really makes you smile. I think this will go viral globally in a big way.

Apa Lagi Amerika Mahu

For my life I could not understand why the US mid term election came to be a snub against Obama... I mean although he is not a big fanfare guy, he has "righted" the many wrongs from the Bush administration, if you can call it that.

Stock markets at all time highs, gasoline low, interest rates low, did not go to war, best OECD growth, hunted and killed Osama, inflation benign, jobs up and up...

New Board Game - How Big Is Your Pond

I blogged about this about 5 years ago. Its a fun game. As investors or banking/finance professionals in the markets, we need to get a grip and look at where we are in the whole scheme of things. No matter how"great" we are its only in a very tiny pond. Of course I am not belittling ourselves here, big pond small pond, still a pond ... but don't let it get to our heads when it comes to why we are only a small boat in a sea storm whose waves could sometimes overwhelm our tiny boat, no matter how well built it is.

As things stand, just the US markets alone is as big as the next 7 markets COMBINED: Japan, China, HK, UK Canada, France and Germany all totaled up.

Hence thats why we mainly look to the US for direction. The blog post below on how big each state's GDP is in terms of another country would show beyond a shadown of a doubt why America is the world in business, trade and finance.

Low Oil Price Providing a $1.3 Trillion Fiscal Stimulus

You cannot just be focused on one side of the equation. Yes, lower oil prices may affect the revenues of oil exporting nations. It may even be a reflection of the oversupplu, maybe brought on by rogue nations milking oil for funds for war and terrorism. It could also be a strategy by OPEC to decapitate shale oil production ventures which needs oil to be safely way above $80 to make it feasible.

Whatever it is, lower oil prices will also mean savings for almost all nations, and in actual fact may go a long way to boosting demand and improve savings for reallocation of resources t

o other areas of the global economy. The report below from Bloomberg pegged stimulus at $1.1 trillion, now it should be $1.3 trillion. Thats a whole lot of QE in a different form and manner. Not all news is bad, the pendulum may swing but there is always a counter balance.

The lowest oil price in four years will provide stimulus of as much as $1.1 trillion to global economie…