Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Portfolio Update Jan 2024

This is the first update of my investment portfolios for 2024.

My SGX Income Portfolio value falls to $328k from $339k.

My US/HK Growth Portfolio value stagnates at US$17k.

My SRS Ultra Long-Term Portfolio value shoots up to $139k from $143k.

The US stock markets have attained fresh record highs amidst uncertainties over interest rates, ongoing wars and diminishing fears of global recession. US 10-year and 30-year government yields have rebounded slightly and the Federal Reserve is expected to hold interest rates high for the short-term before cutting up to 6 times this year.

Despite being clouded by uncertainties, immense noises and fears, it is crucial that long-term investors like us always remain calm, unwavered and focused on our investment objectives. Stick to our own plan and continue deploying our financial resources into high quality income-producing instruments such as government-backed risk-free bonds, property assets, or strong growth businesses tactfully according to our own risk appetite.

I plan to start contributing to my SRS account while waiting for interest rates to fall while monitoring high quality S-Reits and local bank stocks for addition to my SGX income portfolio if opportunities arise in the next few months. I have no plan to add US/HK stocks.

Portfolio Actions


Portfolio Dividends

1. Received $123.20 of dividends from Savings Bonds on 2 Jan.

2. Received $147.50 of dividends fromm Savings Bonds in SRS on 2 Jan.

SGX Income Portfolio

Portfolio Value = $328k

US/HK Growth Portfolio



Tiger Broker


Syfe Trade


Portfolio Value = US$17k

SRS Ultra Long-Term Portfolio

Portfolio Value = S$139k

Thanks for reading. Looking forward to the new year awashed with fresh beginnings and opportunities!

With love and peace, 

Monday, January 29, 2024

5 Reasons To Top Up CPF Retirement Account of our parents instead of giving cash

   I topped up $8k into my mum's CPF Retirement Account via Paynow today.

The transaction and RA account balance are updated instantly in my mum CPF statement.

In my CPF dashboard, my tax relief is also reflected instantly.

Let me share 5 reasons why we should top up the CPF Retirement Account of our parents instead of giving cash to them.

1. Tax Relief

For personal financial objective, we could enjoy tax relief of up to $8k per calendar year for topping up our parent's CPF Retirement Account under the Retirement Sum Top Up (RSTU) scheme.

Assuming my tax bracket is at 11%, a relief of $8k will save me $880 of taxes in cash, which is enough to eat more than 100 plates of $5 chicken rice at the coffeeshop.

The tax relief is also applicable to family members such as parents-in-law, grandparents, grandparents-in-law, siblings and spouse.

2. Compounding growth at 4%

CPF Retirement Account yields at least 4% and up to 6% for senior folks risk-free and guaranteed by the Singapore Government. Monies growing at compounded rate of at least 4% will double in 20 years hence, by leaving cash in CPF RA account, they will grow much faster than inflation rate to preserve and uphold its real value.

For CPF members aged 55 and above, an extra 2% of interest is paid on the first $30k of their combined balances (capped at $20k for OA), an an extra 1% for the next $30k.

3. CPF Life

In order to qualify for CPF Life, one need to have at least $60k in their CPF retirement savings before reaching 65 years old. We could help our parents to boost their CPF retirement savings to qualify for CPF Life if they do not have active income and CPF contributions.

CPF Life offers payouts perpetually for life but is a debatable subject because its pros and cons varied across individuals' opinions. If one's CPF RA does not have $60k before reaching 65 years old, then he or her will only rely on Retirement Savings scheme to draw down their CPF savings till it is depleted.

Having at least $60k in CPF RA will offer extra choice of being able to qualify for CPF Life scheme to enjoy perpetual monthly payouts.

4. Matched Retirement Savings Scheme

Under the Matched Retirement Savings Scheme (MRSS), the Government will match every dollar of cash top-ups made to the Retirement Account of eligible members up to a cap of $600, which can amount to $3,000 over 5 years. To be eligible, the person has to be aged between 55 and 70, has a CPF RA of less than the current Basic Retirement Sum of $102,900, has average monthly income of less than $4k, live in a property with annual value less than $21k and not owning more than one property.

By topping up at least $600 to a qualified family member's CPF RA account, we can milk the $600 of free money from the Government.

5. CPF is like golden ATM for senior citizens

For senior folks close to reaching the 55 year old and 65 year old milestones of being able to touch their CPF monies, their CPF accounts are like golden ATM that offer high interest rates for "withdrawable" cash with the click of a button. This is unlike younger folks who could only stare at their CPF balances as numbers. Hence, the concept of 1M65 is indeed beneficial and practical to people who could really live beyond 50s or 60s and on the brink of drawing down cash from their CPF balances. People who lived past 50 years old should try to pump more monies into their CPF accounts, by all means, in order to reap the risk-free guaranteed returns on their monies.

In conclusion, I top up my mum's CPF RA account with cash instead of giving cash, in order to maximise the value of money. For the $8k topped up, I can enjoy $880 of tax savings myself, let my mum earn at least $280 of CPF interests for 2024 and attract another matched $600 from the Government. This $1760 of "earnings" from $8k gives a whopping ROI of 22% in a year.

In addition, there is compounding effect from future years' interests and being eligible to qualify for CPF Life for perpetual monthly income payouts. Overall, I feel that it is an awesome deal.

However, topping up CPF accounts using cash is an individual decision depending on a myriad of factors and may only suit some of us and not everyone. One should always exercise our own due diligence to make the best decision for our own financial matters.

Thanks for reading. Stay focused and remain steadfast as always!

With love & peace, 

Friday, January 26, 2024

Maxed Out my CPF MA to BHS $71.5k


I topped up around $1.4k into my CPF Medisave Account (MA) today.

My CPF MA is now maxed out at the Basic Healthcare Sum of $71.5k

I am able to enjoy tax relief of the $1.4k cash used for top up as well as 4.08% p.a interest on the balance in MA till 31 Mar 2024.

As I have already attained Full Retirement Sum in my CPF Special Account, I could no longer make voluntary top Up under the RSTU. This is the best effort I can make with CPF.

First mini financial mission accomplished for the year!

Thanks for reading.

With love & peace, 

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Net Worth Update Jan 2024 | Towards SGD 1.65m Target



My net worth grows to S$1.58m in Jan 2024.

The boost is from CPF interests for 2023, CPF contributions from Dec 23 salary and annual wage supplement and savings from Jan 24 salary.

CPF forms the bulk 37% of my net worth. I have already achieved full retirement sum (FRS) in CPF SA and intend to top up my Medisave account to the basic healthcare sum (BHS) of $71.5k next week for some tax relief.

Cash and war chest constitute 18% of my wealth. In the current high rate environment, my cash is being stashed away in bank fixed deposits yielding more than 3% p.a. in Fullerton cash funds under custody of Moomoo and Tiger Broker, and in Money Market Funds held by Phillips Capital yielding more than 3.5% p.a. with interest paid daily.

Singapore Savings Bonds ($140k) and Astrea 7A PE bond ($9k) are low-risk bonds contributing to 10% of my wealth. Together with CPF, cash and war chest, they amount to 65% of my net worth as safe assets. I will skip the coming Feb 24 tranche of SSB with average yield of 2.81%.

Stocks and Reits constitute 22% of my net worth. Together with SRS account which forms 7% and is deployed mainly into local stocks and Reits, they are the 29% of riskier assets in my financial portfolio.

I expect my net worth to continue increase slowly and steadily in this new year. My target by 31 Dec 2024 will be S$1.65m.

I hope to remain on track towards the path of financial freedom. Ignore the noises. Be greedy when others are fearful. Be fearful when others are greedy. Be contented when others are hungry.

Thank you for reading. Stay focused and remain steadfast as always!

With love & peace,

Monday, January 01, 2024

Your CPF Grew While You Slept! Check Your Interest Now!


Happy New Year 2024! 

Our CPF accounts are credited with interests for 2023 today. 

The first thing I did when I woke up today is to check my CPF savings.

Happy to receive more than $18k of interests!

Another important step in the journey towards financial freedom and retirement.

Even though CPF monies do not seem to be like real monies, I believe they are still illiquid monies that can be used to fund our retirement in our late lives, purchase properties, pay for education fees of children and pay medical bills.

Here are my CPF interests for 2023:

In total, I received $18,409.68.

This is a 10% increase from $16,739.56 for 2022.

The interest of $2.7k earned from Medisave account can easily cover the premiums for Careshield life and Medishield life. In a way, it is possible to enjoy free insurance by using passive income from CPF savings to cover the insurance premiums. This can be achieved if we bother to top up our own medisave account and strive to hit the maximum Basic Healthcare Sum limit of $71.5k in 2024 to let the 4% interest rate do its compounding work. 

I am certainly pleased with this source of passive income which certainly boosts my CPF total and net worth on the first day of a brand new year.

Thanks for reading. Stay focused and remain steadfast as always!

With love & peace,