22 October 2008

Live Out Of Bad Credits

In Sydney, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ANZ) –being the third biggest lender – said on Monday that it expected much higher bad debt provisions in the first half of fiscal 2008. This reflects difficult conditions facing Australian firms amid the global credit crunch. The provisions will be about A$975 million or a 72 percent increase from a year ago.

In the midst of the credit crunch, the many bank rescue plans established in many countries around the world would re establish the confidence needed between commercial banks to ensure smooth functioning of markets on which business credit depends.

Do not be part of bad credits. There is an opportunity here. Here are my tips on how to ride your credit horse wisely.

Use Credit Card to Buy Shares

If you possess a credit card use it to buy shares. For instance if the offer price is S3.50 per share 1 lot or 1000 shares will cost $3,500. If you can borrow up to 70 per cent of the value of the shares it means you have to fork out only $1,050 cash upfront. With your credit card you can borrow up to 100 percent of the share value.

Assuming your bank charges around $400 (inclusive of processing fee) monthly instalment for 12 months, you will be on save track provided you pay on time to avoid interest of over 20 percent. And then you can hope that your share price goes up. I think it will. Be realistic. Can we afford to buy everything from cash? But there is some sense to this. If you are borrowing for ‘an asset’ in this case shares it is an investment. Let me give some encouragement.

The second-richest American and perhaps the world’s most revered investor, Mr Warren Buffet says he is buying US stocks for his personal account. To him a simple rule dictates his decision in investment –‘Be fearful when others are greedy and be greedy when others are fearful’.

Hold on to that property if you can

Gone are the days where a house is just a ‘giver’ of shelter. It is an investment in today’s context. In Singapore, if you own a house it is a guaranteed asset value appreciation. If you have bought a flat in 1987 and sold it in 1998 you could have made a whopping cash-in savings. If you are on a bank loan try to lock in for one year and then opt for refinancing to seek for better interest in another bank.

A property is an asset. If you dwell in it or rent it –either way it is considered an asset. If you rent it then you have to stay somewhere. The middle path to cash in a property investment is to stay in and rent part of the house- perhaps a room. This is what I called value integrated. Find other uses of your property where it can ‘earn’ for you

By holding onto your property you will gain in the long run. Moreover, you will not be in the list of the bank’s bad credits.

Turn Bad Credits To Good Credits

The scenario in United States is entirely and unusually different. There is this thing as sub prime mortgage or lending. Borrowers who apply for such loan have a heightened perceived risk of default, such as those who have a history of loan delinquency or default, and those with a recorded bankruptcy. So when borrowers failed to make debt repayment it caused a domino effect to the banking system. The failure of the investment firms, mortgage companies and government sponsored enterprises which had invested heavily in subprime mortgages so called triggered the crisis.

So what is the solution for the people of America? It is simple. Take responsibility on your bad credits. The Americans have to look at the bigger picture. I know it is hard but you have to somehow manage your debt if you have committed one. The crisis is something they have to learn from. Success is not all about money. It is about reaching on what you set forth. It is about completing all actions. You have decided on a course of action to allocate the country’s resources. You have to take responsibility for that. Turn bad credits to good credits.

‘America asks not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country’

21 October 2008

Tax Software

In the United States the Inland Revenue Department has noted that out of the federal revenue of 2409 billion dollars 345 billion dollars are not collected from tax payers. This tax gap is about 14 percent. This is partly due to the difficulty in preparing the tax return. In Singapore the use of electronic means has risen 88 percent in 2004.

Success is not only about formulating making a goal that you love to reach and reached it. It is not making money in the process thereby making your financial health in the pink. It is about giving to those who have less. It is also about how you find ways to work along the parameters of the laws. It is also about not falling into negligence in preparation of tax that to be given to the government as revenue. Tax evasion can be very costly affair to large corporations. You will lose substantial amount of money if you or company fall into evasion. You can read here on how to survive an audit by Inland Revenue Service.
"Under Singapore Income Tax Act, anyone found guilty of assisting another person to evade tax will similarly be liable to a penalty of three times the tax evade"

It is not ‘proenrichment’ to lose money as fines for evasion. In addition you will be portrayed as a corporate criminal. Why not pay your taxes correctly. As the burden of tax return preparation expands, we need tax software to lift up our burdens to have peace of mind. Make use of the ‘donkey’ to shift your burden. Under Singapore Income Tax Act, anyone found guilty of assisting another person to evade tax will similarly be liable to a penalty of three times the tax evaded. This story of tax evasion in Singapore can be deterrence for those who wants to enrich their lives. Pro enrichment is for Pro tax. In this context I will like to introduce some soft wares that can help in the preparation and submission of tax return.

The following three soft wares can be useful to readers.

Turbo Tax 2007

Whether you are a last minute filer, an avid stock trader or filing your first home purchase, Turbo Tax is an excellent tax preparation product. It has been awarded the ‘Top Ten Review Gold Award’: it has the best design and navigation; user friendly even for beginners; easy set up features.

Further reading about this product

Tax Act 2007
Apart from being awarded with ‘Top Ten Review Silver Award’ with excellent design, navigation and easy set features, this product is much cheaper that Turbo Tax 2007, it has an online tax consultant facility. No Live chats and forum facility for this product. It also has national averages comparison, year to year deduction comparison and joint vs separate filing options like Turbo Tax 2007.

Further reading about this product

H&R Block Tax Cut

This product price is on the high side despite having a mark less for its ‘user friendly features’ when compared to the other two products above. It is not facilitated with forum, national averages comparison, and year to year deduction comparison. It has live chat.

Further reading about this product


19 October 2008

How To Clean Your HTML

What is wrong with the World Wide Web Consortium validator. Recently I visited JD Mier’s Blog who proudly presented the 100 Technoratti blogs as a post article. I was curious and picked out the best 5 below. Well even the best blogs in technoratti cannot be validated by W3C. Try and click them and see for yourself.




Huffington Post

Boing Boing

My own site Proenrichment obviously has errors as I am still learning. But you know there is inherent ‘dirty’ hyper text mark-up language template when validated by W3C produce enormous errors.

I just want to clean up my dirty html. That is not only my challenge but a challenge faced by the blogosphere population. What is the appropriate language we are talking about? What is the point of having a common language? Easy communication is the advantage- I think. But do you think we need to have another competitor if need be.

If only can blogspot can upload a cleaner template or html. Perhaps it should form its own consortium as a competitor with w3c. We have many languages in the world. There is one way of bringing down the errors when validated with w3c is by using html frameset 4.0 in your doctype . Type the following after DOC Type

4.0 Frameset//EN""

17 October 2008

How To Ward Off A Depression

I am no economist. But I cannot simply keep quiet and just watch what is going on around the financial market recently starting from the United States. I was not born yet in that turbulent time when the Great Depression took place in the 1930s. My mother was born in 1938. She escaped the greatest ordeal in the economics of the world. Do you know what is like to go through life in a depression?

Life just sucks. People lost their homes who only borrowed 10 percent of the purchase price. Now we are almost tied up with 90 percent loan for a shelter over our heads. Do you think you can just sit back and watch the show while the ‘economic tsunami’ washes all income and wealth? Do you still want to sit or participate in the war with the ‘devil’ called depression?

Whether the financial woes in America is God’s curse or not but it will meltdown the entire world if it is not corrected correctly. In Singapore, export falls for the fifth straight month in September 2008. At the macro level the various bailouts by the US, British and other nations’ governments are appropriate moves to sustain the respective banking systems.

But as an individual we need to participate in warding off an economic recession. The key factor is to make the demand side of the curve more or less stable. A stable demand is like a brick wall blocking the destructive waves of depression.

Live by your means

Spend only on essentials

Sometimes life’s vital guidelines can be learned from your mother. My mother every time teaches me on how to live a simple life- frugal living. I mean not stingy but prudent in what you spent-necessary spending. If your fingers get swollen beyond recognition it is going to be very painful. Try to cure the swell to escape the painful ordeal.

What are essentials? A telephone back in 1974 can be a luxury. Now a telephone in the house is essential. It can become dispensable when you can email or use a web cam via internet for communication purpose. What about hand-phones? Think about it. I am thinking of terminating my hand phone line when I have completed the 2 year plan.

The simple thing to do is to really list out what are essentials and what are not? This will be different for different people. You can say your lifestyle is different. But bear in mind that if you start prudent living now then you can withstand and survive if a great depression sets in. You have to get used to essential living.

What is essential living? I think living with a bare minimum can be classified as essential living: food, clothing and shelter. You can choose an inexpensive restaurant to eat and wear cheaper cloths. And remember to sell off that ‘asset’ called home if you cannot afford to repay your debt. Try to sell it and get a smaller house.

Live with essentials. I will always encourage my friends to do away with insurance policies. Insurance policy will not only take a big part of your disposable income and in most cases we are paying for our own anxiety trap in life.

Take for example, life insurance policy. The owner pays a constant premium for a number of years. But the sad part of it is that once you break before the maturity date in most insurance policy you will lose a great part of your ‘savings’. It is the fees for pessimistic thinking.

Pay only by cash

If you have the habit to buy everything on credit, change your mindset to pay the items you buy with cash. Always carry a cash amount for the day purchase. If you have some credit to settle to the bank try to settle it and terminate the credit line. It is always better to pay by cash.

It is deviant behaviour towards the basic economic principle that we have ‘limited means but unlimited wants’. Such consumer behaviour will eventually lead them to bubble their wealth by using credit. Live within means is a gospel which had been forgotten. To consciously belief in that statement is a panacea to greed. Do not listen to the ‘devil’ to get whatever you want and pay later by credit. If that happens then I think it is stupidity to pay 20 percent more at the end of the day.

Buy now and pay later theory is what set the American economy into danger zone. During the great depression the country’s total credit is totalled to about 6 billions of dollars.

Spend and Spend

Stay employed

The very core of the cause of the Great Depression was attributed to fall in demand for goods and services produced. The very basic index for any country to worry is the unemployment rate.

During the Great Depression the unemployment rate in America was 25 percent of the working population. Unemployment means a probable fall in demand. Things are produced and manufactured for consumption. As supply increases it will have a great impact on the price of goods and services. With shrinking demand any business can go bust.

At our very best we spend on those things we need and help the demand side of the ‘curve’ to maintain the business of economics. If you lose your job get ready to do any job to generate income for you to spend. A job is better than no job.

Don’t buy paper stocks buy food stocks

Investing your money in stocks and shares can be a good thing if it is done 10-90 rule. I mean if you have 100 dollars park the ten dollars in stocks and shares. If it is done the other way round then you become a gambler. The recent stock exchange news in the media is a lesson for every investor. Play safe.

Savings in the bank will be of little effect on the standard of living as the value of money will be very unpredictable when we enter the recession zone. It is better to keep food stocks as a potato was sold for a million dollars during the Great Depression.

Do you know a car was sold at 100 dollars during the Great Depression? So it is worth a while to stock up your closet with food stuff as food can become scarce during a recession. I mean really scarce.

During the Great Depression people had to queue for a simple meal and food was scarce. Starving children chewed their hands almost drawing blood. Disease was rampant and mortality rate rose. Life during the great depression was really miserable.

So do not just sit and watch the recession blows you lives and wealth away. Practice the above simple rules to get ready for the transition. I hope not.

11 October 2008

How To Have Inspiration - Leadership Course 2

In my earlier post on how to become a great leader, I have discussed about how a humble person is personified as a leader. In this part of the leadership episode I will want to share something that will leverage you to be noticed as a strong leader. If you can happen to see the many posts of leadership in the internet, I think they have touched on this point. Yes I am going to touch on the second most important point in any leadership quality – Inspiration.

Most bloggers have more or less gloss over this important point without a clear explanation on what exactly is inspiration and how it can change the ‘bad’ aura of a personality to a ‘good’ one. We are all humans. Even a leader’s inspiration meter fluctuates like the stocks and share market- Boom and slump-. In the process of knowing what is inspiration is all about the influence or impact it creates in a personality change is great. If we say two persons cannot be having the same personality, we are actually targeting their character rather than physical features.

What we want here is a behaviour change in an individual. Behaviour is the variable which can be altered to suit the environment we live in and it is mostly influenced by our thinking process. Thinking process can be altered by inspiration. Once you have understood this vital point then it is easy for you to inspire others – your children, spouse, staff or even your employer or the company you work in.

Understanding Inspiration

If I say that what you are doing is wrong then what I am doing is right. Technically there is no right and wrong in whatever we do. It is our minds that aspire certain ‘orthodox’ perception of life and we proceed to think along that line. I have the occasion to share my blogs with my ‘friends’ and these are the following answers :

‘hey you a lot of time to do that’

‘hey it will not get you anywhere’

‘what is the use of writing such blogs?’

‘simply waste of time’

Two kinds of Inspiration

What I am proposing is that there are two kinds of inspiration generated. One is expected from outside. If it is not possible to find an external inspiration then be ready to be self motivated. I will discuss about self motivation in future.

Inspiration happens when the subject thoughts and actions is touched upon, motivated, lifted up, accelerated, stimulated, provoked or encouraged with a multiplying effect.


(a) Subject likes & dislikes

You can built a strong observation of the things the subject ‘likes’ and ‘dislikes’. The person who is keen of growing rich financially can be inspired by showing successful people who have reached financial freedom. If you have observed around, this is the favourite aspiration among many people. That is why we have lots of blogs out there writing about personal development.

(b) Offer solutions

A simple way to identify what to inspire is to give solutions to the subject’s difficulty to a problem. It can be a work related or personal matter. If you happen to sense the subject has a problem- it is the opportunity for to offer a workable solution which can inspire for him to get around with his problem.


Right words

Communication is the tool for finding and giving inspiration. Words are the most powerful tool of any communication. Like what I am doing right now. If you are going to get inspired from this post all I have to do is to choose of right words to convey the message. In other words, in order for a subject to be inspired the person who wants to inspire has to communicate the right and corrects words to the subject.
It is not about eloquence but rather the appropriate words to elaborate.

Do not rush

It is very important that when the subject is targeted for an inspiration it is best to choose at a time when the subject is available. If the subject is not available there is no point of the whole exercise. The listener has other important things to do rather to hear you words of inspiration. It will not work when someone is busy.

Use analogy

This is an important part of communication. It will help the subject to visualise the part he is in compared to the entire environment. He is either the light bulb or the brake or the chain in a bicycle. Once the subject realise his position then he gets inspired.

Do it over lunch or coffee

The best time to inspire a person is when he is in the comfortable zone. Offer lunch to the subject and you will get his cooperation to listen to you.

05 October 2008

5 Tips To Beat Anxiety

5 Tips To Beat Anxiety
Anxiety symptoms can be easily recognised from a person’s face. A behaviour full of fear, apprehension, distress, uneasiness, tensed desire, agitated desire and so on. This is the person who is anxious, apprehensive, concerned, distraught, expectant, fraught, fretful, impatient and uneasy. A person enters an anxiety zone if the clumsy mind is not managed appropriately.

Anxiety can hit even the coolest person on earth. It is one of the major stumbling blocks to success. If it is not dealt or managed properly, the anxious person will portray a timid and non dynamic personality to the public. It prevents participation in social networking which is the major catapult for any success.

Never expect the negative

The mind presupposes an end to a momentum of an event in question. It expects a result. The mind is ‘trained’ to expect a result. Why I say this? What goes up must come down. This is common sense. If you throw a marble to the air it has to drop. That is the natural order of things. What happens if it just be static in the air? The next moment the press will be called to report the phenomena.

This very essence of the mind sets the subject to be in certain behaviour. If the thing expected is positive the behaviour is favourable. For example, a public speaker who expect that the audience will admire and love his speech in the end, will display enormous confident when he speaks. He will be full of smile and happy. He displays friendlier posture and aptitude. This behaviour sends a positive signal to the audience and he becomes a good public speaker.

Linguist Geoff Nunberg note on what makes Mr Obama a good speaker is that ‘if you come with the idea or hope of being engaged…it is engaging’. In other words, if the mind expects a good result the process will be positive.

Remember the last time you had an anxiety trap. Have you got in this kind of situation where you lost your voice during an interview or a presentation where you expected the worse? The next time you feel the same way, use this tactic to escape from such feeling.

Be Prepared In your own way

I have my own experience in this. I remember I was sitting for my mathematics examination in my secondary four finals. I somehow cannot grasp the way to solve a problem in mathematics. However I practice mathematics I got the wrong answer. I carried the belief that I cannot solve a mathematical problem to my examination day. I felt anxious throughout and whenever I sat for the examination. It was because no matter how I tried to solve a problem I could not get it right. I have never got a pass in my previous preliminary examination.

I find reasons to dislike mathematics. In order to find a correct method to solve a problem is like playing golf. One ball and a small hole in a vast open space! My peers told me that practice makes perfect. It is easy said. I knew this but I had to find an alternative way to prepare for this. Can I prepare this in my own way?

I found a way to study by learning worked solutions to a problem. I bought a ten year series on all the probable questions and worked solutions. I read all the probable questions and worked solutions over and over again. I covered this ten year series ten times before the big day. Guess what? I pass the final exam. Why I want to share this experience is that the majority cannot be the right answer.

If you have a task at hand which you think will make you anxious, my advice is to prepare the task in your own way. Once you know what to do then the rest fall in its place.

Do the hard job first; the easy job will take care of itself.

Your contribution is important

When anxiety traps a person to inaction the subject must interpret his participation as a contribution rather than a job. A job can be performed by anyone. When you give you are on the upper hand. Can an employee tell what to do to an employer? This is exactly how to place the mind when attacked by the feeling of anxiety.

In the first place you have been invited for the speech as your organisation thinks you can contribute to the company. Ask not what the listeners want to hear ask what you can contribute to the listener. A potential politician can be viewed as a future leader if the subject convinces listeners of his or her contribution to the country in general.

If the performer has a mindset that the performance is just a job anxiety might set in quickly. Doing just a job might get wrong. But a contribution is a gradient of information from the upper class to the lower end. A contributor feels that everyone is the same like the teeth of a comb. Even if you are standing in front of a media or giving a speech or presenting to the high ranking bureaucrats if you manage your mind into thinking that you are contributing you can have a balance like a ballet dancer. No one knows the topic than you do. Contribute and be cool

Control the situation

In most of the time you are not an anxious person. It is sometimes caused by outside elements.

I had the opportunity to talk about the facility in my estate to the media recently. Well the media representative requested me to give the small performance in Tamil language as earlier on I have given the piece of information in English.

My Tamil language is not as good as my English language and I hesitated initially. After much persuasion I accepted it as a challenge. The interview came and prior to the interview I did step 2 above. I prepared this in my own way. I did well and I was extraordinarily confident doing the interview in Tamil language.

When I stepped in front of the camera, the representative of the media told me to say a certain portion of the facility which I had missed during my English interview earlier. That is it. And I had to take a four times media shots. That made my mind ran into an anxiety trap. I have lost all my readiness for my Tamil interview. I was perspiring with anxiety. I stopped and think again to control the situation.

What I had said in English will be similar in any other languages. I requested the media representative to insert Tamil subtitles when the show runs on the air. She agreed.

Ask question

Have you seen people who ask many questions in a conversation? What they are doing is to get some piece of your mind about a topic in conversation. Once they get all that you have they prepare mentally how to defend their argument later on. You can apply the same tactic to your audience.

Ask them the question how they can add value to his contribution or how they can improve the existing situation. You can do this when anxiety strike you during your performance, presentation, interview or public speaking. This kind of question asking comes very handy during job interview. You can ask how the job you are applying arose in the first place. By asking question you are ‘killing two birds in one stone’ – adding some contribution from the listeners to your topic in question in which case actually make your presentation realistic. Very importantly you are actually diverting listeners’ attention away from you (as you are locked in an anxiety trap)

When John F Kennedy spoke ‘Ask not what your country can do for you but ask what you can do for your country’ what do you think he meant. He became an extraordinary public speaker. No President of the United States of America has had such confidence in front of public. Was his ‘anxious free’ public speaking bestowed by God? I do not think so.

John F Kennedy put the public in one corner that it was their responsibility of giving to the nation together with their leaders. The onus did not lie solely with the leaders who had been portrayed as ‘vote buyers’ and at the ‘servants’ of voters. ‘Can you contribute to the country? This historical question made by the late admirable John F Kennedy made him an ‘immortal’ confident speaker of all time.

Ask question like ‘what can you contribute to my contents?’

The next time you become anxious do not forget to try out the above tips to escape from the anxiety trap.

01 October 2008


Is the human mind perfect? There is a known saying that ‘no one is perfect’. This statement of antiquity is an orthodox guidance to fall back to if the other person seemed not perfect. Can our judgement be imperfect in the first place? The virility of the mind is depended upon its 'education'. Education is the viagra for the human mind.

Cloudy Mind


The many events that are happening around us can be interpreted in many ways. Whether the interpretation is conscious or spontaneous, the end result will only be one.

As how the brain matter is convoluted it is an inherently a coiled cloudy machine. The languages, for example, we speak have unintentional ambiguity unlike computers. Man made creations like computers have one clear straightforward language. Essentially all human languages do have this ambiguity

"Education is the viagra for the mind”

In mathematics, the language is fixed. There may be many methods of solution but the path to reach the result is only one and linear. Mathematical languages do not have ambiguities.

Problem of Belief System

The country Iraq was thought to have weapons of mass destruction even after its invasion. Belief is the ‘unreal’ oasis the mind escapes into in order to make out the meanings of experiences. But to proof this mirage oasis is the truth will jeopardise our own survival at a point in time. We will not ‘exist’ anymore if we were to be fixed in our own paradigm of untruth.

Is there a difference between a home and a temple? One is the place we live in and the other is a spiritual enclave. If seen both as a house then the difference is narrowed and the mind is put in clear linear path of thinking.

In some Asian countries eating fried insects can be a delicacy - it is repulsive to most people. If you are put in a dire situation to eat a grasshopper the first bite is always difficult to swallow. The mind plays a repulsive picture and the psychological barrier is too great. All insects can be a form of food like poultry. What is acceptable to one’s mind is not admissible to another.

Perfect Mind


Perfection means there is no room to grow. A baby initial touch of fire will teach the child not touch fire again. Education is the key factor in making the mind contemporary.

The human mind is different from the animal mind. It is compact and the neurons are thicker so the information passes faster and quicker. A program is built into the animal mind. A bird built its nest out of its basic instinct built into them. No one teaches a bird to build a nest. It does it naturally.

Dogs are trained to trace to tackle the problem of drug trafficking. Chimpanzees and elephants are also used for entertainment purpose in a zoo. Anatomically, the human brain is similar to that of other primates. The inherently ‘absorbent’ power of the human brain made its species an excellent survivor and manager.

It is the fault of philosophy to put the heart second to the mind as this thought can be attributed to the location of both the mind and the heart – the mind is above the heart so it must be better. But heart is the organ which keeps our lifeline in order. It is the cloudy mind that makes our thoughts clumsy.