Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Three Strategies for Choosing What Cryptocurrency to Invest in Next (Guest Post)

Finding the Next Bitcoin

You’ve probably thought it at one point or another: “I missed the Bitcoin payday. How do I decide what cryptocurrency to invest in now that I know about the market?”
The bad news: It’s unlikely that any other cryptocurrency will see the same astronomical growth that Bitcoin experienced over the last few years, and impossible to predict it. 
The good news: There’s still plenty of opportunities to invest in up-and-coming cryptocurrencies that could potentially bring you 10-100x returns. This comes with a heavy note of caution, because as you may know, cryptocurrencies are incredibly volatile. This is not investment advice, and you should gain/lose money on your own research and intuition.
In this article, we’ll go over some basic strategies you can follow when searching for what cryptocurrency to invest in next. We’re focusing on high risk, high reward options here. If you’re looking for general investment tips, you should check out our article on how to build a proper cryptocurrency portfolio instead.

Scour Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs)

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) have quickly become the standard for blockchain startups to raise funding for their project. In an ICO, the team hosts a crowdsale in which you purchase tokens that you can use on their platform. You can also trade these tokens in the secondary market (exchanges) after the ICO.
For example, Golem held an ICO to distribute the first GNT tokens. The purpose of these tokens is to purchase computing power in the Golem network, but traders also buy and sell them on exchanges.
Participating in ICOs can be a lucrative trading strategy. If you invested in the NEO crowdsale (at the time the project was called AntShares), your return on investment (ROI) would be ~160,000% currently. Populous, about 5,000%OmiseGo, around 4,000%. You get the picture.
Source: ICOBench
ICO gains do come with the highest amount of risk, though. The majority of ICOs will fail, and already almost half have done so already.

ICO Research

It’s important that you do your due diligence when picking what cryptocurrency to invest in pre-ICO. There are a ton of things to look at when evaluating a cryptocurrency, but the most important attributes are:
  • Team and advisors – The team should have experience in blockchain technology or at least the industry that they’re targeting. Preferably both. Having reputable advisors is also a strong sign that the ICO could succeed.
  • Clear problem/solution – The project’s white paper should clearly define what problem the project is aiming to solve and how the cryptocurrency solves it. Make sure it’s not just a document full of marketing BS.
  • Token distribution –  The team should be distributing over fifty percent of the tokens to crowdsale participants if not much, much more. Be hesitant about projects in which the team and advisors keep a significant proportion of tokens.
Other things to take note of are: any notable partnerships, whether the team has already created a product, and the size of the industry they’re targeting. All of these things could lead to a favorable investment.

Check Lesser Known Exchanges

Even if you missed your chance to participate in an interesting ICO, you can still invest once the coin hits exchanges. At this time, there’s often a brief spike followed by an immediate dump as ICO investors look to cash-in on short-term gains. This is a prime opportunity to get coins you’re interested in for ICO-level (or even lower) prices.
Beyond the short post-ICO period, you still have time to invest in a coin before major exchanges begin to list it. Cryptopia and decentralized exchanges such as IDEX are goldmines for these types of coins. The same research strategies mentioned above apply to coins in this category as well.

Search through coins with a small market cap (<$100 million) that haven’t been listed on a large exchange like Binance yet. You can check CoinMarketCap to see which exchanges coins are on. Make sure you research appropriately and find coins that you believe to have solid fundamentals.
Once you’ve found a coin you’re confident in, purchase it, and (this is the hardest part) wait. It could take days, weeks, or even months for your coin to reach a respectable amount of awareness. If you truly believe in the fundamentals of the coin, though, this timeframe shouldn’t matter. Once the coin joins a major exchange, feel free to trade it accordingly. 

Time Important Events

Another popular strategy in selecting what cryptocurrency to invest in is to choose coins based on project roadmaps and event calendars. This is a short-term strategy and usually much harder to execute than the other ones that we’ve covered.
The price of cryptocurrency tends to rise after an important partnership announcement or development milestone. If you follow certain projects on Twitter or are active in their Telegram channel, you usually find out about these announcements ahead of the less involved general public.
With that information, you can sometimes buy into a project early and ride the wave up following the announcement. This has some potential downsides, though. Correct timing is incredibly difficult to accomplish. And, in a bear market, even the most impressive announcements can get crushed under the negative sentiment.
Additionally, the rest of the market may not react to the news the way that you expect. A recent example of this is Verge’s PornHub partnership announcement. While some supporters saw this as positive news, the majority of the market didn’t, and the price crashed accordingly.  

Stay Vigilant

Most importantly, you just need to stay vigilant when looking for what cryptocurrency to invest in. New investment opportunities occur every day when you’re actively looking for them. Join subreddits, follow crypto traders on Twitter, constantly research new projects – in essence, engulf yourself in the blockchain space. You never know what gems you’ll stumble upon.

This article by Steven Buchko was originally published at CoinCentral.com

Sunday, May 27, 2018

ElderShield Revamp - 10 Things You Need To Know

ElderShield, Singapore's national long term care insurance is set to be overhauled in 2020. Currently, Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents can opt in to the Eldershield scheme when they reach 40 years old and it is administered by 3 of the selected private insurers : Aviva, Great Eastern and NTUC Income.  

Come 2020, things will change and here are the 10 things that you need to know about Eldershield revamp:

1. New Name - It will be renamed as CareShield Life

2. New entry age : 30 years old (as opposed to current 40 years old)

3. It will be compulsory (as opposed to current opt out approach)

4. Claim payout is increased to at least $600 per month (as opposed to current $400 per month). The benefit will also go up 2% per year for the first 5 years of implementation. 

5. Claim period will be lifetime (as opposed to current 6 years). 

6. Existing Eldershield holder (or those who opt out after reaching their eligibility age) can opt-in from 2021.

7. Premium is expected to increase and the premium payment period will be from age 30 to 67 (up from current age 40 to 65), more details will be provided by MOH in the second half of the year. 

8. Premium subsidies will be provided for the first 5 years.  

9. The government will take back the administration of CareShield Life.

10. Private insurers are expected to continue to provide the enhanced layer of the CareShield Life in the future, some fine-tuning and alignment of their benefits/premiums are to be expected. 

What is your view of this upcoming Eldershield revamp?


Friday, May 25, 2018

All My Capital On This Counter Is Officially Kaput (hint - not Hyflux)

Recently, Hyflux is in the news, for the wrong reason. It went from market darling (heyday of  $2.42 in May 2008) to trading suspension (at $0.21 in May 2018) in the span of 10 years. Of course, there is still a slim chance that Hyflux might make a come-back (never say never, just need to find one or two white knights). 

I knew a couple of my financial blogger friends got burnt (in variation of impact) but to me there is always chance that such situation can happen to any company that we are vested in. No matter how prudent is your analysis (fundamental or technical), there is always the luck/gambling element in investing (which is not within our control).

Not too long ago, when I was checking my stock list (via the POEMS app), I noticed the list is somehow shorter (the list is not long in the first place, hence it is rather obvious). After further checking, it is confirmed that one of the counter (EVEP - Eve Energy Partners, US stock) has went missing!

EVEP is my only US stock which has been in the decline (for close to 90%) for quite sometime and I've actually mentally written it off. Upon further checking, my capital (about S$5,500, after offsetting the dividend received) for this counter (EVEP) is officially GONE! KAPUT! The company has filed for Chapter 11 last month. 

So, what have I learnt from this episode? Avoid industry/company that you are not familiar with (especially those from oversea) 

So, what is your biggest materialized "rotten apple" thus far? 


Saturday, May 19, 2018

How These 2 Apps Made My Recent Macau Trip Extra Sweet?

I am just back from my 5 days 4 nights Macau trip a couple of days ago, after settling down the work stuff, it's time to get back to the blog sphere again. For a start (or re-start), let's do something light and more leisure stuff - my recent Macau trip's experience. 

This was my third time visiting Macau and for the previous 2 trips, they were all day trip (from Hong Kong island). This time round, we spent the full 5 days in Macau and hence have more time to relax, and really explore the various tourist attractions. Of course, when come to Macau aka The Land Of Money, the first thing that come to most people's mind is the casinos. Practically every corner you go, you will chance upon one or two casinos waving at you. Even though you might not be an a casino person, it is still an eye-opening experience to just drop by and have a feel of how posh or grand a casino can be (it's free entry anyway and nowadays they are not strict in the dress-code, I do see people wearing short and slipper in there). Too bad, there is no photo taking within the casinos, or else, I might share some of the photos here, especially the one in Wynn. lol

A few tips on travelling to Macau:

1. The international airport in Macau is rather small and so far only FlyScoot has direct flights (from Singapore). 

2. Taxi fare there is comparable to the one in Singapore. It's more convenient/easier to get taxi from hotels. Also, most of the hotel do provide free shuttle services to Ferry terminal, other hotels or designated tourist attractions. 

3. If you planning for a Macau trip, you may consider the following alternative tourist attractions (besides the default must visit places like Ruins of St Paul's and Senado Square) :

a. The House Of Dancing Water - It's a 90 minutes+ show that awesomely combine acrobatics, dancing and daredevil stunts with plenty of water. The design and transformation of the stage (from water pool to dry land) is a marvelous experience (it's better than any Transformation movies). It's a MUST WATCH if you are into such show. 

Selfie before entering the show - The House Of Dancing Water

The stage of The House Of Dancing Water - The platform is actually water pool
b. Macau Tower - If you like height and want a bit of the thrill, you can consider Macau Tower for the Skywalk or even SkyJump (at 233 meters height). I managed to do the Skywalk only and have fun doing it with a bunch of un-known but jovial girls from China. 
Before the Skywalk

Skywalk and sitting on the edge

I believe I can fly...
c. Studio City Macau - It's an all under one roof entertainment hub of which their Golden Reel (the Ferris wheel turning in a shape of 8) and Batman Dark flight 4D show are worth the visit. 
Studio City

Golden Reel - The Ferris Wheel in the shape of 8

Golden Reel and me

Inside the Golden Reel

Batman Flight 4D Show

Batman Flight 4D Show

Oh, almost forgot to share the 2 apps that I am talking about in the title, phew! The apps that sweetened my Macau trip are Shopback and Klook.

For Shopback, I managed to get a cashback of $46.70 for booking my FlyScoot ticket and accommodation (Booking.com) through their app. The best part is that the booking journey is seamless as their app has integrated with the actual booking sites, so your booking experience will be as per normal. The total cost of my booking (flight + accommodation) is $837.78, so, effectively it's about 5.5% discount (after the cashback). 

If you have not download/use Shopback , you can download and register via this link and get $5 cashback bonus. 

As for Klook, its main purpose is to provide discounted tickets for tour, activities, shows etc. in many countries. So, why pay the full price when you can have a discounted one? The best part is that their e-tickets will be emailed to you as well as uploaded into your app. With the e-tickets, you can use it for direct entry without the need to queue at the box office to exchange for physical tickets (at least this is my experience in Macau). I've used Klook to purchase the tickets for The House Of Dancing Water and The Batman Flight Show and managed to save $74.40 (I paid $244 instead of $318.40, which is about 23% discount) for 2 persons.  

If you have not download/use Klook , you can download and use this referral code AQC8R to get yourself $4.30 as a sign-up rewards.  

Enjoy the travelling and savings along the way. 


Sunday, May 6, 2018

The Future is Trust Less (Guest Post)

There are a lot of things in this world that operate on a trust. 

Some central authority has to be trusted in order for those who place their trust to agree to it. These include a number of different avenues. From large internet companies to governments and central banks. 

The most important question is, can this trust be discarded? 

Can we operate in a system where trust is not needed in order for you to operate as a society? Can we operate in a system where something is either verifiable or it is not by immediately available public information? 

The answer is yes, we can. This is all through the power of blockchain technology.

The Buzzword of Our Time

It is indeed true that the latest buzzword of our time is blockchain technology. This is been bandied about at nearly every conference and is at the forefront of everyone’s mind. This is mainly because people are inherently skeptical of centralized authorities. 

Do you trust large web companies with your data (looking at you Facebook). Do you trust the large banks and the Federal Reserve with the financial system when they were the sole contributors to the financial crisis? 

By placing all of this information on a public ledger that is instantly verifiable and impossible to manipulate, people will feel safer with the system. They know that the honesty of the system is guaranteed as it relies purely on math and nothing else. 

While the applications for blockchain technology are so broad, we will take a short expose into the power that it has brought to consumers through the realm of cryptocurrencies.

The Power of Digital Money

The way that the financial system works now is quite cumbersome. Sending money to someone in another country can take days and has to rely on a system of partner banks that will route the payment through their books. Irrespective of the time that is involved, the fees can be close to extortion. 

Moreover, if you keep your money in a bank, the money is not yours. If the bank may decide to freeze your account for whatever weird reason then you have no way of getting in. 

You are at the whim of this centralized system. 

However, through the power of cryptocurrency, you can easily send funds to someone else on the blockchain with the click of a button. There is no need for a bank to co-ordinate the transaction. It is merely broadcast to the blockchain and propagated. 

That transaction is cryptocraphically secure and you can see exactly who it is going to. The time that the transaction can take is almost instantaneous. The fees are near meniscal. 

You can send millions of dollars worth of cryptocurrency options across the network in a matter of seconds without so much as a single murmur. Try wiring a mere 100k to a bank account and observe just how much scrutiny it will get.

The Central Actors Don’t Like it

One thing that is clear is that the power of decentralized money is not being welcomed by the likes of the Federal reserves or the large central banks. They do not like to have their sovereignty challenged by the people. 

That is why there is constantly talk about regulation. That is why banks are always shutting down the accounts of people who transact in cryptocurrencies. They do not like to have their monopoly threatened. 

So how do you join the fight against centralized authorities? 

You join the decentralized revolution. You start buying cryptocurrencies and using them in the place of banks. You fight the attempts of the banks to sanction individuals who use cryptocurrencies. 

Pretty soon the large financial institutions will know that decentralized technology is out of the bottle. The tide cannot be turned. The people are saying that the gig is up. Moreover, the other industries that rely on central control will also notice the threat and quake in their boots. 

If you wanted to buy cryptocurrencies, you could use a broker like IQ Option. They have an extensive range of cryptocurrencies for you to purchase. They also have easy options for purchase and withdrawals. 

There are also other options for purchasing physical coins and these include Coinbase and Bitstamp. Your choice of exchange or broker will largely depend on your residency and personal preferences. 

Good luck!

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Evolution of Employee

Recently, the acronym FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) pop-up quite regularly in the Personal Finance Blog Community as well as group chats. Looks like everyone are catching "FIRE" everywhere.

Personally, I am not into this FIRE thingy in its strictest sense as I do still believe in contributing to the commercial/business world, be it as a capacity of employees or otherwise. This bring me to the topic of today's post, which is the evolution of employee. In fact, all I wanted to share can be found in the following picture, it nicely summed up the "Past" and "Future" of employee. 

So, regardless what you call yourself and whether you are already "FIRED" or not, do look into way to continue to contribute to the commercial/business world in whatever capacity you deemed fit. 
Also, for those of you said that you wanted to be "FIRED" so that you can do whatever personal or charitable stuff that you have been putting aside as you are working, my advice is : please do not WAIT, do it anyway NOW! Who said you must be "FIRED" before you can do such thing? 


Like What You See? Subscribe To Us Here...

* indicates required