Haven’t gotten down to writing much lately. Shall take a shortcut and lump it all together here.

Smartly Robo-Advisor – What Gives?

Things can change really fast.

Let’s see. I can’t seem to find the Smartly’s team page anymore on their official website – which led me to presume that some manpower movement might have taken place.

Digging at LinkedIn, Kentwell has concurrent new role at AlgoHybrid. Danielle has moved on to the MAS. Artur, CEO of Smartly, is concurrently a partner at Change and even Smartly’s CTO is listed at Change’s team page. I haven’t heard from Keir in a long while.

For one, the educational platform they touted that differentiated them from competitors is no longer found on the webpage as well.

To be honest, I don’t ask for much. Even a basic feature like the “Activity” icon has been there for months – work in progress it seems.

Not much of any Facebook engagement or social media posts too, although they did publish a blog post a few days ago. A sign of things to come?

For a robo-advisor, one has got to be in it for the long term. However, the platform isn’t instilling that much confidence in me at the moment.

Maybe it’s time to reconsider my monthly investments? It’s a good thing that I’m concurrently trying out all three robo-advisors.

Bogleheads Portfolio Using Robo-Advisors

I’ve been blogging for quite some time. Yet, I’m not a big fan of re-writing content even though I probably should, by giving them an updated perspective. Before the age of robo-advisors descended upon Singapore, we have less tools (mainly ETFs) with which to construct an indexing portfolio.

My preferred choice then was a simple Bogleheads 3-Fund portfolio.

  1. STI ETF (SG equities)
  2. ABF Bond Index Fund (SG bond)
  3. Vanguard VWRD (Global equities) // bleeding $ due to poor StanChart forex rates

With robo-advisors, it’s a totally different ball game now with easy access and auto-rebalancing.

My preferred choice now is the Bogleheads 4-Fund portfolio. I’m slowly transiting my portfolio to reflect it.

  1. STI ETF (SG equities)
  2. ABF Bond Index Fund (SG bonds) // or cash in a high interest bank account like CIMB FastSaver
  3. Robo-Advisor (Global equities)
  4. Robo-Advisor (Global bonds)

Quite a few people have been asking about this, but I thought it seemed to be fairly easy to DIY.

Let’s say you have $200,000 sitting in the bank and is interested in the Bogleheads portfolio.

  1. You take $50K and buy STI ETF (ES3).
  2. You take $50K and buy ABF SG Bond Index Fund (A35). Alternatively, you may prefer to park it in a high interest bank account like CIMB FastSaver and get 1%.
  3. You take $100K and go to a robo-advisor like StashAway or Autowealth and invest it with them. They will split it down to your desired equities/bonds allocation.
  4. Re-balance and/or add funds accordingly.

Crytocurrency Mania

For many of us millenials, the cryptocurrency boom/bubble/whatever you want to call it, is our first experience of such a phenomenon. I was too young to appreciate the dot-com boom and doom.

The signs (and charts) are eerily similar.

Add the word “blockchain” in a company’s name and see it’s share price magically go up?

Hearing more from both the younger and older ones about cryptocurrency mining and investing?

For me, it is an excellent chance to get my hands dirty. Nothing beats practical experience. Play money, remember?

For educational purposes, why not simulate a pseudo portfolio (whether it is $500 or $50,000 doesn’t matter) of 50% Bitcoin and 50% Ethereum? You’ll see the effect it has on overall portfolio volatility (compared to 100% Bitcoin). Is volatility in fact your best friend? What happens when you attempt to re-balance the allocation back to the original weightage? Can it be done easily? How does the spread and transaction costs eat into your gains?

For the record, John Bogle says “avoid bitcoin like the plague.”

“Bitcoin has no underlying rate of return,” said Bogle, 88, who started the first index fund in 1976. “You know bonds have an interest coupon, stocks have earnings and dividends, gold has nothing. There is nothing to support bitcoin except the hope that you will sell it to someone for more than you paid for it.”

It’s “crazy” to invest in the digital asset, he added. “Bitcoin may well go to $20,000 but that won’t prove I’m wrong. When it gets back to $100, we’ll talk.”

What do I think? Bogle said Bitcoin. He didn’t mention Ethereum. So, tread carefully. You can see 30% or 40% gains in a matter of days. There will be temptations.

Black Friday Sale

When other people are busy shopping, I spent some money (well there’s a sale) to upgrade the hosting plan that my blog is using. This means you should no longer see messages like the one below.

With 400+ Facebook page likes, 700+ in the Facebook group and 700+ subscribers, there is increasing demand placed on my blog to service the heavier load. In the past two month, I have been getting repeated alerts on peak usage from my web host.

Nothing to worry about. Not going to ask for donations or anything like that. Revenue from ads are sufficient to cover the long term increase in hosting costs. All I ask is that if you’re using an ad-blocker, please disable it for my blog address. Those one or two cents add up 🙂

Turtle Investor Annual Giveaway

I haven’t had the time to pump out the annual giveaway contest as I’m migrating my subscribers to a new provider. I hope not, but do expect some minor hiccups (oops) along the way.

I’ll most likely request for you to acknowledge the email address just once 😉