Rogue One: Is Demo/Paper Trading a Mistake?

Imagine yourself being the manager of an airline company.

Would you allow a junior flight school student to fly a real plane for you, even though this student may have read and understood the theories on how to operate a plane?

By now, you may be thinking:

“Ridiculous, of course no!”

Hey, I figured the same too.

I’d throw this fella into multiple flight simulations and make sure that this flight school student is able to follow standards & procedures for a flight.

More importantly, I’d not want this soon-to-be pilot crashing my real planes if he/she can’t even handle landing the plane safely in a simulated environment.

Make sense, right?

I hope I have made my point of this article by now, but if not, here it goes:

Putting a junior flight school student into simulations is exactly the same as you going through the demo or paper trading phase when you first started investing or trading.

Essentially, you are doing yourself a HUGE favor by making sure that you can follow the rules and strategies consistently in a risk-free environment.

Here’s the thing:

At the beginning of your investing or trading journey, it’s not about making a lot of money. It’s not even about having a ‘feel’ with putting in real money into the market.

It’s about you having the discipline to follow the rules and processes and learn the foundation properly without additional emotional baggage.

Honestly, if you can’t land a plane safely in a simulated environment, what makes you think that you can land a real plane in reality – before crashing a few costly planes and hurting yourself (and others) badly in between?

I believe I’ve made my point clear.


p.s. Related Read: Here's What I’d Do if I Had to Start My Investing Journey All Over Again

Rogue One is a new weekly 1-min article series where I share my random thoughts and ideas.


How I 5x My Investing/Trading Experience with Every Trade I Take

Huge Warning: If you are here thinking of looking for a shortcut to milk money out of the market, this article is NOT for you.

However, if you are looking for mini-routine hacks to help deepen and internalize your learning, I think you will find this post surprisingly helpful.


Regardless if you want to improve as a long-term investor or a short-term trader, it will require skill development. Skill development though, demand for our time and experience. 

For most investors and traders, one trade* typically transpires into a single moment of experience.

What if there is a way for you to turn a single trade into 5 times worth the experience. Interested?

*The verb ‘trade’ is used in this article to reflect a position that you take in the market, regardless if you are investing for the long-term, or trading for the short-term.


You will be surprised that there is no secret recipe here. 

The key to amplifying your experience from every single trade you take is through a systematic post-trade learning routine, all of which I will share with you below:


You did your pre-trade preparation and took a trade – that was 1x experience.

As a long-term investor, you placed a trade after doing your overall research on the fundamentals of a company.

As a short-term trade, you spotted this breakout pattern and placed the trade.

Either way, these transpired into ONE experience.

For most people, their journey ended right there – time to go and enjoy a good movie time, right?

What else is there for you to do?

There's more to do after you take your first trade.

Make detailed notes in your journal – that’s 2x experience

For me, I will write down WHY I took a particular trade.

As an investor, what are the characteristics and risks involved in the company that I’ve just invested in?

As a trader, what is the if-then context and price action setup that made me took that trade?

Putting my trades down into a journal makes doubled my experience with that particular trade.

You'd be surprised to find that there's a lot that you can learn from yourself through journaling.

Discuss trades with like-minded people/community – that’s 3x experience 

One thing that I like doing is to discuss the trades that I took with like-minded traders and investors.

These are the people and communities that, to a certain extent, understand how I make trading/investing decisions.

As an example, they might notice a certain part of the company’s fundamentals that I’ve missed out on in a financial report.

As a result, I can receive feedback on what I’ve missed or maybe a certain perspective that I’ve not considered in that trade – which is extremely helpful.

Discussing your trades with a like-minded community is super helpful in your growth as an investor/trader. (pic: My mini REIT income investing community - let me know if you are curious to know more!)

Visualize your trades – that’s 4x

I can’t emphasize how powerful this routine is to your experience accumulation.

Replaying a particular trade in my mind – what happened, what went right and what could’ve been done better, contributed to my growth tremendously.

Visualization helps in reinforcing the right habit & execution in my subconscious. 

In return, this will make my execution better if there are any similar opportunities in the future.

Visualization helps in reinforcing good trade executions and habits.

End-Of-Month Review – that’s 5x

Many investors and traders have the impression that once a trade is taken then there’s nothing left to learn for the trade.

However, that’s clearly not the case.

For me, reviewing my past trades every end of the month/quarter has been extremely beneficial. 

Reason being, it helped me to again reinforce the good trades that I’ve executed and how I can do better moving forward. 

Now, I know what I can do better with my breakout trades.

Monthly + Quarterly review is a must.

No Money Lah’s Verdict – Multiply Your Growth with Systematic & Mindful Learning Routine  

Now, I want to end this conversation by pointing out the obvious:

Investing and trading are not easy to master. More often than not, it involves a deep learning curve that’ll take time to develop.

Hence, you will need all the feedback from the market to help you deepen your learning experience.

Good or bad, winning or losing, every trade is a learning opportunity. 

In fact, every trade can be more than ONE learning opportunity. Using the methods above, and you can 5x your experience for every trade you take. 

All you need to do is to just tweak your routine a little. For a 5x growth of experience per trade, I’d say the effort is pretty worth it. 


Part of this article is inspired by the book One Good Trade by Mike Bellafiore. Bella is the founder of SMB Capital, a proprietary trading firm in New York. 

He is one of my favorite trading coaches that I follow online which has been giving back tremendous value to the online trading community.

I found that some of his approaches to trading improvement, which has inspired me to implement and write this article, are equally useful in one’s investing journey as well.

 

This is What I’d Do if I Had to Start My Investing Journey All Over Again

I started to expose myself to the world of investing as a university student 5 to 6 years ago.

Well, my ultimate masterplan back then was to crush the market like peanuts and make hell lot of money with it.

(p.s. Obviously, that intention did not end up well for me.)

It took me a long, long time before I eventually discover my sweet spot and investing style (more on this in future articles).

Looking back, I always wonder if I could have been much better with investing (and with money) if I were to put every piece of the puzzle in the right place – one by one, step by step.

Depending on how you look at it, this article can be more like hindsight, or more of a reflection.

But my goal for this article is simple:

If you are totally new and are thinking about getting started, I hope this post will be of great guidance & insight for you.

With that, this is what I would do if I were to start over my investing journey from zero:


Step 1: First, I'd learn about personal finance & build a strong habit around money

New investors be like:

Harr… but I just want to find the best stocks to buy wor…

Yes, boring, I know.

But this is exactly what I would do FIRST if I were to start over my journey, because honestly:

Who cares if you can spot the best stocks to invest in when you have no savings to invest?

Who cares if you have attended the best investing course when you still struggle to pay off your credit card debt every month?

Looking back, instead of splurging on food & entertainment in university, I would start tracking my finances and have a more consistent savings habit (regardless of how little it could be).

I’d also build a stronger foundation & understanding around money (ie. Financial independence, compounding effect, asset & liability) by reading more personal finance (not purely investing) related books.

With all these financial knowledge and habits in place, I am sure that I’d be in a better position to start learning how to invest at the age 21 years old.

Strong financial habits are CRUCIAL to sustainable investing.

Step 2: Instead of asking “What Stocks to Buy?”, ask “What Skills Do I Need?”

“Which company should I invest during this crisis ah?”

“Is now the right time to buy into the shares of XXX yaa?”

These are without a doubt the most asked questions by investors on investing forums, telegram chat & FB groups.

Looking back, I wasted my fair share of time indulging in discussions like these.

If I were to start again, I’d definitely spend NONE of my time consuming any content like this.

Instead, after building a sound financial habit, the next thing I’d do is to learn the skills needed for me to build a solid foundation in investing – be it from books or a mentor/coach.

Some crucial fundamental skills include, but not limited to:

  • How to extract important data and information from a financial report?
  • How to develop a set of investment rules on when to buy & sell?
  • How to construct a decision-making framework & thought process?
  • How to make independent investment decisions without succumbing to headlines and unnecessary news & content?

Can you see how these skills above, once mastered, will be able to answer your ‘What stocks to buy’ question?

Nowadays, most new investors yearn for shortcuts and/or the easy way to make money from the ‘exciting’ stock market – all without considering putting effort into building their foundational skills.

But hey, I get it. That was me once upon a time too.

Just telling you that, if you are new, you might really wanna consider building a solid foundation first before risking your hard-earned money.

The only short cut in sustainable and successful investing is effort and hardwork.

Focus on the skills that you need before even thinking about the returns - read books, get a mentor and get hands on.

Step 3: Setting my initial vision with investing

If I were to start my journey from zero again, I’d want to spend some time constructing a vision for my investing journey: a sort of picture-like vision of the outcome of investing in my life.

This is the stage where I would learn more about different financial stages in life (eg. financial independence, abundance) and set a vision to motivate me to keep honing my skills.

Now, you may disagree with me, but I would not set a fixed goal at this stage (eg. Financial independence by 30 years old).

Reason being, as a university student, there is simply no way for me to know what kind of circumstances I would be upon graduation. Hence, any form of fixed estimation is really inaccurate at best.

That said, as a start, having a conceptual understanding of what’s possible (eg. vision towards financial independence) is important and should not be overlooked.

However, it should also be noted that our lives will change as we move on to different stages in life – hence it is essential to be flexible with the vision and ultimately discovering our goal along the way.

Setting an initial vision of what's possible with investing is crucial in our investing journey.

Step 4: Hone my skills in a simulated environment

Learning the fundamental investment skills & knowledge is a thing, but it doesn’t mean that it is the end of the journey.

In fact, it is only the beginning of the journey.

So, what I would do is I will set up a simulated investing account via platforms like Bursa Marketplace so I can test what I’ve learned in a risk-free environment.

Now, this could be a very boring stage for many. I used to do it (and gave up) too back then as there is no fun at all buying stocks in a simulated environment.

But if I were to start again, I would spend at least 6 months to a year in a simulated environment so I am sure that I can follow my entry and exit rules consistently whenever needed.

No fun, I know. But I’d cut short a lot of my learning curve if I persisted with the practice 5 years ago.

Grow and practice in a simulated environment before using your hard-earned savings & money.

Step 5: Opening a Live Account (Finally!)

Now’s the time to finally worry about which brokerage account to open!

Or better, time to make some big money! *wink* *wink*

But is it so?

In the hindsight, what I would do as a beginner (regardless of my initial capital) is to set my intention right when opening a live account.

Instead of treating my initial few hundred bucks account as my immediate runway to become a millionaire, I would work on my ability to execute my plan/rules consistently without worrying about the returns as much.

By doing so in a small live account, it would build a very solid psychology foundation for me to handle my live account as it grows in the future.

Simply put, I would take my initial years of live investing journey to make mistakes and gain experience – not so much on making huge gains.

Honestly, what brokerage account to open is your least concerning issue when you first started.

Step 6: Continuous Reflection & Self-Discovery + Receive feedback

Remember that I talked about setting an initial vision in Step 3?

Now, with more experience in the market (and assuming I already graduated and started my career), I’d start to find a more solid goal and focus in investing.

This is because, by this stage, I would be more familiar with my financial commitment. Hence, it is easier to calculate and come out with a proper financial goal and action plan.

It is also time for me to start reflecting and discovering my own investing style to accommodate my other commitments in life.

At this stage, joining a community of like-minded investors (not a general Facebook/Telegram group) is hugely beneficial. It serves as a great & efficient way to leverage on great investors' insights and receive feedback to accelerate learning.

At the start, focus on the process of learning, not the outcome.

No Money Lah’s Verdict

As I write this article, I am fully aware of my own investing style – income investing (article coming soon).

That said, I honestly think that if I were to follow the above steps diligently when I first started investing, I’d be discovering my preferred style much sooner.

But the journey of investing doesn’t end at Step 6.

As both life and market are dynamic, it is a must for me to keep refining my skills and goals as I continue in my investing journey.

Anyone that says that they’ve known and learned everything is just another egomaniac with little time left in the market.

Ultimately, while I may not be able to time-travel to change my journey, there is one thing that I can do:

Focus on the right mindset, strive to keep improving, and most importantly, stay humble.


Rogue One: Being Right in The Market

I used to have a bad tendency of wanting to be right in life. Sometimes, I still do.

In a debate, I want to prove my point right – and someone else’s opinion wrong.

In the stock market, I want to be right in the market direction so badly – that being right made me happier than making returns.

But here’s the thing:

This can work both ways.

Whenever I'm proved wrong in a debate, I felt ashamed.

Whenever the market doesn’t go in my favor, I felt frustrated.

The emotional baggage that I carried from trying to prove myself right is suffocating.

Here’s a lesson that I learned the hard way:

We live in a world that makes up of different personalities & agendas.

We invest in a market that makes up of different perspectives & emotions.

In the market, your opinion doesn’t matter. The market moves however it wants. The market is always right.

The key here is not trying to be right all the time. Rather, it’s having the humility to accept the lessons from different outcomes that’ll ultimately benefit you in the long run.

Be open with being right, AND be equally open on being wrong. There is more money to be made when you embrace both sides of the coin.


Rogue One is a new weekly 1-min article series where I share my random thoughts and ideas.


How to Build Your Emergency Fund?

An emergency fund is one of the least discussed topics in personal finance. Yet, it is the most crucial aspect of our financial life that will save us in times of unexpected crisis, if prepared well.

In spite of Covid-19, if you are still earning an income, you should really consider to start building the foundation of your financials via an emergency fund.

Typically, most people would opt for Fixed Deposit (FD) to build their emergency fund. That said, if there is a better alternative in town, would you be interested to learn more?


What is an Emergency Fund?

An emergency fund is essentially the money that you allocate on the side in case of unexpected financial emergencies like unemployment or a loss of income.

As a minimum, one should aim to build a 3 to 6 months’ worth of emergency fund (ie. 3 - 6x Your Monthly Expenses).

Now, it is crucial for us to understand the mechanism around an emergency fund:

It is not about growing the fund like what we do with investing. Rather, with an emergency fund, we are trying to preserve the value of your emergency fund so it doesn't lose its value with time.

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Where to Place Your Emergency Fund: Money Market Fund

Money Market Funds are funds that invest in low-risk assets such as government securities, treasury bills, commercial bonds, and other highly liquid securities.

This means that unlike stock market investments that are generally volatile, the low-risk assets in a Money Market Fund is relatively stable & consistent.

Reason being, most assets under a Money Market Fund have a maturity date where it almost always ensures a return. 

Normally, most assets under a Money Market Fund matures in 1 year or less. This ensures the liquidity of funds that allow you to buy and sell relatively easily.


Money Market Fund vs Fixed Deposit (FD)

(1) Competitive Return

Money Market Funds generally pays a return of 3.0 – 3.5% annually. On the other hand, FD rates have been hovering in an average of 2%.

(2) Better Liquidity

Money Market Fund is generally more liquid than FD. This means that there is no lock-in period and you can deposit and withdraw whenever you want.

(3) Lower Barrier of Entry

Not only that, a Money Market Fund also has a relatively low barrier of entry compared to FD. This means that you can start investing in Money Market Funds from as low as RM10 and still enjoy the returns.

In comparison, there is a relatively high cap for FD deposits that ranges from RM10,000 to RM100,000.


What are the Risks of Investing in Money Market Funds?

Investing in a Money Market Fund is not without its risks, although it is quite minimal relative to the stock market.

(a) Interest Rate Risk 

Interest rate risk refers to the impact of interest rate changes on the valuation of fixed income securities.

Essentially, when interest rates rise, fixed income asset prices generally decline. This may lower the market value of the Fund’s investment in fixed income securities, which will affect the net asset value (NAV) of the Fund.

The opposite may apply when interest rates fall.

(b) Credit/Default Risk 

Credit/Default risk refers to the ability of issuers of fixed income assets (eg. a company’s bond) to make timely payment of interest or profit.

This means that if the issuer faces any challenges to make payment, it may impact the value as well as the liquidity of the fixed income assets of a Fund.

To manage the risks involved, a Money Market Fund will normally opt for high graded bonds and securities. This means that the chance of default will be relatively low and hence ensure peace of mind.

All in all, Money Market Fund’s investment in low-risk assets ensured it’s stability, making it a great FD alternative to build your emergency fund. 

That said, please be reminded that it is NOT a capital and return guaranteed vehicle as there are still some risks involved in it.


3 Money Market Funds Options

There are many money market options out there, varying in fees and deposit amount. For the options below, I am going to share with you 3 options out there which is suitable for most people.

  1. BIMB Dana Al-Fakhim via BEST Investment App

The first money market fund that I think is a great option for most people is the BIMB Dana Al-Fakhim (Money Market Fund) via BEST Investment App.

Its low barrier of entry of just RM10 is the reason why I would recommend this to most people that are looking to build their emergency fund via money market.

To start, just go ahead and install the BEST Investment app on your phone (select Do It Yourself --> BIMB Dana Al-Fakhim), and start contributing to your emergency fund.

Install BEST Investment app HERE.

Click photo for more fund details.
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  1. Opus Money Plus Fund

The reason why I feature Opus Money Plus Fund is due to its overall fee structure that is lower than other money market options out there.

Typically, most money market funds have a management fee of up to 0.5%/annum. In contrast, Opus Money Plus Fund features a maximum management fee of 0.35%/annum.

Account Opening Details HERE.

Click photo for more fund details.
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  1. Phillip Capital Money Market Fund

The final option that I am featuring here is Phillip Capital Money Market Fund.

The reason for this feature is because I am personally having my emergency fund parked with them.

That said, when it comes to ease of access, Phillip Capital is the least friendly one as it requires applicants to still fill up physical forms to open an account.

Account Opening Details HERE.


4. StashAway Simple (Updated 15/6/2020)

Newly launched in June 2020, StashAway Simple comes into the scene as a reliable alternative to Fixed Deposit (FD).

For an in-depth review of StashAway Simple, click HERE.



Money Market Funds Comparison

Click to enlarge

No Money Lah's Verdict

Hopefully this article gave you a good idea on how to get started to build your emergency fund!

Do you have any other suggestions on where to place your money for an emergency? Share with me below! :)


p.s. Already have an emergency fund in place? Wanna kickstart your investing journey for a new (& consistent) income stream?

Scroll below for more info!


Rogue One: Why You'll Not Make Money From that Hot Headline Stock?

Excited about the latest & hottest stock in town that everyone is talking about on Facebook groups, investing forums, and live webinars?

“Argh! I could’ve made 15% if I bought into that stock a few weeks ago when it was at RM1.00!”

Then, you either have a good whole day of self-blaming for not buying into that stock ‘a few weeks ago’ OR you rush in to chase the price in hope that you can catch the remaining up move of the stock.

Isn’t this familiar, kind of like a Déjà vu?

Because you have likely experienced it last week, and even the previous month too – how did that turn out for you?

Stocks or news that make it to the headline & social media, well, takes time to appear on the headline.

By then:

Skilled day-traders that know how to read price action & order flow have taken advantage of the move.

Experienced investors with foresight about the value of the stock have already secured their positions months before this headline.

When everyone in town is crazy and talking about a stock, you are probably too late - timing, mindset and skill-wise -  into the party. 


Rogue One is a new weekly 1-min article series where I share my random thoughts and ideas.


Wahed 2020 Review: The First Halal-Investing Robo-Advisor in Malaysia with Huge Potential!

Late last year, I was introduced to Wahed, a robo-investing platform that prides itself on being the first halal investment robo-advisor in Malaysia.

Less than 4-months of launch in Malaysia (Wahed was started in New York), Wahed has been making an impression among fellow fintech and investment enthusiasts.

Being an enthusiast myself, I have also signed up for a Wahed portfolio to personally try it out myself, and got a $5 (RM20) FREE bonus while doing so  (remember to apply my promo code “YIXCHI1” to get the bonus!). 

In this article, let’s dive deep into Wahed, and see if this is a robo-advisor that you should invest in!




(1) First thing first: What is Wahed?

Wahed is a robo-advisor that helps invest your money into Shariah-compliant investments*.

What differentiates Wahed from other robo-advisors is that they are the first company that has received an Islamic Robo Advisory license from the Malaysian Securities Commission.

As such, Wahed also takes up an important role in fulfilling the Malaysian Muslim community that is looking for an investment platform that is aligned with their values of life.


*For readers who are unclear, Shariah-compliant investments are investments governed by the requirements of Shariah law and the principles of the Muslim religion.

Wahed Invest is one of the new robo-advisor platform in Malaysia.



(2) Who Certifies Wahed’s Shariah compliance?

Wahed’s Shariah review is done by their Shariah Advisor, Dr. Aznan Hasan.

Dr. Aznan is the President of the Association of Shariah Advisors in Islamic Finance & Deputy Chairman of Shariah Advisory Council of the Securities Commission (SC). He is also a former member of the Shariah Advisory Council of Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM).

Wahed also has Straightway Ethical Advisory LLC (a US-based Shariah financial advisory firm) to advise them on matters of Shariah compliance and Islamic financial ethics at the group level.


Source: Wahed’s Official Site




(3) How Wahed Invests Your Money?

Now, though positioning themselves as the forerunner of halal investing, Wahed is at its core a robo-advisor that invest on behalf of their users too, just like its competitor StashAway and Mytheo.

Hence, Wahed is definitely a robo-advisor that you should not overlook if you are looking to build your passive investing portfolio, regardless of your religion and background.


(a) Fund Management Methodology

Just like its robo-advisor competitors, Wahed’s fund management strategy is powered by its proprietary financial algorithms. This means that there is no way we can back-test the strategy ourselves aside from the information shown at Wahed’s official site.

Unlike StashAway’s ERAA methodology, there is very little mention of how exactly Wahed manages the users’ funds.

That said, Wahed does mention that its financial algorithms are derived from the Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT). Essentially, the idea behind MPT is to help an individual create optimal portfolios that are tailored to the needs of the user based on one’s risk tolerance.

Personally, it is a little bummer to see so few details about the investing methodology employed by Wahed on their website (Wahed, take note).


More explanation about the investing methodology behind the scene would be very helpful.


(b) Investment Instruments: 5 Major Asset Classes

The good thing, though, is Wahed does give us an idea of what they are using their users’ funds to invest in.

As per my experience**, there are 5 asset classes that Wahed will invest our funds in, namely:


    1. US Stocks (MyETF Dow Jones US Titans 50)
    2. Malaysian Stocks (MyETF MSCI Malaysia Islamic Dividend)
    3. Sukuk (Islamic Bond) (RHB Islamic Bond Fund)
    4. Gold (TradePlus Shariah Gold Tracker)
    5. Cash

There are 6 different risk profile that you can choose from. Depending on your risk profile, there will be a difference in the allocation of your funds across these assets.


**Information on assets and asset allocation is accurate is per my record when I signed up for a Wahed account. Unfortunately, unlike StashAway, Wahed does not reveal the total number of asset classes that they can invest in.




(4) Fees Comparison: Competitive, But Can Be Better

One big advantage that robo-investing services have over conventional mutual funds is its fees.

Generally, while typical mutual funds have an average fee of 3-5% per year, robo-investing services charge only a fraction of the fee (<1%).

This is important, as a few percentage differences in fee could mean a lot to your return. Here is a simple calculation to give you an idea:


 RM100,000 at 5% fee per year = RM5,000 on fees.


RM100,000 at 1% fee per year = RM1,000 on fees (and no, robo-investing services offer lower fee than 1% at RM100,000).

The question now is, how are Wahed’s annual fees compared to the other presently available robo-investing platforms – StashAway and MyTheo?

Now, every robo-investing platform has its own tiers of pricing. Hence, to make my life (and yours) easier, I am comparing the fee in terms of the category of fund amount:


Full fee details: StashAway, Wahed, MyTheo.

Now, as you can see, Wahed’s annual fees are competitive, and it gets even cheaper when your fund exceeds RM500,000 and above.

That said, in terms of versatility of fees, I think StashAway is still the robo-advisor to beat.




DON’T MISS THIS: Click HERE to Get an EXCLUSIVE $5 (RM20) BONUS When You Fund Your Wahed Portfolio today (REMEMBER to apply my promo code “YIXCHI1”)!




(5) Customer Service: Up Your Game, Wahed!

At this point in the article, I would like to say that while lower fees are important, it is not everything. A lower fee that compromises the overall customer experience is a NO-NO.

After all, what’s the point if a company has a low fee but no one is attending to customers’ issues properly?

To test out Wahed’s customer experience, I sent out inquiries to all 3 channels of customer support (as stated available in the Support section of the app): Email, Phone & WhatsApp, all during office hours.

Firstly, Wahed’s response time for email is decent. However, I failed to reach out to the support team via call and it is also disappointing to see that there is no WhatsApp chat support available yet.

As a whole, I think Wahed has to really up their game to stay competitive in customer experience when competitor like StashAway is already providing more support channels for users to reach out to them.





(6) How to Open an Account?

Opening a Wahed account is simple and can be done in less than 10 minutes (Click HERE to install the Wahed app on your phone). And while doing so, remember to apply my promo code “YIXCHI1” to get a $5 (RM20) FREE Bonus when you fund your Wahed portfolio!

The account opening process is also straightforward. You will be asked about your investing goals and your savings in order to identify your risk profile.

Then, you will be recommended with one of the 6 portfolios from very conservative to very aggressive. Of course, you can also choose your own portfolio if you have a personal preference.

Once you completed all the procedures, it will take a few days to get your account verified and you are good to start!


You will be recommended a portfolio upon completion of your profile.




(7) What I Like About Wahed?


(a) Huge Market Potential

What Wahed is providing is truly one of its kind at the moment, and fits in well with the demographics of the majority Muslim community in Malaysia.

In short, Wahed is the to-go robo-advisor platform for people that are looking for Shariah-compliant investments.


(b) Help in Promoting Ethical Halal Investing in Malaysia

Given its unique positioning, Wahed is a great platform to promote halal investing to fellow Malaysian users regardless of religion and background – of which I like its core principles and concepts.




(8) What Could be Better?


(a) Customer Service needs Some Work

As discussed above, Wahed needs to put more effort to improve its customer service. That said, I do understand that Wahed has just launched in Malaysia (Oct 2019) and may need time to build up their Malaysian team.

On this matter, I will revisit Wahed’s customer service in my review next year and see if there’re any improvements.


(b) App UI needs Refurnishing

One thing that annoys me while using Wahed’s app is that the app interface seems to have issues showing the last letter and decimals of the word and numbers (eg. Overvie’X’ and RM100.’XX’). This may be something that Wahed will have to resolve with their backend team.


Wahed must improve their UI.


(c) Minimum Deposit of RM100

Unlike competitors like StashAway that has no minimum deposit, Wahed has a minimum deposit of RM100.

While this may not be a big issue, but it is definitely not as flexible as other robo-advisors around and I would love to see this minimum being lifted in the future.


(d) Only 1 Portfolio for each User (for Now)

As of the time of writing, there is no way for me to create another portfolio in Wahed other than the one I’ve created when I opened my account.

Meaning, I am not able to open a Moderate risk portfolio if I started off with an Aggressive risk Portfolio.

This is kind of a bummer because, in comparison, StashAway allows multiple portfolios of different risk profiles.




No Money Lah’s Verdict – A Robo-Advisor with Huge Potential

Is Wahed a good robo-investing platform?

Personally, I feel that Wahed has done a good job of positioning itself at the forefront of halal investing in the robo-advisor space.

Not only that, I’ve also heard good feedback from the Malaysian community, especially their awesome referral reward: Fund a minimum of RM100 and get $5 (RM20) FREE Bonus – Instant 20% Gain!.

If Wahed is able to enhance its customer service and user experience, I foresee that it will definitely give competitors like StashAway and Mytheo a good run of their money.

If you find this review on Wahed useful, my suggestion is to TAKE ACTION on your investments RIGHT NOW: Time wasted on inactions is more painful than money badly managed.

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p.s. Which Robo-Advisor Should I Invest In?

Now, if you are wondering if you should go for one robo-advisor over another, why not try investing in these platforms and see which one fits you the best?


StashAway: Claim your EXCLUSIVE 50% off your fees for 6 months when you use my link HERE!


Mytheo: Enjoy FREE 3 months management fee when you use my link HERE!




Disclaimers:


  1. Past return is not indicative of future performance. (just like your mom may not be angry at you today doesn’t mean she will not get angry with you tomorrow) 
  2. Now, one thing that I have yet to comment is Wahed’s return. As Wahed is still new in Malaysia (since Oct. 2019), I cannot comment on the return – and neither you should take others’ words as it is. I will keep monitoring the return and give my feedback in my 2021 review. 
  3. This post may contain affiliate links that afford No Money Lah a small amount of commission should you sign up through the links.

 


3 Ideas to Maximize the Return of Your Angpau Money (Tried & Tested)

Gong Xi Fa Cai! Gong Hey Fat Choy!

Happy Chinese New Year everyone – may this new year showers you with health and wealth!

If you are like me, you know that growing up, we do not get to keep our angpau money. Instead, our angpaus are being kept and managed by our parents.

The good thing? It prevented us (the child) from spending on unnecessary stuff. On the flip side, it made a lot of us pretty bad angpau money ‘managers’ upon growing up.

 If that’s the case for you, here are some solid suggestions (which I personally do) on how to best make use of your angpau money!

 


 

#1 Invest them! (Starting from RM0)

Getting your angpau invested is definitely one of the best and most direct ways to start a prosperous new year!

If you are new to investing and/or have no extra time to manage your money, be sure to check out StashAway to help manage your investments, hassle-free!

Essentially, StashAway is a smart wealth management platform that helps you manage your investments via algorithms in accordance with your risk appetite and economic condition – think of it as an (often cheaper) alternative to mutual funds.

Personally, I have been using StashAway to manage my passive investment portfolio and have no problem recommending it to people due to its reliability (regulated by Securities Commission) & lower fees than typical mutual funds.

In terms of returns, StashAway managed to give a return of around 10% for my combined aggressive portfolios in 2019 – a very respectable return by all means. Check out StashAway’s 2-year performance in the photo below.

Alternatively, there are other similar wealth management services like Wahed (Promo Code to get FREE RM40  bonus when you deposit a min. of RM100: YIXCHI1) and MyTheo (Promo Code to get 3 months FREE management fee: CHINYXWD49) of which I will be covering in the future.

If you are keen to try out StashAway, be sure to click HERE to get an exclusive 50% OFF your StashAway fees – AND no worries on how much you get for your angpau as you can get started with any amount at all!   

 

StashAway’s Performance compared to same-risk benchmark. (Source: StashAway)

 

 


 

#2 Spend on Books for even Bigger Return!

Nothing pays more dividends than acquiring new skills and knowledge.

If there is one thing that I can comfortably recommend anyone to spend on, books will top the list without a doubt.

Now, if you’ve been following me on social media, you’ll know that I am a huge book lover.

I enjoy reading books on personal growth, habits and money & investment – and here are 3 books that you should not miss in 2020:

 

(a) Mindset by Carol Dweck (Personal Development)

Mindset by Carol Dweck is a great book on personal growth that I am personally reading at the moment.

This book emphasizes the importance of having a growth mindset in personal life, sustainable leadership and long-lasting relationship – and the approach that you can apply to build this mindset.

Definitely check out this book if you are looking to make a significant breakthrough in 2020.

 

“True self-confidence is “the courage to be open—to welcome change and new ideas regardless of their source.” Real self-confidence is not reflected in a title, an expensive suit, a fancy car, or a series of acquisitions. It is reflected in your mindset: your readiness to grow.”

― Carol S. Dweck, Mindset: The New Psychology Of Success

 

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(b) Atomic Habits by James Clear (Habit-Building)

Atomic Habits by James Clear is hands down, the best book on habits that I’ve read in 2019.

Essentially, this book rips off myths on conventional habit-building methods and introduces us to simple & scientifically proven hacks to build a good habit that lasts.

If you have problem building habits that last, this is THE book to go for.

 

“You should be far more concerned with your current trajectory than with your current results.”

― James Clear, Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones

 

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(c) The Personal MBA by Josh Kaufman (Money, Personal Finance & Business)

The Personal MBA by Josh Kaufman will be my next read after I am done with Mindset.

The reason I am excited to read this book is that it covers a comprehensive aspect of personal finance and business – which I think would contain a whole lot of golden nuggets for me to discover.

Plus, you can now get this book at 41% OFF – which is really a great deal that I do not want you to miss out on.

 

“You can’t make positive discoveries that make your life better if you never try anything new.”

― Josh Kaufman, The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business

 

 


 

#3 Optimize Your Financial Goals with a Professional Personal Financial Planner (BONUS: Free Consultation Session using my link below)

If you are looking to have a prosperous new year in 2020, you will definitely need a solid money plan on how to grow your wealth (like seriously).

This is even more important especially if you have a goal in mind that would need a big sum of money to accomplish in this new decade:

Planning to get married? Buying your first house or car? Looking to retire soon?

How about the plan for a trip to Japan, or the idea of changing your 3-year old smartphone this year?

If you have all these big (and small) financial goals in mind, and are still clueless about how to achieve them, engaging a Personal Financial Planner is the way to go.

Personally, I have worked alongside my very first Personal Financial Planner to get my 2020 financials planned with effective action steps – and I’ve learned so much about my finances.

Now, I DO NOT want you to pay for a Personal Financial Planner if you do not find value in their services.

For that, I am throwing in a FREE financial consultation session for you to find out for yourself (Click HERE to register) – I promise that it will be a time well-spent with great insights!

 

Working alongside my personal financial planner

 


 

Verdict: The Best Return of Investment in Money Spent is When Your Grow Alongside Them.

One of my biggest satisfaction when it comes to money spent is to feel or know that I’ve learned something from the transaction.

As of the case for angpau money, it is even more meaningful to use them in ways that could elevate your wealth and/or growth to kickstart the year.

For me, that’s the best return ever.

Take care and have a great festive season! 🙂

Yi Xuan

 


Disclaimers:

(1) This post may contain affiliate links, which afford No Money Lah a commission if you make a purchase.

(2) Any investment related sharing in this article is purely my personal opinion and should not be taken as a buy/sell call. Please seek financial advice from a professional financial planner for this matter. 

 


Is Now (or anytime) a Good Time to buy Gold?

If you are considering to start buying gold or to add on to your current gold holdings, this article is for you.

The second half of 2019 has been an interesting time for gold.

Gold went from the year’s low of around $1270/ounce to a 5-year high of $1565/ounce – a huge 23% run, before settling for $1555/ounce to end the year.

This is an interesting time because I started to see a lot of ‘Buy Gold’ or ‘Gold is the Safe Haven’ related articles and contents sprouting around social media.

Clearly, people’s interest in gold has been rising especially with increasing uncertainties around global geopolitical issues.

With a simple price action analysis, let’s explore whether it is now a good time to buy gold? If now’s not a good time, then when’s the best time to do so?

TLDR –

In my opinion, gold would likely see its next bullish run if it is able to find a stable footing above the $1525 – $1610/ounce resistance zone (~RM215 – RM227/gram*).



*USD 1.00 = RM4.00 for ease of calculation


First thing first – Where does Gold Price stand now?

Again, gold is in an interesting phase right now.

From the gold’s 10-year weekly chart below, it can be seen the price of gold has finally broken away from a 6-year large corrective structure since the 2nd quarter of 2019.

This is significant, as the bulls (or the buyers) are finally taking over the overall trend after a 6-year tug-of-war against the bears (or the sellers).

In short, it can be said that the market is becoming more bullish towards gold for now.  

10-year weekly chart for gold. (Get your chart HERE)

That said, is it the right time now to buy gold?

As of now, the price of gold stands at a unique point.

Referring to the 10-year weekly chart below, the price zone between $1525 – $1610/ounce has been a key interaction point between the Bulls (Buyers) and the Bears (Sellers) over the past decade.

As an example, the first point of contact was in April 2011, when the Bears defended the zone from the Bulls for the first time.

Thereafter, the Bulls have defended the zone 3 times between 2011 – 2012. This showed the conviction of the buyers to defend the zone from being further pushed downward.

However, it was also in the same zone that the Bears actually took control in March 2013 and pushed the price below the zone – which started a 6-years long corrective phase.

At this moment, the buyers have been testing the zone twice since late 2019. That said, the Bears are clearly still holding the fortress firmly against the buying pressure.

In short, $1525 - $1610 is a key price zone that the Bulls (buyers) must overcome should we want to see a more significant bull run in 2020.

$1525 - 1610 is an important price zone with many interactions between Bulls & Bears over the past 10 years.

What if… the Bulls (buyers) manage to break above the zone?

Now, if the Bulls break the Bears’ defense on the key $1525 - $1610/ounce zone (RM215 – 227/gram), chances are this would trigger the Stop Loss orders of the Bears on the other side of the zone.

This would stop some key sellers out, and would likely lead to a change in the overall market bias to be even more bullish.

Should that happen, I am anticipating a more aggressive buying pressure from the market.

This upside would likely be going to continue until the next key resistance level of $1800/ounce (~RM254/gram) – a 12% potential upside from the $1610 level.

In short, I will be more bullish towards gold should price manage to overcome and find a stable footing above the key $1525 – 1610 resistance zone.

$1800 is the next key resistance should price breaks above the $1525 - 1610 price zone.

What if… the Bears (sellers) manage to defend their position at the $1525 – 1610/ounce zone?

We cannot say with 100% certainty that Bulls will take over the trend – what if the otherwise happens?

Let’s say the Bears (sellers) manage to defend the $1525 – 1610/ounce zone, chances are the price of gold will be pushed downwards away from the zone.

With that in mind, the next key price zone where the Bulls (buyers) would likely be active again would be the zone between $1365 – 1465/ounce. (RM 193 – 207/gram)

On that note, the gold price could either make a bullish rebound (green arrow) if the $1365 – 1465/ounce zone is well defended by the bulls. Otherwise, a further bearish momentum could continue if price breaks below the zone (red arrow).

$1365 - 1445 is the next key support zone should price is not able to make it above the current zone.

Good to Know – China has been buying gold at an increasing rate**

In my previous article, there is a mention of how China’s gold holding makes up less than 8% of the country’s total reserve.

However, global geopolitical issues, especially the US-China trade war which started in the second half of 2018 have made an impact on the rate of China’s gold reserve.

Since the 3rd quarter of 2018, China has been buying gold at an increasing rate (4Q2018: 0.5%, 1Q2019: 1.8% and 2Q2019: 2.2%).

On that note, geopolitical uncertainties are definitely part of the reason why gold price has been increasing in 2019.

China's Gold Reserve (in tonnes) (3Q 2016 - 2Q 2019) [Source: World Gold Council]

No Money Lah’s Verdict

I have always enjoyed reading and studying about gold.

Gold’s unique characteristic from an economic and cultural perspective makes it one of the most interesting and valuable commodities in the world.

However, since gold is a volatile (and to some extent, speculative) commodity, I am more inclined to have the thoughts that people should approach gold in a well-researched manner.

To summarize from today’s article, I will be more bullish on gold should price breaks above the key $1525 - $1610/ounce zone as this will follow with a 12% potential upside (towards $1800/ounce).

Hope you enjoyed this read! 😊






Thinking about opening a gold investment account? Definitely check out the link below to get started!


Disclaimer: This article is written based on my best research as of the time of writing, and should not be considered as a buy/sell recommendation. Please do your own due diligence and/or seek professional advice when making your investment decision.

--

**Credit: Part of this article is made possible with the help of my friend, Mr. Varian Soong.

Mr. Varian Soong is an Economics graduate from University of Malaya. Being one of the brightest of his batch, he came in as the 1st runner-up in the 2017 CFA Institute Research Challenge. 

Also, he has completed CFA Level 2 professional paper and he is now pursuing his professional career as a Credit Analyst in Public Mutual Bhd. 

Connect with him on LinkedIn HERE.


3 MUST-BUILD Mindsets to become a Better Investor & Person in 2020

Hey everyone!

First of all, I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you Happy New Year! 2019 has been challenging yet really amazing for me. What’s more, the year was even better as I get to know everyone of you – your support and feedbacks have been tremendously motivating to me.

As I gather my takeaways as a developing trader, investor and, well, a person, I would like to share with you 3 MOST IMPORTANT mindsets that you must work on or cultivate in 2020.

From my personal experience and studies, these 3 mindsets are crucial for a person to develop and master in order to achieve any kind of significant breakthrough in his or her life & investing endeavors.

Now, it must be mentioned beforehand that building these mindsets would not promise immediate monetary returns. However, I am confident that having them will make your 2020 an extremely empowering year to live in.


#1 Mindset: Focus on Process over Outcome

A mistake that many beginning investors do is to anchor their investing performance to the return of their investments.

This mindset is what I call the ‘Outcome-based Mindset’, and it is THE BIGGEST mindset hurdle that an investor must overcome to stand a chance in the market.

Reason being, there is no 100% certainty that the market is going to give us what we want. When that happens, the confidence of a beginner investor will get shaken to the extent they may eventually develop a pessimistic view towards investing.

Hence, in 2020, focus on getting the process right. Aim to build a ‘Process-based Mindset’.

Focus on the process of learning. Focus on the process of executing your investing plan properly. Focus on the process of growing.

Amateur investors aim for the outcome, the successful ones focus on the process.

Focus on getting the process right in 2020 and the outcome will come.

#2 Mindset: Consistency is the Key

Now, when I mention consistency, I am not talking about the %/year that you can make consistently.

Rather, I am referring to one’s consistency in the execution of his or her processes.

You cannot control the market movement (external factor), but you can certainly take charge of how consistent you are in your process and effort (internal factor).

Be consistent in your routine to study financial reports & charts. Be consistent in your process to filter for quality investments. Be consistent in your risk management.

Ultimately, be consistent in your pursuit of mastery.

As cliché as it sounds, the consistency of ‘outcome’ that amateur investors dream of – they come from the consistency of ‘process’ that successful investors practice to heart.

Consistency in execution leads to consistency in outcome over the long run.

#3 Mindset: Relate to Challenges with Positivity

As the year goes by, it is for sure that there’ll be challenges in your life and investing journey.

In times like this, people with a mediocre attitude will look for someone or something to blame for their encounter.

On the other hand, people with a growth mindset will take charge of their life challenges and take it as an opportunity to improve.

Fear and challenges consume the people with a fixed mindset, but lift the people with a growth mindset.

Lady luck favors the positives.

Verdict

2020 is an exciting year. For the year and the decade ahead, things will evolve. The market will change. Some skillsets will become obsolete, and some will become high on demand.

However, a healthy mindset is timeless. No era of time will ever make a growth mindset irrelevant.

With that, I wish you the very best in your life and investing journey in 2020, and have a great, great year ahead! :) 

-Yi Xuan


Get Your 2020 Financial Goals Mapped-Out Strategically with Practical Action Steps!

Stepping into the new year (and decade) and still have ABSOLUTELY no clue about how you can achieve your ideal financial lifestyle & goals?

Or rather, you have some idea about your financials but are still 'kind-of' miserable about HOW TO REALLY ACHIEVE YOUR FINANCIAL GOALS?

Personally, I had a fair share of these experiences in 2019, until I finally consulted my first ever Personal Financial Planner to get my 2020 financials properly planned - and it is the BEST thing that I've done for myself in preparation for the new year and decade!

Hey wait - I DON'T WANT YOU TO PAY for your Personal Financial Planner if you are not convinced that they are not able to add value to your financials.

Hence, as a No Money Lah's supporter & reader, I am throwing in a FREE Financial Consultation just for YOU!

Find out HOW and CHECK OUT my personal experience working alongside my first personal financial planner BELOW!