The Truth About Bitcoin

Yes, Bitcoin. Everybody heard of it. Everybody saw it on the news. Some got rich because of it, and some got poor because of it. Some hate it and swear to never touch it, while some preach it like a gospel. So what’s with all these buzz around Bitcoin? I will breakdown everything I know so far on this fascinating asset class and busting some truth for all the fear mongers and non-believers out there.

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Before I get started, do understand that I am biased in my viewpoint as I am bullish on Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, and before you just scroll away and think I’m just another speculator, hear me out:

Try out the power of blockchain technology yourself. Once you try it, you can come back and discuss Bitcoin with me again, as I believe it will change your perspective about the history of money, how traditional finance is really in a paradigm shift and why the banking system that we use and live in are slowly being disrupted just like Internet did in the 1980s. (How does T+2 wire transfers still exist and banks charging clients for transfer/withdrawal fees???)

Also, if you understood the Gamestop saga and also the 2008 financial crisis, decentralisation is more crucial than ever and I cannot emphasise more of that. When giant institutions gets to manipulate the market (Robinhood) or screwed up big time (2008 Bond Markets Bubble), the governments bail them out but the retail investors with no power gets trampled upon and left with nothing. If you think that putting money in your bank is safe, read on and you will think otherwise.

Before we move on, let me ask you: Would you rather 4-5 individuals controlling the entire monetary system deciding when to start or stop the printing machine while the rest watch and obey or would you prefer millions of individuals maintaining trust and integrity of the platform and no single entity has absolute control? Yup, the latter is what decentralisation is all about.

Bitcoin is the Apex predator of the financial system

There is no doubt about it. Bitcoin is the fastest asset to reach 1 trillion market cap and it did it within 12 years. Yes. 12 YEARS.

Source: Visual Capitalist

What does that imply? This means Bitcoin is becoming more mainstream as the days go by and it has proven itself to be the foundation of a new financial system being created by the internet itself. With more mainstream adoption from the likes of public companies, institutional investors wanting a piece of the pie and the creation of Bitcoin ETFs, perhaps this time Bitcoin is here to stay.

Also, there is a thing to note about financial natural selection, where the most powerful asset class will command the most monetary energy flowing to it in the shortest amount of time. Currently, no other asset is able to accumulate 1 trillion worth of value as quickly as Bitcoin did, and I hope you see the point I am trying to make here.

The term ‘Apex predator” is actually coined by Bitcoin maximalist and investor Anthony Pompliano and here this what he said about Bitcoin:

Bitcoin is the apex predator of financial markets. You’ve got digital sound money that’s grown at a compound annual growth rate of 200% for a decade.

And if you’re sitting there and you manage a treasury, you’ve got cash on your balance sheet, you tell me where else you’re going to put it where you can get that type of growth. 200% compound annual growth rate for a decade, there’s nowhere else they can put it.

We’re printing an unprecedented amount of money, and so they’re looking for a safe haven, and Bitcoin is that apex predator that everyone is concluding is the answer.”

Why does this matter? Because what many do not understand and are not aware of, is the dangers of quantitative easing, or simply the unlimited printing of money in these unprecedented times by Central Banks worldwide.

Owning Bitcoin is not about getting rich, but how to not be poor in the long run.

Devaluation of Fiat

I don’t need to elaborate on the above, but I want the focus here to be on the US Dollar.

Ever since the inception of the US dollar (Gold Standard) all the way to the end of the Bretton Woods system and the inception of the “fiat currency” from 1970s onwards, the US dollar has been steadily depreciating and for very good reasons:

  1. Inflation
  2. Reduce trade deficits (benefits government)
  3. Lowers interest payments on government debt (benefits government)
  4. Boost exports (benefits government)

So in essence, the cash we are holding today, regardless of it being USD/SGD/British Pound or Yen or whatever fiat currency out there, they lose value over the long run due to a multitude of factors, and also the concept of Time Value of Money here. The dollar you are holding today will not be worth the dollar it is 10 years from now.

To put things into perspective, the British Pound Sterling (GBP), just like its name, is supposed to denote that 1 GBP was to match the price of 1 pound of Sterling Silver (Silver in short) when it first incepted, but today, to purchase the 1 pound of Sterling Silver you need to pay approximately 272 GBP .(at the point of writing)

Getting my point? While fiat is important for day to day use, it gets more and more risky to hold on to cash over the long run as you are GUARANTEED to lose your wealth over time as a result of fiat devaluation.

Bitcoin Myths Busters

Below are some of the few arguments that naysayers (who simply didn’t bother reading up or are plain ignorant) say about Bitcoin:

  1. Bitcoin is unlimited
  2. Bitcoin has no intrinsic value
  3. Bitcoin is too volatile as an investment
  4. Bitcoin is a scam and a giant Ponzi scheme
  5. Bitcoin will never replace cash

The other bearish arguments revolve around these 5 main arguments but lets get into it.

Myth: Bitcoin is Unlimited. (WRONG) Bitcoin has a total supply of 21 million. No more no less. It goes through halving events which means the miners rewards per block get divided by half every 4 years. What does this mean? By using some simple economic concepts, you will understand that the main value proposition of Bitcoin is scarcity.

The fact that is is limited and the fact that it gets more difficult to mine over time, solidified its position as a superior asset that offers individuals the choice to store their monetary energy into an something which retains value over time. So no, Bitcoin is not unlimited. In fact, the very cash you are holding in your wallet, tin can and bank account are the ones that are unlimited. You can read up more here.

Myth: Bitcoin has no intrinsic value. (WRONG) To say that Bitcoin has no intrinsic value is like saying Apples are better than Oranges simply because red is nicer looking than the colour orange. One simply cannot compare Bitcoin and an individual stock head to head as it is meaningless.

You cannot conduct any meaningful analysis using traditional fundamental analysis or valuation models such as Discounted Cash Flow because Bitcoin is not a company and it does not generate cash, neither does it generate shareholder value or anything of the sort.

Instead, Bitcoin’s intrinsic value primarily derives from Metcalfe’s Law and Stock-To-Flow Model. What these 2 basically are, are measuring the network effects of Bitcoin and evaluating how valuable Bitcoin is as a store of value respectively. I leave it up to you to do the rest of the due diligence.

Myth: Bitcoin is too volatile as an investment. (WRONG) Volatility does not equate to risk. This has been said again and again but this is something most people won’t get. Volatility itself is not risky, but the human reaction to volatility is what that is risky. Once again, that means whether owning Bitcoin is risky or not depends on your tolerance to irrational behaviours during times of volatility, and again I see volatility as a good thing because price swings are part and parcel of investing and it should not matter if you are in it for the long run, and it is with volatility that allows you to buy during the lows and ride the wave up.

Also, Bitcoin’s volatility has been decreasing over the years as more mainstream adoption and institutional participation takes place, while the growing market capitalisation also means volatility will generally go down over time the larger and more mature the asset class gets.

Myth: Bitcoin is a scam and a giant Ponzi scheme. (HOW SO?) This argument is really something I am puzzled about and a really outdated argument. In the past, incidents such as Bitconnect and Silk Road were high profile cases which tainted the cryptocurrency name as a place where only scammers and cheaters thrive and exchange currency with each other. Unless you have been living under a rock, the crypto space has matured way beyond what it was once thought out to be.

In fact, you can view every single Bitcoin transaction in real time here, which wallet it is going to, what address it is and more. There is nothing more transparent out there than these blockchains. But again, there are still scams and rug pulls out there in the crypto world and the same in the real world, so just be careful and stay alert.

Myth: Bitcoin will never replace cash. (Well it’s not aiming to) In my opinion, I think the word “Cryptocurrency” is really misleading and hopefully one day “Crypto Assets” can be adopted instead of the word “Currency” in it. Why? Because every crypto asset has different use cases and not every coin is aiming to be a currency, or in other words, a medium of exchange.

Bitcoin’s purpose is not to replace fiat but to be a store of value. It is more ‘Gold-like’ than it is ‘Cash-like’, so people usually confuse these two and start bringing the argument that Bitcoin is too volatile to be a currency, which can be true to an extent but again not what Bitcoin is aiming to be.

The crypto assets that are aiming to replace cash instead, are what we call Stablecoins such as USDT (Tether)/USDC (USD Coin) or DAI for example. These are USD-pegged digital coins that aim to be used as a medium of exchange in the crypto world, and also the real world now that Visa announced it here.

Do Your Own Due Diligence

Before I understood the purpose of Bitcoin, I was also skeptical about it just like the early Bitcoin adopters when they first read the Bitcoin Whitepaper.

Whether Bitcoin is simply going to crash like the ICO boom and bust of 2017, one thing is certain:

Bitcoin survived the skepticism, rose in popularity through giant bull runs and survived massive crashes whilst maintaining network effect and managed to become the apex predator and the reserve currency of the crypto world. I can safely say, Bitcoin is here to stay as long as the Internet exists.

While crypto is mostly still a highly speculative asset class as a whole and yet to be deemed as a security by governments world wide (because they haven’t found a way to properly tax crypto yet), the early adopters who saw the value proposition will be rewarded tremendously, but again, nothing that offers attractive returns come without significant amount of risk attached to it. There is always a risk-reward tradeoff.

Therefore, in order to shield yourself from potential scams or unnecessary risks, I always reiterate the essence of what investing is all about as espoused by legendary investor Peter Lynch:

Know what you own, and why you own it.

Short and simple, if you can’t explain to a 3 year old why you bought Bitcoin (or any other asset) and have no idea what it does, then you shouldn’t own it. Always do your research, understand the risk and returns it offers and what intrinsic value it offers.

The most important part is to understand what gaps Bitcoin fill, and that is: solving the problem of money (fiat) devaluation, the imminent debt crisis and the inflationary nature of fiat currencies.

Eventually, when widespread adoption take place and Bitcoin continues to mature, Bitcoin’s volatility will slowly go down, and ultimately be the primary hedge against the devaluation of the fiat (cash) and the main store of value for humanity.

Don’t forget the risks!

But of course: There are also many risk when it comes to Bitcoin, and that includes platform risk (hacks), price fluctuations resulting in panic selling, Hot wallet hacks, Cold wallet private keys stolen and many more. Please do your own due diligence.

Disclaimer: 

The content here is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security. In fact, the content is not directed to any investor or potential investor and may not be used to evaluate or make any investment.

Do note that this is not financial advice. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your stock broker or financial advisor. (Or contact me!)

For those who are already into Crypto

Want to learn how you can earn high yielding interest rates on your idle crypto assets in a secure, safe and easy manner? You can read up more on my post here and also my crypto exchange of choice Gemini here if you are looking to buy your first crypto!

Referral Links (Click and Sign Up)

Gemini Exchange: Deposits and buy US$100 or more crypto on Gemini and you will earn US$10 in BTC.

Coinhako Exchange: You can create an account by clicking the link and then enter promo code: COINGECKO when doing a buy/sell and enjoy 20% trading fees discount! 

Binance Exchange: Create a Binance.com account here and trade the widest range of crypto pairings!

Celsius Network: Earn US$40 in BTC for free with your first transfer of US$400 or more in any crypto asset and wait for 1 month!

Nexo: No referral events at the moment 😦 Just sign up and enjoy this great product!

For those that are interested to learn more about Bitcoin, I highly recommend you to start by watching these videos here:

Nexo and Celsius Network: The Best Place to Earn High Interest on Your Crypto Assets

Finally made the leap of faith and made your first crypto investment? If your answer is yes, congratulations on becoming a fellow HODL-er and having diamond hands through the volatility ahead. While you HODL, wouldn’t it be great if you can earn compound interest on your idle assets? That is exactly what today’s topic is about.

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For those that have yet to own any crypto, you can check out my post here to learn more about Bitcoin and Ethereum (the 2 most popular crypto asset right now) or another post here to learn more about cryptocurrency and why you need to invest in them.

Introduction

What exactly is Nexo and Celsius Network? In layman terms, they are simply a crypto based savings account (works similarly like your bank account) where interest is generated on idle assets on a daily/weekly compounding basis.

Nexo’s Interface (Homepage)

Let’s first talk about Nexo, where it has both a web and app interface. Nexo is where I park my Bitcoin and Ethereum in. Why? Because I am getting interest on a daily basis which sums up to 6% APY (Annual Percentage Yield), meaning I get 6% compound interest every year in Bitcoin and Ethereum even before any capital appreciation of the underlying asset.

That is way more than any other traditional bank interest rate/bond yield/endowments/fixed deposits right now. Heck, that is more than the returns of some individuals’ investment portfolio.

With inflation at 2% over the long run, we need higher yields to hedge inflation and the current traditional financial products don’t even have a guarantee for that. 0.05% is the norm for most bank accounts and just how are you supposed to retire when your cold hard cash is devaluing by the minute?

Extracted from my Nexo App

I am earning 6% APY as I am holding 10% in Nexo token which qualifies me as a platinum tier Nexo customer + additional 1% optional interest by locking my asset for 1 month.

Since I am parking my crypto for HODL (long term holding) anyways, I realised it would be a waste to simply rely on the value of the asset going up over time. The compound interest from Nexo will boost and accelerate my returns even faster compared to if I just let my assets sit idle.

Benefits of Nexo:

  1. Free crypto transfers every month (1 for basic users and up to 5 for higher tier)
  2. No minimum transfer or custodian cost
  3. No lock up period at all
  4. No fees at all
  5. BitGo as custodian (layman: huge crypto backer to ensure our assets are safe and insured)
  6. Crypto assets are stored in a separate cold storage and not as a hot wallet on Nexo public network
  7. SOC compliant and military grade bank vaults to store crypto asset (basically means your crypto is so safe just like money you deposit in a bank)
  8. Nexo Exchange (You can swap different crypto for 0 fees on Nexo!)
Daily Interest for Crypto. Extracted from my own Nexo account

However, just like BlockFi or any other crypto savings account, these are not MAS licensed since crypto is really novel and the government literally has no control over it since it is decentralised and not owned by any single entity/group or organisation.

If you are someone who only trust MAS licensed products, I’m sorry to disappoint but there are no alternative options out there for such a great product at the moment and I doubt traditional finance will be able to offer something half as good.

I have been using Nexo for more than half a year now, and interest are credited on a daily basis the moment it is deposited into the Nexo account. (yes. sweet compounding interest in Bitcoin, Ethereum and more on a daily basis).

How to transfer your crypto into Nexo

Below, I will highlight the steps to take to safely deposit your precious crypto assets into Nexo.

  1. Create a crypto exchange account (To buy/Sell) + Nexo (savings account)
  2. Buy your crypto on an exchange (I use Gemini Active Trader as each buy/sell is 0.35% per transaction)
  3. Transfer the crypto through the blockchain (Copy&Paste the address for transfers between the exchange and Nexo)
  4. Wait for your crypto to be deposited and congrats on achieving daily compound interest!

Gemini Exchange

Exchange wise, I highly recommend Gemini and its my personal exchange of choice since they have 10 free crypto-crypto transfers every month and also extremely low trading fees (0.35%) for Gemini Active Trader. You can read up on Gemini in greater details in a post I wrote here.

Celsius Network

The next one would be Celsius, or what we call Celsius Wallet, which operates as a web interface and also an app interface just like Nexo.

Celsius Network App Interface taken from my own account

It works just like Nexo but 1 thing which Celsius really stands out is their interest rates for stablecoins like USDT, USDC, DAI and more. It’s the best place to park Stablecoins which are basically spare cash and the interest ranges from 10.51% up to 13.3%!

Just like Nexo, they also don’t charge any withdrawal fees so your money won’t be locked up if you just want to try out 🙂

I personally park DOT (Polkadot) and DAI (Stablecoin) on Celsius as it offers the highest interest rates with ease and convenience.

Benefits of Celsius

  1. Similar as Nexo mentioned above
  2. Stablecoins interest absolutely crushes Nexo

Verdict: Park BTC/ETH in Nexo and stablecoins on Celsius

Question: How the heck do they pay such high interest? Is it a Ponzi scheme?

To the paranoid and skeptical ones: No, this is not a Ponzi.

In layman terms, they are doing whatever our traditional banks like DBS or OCBC are doing: Lending out deposits for higher interest to lenders and other organisations by charging interest on the loaned assets.

Instead of taking majority of the profits from the lending activities, they share more of the pie with the HODL-ers like us which translates to higher interest which is sustainable, but ultimately once demand catches up and more users pile on such saving accounts, interest will eventually start to fall (which is why I was reluctant to share this great product since you guys will start using and my interest might slowly drop… Kidding!)

You can check out articles here to see how interest is generated and more info on the platform:

  1. Celsius Network Interest Rates, Explained
  2. The Five Ws and How of the Nexo Exchange

Going forward, I will continue to buy my crypto through Gemini or Coinhako depending on which crypto I am buying, once done, I will transfer them via the blockchain and deposit them into either Nexo or Celsius depending on the asset bought, rinse and repeat and see my asset grow over time.

Conclusion

For BTC and ETH: Bank — Buy via Xfers (no fee)–> Gemini –> Nexo (interest 4%-6%)

For USD Stablecoins: Bank –Buy via Xfers (small fee)–> Coinhako –> Celsius Network (interest ~10.51%)

If you are interested to use the platform I am using to buy crypto, do sign up using my referral links for some sweet bonus!

Referral Links (Click and Sign Up)

Gemini Exchange: Deposits and buy US$100 or more crypto on Gemini and you will earn US$10 in BTC.

Coinhako Exchange: You can create an account by clicking the link and then enter promo code: COINGECKO when doing a buy/sell and enjoy 20% trading fees discount!

Celsius Network: Earn US$30 in DAI (USD Stablecoin) for free with your first transfer of US$200 or more in any crypto asset and wait for 1 month.

Nexo: No referral events at the moment 😦 Just sign up and enjoy this great product!

Seedly Personal Finance Festival 2021 Promo Code

Oh yes, for those who want to improve your financial literacy and gain insights to some of the best investors of the world or learn more about personal finance, with speakers such as Cathie Wood, Jamus Lim and more, don’t miss out the Seedly Personal Finance Festival which is happening on 10 April 2021 at the price of 1 Nasi Lemak 🙂. Don’t miss out on this golden opportunity!

Promo Code: YUNHENG40

If you are keen to buy the ticket (while stocks last), you can add in my code to enjoy 40% off your tickets. Simply key in the promo code shown below and checkout.

If an error occurs, simply switch the incognito/private browsing mode and the problem should be solved 🙂

Do act fast while stock last! Good luck!

Disclaimer: 

The content here is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security. In fact, the content is not directed to any investor or potential investor and may not be used to evaluate or make any investment.

Do note that this is not financial advice. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your stock broker or financial advisor. (Or contact me!)

What I Purchased During The Market Sell-Off

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The stock market has been irrational for quite some time now. One day we see a huge greedy rally and another day we see investors fearing inflation hikes or afraid of Fed’s policy tightening measures to short squeeze sagas like Gamestop and AMC. The stock market is truly a dynamic environment filled with long term investors and short term gamblers and speculators alike.

With so many factors at play and infinite number of permutation as to what can happen in the next month or next year in the stock market, just how should we allocate our portfolio to achieve the highest Sharpe ratio (risk-adjusted return)?

With so many asset classes to invest in: Stocks, crypto, bonds, commodities and more, how did I make up my mind with my current portfolio?

Personality, Time Horizon, Goal

It all boils down to what make each of us tick. Do you spook out if your net worth drops 1% in a day? Or are you still like a rock even if your portfolio plunges 50%? This has to do with our individual risk appetite and time horizon.

For myself, I am 22 years old this year, no liabilities in at least the next 3 years as I am still studying in NUS and thankfully, I do not have student debt.

Since my time horizon is more than 20 years and I have a high risk appetite, it make sense for my portfolio to reflect who I am and what I can handle: 100% equities + crypto for maximum returns (risk-adjusted of course)

The important thing about risk-adjusted returns is such that you take the most acceptable risk in regards to the returns potential.

If you take a high risk of 90% drawdown in return for 8% return, you should stop investing and think about your odds again.

In the next 5-10 years, I am aiming to double or triple my investments as soon as possible, allowing myself to get a head start financially without having to get into debts which will settle on later in life (mortgage, car etc.)

So with that cleared out of the table, what did I do during the recent market turmoil?

Stock Market Shopping Spree

During the market pullbacks and corrections in late Feb and March, I re-adjusted my portfolio, cut my losses on lower conviction stocks and recycled them into my higher conviction holdings (exactly what Cathie Wood did as well).

Before the sell off, I was lucky enough to take profit of $5000 capital gains from Syfe Equity100, bolstering my war chest further which I was lucky to execute and allowed me to “buy the dip“.

While I am no expert myself, I saw the opportunity and bought into these stocks/ETFs:

  1. Square Inc. (New Position)
  2. Alibaba (Average In)
  3. Taiwan Semiconductor (Average In)
  4. Wisdomtree Cloud Computing ETF (New Position)

With these additions, I solidified my DIY portfolio with strong tech stocks and blue chip names such as Alibaba and Taiwan Semiconductor.

Overall, my DIY portfolio consist of 7 positions (3 ETFs + 4 individual stocks) at the time of writing this post. When coupled with my Syfe Equity100 portfolio, I essentially have a total of 19 positions and here is how I am performing compared alongside other investors so far:

Side by side comparison vs other investors. As of 17 March 2021 (StocksCafe)

I would say, having Equity100 portfolio really does spread out my overall risk as the portfolio’s smart beta approach is an efficient way for me to diversify my holdings and at the same time reduce concentration risk from my DIY portfolio.

Crypto Shopping Spree

Aside from my stocks DIY portfolio, I also took advantage of the headwinds in the crypto market and bought more crypto!

When Bitcoin hit a high of $52,000 a few weeks ago and retracted to the $47,000 level, I saw it as an opportunity to load up more crypto. If you don’t know already, Bitcoin is the reserve currency in the crypto market and when bitcoin falls, all the other coins will follow suit. (and vice versa)

During the whale dumping period, I accumulated more:

  1. Bitcoin
  2. Ethereum
  3. Polka Dot
  4. Nexo Token
  5. Converted Cash to Dai (to earn 10.51% APY in Celsius Wallet)

At the point of writing, my crypto allocation is taking up approximately 25% of my entire portfolio, which is my target allocation for the asset class and it is sitting at a handsome unrealised profit in my Nexo account, quietly accruing compound interest daily up to 6% :).

Conclusion

Growth stocks took a huge slap on the face as their sky high valuation saw a correction of approximately 20%+ on average.

While some of their valuations are still sky high, some represent huge opportunities for accumulation and a few things I have learnt from this sell off are the following:

  1. Stocks will get cheaper, but act quick and load up some in case it recovers
  2. Be happy when the market is red, because it represents a potential buying opportunity
  3. High conviction is extremely important, if not, you won’t know why you are owning the stock and might lead to irrational decisions. (eg. Buy high sell low)
  4. Preparing a war chest and a “crash list” for shopping spree is also important, wealth shifts from the impatient to the patient during these events
  5. Hold, hold and hold. If the stock is good, why should you sell?

As always, I use StocksCafe to keep track of all my investments (include Robo) + research on stocks. You can also view my portfolio as well as many others so you can compare your own performance with other investors. If you are interested in signing up, you can use my referral link to sign up and access premium features for 1 extra month for new users. (3 months)

The Power of Low Fees

One huge advantage I have as an investor is paying very minute fees which can really eat into returns in the long run because I am using Firstrade to buy US Stocks which has absolutely $0 fees and extremely fast wire transfers for deposits and lightning fast trade executions. Aside from paying $0 commission fees, Syfe also has very low fees each month of 0.65%/12 

Ever since I switch to Firstrade and Syfe last year as my main investment vehicle, I saved up on a ton of fees and hence able to achieve way better returns than before. I saved up more than 5 times the fee paid in 2018, 2019 and 2020 this year due to the switch and I am really happy thus far. 

Of my entire investments in 2020, fees only take up 0.1% of my entire portfolio! (2018+2019+2020 combined across all brokers and Robo)

Syfe Promo Code

For people who are interested to invest into Syfe and wants to open an account, you can use the promo code below as a bonus! 

Promo Code: SRPTH8LK3

$10 bonus for the first deposit of $1000 (or more)!

$50 bonus for the first deposit of $10,000 (or more)!

$100 bonus for the first deposit to $20,000 (or more)!

Note: Bonus is applicable on the first deposit made only. The bonus will be automatically credited to your portfolio and invested along with your existing investments

Seedly Personal Finance Festival 2021 Promo Code

Oh yes, for those who want to improve your financial literacy and gain insights to some of the best investors of the world or learn more about personal finance, with speakers such as Cathie Wood, Jamus Lim and more, you can join the  Seedly Personal Finance Festival which is happening on 10 April 2021 at the price of 1 Nasi Lemak 🙂

Promo Code: YUNHENG40

If you are keen to buy the ticket (while stocks last), you can add in my code to enjoy 40% off your tickets. Simply key in the promo code shown below and checkout.

If an error occurs, simply switch the incognito/private browsing mode and the problem should be solved 🙂

Do act fast while stock last! Good luck!

Disclaimer: 

The content here is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security. In fact, the content is not directed to any investor or potential investor and may not be used to evaluate or make any investment.

Do note that this is not financial advice. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your stock broker or financial advisor. (Or contact me!)

The Market Sell Off and Strategies to Adopt

The past 3 weeks was disastrous and the stock market started dropping from Feb 16 high, due to several reasons. The rising treasury yield, better economic growth sentiments and rising interest rate expectations meant that there are better asset class out there to hedge against inflation, hence growth and tech stocks in particular, took the biggest hit.

The S&P 500 index saw a fall of around -3.19% while the NASDAQ-100 index saw a fall of -8.51%.

My portfolio was not spared at all, as I saw a drop of approximately -13% in my equities portfolio, essentially wiping out nearly all of my 2021 gains (excluding crypto).

My DIY portfolio is mostly tech and growth stocks right now, so I expected my portfolio to decline way steeper than the broad market indexes because that is just what my portfolio’s characteristics is. In a bear run, my portfolio will face the most pain but in a bull run, my portfolio will run faster and it will go high up than a broad based index as well.

I was lucky to take profit from my Equity100 before the correction and recycled some capital into my DIY portfolio which I am buying/selling using Firstrade.

Despite the stock market correction, I did not sell any of my stocks, in fact, I bought in even more and I have added positions in NVDA, ARKW, and more BABA.

However, there are still a few lessons here that I learnt and what can be done to mitigate against such drawdowns in our portfolios.

Always have a warchest ready

It is only during such market downturns when the discount and buying season is here. One of my mistake this time round is only having 10% warchest ready and hence, I only had 1 bullet to buy into the market and no more to average down as the market continues to fall.

Having this additional amount set aside to buy into stocks when prices are depressed is extremely important because that’s when money gets transferred from the impatient to the patient.

Diversify!

Yes my portfolio is already diversified. I have tech and growth stocks, Syfe Equity100 to cover across different sectors and styles with 1500+ stocks exposure, as well as crypto holdings which is uncorrelated to the stock market and ever growing, but going forward, I may start to diversify into value counter plays such as Berkshire Hathaway once again if prices were to hit my intrinsic value.

My DIY portfolio is heavily tilted growth stocks which will be hit the hardest during bear runs and with rising interest rates, tech stocks will get beaten down even further, so it is better to be prepared for future concerns of your own portfolio to better mitigate against the impending risks.

Focus on fundamentals, not hype

It is easy to get swayed by greed and the urge to buy into stocks that just keep going up up and more up.

Prominent examples include Gamestop (GME), AMC, Nio Inc, Palantir, Tesla, Lemonade and many more but these stocks are pretty hyped up and the market exuberance is real here. Ever heard of Tulipmania? Yep, these stocks are pretty much Tulipmania of the 21st century.

As Warren Buffett said, it is far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price. And this is because fundamentals matter in the long run.

Be a comprehensive analyst

While strictly using fundamental analysis and critically analysing financial statements may not be an effective strategy on its own, we also need to be able to identify future trends beyond the balance sheet of companies and also how the management is growing the company moving forward.

Value investing is not merely looking at financial ratios such as ROE/ROA/Operating Margin or Debt-Equity Ratio, it is more than just analysing the fundamentals of a company.

A growth company measured using traditional methods will be deemed a sh*tty investment and likewise a dying company might have excellent fundamentals but their revenue growth is negative.

Once you understand that while fundamental analysis can give us clues about how well a company is performing, those are all in the past, the earnings and cashflows and revenues are all earned by the company already. Look forward and think about what will lead the company to further growth, with cost of capital of around 7%-8%, is the company you are invested in able to surpass their cost of capital and generate shareholder value in the future?

Conclusion

To all readers and friends who equally felt the impact of the recent market downturns, do not fret or panic. If you still have spare cash lying around, now may be the time to deploy some into the stock market but do so prudently and look out for opportunities. Whether the market is going up or going down, there will always be opportunities in the market.

Don’t sell out of your investments out of fear and understand that market declines are perfectly normal and it is part and parcel of the stock market.

Market will always go up and go down sometimes but if you are invested in great companies and diversified, your portfolio will trend upwards eventually in the long run. Stay patient and trust the process.

If you are an investor, buy and hold good companies and if you are a trader, be disciplined in your stop-loss and target price.

Moving forward, I am looking to increase my crypto allocation even further to 40% of my portfolio and I really urge readers to really understand the Bitcoin thesis and why it is such a compelling investment for the long run.

Seedly Personal Finance Festival 2021

Oh yes, for those who want to improve your financial literacy and gain insights to some of the best investors of the world or learn more about personal finance, with speakers such as Cathie Wood, Jamus Lim and more, you can join you can join the Seedly Personal Finance Festival which is happening on 10 April 2021 at the price of 1 Nasi Lemak 🙂

Promo Code: YUNHENG40

If you are keen to buy the ticket (while stocks last), you can add in my code to enjoy 40% off your tickets. Simply key in the promo code shown below and checkout.

If an error occurs, simply switch the incognito/private browsing mode and the problem should be solved 🙂

As always, I use StocksCafe to keep track of all my investments (include Robo) + research on stocks. You can also view my portfolio as well as many others so you can compare your own performance with other investors. If you are interested in signing up, you can use my referral link to sign up and access premium features for 1 extra month for new users. (3 months)

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Disclaimer: 

The content here is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security. In fact, the content is not directed to any investor or potential investor and may not be used to evaluate or make any investment.

Do note that this is not financial advice. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your stock broker or financial advisor. (Or contact me!)

Why You Should Diversify Into Crypto and My Strategy Ahead

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I am not going to lie, but I have been putting more time and energy researching deeply into the cryptocurrency space and why I feel everyone should too. Crypto has been the buzzword of 2021 so far with Bitcoin and Ethereum breaking all-time-highs almost on a daily basis.

Adapted from Ark’s Big Idea 2021

Bitcoin is not the only thing there is when it comes to crypto, you have your alt coins such as Ethereum, Cardano, Polkadot, Binance Coin and also your Stablecoins such as USDT (Tether), USDC (USD Coin), Dai (Decentralised Stablecoin). In short, stablecoins are usually pegged to a currency (such as USD) and aims to be “stable” and act as cash but in crypto form.

Every crypto asset has their own value propositions and own fundamentals as to why people would want to invest or trade in them. The Bitcoin thesis is probably one of the most popular, due to its popularity and insane run up since the 2017 price reset.

For those interested to invest into crypto, I highly recommend you checking out my exchange of choice and my review of it here: Gemini

Gemini Referral Code

Click on this referral link here and receive US$10 in Bitcoin after you top up at least US$100 on Gemini!

Is crypto really a speculation bubble waiting to be popped? Personally, I beg to differ. Here’s why:

Crypto Savings Account and Yield Farming

Do you know you can earn interest on your idle crypto assets such as Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin and more? You can also earn crazy high yields on your Stablecoins with potential up to 100% interest rate per annum! How much interest is your bank giving you?

Personally, I am still researching more into yield farming but due to the complex nature of the DeFi space, I have yet to dabble in yield farming so I am sticking to crypto savings account for now.

The ones I am personally using are Nexo Wallet (for my Bitcoin and Ethereum) and Celsius Network (for my stablecoin, Dai)

Nexo Wallet

Once I purchased the crypto, I will transfer the assets over to Nexo and Celsius respectively to earn interest on my assets and the best thing about it is that it compounds, even when I am doing nothing. I will not dive into details on how the 2 platforms work but essentially, how they generate such high interest rates is the same as how a bank works: They lend your assets out to institutions and charge them a higher fee for lending the crypto asset, and in return give you interest as reward for putting your assets on their platform. (essentially how a traditional bank works)

Celsius Interest Rates (Aug 2020)

Why am I confident in the 2 platforms? Even though they are not MAS regulated, Nexo is a regulated entity in the EU while Celsius is also a highly established player in the field. Both feature high levels of security with Nexo having around the same security sophistication of Gemini and bank grade security for our crypto assets. Hopefully 1 day I will elaborate further on them.

To sum up though, I am earning 5.5% APY on my Bitcoin and Ethereum through Nexo (by holding <10% in NEXO Tokens) and 12.5% APY on my Dai stablecoin through Celsius.

If you are interested to deposit into the savings accounts, I have a referral code for Celsius below.

Celsius Referral Code: 199285483c

Earn $30 USD in Bitcoins when you join Celsius Network and make a first transfer of $200 USD or more using the referral code at the time of signup!

(Bitcoin reward will be unlocked 30 days after the initial transfer)

Risk Reward Ratio is Huge

Crypto’s upside is really unlimited when you think about it. At the time of writing, Bitcoin’s return year to date is 90.23% while Ethereum’s return year to date is 170.69%, that’s insane. That is some crazy returns in the matter of less than 2 months.

My crypto gains thus far amounts to 140+% gain since my first investment into the asset class back in late 2020. I am still dollar cost averaging every month into the asset class as well. As of now, I am still holding on to just Bitcoin and Ethereum, but a few alt coins are showing extremely compelling value propositions and I just can’t ignore it anymore.

My crypto returns has already far surpassed my equities (stocks) and I will be focusing on this asset class in the near future. I am thinking of taking profit from my Equity100 portfolio and redeploying the profits into crypto too.

Ark’s Research on Bitcoin

Shown above, it is clear that by diversifying into crypto or Bitcoin in particular, you essentially reduce your risk but increase your returns potential due to how Bitcoin has basically zero correlations to the stock market.

The more uncorrelated the asset classes the better, that is what diversification is supposed to be.

The thesis for Bitcoin has never been stronger. As more traditional investments dabble into Bitcoin, we will see even greater adoption and soon acceptance of Bitcoin as a legitimate asset class. Only time will tell.

Bitcoin has been on a rising trend over the years and the diagram above gives a visual representation of what might happen to Bitcoin’s price going forward. Don’t just blindly trust it though, as due diligence is still needed and every person’s risk tolerance is different.

Strategy Going Forward

At the point of writing, crypto takes up roughly 13% of my entire portfolio (consisting DIY Portfolio, Syfe Equity100 and Crypto holdings).

I will be recycling a portion of my funds from Equity100 and redeploying it back into crypto. The reason being is simple: My Equity100 saw a huge run up in overall returns. I am overweight on equities currently and I hope to rebalance the allocation towards 25% crypto and 75% into equities.

Going forward I may be diversifying into other alt coins, and on my watchlist are the following:

  1. Cardano (ADA)
  2. Polka Dot (DOT)
  3. Binance Coin (BNB)

These 3 picks are all part of the top 10 cryptos by market cap so you can sort of call them the “blue chips” of the crypto world. While these alt coins may not overtake Bitcoin, their value proposition is incredibly compelling especially the case of Polka Dot. I leave it up to you to do up your own due diligence and to further understand the asset class before dabbling in it.

Also, I urge all readers with less than 1 year of investment experience to stay away from crypto first, because the volatility of the asset class is insane and may not be suitable for beginners. A daily upswing or downswing of 30%-60% is possible, thus, I urge readers to take note of the risk involved with such an asset class as well even though the upside and returns may seem unlimited.

As of now, I will be deploying into crypto on a monthly, dollar cost basis and buy into them slowly but surely. While my cash lie around not invested, I will covert them into Dai to earn interest in Celsius first. When I want to deploy them, I will transfer them back to Nexo and exchange Dai for Bitcoin or whichever coin I wish to invest into.

Also, for those not informed, Bitcoin has hit the US$56,000+ while Ethereum officially broke the US$2000 mark! I do expect to see a pullback soon but the dip will probably be bought back just as quickly. I will focus on accumulating them slowly over time and won’t be planning to sell them any time soon.

As always, I use StocksCafe to keep track of all my investments (include Robo) + research on stocks. You can also view my portfolio as well as many others so you can compare your own performance with other investors. If you are interested in signing up, you can use my referral link to sign up and access premium features for 1 extra month for new users. (3 months)

Have a great weekend and good luck investing! Stay safe and healthy always!

Disclaimer: 

The content here is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security. In fact, the content is not directed to any investor or potential investor and may not be used to evaluate or make any investment.

Do note that this is not financial advice. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your stock broker or financial advisor. (Or contact me!)

3 Ways to Invest Your Ang Pow Money

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Happy Chinese New Year! I hope everyone had a good break, ate lots of pineapple tarts and love letters and received many ang pows! For youngsters like me, you may be wondering, “I collected quite a sum this year, how should I allocate my angpow for the future?”

Aside from allocating your angpow for investments, don’t forget to treat yourself/loved ones! It is very important to reward ourselves sometimes and even more important to treat our loved ones who stayed by our side after all these years. (or you can donate to charity and help the needy as well.)

So now that you have allocated the spare amount for long term planning, what are the few things you can go about putting your ang pow money to better use?

The most important question you need to ask yourself first is this:

  1. When do I need this amount of spare cash?
  2. Am I willing to lose the amount I put in?
  3. Why am I investing this amount in the first place?

To answer these questions, you need to reflect back on your own personality and time horizon. Are you currently studying? Or are you a working adult who wants to retire early?

The reason why we want to invest is for 2 simple reasons, and it is to:

  1. Beat inflation (Protect our purchasing power in the future)
  2. Capital Gains/Passive Income (Dividends)

Current State of the Economy

Global interest rates are at an all time low nearing zero which indicate a really bullish sentiment for the stock market and crypto markets.

With low interest rates comes low bank interest yields, which in turn will force more savers to seek for higher yield and there is no better place than the stock market and crypto markets.

As of today, there is still a few trillion worth of money tucked in money market funds which means there are plenty more money still waiting in the sidelines that are not invested. This is extremely bullish because it simply suggest that the current bull rally might be sustainable and we may not actually be in a bubble at all.

Like ARK invest CEO Cathie Wood said, she does not believe that we are in a bubble despite how traditional analyst or value investors are saying, as the seeds have been planted back in the 2001 dot com bubble with too much money chasing too little opportunities, which caused the bubble to burst back then.

However, ARK believes that the seed has already been planted and we are now in prime time for disruptive innovation and breakthrough in technology. The 5 innovative platform consisting of 14 different technology are entrenched into every single sector of the economy, and technology is no longer a sector but so widespread that it is necessary in every business.

2021 will be the year of crypto (and more importantly, Bitcoin)

The breaking news of 2021 so far was when Tesla announced that they are allocating not 1% but 8% of their cash balance of $1.5 Billion USD into Bitcoin. This is huge.

This basically means that Bitcoin is a legitimate asset class that can be adopted by institutional investors around the world and the growth of the asset class has only just begun.

With companies such as Tesla, Square, Paypal and Microstrategy jumping into Bitcoin, while major finance companies such as BNY Mellon, Deutsche Bank, Mastercard and Morgan Stanley launching crypto investments, custodies and exchanges, the runway for Bitcoin is only just the beginning.

In 2021, I expect to see more companies switching a portion of their cash allocation over to Bitcoin with varying percentages, and this will be a real game changer for the investing world.

As central banks print more money while Bitcoin supply decreases over time, it will only drive the demand of the alternative asset class higher and higher until eventually it is recognised as a global currency and by then, Bitcoin might already be worth 100k USD or more per coin.

So the logical step is to invest your ang pow money into crypto and we shall go through in detail below.

1. Invest your Ang Pow into Bitcoin/Ethereum

To add on what I said earlier, ARK Invest CEO Cathie Wood mentioned that based on their research, allocating 10% or more into Bitcoin will reduce overall portfolio risk, and at the same time improve returns, which translates to better risk-adjusted returns due to the lack of correlation between the stock market and Bitcoin.

Hence, I feel that it is important to allocate into Bitcoin in order to boost overall returns while reducing your portfolio’s risk.

For myself, I am dollar cost averaging into Bitcoin frequently and already up 86% year-to-date for Bitcoin, which is truly amazing. I currently have a 12% allocation to crypto (Bitcoin + Ethereum) with regards to my overall portfolio and I aim to hit a target allocation of 25% of my overall portfolio.

I currently use Gemini Exchange using SGD to purchase my crypto assets. If you wish to read up more, I did a review of Gemini here.

After purchasing the crypto assets from Gemini, I transfer them via the blockchain into my Nexo wallet where I earn 5% interest on my idle assets (Bitcoin/Ethereum). Nexo offers 8% interest for Stablecoins such as USDT, USDC, DAI and more. So if you want better interest for your cash, you can check out Nexo as well. (Nexo offers bank grade security and crypto insurance up to 100 million by renowned crypto custodian BitGo)

How to buy crypto on Gemini and transfer to Nexo?

  1. Open a Gemini account
  2. Link your bank account to Gemini
  3. Deposit into Gemini using Xfers (using your bank account)
  4. Purchase crypto using Gemini app
  5. Withdraw crypto from Gemini (key in Nexo Wallet address)
  6. Confirm the transaction
  7. Done!

Gemini Referral Code

For those who are interested to sign up with Gemini and invest into Bitcoin and more, you can click on this referral link here and receive US$10 in Bitcoin after you top up at least US$100 on Gemini!

2. Invest your Ang Pow into Syfe Equity100

If you are a beginner with little knowledge or an investor with little time or no interest to read business news daily or research on individual stocks, Syfe Equity100 will be your best bet.

I wrote a review of Equity100 here and do monthly updates on the portfolio performance with the latest update here.

This portfolio consist of 12 ETFs, and follows a smart beta approach using factor investing. In layman terms, it is basically a systematic portfolio which offers high risk-adjusted returns by following a 3 factors which is used to construct the investment portfolio.

Just by investing $1000 for example, you will be exposed to over 1500 stocks around the world which would not be possible if you were to buy individual stocks yourself.

Equity100 is a powerful core portfolio component for you to build your base and simply allow them to compound your money while you do other things. Their fees are also low at 0.4%-0.65% per annum.

Syfe Promo Code

For people who are interested to invest into Syfe and wants to open an account, you can use the promo code below as a bonus! 

Promo Code: SRPTH8LK3

$10 bonus for the first deposit of $1000 (or more)!

$50 bonus for the first deposit of $10,000 (or more)!

$100 bonus for the first deposit to $20,000 (or more)!

Note: Bonus is applicable on the first deposit made only. The bonus will be automatically credited to your portfolio and invested along with your existing investments

3. Invest in Yourself (Knowledge is Power)

The last way might in fact, be the most important of it all. While you can put your angpow money into Bitcoin and Syfe Equity100 without any prior knowledge and still generate great returns, the best way to ensure that your investments will remain sustainable and grow at a high rate of return is for you to build up your own knowledge, learn how to invest using fundamental and technical analysis and actively reading up to catch up and adopt a growth mindset.

To kickstart your knowledge journey, I recommend you to read these few books as soon as possible in the order which I wrote them.

  1. Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
  2. The Little Book that Still beats the market by Joel Greenblatt
  3. One Up on Wall Street by Peter Lynch (My Personal Favourite)
  4. The University of Berkshire Hathaway by Daniel Pecaut
  5. The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham

Once you are done with these 5 books, you most probably have all the knowledge you need to invest yourself. If you do not have the time to read these books, you can watch the summarised version of them on “The Swedish Investor” YouTube channel to learn more.

Conclusion

The most important thing to understand form this article is to know that investing is a long term commitment and although short run we may not be able to see the compound interest take place or things don’t go according to our predictions, it is important to tune out short term noises and think long term, understand that investing is a marathon and not a sprint.

“In the short run, the stock market is a voting machine but in the long run, the stock market is a weighing machine”

-Benjamin Graham (Warren Buffett’s Mentor)

In the short run, the market will be driven by sentiments and hype, but in the long run, earnings and performance will eventually reflect the true price of a stock. Hence, understand why stocks go up and why it goes down, why some stocks go up faster than others and why simply don’t go up at all.

All these questions will be answered if you read up on them in the books mentioned, thus, I urge beginners to read these books diligently as all the knowledge of the great investors are already written down for us to read, it is up to us to pick up the knowledge and use it to our advantage.

Alright, here’s to a great year ahead and I hope everyone finishes 2021 with great returns! Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below!

Why You Should Invest Into Bitcoin And Ethereum (2021)

Bitcoin had an insane run in 2020. With the halving event in 2020, and as more and more retail and institutional investors alike pile into the world of cryptocurrency, the investment thesis for the alternative asset class has seen a surge in demand and interest more so than ever.


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Most people that are not invested or simply do not understand Bitcoin would think that it is currently a bubble and that it will crash once again just like in 2017. While hindsight bias cloud our better judgement, it is better if you can understand why people are investing into Bitcoin and just what is so valuable about it.

Backstory

Bitcoin first started trading back in 2009 when a mysterious figure known as Satoshi Nakamoto created the blockchain and the Bitcoin ecosystem. Back then, you could buy one of the new digital tokens for less than 1 cent. Prices steadily rose , albeit with some volatility over the years and in January 2021, Bitcoin hit an all-time high of nearly $42,000 USD.

Ethereum on the other hand, debuted in 2015 at less than $3 and soared to more than $1,400 by 2018. At the time of this writing, Ethereum trades at slightly more than $1,700 USD.

Although they’re the two biggest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, Bitcoin and Ethereum are totally different animals, developed for different reasons and with different internal dynamics, and hence, the purpose of the 2 coins are very different which is something you need to keep in mind.

The King of Crypto

Bitcoin is the largest cryptocurrency by market-cap, and for a very good reason. Bitcoin is also known as digital gold due to its limited supply of 21 million in circulation. At the point of writing, there are around 18.3 million Bitcoins already in circulation, which means there are around 2.7 million Bitcoin left before all the Bitcoin are out in the open.

Due to it’s algorithm parameters, Bitcoin goes through halving every 4 years, which basically means that the number of blocks (of Bitcoin) that miners get rewarded with will reduce by half every 4 years, making it harder and harder to mine Bitcoin the longer the time drags. At the point of writing, one block mined takes 10 minutes on average through its Proof-of-Work model and at the point of writing, yields 6.25 Bitcoin as reward for the miner every time he successfully mine a block. (It will become 3.125 Bitcoin/Block in 2024 and 1.5626 Bitcoin/Block in 2028 so on and so fourth.)

By 2040, it is estimated that the entire 21 million worth of Bitcoin will be in circulation and no more Bitcoin can be mined or created. Hence, the fundamental value of where Bitcoin derives its value is due to the scarcity of it. Just like physical gold which becomes more and more difficult to mine over time, the value of Bitcoin depends on many factors such as the global interest rate environments, the demand of Bitcoin, the regulatory environment, fiscal action by central banks etc.

As mentioned by Ark Invest CEO Cathie Wood, their research shows that if all S&P 500 companies were to allocate 1% of their cash to Bitcoin, its price could increase by approximately $40,000! (At the point of writing, Bitcoin is valued at around $37,000 per coin).

As more institutions and big fund houses adopt Bitcoin into their balance sheets, we could see increased demand for Bitcoin (and therefore price increases) in the near future.

Couple that rising demand with Bitcoin halving every 4 years and the unlimited money printing by Central Banks all over the world, the Bitcoin thesis is becoming stronger and better each day. Whether you are a skeptic of Bitcoin or not, the fact is Bitcoin is here to stay and it’s growth will keep on getting better as it becomes harder to mine and more institutional participation.

The King of Altcoins

Ether, the native currency of the Ethereum chain, is also known as an alternative coin (altcoin) which basically refers to any cryptocurrency that is not Bitcoin.

To put it simply, Ethereum is a decentralized, open-source blockchain featuring smart contract functionality. It is the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap, and is the most actively used blockchain which uses the ERC-20 token.

Ethereum is interesting because its goal is not to become digital gold like Bitcoin, but to become programmable money which basically created decentralised finance (DeFi) and utilised for many initial coin offerings.

Simply put, the Ethereum blockchain is a platform for many other crypto projects to build decentralised apps (dApps) and to build on many other blockchain and more initial coin offerings, using Ethereum’s ERC-20 token standard. In order to send ERC-20 tokens , users have to pay Ether for all transactions, which is what makes Ether so powerful.

Since late 2020, Ethereum has started implementing a series of upgrades called Ethereum 2.0, which includes a transition towards proof of stake (from proof of work) and an increase in transaction throughput using sharding.

2021 will be the year of Cryptocurrencies

In 2021, we have already seen Bitcoin and Ethereum breaking their previous all time highs and for a very good reason. As the global money supply increases due to unlimited money printing by central banks, investors are becoming more afraid of the inherent risk of inflation which would be imminent in the future. Money printing do not come without long term side effects.

Aside from money printing, the low interest rate environment meant that cash is trash, which meant that investors, be it retail or institutional, will be desperately looking for inflation hedges, and because a huge amount has already been allocated to the equities market, cryptocurrencies as an alternative asset class will be able to diversify systemic risk and improve overall Sharpe ratio for many investment portfolios out there.

As the combined market cap of crypto assets cross the 1 trillion mark, it signifies the significance of this asset class as a viable option for institutional investors. Square, Microstrategy and Paypal led the charge into the asset class as they started reporting a part of their cash allocation as Bitcoin under their balance sheet and buying Bitcoin aggressively and offering Bitcoin exchanges for their customers. As more institutions swap Bitcoin for cash, we could see further rise in the price of Bitcoin in the future as well.

While some may argue that the current price is a bubble, they may be right or may be wrong, but bubbles can grow for a very long time and you are better off riding the wave than the miss the opportunity of a lifetime. Every minute wasted is millions worth in opportunity cost, so think wisely and think rationally.

Where To Buy Bitcoin and Ethereum?

Now you may ask, just where is the best place for us retail investors to buy Bitcoin or Ethereum?

Gemini Exchange

I have used many different platforms such as Binance.SG and Binance Global, and I find that for both of the exchanges, there are certain things I dislike about both. Firstly, SG has very limited options and only offers a desktop platform with many technical issues such as Xfers having difficulty processing our money or other problems. Binance Global is extremely confusing for beginner crypto investors, and although both have pretty low fiat to crypto fees of around 0.6%-1%, when I want to send my crypto over to a crypto savings account, they took another bite off my holdings which amounts easily to around 0.001 BTC or more per transaction (which is hefty!)

Gemini, on the other hand, offers best in class security with high levels of protection and best in class custodian which puts you crypto assets in a separate Cold Storage encrypted by multiple signatures and having one of the highest security in the crypto field. You can read more about Gemini in my post here.

If you value security above all else like me, Gemini is one of the best exchange out there. They have not been hacked before since its inception, compared to Binance/Coinbase or any other platforms which are susceptible to hackers.

Fiat to crypto fees are much more significant at 1.49% + convenience fees but you get 10 free crypto to crypto transfers every month which I find particularly attractive. Let me explain why.

After purchasing Bitcoin/Ethereum, I will transfer my crypto assets over to Nexo.IO, which is a crypto savings and lending platform with high levels of security and a similar Cold Storage custodian with industry renowned BitGo. By putting my idle assets in Nexo, I effectively get 5% per annum (compounded daily) on my Bitcoin and Ethereum just by buying and holding.

As the value of my crypto asset increases, it is boosted by the daily accrued interest which is amazing. There are no fees at all when it comes to depositing or withdrawing from the Nexo wallet. All you need to do is to send the crypto asset from Gemini to Nexo and vice versa.

You can read up more about Nexo here.

Gemini Referral Code

For those who are interested to sign up with Gemini and invest into Bitcoin and more, you can click on this referral link here and receive US$10 in Bitcoin after you top up at least US$100 on Gemini!

Conclusion

Cryptocurrency is here to stay and this time it is different. Whether you want to call it a speculation or investment, it is totally up to you and your level of understanding of the asset class. If you understand the thesis behind it, you can go long term, ignore the short term volatility and noises, and simplying HODL until Bitcoin breaks new highs and more institutions take part.

Understand the risk of the asset class as well, such as regulatory risks and the difference between a hot and cold wallet, the level of security of different wallets. The post today merely scratched the surface of what Bitcoin and Ethereum actually is, and there are more complicated concepts and jargons at play here, so please do your own due diligence when it comes to investing and research properly before putting money into any asset.

For now, I will be allocating 10% of my assets into Bitcoin and Ethereum and depending on the future trend and environment, I may increase or decrease the allocation accordingly. It is definitely worth it to diversify into crypto as they have 0 correlation to the stock market and I think the thesis as an inflation hedge is extremely strong on Bitcoin especially, which is why I feel that in the long run, Bitcoin will be a good hedge against inflation and of course, the capital appreciation that comes along with it. 😉

Happy investing and all the best!

Disclaimer: 

The content here is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security. In fact, the content is not directed to any investor or potential investor and may not be used to evaluate or make any investment.

Do note that this is not financial advice. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your stock broker or financial advisor. (Or contact me!)

Future Trends: Which Companies to Invest in 2021 and Beyond

2020 was an amazing year for the stock market, period.

Stock market has long detached from the real economy

With QE infinity (unlimited money printing) pushing the market higher, providing lifeline and liquidity for the stock market, it is no wonder we see the market going higher and higher despite what is happening in reality.

The stock market is always forward looking, and every news you’ve seen, every good news or bad news (Jack Ma/Alibaba/Capitol/US riots) will be priced in by the market. Mr Market will never be able to decide which direction to go, because it has bipolar disorder swinging between extreme greed and extreme fear, so no one can ever predict it.

However, in the long run, sentiments won’t be what drive markets but rather the fundamentals. This is a fact because the stock market has been on an uptrend since its inception, because businesses grow and so will their stock.

Stocks are ownerships of companies and I hope everyone view them as being a shareholder of a company instead of treating it like a lottery ticket, thinking short term about which stock will go up another 500%, 1000% or 5000%, which is simply not sustainable and unrealistic.

While you may be lucky for 1 or 2 years, stocks always revert back to its mean towards their intrinsic value.

Okay, enough of investing mindsets, so how will the future be like? What do we look out for?

From now till 2023, it will be a period of easy money (Bullish Sentiments)

In the near future, till at least 2023, I believe that it will be a consistent uptrend where we see a bull run because of the macro economy backdrop of low interest rates and the Fed continuing to prop up the markets with QE infinity.

What does that mean? Basically, money will be easy because nobody will be incentivised to save and would rather borrow and pile into assets such as equities and cryptocurrencies at least in the near future.

Growth stocks will continue to break all time highs, see some short term pullbacks as the stock market takes a short break before continuing climbing higher. (In essence, valuations are out of the tables and we are relying on the market momentums.)

My own predictions for future trends in 2021 onwards are:

  1. SaaS (Digitisation)
  2. Clean Energy
  3. Mainstream Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Adoption

For each of the trends, I will list down a few recommendations for you to further research on.

Saas (Software-As-A-Service)

SaaS is a software licensing and delivery model in which software is licensed on a subscription basis and is centrally hosted.

They are companies that hosts an application and makes it available to customers over the internet. Remote working as a result of the pandemic has sped up the adoption of such a business model across every sector and industry.

SaaS companies wants to improve the productivity of companies and to automate business models and streamline the entire organisation. So what are some stocks/ETFs you can look out for to better position your portfolio towards SaaS companies?

  1. Salesforce
  2. Fastly
  3. Twilio
  4. Crowdstrike
  5. Zoom
  6. WCLD (Cloud Computing ETF)

I am not going to go in depth into each stock/ETF because that would be way too long. Personally, these stocks are positioned for the future and their network effects are particularly extensive.

Most of the companies here are B2Bs so you may not have heard of them before. But Zoom, Twilio and Fastly for example, are all enhancing parts of the products we use daily: Zoom Video (School/Meetings/Webinars), Fastly (Spotify music relies on their infrastructure), Twilio (Netflix, Airbnb relies on their software).

As for Crowdstrike and Salesforce, they are B2Bs with the former focusing on protecting company software from hackers through the incorporation of artificial intelligence and the latter improving customer relationship management

All these companies have one thing in common: They have a recurring, subscription based model which can generate free cash flow year in year out, and their software becomes better and more efficient over time as they collect more data and improve their artificial intelligence or software capabilities.

If you are not interested to research in depth, you can expose to these companies through WCLD (Cloud Computing ETF).

Clean Energy

With Biden’s victory, while climate change continues to worsen around the world, there is faster and wider adoption of clean and renewable energy for the potential of cost reductions, benefits and the rise of electric vehicles (EV).

Biden’s policies are skewed towards providing more subsidies for the clean energy sector. If you look at stock market action on 6 January, it is clear that investors expect Biden and Congress to do a lot for companies producing clean energy, or developing technology and services to enable other companies to do so.

Here are some stocks which are personally on my watchlist to expose into the clean energy sector:

  1. ICLN (Global Clean Energy ETF)
  2. TAN (Solar ETF)
  3. LIT (Lithium Battery ETF)
  4. Tesla
  5. BYD

Tesla needs no introduction. Elon Musk is now the world’s richest man and he did not get there by luck. He saw the future before everyone did so he’s duly rewarded for taking the leap of faith while no one was looking. Tesla, is not just a car company, because they have advanced software with superior data collection, artificial intelligence, industry leading battery technology and a solar panels producer.

This is the same for Chinese company BYD, which is the EV pick of Warren Buffett. BYD likewise is not just a car company, but involved in multiple different product lines way before competitors like Nio, XPeng or Li Auto entered the EV space in China.

LIT is a play on leading lithium battery technologies or battery producers, which are the backbone of electric vehicles if you think logically and it is to further diversify the portfolio (this ETF has both Tesla and BYD inside.)

ICLN and TAN are diversified ETF which focuses on the clean energy space which saw incredible gains in 2020. While ARK stole the spotlight, there were many more ETFs which performed just as impressive as ARK.

Mainstream Blockchain and Crypto Adoption

While the topic of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies continue to be the hot topic of 2021, it is without a doubt cryptocurrency has earned a spot in the institutional space and slowly being seen as a viable asset class that has a store of value and a form of inflation hedge.

While people can argue that Bitcoin is a scam, that it will crash, that it is used by criminals, there are also people that advocate that Bitcoin is a store of value, that it can help improve banking efficiency and prevent centralisation of power.

While both sides have some valid arguments, blockchain, as a matter of fact, is the way forward especially for financial transactions.

While majority of Initial Coin Offering(ICO) projects end up becoming nothing, there are alt coins that have proved their worth and continues to be adopted slowly but surely.

As blockchain continues burgeoning across industries and sectors, eventually it will become a part of our daily lives just like how we broke away from the Gold standard back in 1971 after the end of the Bretton Woods system, eventually fiat currencies prevailed all the way till today.

No matter what happens to the future of money, whether fiat currencies continue to be the medium of exchange or cryptocurrencies, one thing is certain: Blockchain is disrupting the traditional banking system, and with widespread digitisation, it definitely improve the efficiency of the blockchain as more users go online and stop queuing at physical banks for simple transaction needs.

For this, here are some things you can look at:

  1. Square
  2. Paypal
  3. Bitcoin
  4. Ethereum

Square and Paypal are the clear leaders when it comes to the fintech space. They both made massive purchases in Bitcoin in 2020 so that they can distribute it to their customers as a medium of transaction.

They are riding on the rise of digitisation as more people perform transactions, banking and more through their apps. Since they rely on network effect, the more people that use their platform, the better it gets.

As for Bitcoin and Ethereum, to keep it brief, cryptocurrency have finally hit 1 trillion in combined market cap, making them a viable asset class for institution participation.

Bitcoin’s market cap is still a fraction that of gold, and with the continued money printing of fiat currency, it is no wonder Bitcoin is going higher and higher, breaking the $40k USD mark as more investors buy it as a store of value to protect their future purchasing power.

This is just a simplified explanation of Bitcoin and as for Ethereum, it’s value comes from the Ethereum chain, which is the backbone of many alt coins such as Chainlink, USDT, USDC and more which are ERC-20 tokens.

Without going into the complicated jargons, Ether’s value derives from the network effect that comes from all the infrastructure (smart contracts) which the chain provides.

As Ethereum slowly moves from Proof-Of-Work towards Proof-Of-Stake, I believe Ethereum’s growth has only just begun and there will be further room for Ether’s utility and value to rise.

Conclusion

In this period of low interest rates and easy money, will you be capitalising on the momentum and sentiments and ride on the wave? Or will you continue to be fearful? I leave that up to you.

For the beginners and new investors, your best bet is to dollar cost average and just consistently invest into the market.

Time in the market TRULY is better than timing the market. The market will always be hitting all time highs and it will crash from time to time.

It is futile to try and predict the market and in every market crash, the market will ALWAYS recover in the end and climb higher beyond its previous peak.

Sign Up Firstrade Broker

For the best platform to start, you can start with Firstrade platform, which offers $0 commissions fee trading, free Morningstar Premium reports and lightning fast trade executions for all US Stocks. It has 40+ years of brokerage experience in the US and also extremely secure with FINRA and SIPC backing (MAS-level regulators).

I have been using Firstrade for a long time and tried many different brokers such as Tiger Brokers, FSMone, TD Ameritrade, Saxo, DBS Vickers and OCBC Securities, and I find Firstrade to be way ahead of any of the brokers I’ve used.

If you are already using other brokers, give it a try, don’t have to deposit anything and just see if you would like the platform.

If you want to find out more, you can read up about it here, including how to sign up, how to deposit and more!

And that’s it! Here are some trends which I am looking out for and personally, I am invested in Salesforce, Fastly, WCLD (Cloud Computing) ETF, Tesla (Through Firstrade),Bitcoin and Ethereum. (Buy through Gemini, stored in Nexo for interest)

For those interested in Cryptocurrency

For those interested to find out how you can get started on Bitcoin or Ethereum, you can check out my article here. (and get $10 USD bitcoin when you sign up and deposit 100 USD!)

I am personally using Gemini Exchange for its high level of security and Nexo Wallet to earn interest on my crypto holdings. Stay tuned as I will soon talk about the alternative asset class and Nexo as well.

Join My Tele Channel Here For Updates And More!

I use StocksCafe to keep track of all my investments (include Robo) + research on stocks. You can also view my portfolio as well as many others so you can compare your own performance with other investors. If you are interested in signing up, you can use my referral link to sign up and access premium features for 1 extra month for new users. (3 months)

Disclaimer: 

The content here is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security. In fact, the content is not directed to any investor or potential investor and may not be used to evaluate or make any investment.

Do note that this is not financial advice. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your stock broker or financial advisor. (Or contact me!)

Buying Bitcoin? Check out Gemini Exchange

Join My Tele Channel Here For Updates And More!

Many people want to invest and buy Bitcoin, and now is as good a time as ever before in the year 2021. But before we begin, I need to let you know that my viewpoints are biased as I am an investor of Bitcoin and Ethereum myself.

There are currently 2 camps when it comes to cryptocurrency, on one hand, we have the argument that cryptos are a scam and it will eventually disappear, that it is a bubble and it will burst, on the other hand, crypto advocates are pushing the crypto thesis suggesting that decentralisation is the future and with central bank’s unlimited money printing, crypto’s thesis is stronger than ever. For me, I believe that some exposure to cryptocurrency is necessary to hedge our portfolio against systemic risk and also inflation.

I personally will allocate 10% of my entire capital towards cryptocurrencies and currently I have an exposure of around 4.7% to crypto, which is still shy of the 10% target allocation. With Bitcoin hitting all time highs and crossing the $30k USD mark, I believe there is a lot more room for growth especially given Bitcoin’s tiny size if you compare it to the market cap of the stock market or gold supply.

Bitcoin’s market cap is currently sitting at $613 Billion at the time of writing and if we were to compare that to the market cap of gold, which is approximately 9-10 trillion, Bitcoin’s position as digital gold is still in its early stages and plenty more room to grow if institutional investors start to pour money into Bitcoin or even start to convert a part of their free cashflow into bitcoins, which will push Bitcoin’s demand even higher and the price to continue to surge.

So how exactly do you buy Bitcoin? You first need to find a brokerage for you to purchase Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies.

When looking for the right crypto broker, a few things are very important for me. The broker needs to be:

  1. Safe and Secure (Clean Record and able to fend off hackers)
  2. Easy to Use (Modern UI and Simple To Understand Platform)
  3. Good Value (Low fees of transaction)

Click on the logo to sign up! (Get 10 USD in Bitcoin when you sign up and top up $100 USD!)

When it comes to crypto investing, it is of utmost importance to ensure that the exchange is safe and secure so that our digital currencies won’t just disappear into thin air never to be found again. Aside from security, a simple platform can simplify the sign up process and ensure great experience when using the app. and of course, the exchange need to be good value for money even for small investors looking to put in just a few hundred dollars.

Gemini Exchange

Gemini is a top-rated digital currency exchange and custodian started in 2015 by the Winklevoss twins. It is one of the best places to trade and store crypto, and according to Fortune and Bloomberg, the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) uses Gemini as the basis for the daily settlement for the bitcoin futures.

The Gemini exchange is based in New York. It’s quickly become one of the most respected cryptocurrency exchanges in the digital currency space. It also became the world’s first licensed Ether exchange in 2016.

Knowing that big institutions and renowned investors trust the Gemini platform, it puts an ease of mind for an investor especially in the cryptocurrency world, where hacking risk and loss of capital are prevalent across platforms such as Coinbase and Binance, both of which have been hacked before, causing billions of dollars in damage.

1. Safety and Security

Gemini is one of the largest and most reliable cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. It is a SOC 1 Type 1 and SOC 2 Type 2 certified crypto exchange and custodian with industry leading custody services. The exchange has never been hacked before since its inception and your cryptocurrencies are basically stored in a separate “Cold Storage” which makes it extremely secure.

It is one of the most secure hot wallets in the world if you intend to invest/trade large amount of fiat currencies.

In an announcement, Gemini now supports Singapore Dollar (SGD) purchases of crypto. You can now buy crypto using a debit card or deposit SGD into your Gemini account via FAST bank transfers!

Personally have been waiting for them to offer SGD for a very long time because the only other affordable option for Singaporeans is to either go through Binance.sg, Coinhako or Crypto.com.

But if you compare the overall security of the exchanges, Gemini will be the outright winner because of its clean track record of not getting hacked and attaining high security ratings which are difficult to achieve. You can read up more on it here.

Currently, I am using Binance.sg and Gemini for cryptocurrency investing and overall, I do find Gemini’s interface to be superior as it looks really clean, modern and secure.

2. Ease of Use

Gemini comes in both web and mobile format, and above you can see the mobile interface. The exchange offer access to 5 fiats currencies (including SGD) and 13 different cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Chainlink, Z Cash, Dai (Stablecoin) and more.

The exchange also support recurring buys such as daily, weekly, twice monthly and monthly orders, so you basically can dollar cost average into the crypto of your choice and simply HODL.

The platform is really very simple and beginner friendly so you will be familiar with it once you register your account.

3. Good Value

When it comes to fees, this is where things get tricky, because fees are usually written in fine prints. For Gemini, fees based on my own experience is around 1.4% every time I buy crypto, for comparison, Binance.SG fees are 0.6%, but in exchange for heightened security and mobile app access, I don’t mind the higher fee associated with Gemini if you compare to Binance.SG. For detailed fees description, you can read more on Gemini’s website here.

Do note for all SGD based crypto exchanges such as Gemini, Binance.SG, Coinhako, Crypto.com, they are all linked by the same Xfers account with a transaction limit of S$30,000 annually, beyond this amount, you either have to find someone to deal OTC/P2P or trade in USD denomination.

If you are not planning to invest more than $30,000 or have less than that amount, then it should not be a problem.

Gemini is good value compared to other crypto exchanges as they do not have complicated maker and taker fees, coupled with their world class security, the fees are tough to beat if you compare to global brokers such as Binance.com, Coinbase, Kraken and more.

How to fund Gemini account?

To make SGD deposits on Gemini, you need to first add a SGD bank account as a funding source once you sign up and verified your account. Next, follow the steps here:

  1. Head over to Gemini and click on Account settings, then locate the ‘Funding Sources’ tab.
  2. Click on ‘Get Started’ under Manually Link Bank Account and then select SGD as the funding source currency.
  3. In the deposit screen or Transfer tab, select your bank account, amount to transfer and receive your FAST deposit instructions.

You will receive a set of bank account instructions to facilitate SGD deposits, simply follow the steps, key in your details and done!

Make a FAST deposit from your bank account approved as a funding source, remember to include the reference code given. First-time FAST transfers may take up to 48 hours to get credited while mandatory verifications are being conducted.

Withdrawals

To make a withdrawal, simply go to the withdrawal tab, select SGD and select the linked bank account and click on ‘Request Withdrawal.’

Your withdrawal should be reflected within one business day in your linked bank account.

If you are still unsure, you can follow the deposit instructions here!

Conclusion

Gemini launching SGD deposits, withdrawals and crypto trading and investing is an absolute gem for Singapore investors looking for an easy fiat on and off-ramp for cryptocurrencies.

The exchange is world famous for its security and the popularity of Gemini globally meant that it is a reliable and renowned platform trusted by high net worth individuals, institutional investors and companies worldwide.

Gemini Referral Code

For those who are interested to sign up with Gemini and invest into Bitcoin and more, you can click on this referral link here and receive US$10 in Bitcoin after you top up at least US$100 on Gemini!

Overall Rating: 9.5/10

Security Rating

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Ease of Use

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Value for Money

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

If the fees were to be slightly lower, it would have gotten a 10/10, but again, this is simply nitpicking because the security that comes with Gemini is extremely top-notch and industry leading, giving investors a peace of mind knowing their crypto holdings are safe.