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3 Major Lessons We Learnt From Singapore’s Top Investment Bloggers

Turns caffeine into digestible finance content. You can contribute your thoughts like Ming Feng here.

Instead of the eavesdropping for stock tips at the coffee shop, we tried this

Assuming you started your brokerage account, there are usually two immediate options to help you kick-start your journey in building the “perfect” investment portfolio.

One can either:

  • Read up lots of investment-related content before deciding on what to invest in
  • Or simply, head over to a nearby coffee shop and eavesdrop on the latest stock tips from some uncle having his afternoon beer (Not kidding! Personal experience!)

I choose the first option anytime. This explains why some of the investment bloggers in Singapore received a random Email from Seedly pleading them to share a bit of their investment portfolio with us.

Guess what, it worked!

Over the past weeks, we featured the portfolios of some (8 to be exact) of the investment bloggers who selflessly shared their investment strategies and here are our findings.

TL;DR – 3 Key Takeaways

  • Never jump blindly into investing any products. Create your own stock selection process with indicators such as P/E ratio, free cash flow and information such as the balance sheet of the company, available publicly.
  • Diversify and spread your risks through different sectors, countries or asset classes.
  • All the investment portfolios carry a percentage of REITs in them, indicating that REITs can be a good addition to your portfolio on top of the usual recommended STI ETF.

Investing lessons:

Given that these investment bloggers are financially savvier than most of us average Singaporeans, looking through their portfolio and advice can give us a good picture of some of the investment instruments or strategies we can pay more attention to.

Deciding On A Particular Stocks

Each individual investment bloggers have their very own choice of indicators before deciding on which stocks to invest in. We list out some of these indicators and readers can look through the definition of these indicators and build your own “stocks selection formula”. Exciting!

IndicatorWhat does it mean?Formula
Stocks
Free Cash FlowIndicates the cash that a company is able to generate after spending the money required to maintain or expand.(Cash flow from operations) - (capital expenditures)
Payout RatioThe proportion of earnings paid out as dividends to shareholders.(Dividends per share)/ (Earnings per share)
Debts RatioThe ratio of total debt (long-term and short-term) to total assets(Total Debt)/(Total Assets)
Price-earnings Ratio (P/E)Measures current share price relative to per-share earnings of a company.(Market Value per share/ Earnings per share)
Capital GrowthIncrease in value of an asset or investment over time.(Present Value - Past Value)/(Past Value)
Wide Economic MoatCompetitive advantage that a business possesses, which hinders makes it difficult for its rivals to wear down its profit.
Exchange Traded Funds
Low Expense RatioThe annual fee that funds or ETFs charge their shareholders
Fund SizeFund resources of monies
LiquidityCash that can be accessed in case of unforeseen circumstances.

For more detailed examples of stock selection processes:

Investors must also look out for any possible economic factors that might affect the company. Changes in the economy such as government policies can have an impact on the demand for certain services. One should also only invest in business models he personally believes in.  Most investment bloggers built their stocks selection process over time through many failures and lots of reading up. Hence, investors should not be disheartened should he made losses on his first attempt at investing.

One should also only invest in business models he personally believes in.  Most investment bloggers built their stocks selection process over time through many failures and lots of reading up. Hence, investors should not be disheartened should he made losses on his first attempt at investing.

Most investment bloggers built their stocks selection process over time through many failures and lots of reading up. Hence, investors should not be disheartened should he made losses on his first attempt at investing.

Diversification

To spread out the risk of the portfolio, it is important to diversify your portfolio. Below are some of the methods investment bloggers use to diversify their risks.

  • Investing in stocks across different sectors
  • Investing in stocks with exposure to risks in different countries (eg. Accordia Golf Trust, found in STE and AK’s portfolio, is a Japan-based business trust)
  • Investing in different types of asset class (eg. JKYL Investment’s portfolio has 25% Singapore Savings Bond and 15% in shares and REITs)

Investing does not necessarily mean having a portfolio full of individual stocks. Turtle Investor, for example, has a portfolio of ETFs, Fund and REITs. He is also putting a portion of his money into Robo-advisors.

Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs)

While comparing all the portfolios, we came across a striking similarity.

  • All the Investment Bloggers have a certain percentage of their portfolio in Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs).
  • First REIT is the most popular with 4 out of the 8 investment bloggers vested in it.
  • Despite each financial blogger having their own method of deciding the stocks they wish to invest in, they all invested in REITs. This indicates that REITs are seen as a good asset class for investors.
  • We wrote an article on choosing between Growth Investing and Dividend Investing. Do note that REITs usually fall under the category for dividend investing.
REITs found in Investment PortfolioWho invested in it?
AIMS AMP Industrial REITA Singaporean Stocks Investor (AK)
Miss Niao
Ascendas REITStocksCafe
Ascendas Hospitality TrustA Singaporean Stocks Investor (AK)
BHG Retail REITSTE’s Stocks Investing
CapitaLand mall TrustSG Young Investment
CapitaLand commercial TrustSG Young Investment
CDL Hospitality TrustSG Young Investment
STE’s Stocks Investing
EC World REITInvestment Moats
ESR-REITSTE’s Stocks Investing
Far East Hospitality TrustSG Young Investment
STE’s Stocks Investing
Frasers Centrepoint TrustSG Young Investment
Investment Moats
Frasers Commercial TrustStocksCafe
Frasers Hospitality TrustSTE’s Stocks Investing
StocksCafe
Frasers Logistics and Industrial TrustInvestment Moats
STE’s Stocks Investing
First REITA Singaporean Stocks Investor (AK)
Investment Moats
Miss Niao
STE’s Stocks Investing
IREIT GlobalInvestment Moats
STE’s Stocks Investing
Keppel DC REITJKYL Investment Blog
MapleTree Greater China Commercial TrustStocksCafe
Mapletree Commercial TrustInvestment Moats
Suntec REITSG Young Investment
Starhill REITMiss Niao
StocksCafe
Soilbuild REITSTE’s Stocks Investing
Viva Industrial TrustSTE’s Stocks Investing

Further Reading: Parting Advice

Seedly believes in a “classroom” environment for learning. Which in this case, students and seniors who are stronger in the subject on investing shares their knowledge. Here are some tips for juniors who wish to do well on the subject of investing.

One can read up on their individual interviews in the links below:

  • You can start small but start today. – StocksCafe
  • Understand the concept of “Mean Reversion” to help us take advantage of price movement during a crisis. – STE’s Stocks Investing
  • There is no one-size-fits-all investment solution that can cater to every single person, so do not be disheartened when things do not work out initially. – Turtle Investor
  • Know your risk appetite and understand what you are investing. – JKYL Investment Blog
  • Do not make hasty decisions and do calculate your risks. – Miss Niao
  • Build up a brain to spot value. Read a lot. – InvestmentMoats
  • When we focus on the long term, the portfolio tends to do better over the years. – SG Young Investment

Join our classroom of close to 3,000 students today and embark on an exciting journey of personal finance with us!

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