Tuesday, December 24, 2013


Along the way in my life, I have observed that certain personal characteristics of people of certain names. Do these people truly live up to their names or do their names inspire or lead them down their paths?

I don't know. But it is becoming a clear observation.

Perhaps, both western and eastern thinking values importance on the choice of a good name.

Still, I can't help but feel 东方思维 places a greater emphasis on names and contains a richer study into the choice of a good name.

Afterall, 名不正,言不顺.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Law of Percentages

Very frequently, the common fella has more of an affinity for the absolute numbers; figures for measure, for quantification,  for constraints, for limits.

While it is all very correct and true for a variety of situations; number of demerit points for suspension of licenses, as a fixed KPI for bonus/awards, fixed pricing for purchases.

Sometimes, in a longer time horizon, for an ongoing event like determination of a measure of performance, it is better to defer to the use of percentages.

Simply, if you have got a key statistic; say an increase of 20 people going through your store doors each day, this improvement is made more indicative expressed as a percentage such 5% or 10% etc.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Air Miles from Credit Cards

Everybody likes to have a little kickback benefit from spending their money..  and some take it to the extreme.

Natalie Keener: Hungry much?
Ryan Bingham: Our business expense allots forty dollars each for dinner. I plan on grabbing as many miles as I can.
Natalie Keener: Okay, you got to fill me in on the miles thing. What is that about? You're talking about, like, frequent flyer miles?
Ryan Bingham: You really want to know?
Natalie Keener: I'm dying to know.
Ryan Bingham: I don't spend a nickel, if I can help it, unless it somehow profits my mileage account.
Natalie Keener: So, what are you saving up for? Hawaii? South of France?
Ryan Bingham: It's not like that. The miles are the goal.
Natalie Keener: That's it? You're saving just to save?
Ryan Bingham: Let's just say that I have a number in mind and I haven't hit it yet.
Natalie Keener: That's a little abstract. What's the target?
Ryan Bingham: I'd rather not...
Natalie Keener: Is it a secret target?
Ryan Bingham: It's ten million miles.
Natalie Keener: Okay. Isn't ten million just a number?
Ryan Bingham: Pi's just a number.
Natalie Keener: Well, we all need a hobby. No, I- I- I don't mean to belittle your collection. I get it. It sounds cool.
Ryan Bingham: I'd be the seventh person to do it. More people have walked on the moon.
Natalie Keener: Do they throw you a parade?
Ryan Bingham: You get lifetime executive status. You get to meet the chief pilot, Maynard Finch.
Natalie Keener: Wow.
Ryan Bingham: And they put your name on the side of a plane.
Natalie Keener: Men get such hardons from putting their names on things. You guys don't grow up. It's like you need to pee on everything.

From one of the most useful & easy ways of spending money (ie. credit cards) comes a little travel benefit in the form of air miles for Frequent-flyer programs (FFPs).

There is no lack of choices for air miles cards and no lack of comparison posts. See here and here.

In fact, you can even go so far as to get rolodex full of credit cards to maximize air miles conversion from credit card dollars/points from various activities. But I just find it tedious to do so. Before the inflation of air miles conversion into actual air tickets (IAMC), once upon a time, it was worthwhile a person's while to collect these air miles because:

  • Kickback benefit from Non-Discretionary Spending 
  • Non expiry of points
  • Alignment with interest in travel 
  • Travel with Family
  • Feel a Significant benefit.

To minimize discretionary spending, it is easier to have just ONE card of the following features:

  • Visa/Mastercard card
  • Immortal Lifespan of Air Miles/points
  • Conversion into multiple FFPs.

For this purpose, my choice is Citibank PremierMiles card. However, with IAMC kicking into gear, unless you spend a fair bit, the points benefit per dollar may point you towards cashback cards.

Friday, December 13, 2013

One Coin for All of Your Cards

Well, this certainly looks interesting. The home page has a good design too.

CPF Requirements

CPF Minimum Sum 

55th birthday on or after


(in 2003 dollars) 


(after adjustment for inflation)
1 July 2003
1 July 2004
1 July 2005
1 July 2006
1 July 2007
1 July 2008
1 July 2009
1 July 2010
1 July 2011
1 July 2012
1 July 2013

Medisave Required Amount (MRA) 

  • S$40,500 (from 1st Jan 2014)
MRA will be merged into the Medisave Minimum Save (MMS). The Medisave Minimum Sum is the amount you need to retain in your Medisave Account, before any excess Medisave savings can be withdrawn, whenever you make a withdrawal of your CPF monies at age 55 and above. The Medisave Minimum Sum ensures you set aside enough savings to meet your future healthcare expenses, especially during old age. The Medisave Minimum Sum is $40,500 since 1 July 2013.

HDB Property Inheritance Rules

Qn: If a man already owns/co-owns a HDB property, will he be forced to sell his HDB house if his parents wills their HDB property to them upon their deaths?

Ans: A person who owns an HDB flat is not allowed to take over the ownership of an inherited HDB flat as he is unable to hold 2 HDB flats at the same time.

Qn:  If a man already owns/co-owns a private property, will he be forced to sell one of his houses if his parents wills their HDB property to them upon their deaths?

Ans: Generally, for a Singapore Citizen household, as a private residential property owner, they can take over an HDB flat which has already fulfilled its minimum occupation period without disposing the private property. However, they are required to physically occupy the HDB flat.