Month: January 2021

Funding Secured! (For Teh Bing)

I hosted a fellow member of Team ThumbTack last weekend for lunch. It’s been an uber exhausting start to 2021, and also, since it’s going to be CNY soon, I thought we should go somewhere fancy, eventually settling on Cantonese food from Summer Palace at Regent Hotel.

Here’s what Michelin 1-star for 3 consecutive years Summer Palace looks like:

LOL. U gotta admit, the starter does look kinda… underwhelming. But it gets better real fast.

Can’t rem what goes inside exactly, but there’s all sorts of seafood and I was kinda ready to call it a day after that.

Lobster noodle is da bomb. I kinda wished it was served earlier though, was already 99% full by then.

<Forgot to take pics of the fancy desserts…>

Anyhow, said fellow ThumbTacker was coincidentally, 1 of the early employees of InvestingNote. He was also heavily involved with the previous post, doing most of the heavy lifting in fact:

https://thumbtackinvestor.wordpress.com/2021/01/21/ttis-2021-market-outlook-and-review-of-tiger-brokers/

In that post… GameStop (GME) was referenced multiple times and quoted as an example.

Now, all these mentions of GME here were way before GME made financial headline news all over the world, particularly in the past week.

It has occupied the no.2 spot on the top 5 general list for the longest time:

https://thumbtackinvestor.wordpress.com/2020/12/02/thumbtack-fund-report-5-ba-ba-black-sheep/

I held 55,000 of GME at an average price of approximately USD 8++ at the start of 2021, way before Chamath even knew the company existed (just sayin). As it spiked, I finally sold everything at around USD40 – USD45, recognizing a 450% or so ROI for General no.2.

Big mistake (on hindsight of course!)

The share price continued to rise violently, spiking way above USD 400 even, and this looks set to continue next week.

At the last count, my 55,000 shares would now be worth approximately USD 22mil!!!

<Insert emoticon of someone puking blood pls for the full cinematic effects>

Talk about leaving the party early!

Gosh.

OK, OK, I did do the hypothetical calculations just to have a sense of how much I left on the table, although truth be told, I don’t really feel… … that it’s a waste. I guess that’s the price to pay if my strategy is focused on assigning intrinsic values to the share price.

On hindsight, there are of course, many things I could’ve looked at. Even in my early mentions of GME on IN, I’ve already stated a short squeeze as a potential scenario, and that’s way before most people spoke about it.

So I guess this ends up being 1 of the scenarios whereby my rationale was right, my timing was fortuitous, I did benefit from what would otherwise have been eye popping returns… but left the vast bulk of the gains on the table as I under estimated the insanity of today’s markets.

As a buddy told me: “You’re too smart to be filthy rich.”

Think about that statement. It’s true. It really is.

To capitalize on extreme scenarios, and I mean like EXTREMEEEEEEE…… you can’t be just smart. Cos being smart implies a degree of judgement and rationality. Doing the sensible thing.

But those who have capitalized on extreme situations to become filthy rich, usually include an element of irrationality. Craziness. Doing things that normal people would think is insane. Just plain, outright illogical.

Jobs was sleeping in his friend’s dorm for a period of time. He didn’t graduate cos he didn’t bother to pick up the relevant credits needed to do so.

Tesla was expected to fail for the longest time. Musk himself said so, he himself thought that they’d go under.

Many billionaires dropped out of Ivy League colleges and took huge risks before they made it big. That’s not the “smart” way of doing things. The “smart” way was to graduate, get a cushy consulting job, and bank in half a mil of comp annually, and work your way up.

So there. I did the “smart” thing. Banked in a 450% ROI in 3mths. (but not the 4,500% ROI)

And as long as I remain “smart”, I’d never be able to capture the next 4,500% ROI opportunities that I manage to dig up. Cos that’s not what rational people do.


The excitement doesn’t stop there.

U see, on InvestingNote, I tend to reference drinking Teh Bing (iced milk tea) once in a while:

LOL, u get the idea…

Of course, I didn’t really mean it right? Everybody’s just a random stranger to everybody else. I don’t expect to know anyone irl, possibly in this entire lifetime. We are just all random folks, of course, linked by a “investing commonality”, but would otherwise just have a fleeting impact on each other’s life.

But apparently, some dude decided that he meant what he said, it’s not a figure of speech, it’s not a joke; and really treated me to teh bing by sending me a Grabfood voucher via email! I legit don’t even know you can do that.

Since then, that set off an avalanche of folks who decided to errr…. fulfill their promises despite everybody knowing that it’s probably a joke!

LOLOL! Kid u not, I’ve been receiving GrabFood vouchers, Starbucks, Capitastar$ (or something like that), Cold Storage vouchers etc literally everyday since then.

It made me smile.

Like really. We’re not talking about massive sums of money, but it’s… kinda cute, ain’t it?

I think I should ask if Guinness Book of Records if this is a record for “most number of gifts received from complete strangers”. I tried to google it and it only shows some “Secret Santa” record, so hey, this might really be a record.

So now, aside from Teh Bing, I can on occasion, get the Ackman sanctioned western version:

This is by far my favorite message: GME paid for his renovation! :)

Who’d have known? An American legacy video game retailer paid for some dude’s house reno halfway around the globe in SG…

Anyhow, the main purpose of this post, is really to just say thank you.

I can’t reply the Grabfood email, so I guess I just have to say thank you to everybody as a group here.

It’s greatly appreciated, I’ve saved each and every one of your emails, I know who you are (online persona at least), it’d be my treat next if I get the chance to.

If I drink 1 x teh bing everyday, back of the envelope calculations tell me that I’ve enough for around 2 years. LOLOL!

To put things into perspective, if TTI is a company, and daily 1 x teh bing is an operating expense, as of now, my balance sheet has enough teh bing assets to last till… Q4 of 2022.

That’s longer than how long AMC can last at their current cash burn rate, despite having just done a capital raise and having a bunch of debt converted to debt! (https://seekingalpha.com/news/3656164-amc-entertainment-exploring-raising-new-capital-with-stock-surge-cnbc-says)

So I’ve enough, don’t need to send me teh bings anymore pls, I greatly appreciate it. SEC can’t come after me for saying that funding IS secured, thank you, thank you, this IS kinda the closest to having an actual teh bing truck.

Gum xia. Gum xia.

Probably no new posts for a while, so I’d end off by wishing all readers a great Lunar New Year ahead.

Huat ar!

TTI’s 2021 Market Outlook And Review Of Tiger Brokers

Let me start 2021 off on SG TTI with something fun.

On the 1st trading day of 2021, I fired off a mini proton cannon shot at 1 listed company in SGX. Long-time readers would know that prior to that, I don’t own anything on SGX. Not directly in the personal portfolio at least. (Own some shares of FCT indirectly via a holding company, that’s about it)

I intend to add a little more to this position before I’m done.

See if you can guess what company this is.

Here’s the solitary clue:

Ah. Now that I look at it, this sure is a dead giveaway.

But maybe cos I know the answer… so everything looks damn obvious. LOL.

Let’s see how many folks get it right.


In my last post, I used the Rose of Jericho as a reference to year 2020. So what lies ahead after a year of resurrection?

Salvation?

I think there’s no debate that the world’s economies were temporarily saved by the loose monetary policies we saw all around the world. Money printing papered over several cracks that were threatening to destroy economies in the blink of an eye.

Yet, like an aspirin taken for a hangover, it gets worse when the effects wear off. When exactly would this happen, is a guess for everyone to make, myself included.

IMO, the effects of loose monetary policies continue for a tad longer into 2021. Democrats now have firm control in the US, and their policies all revolve around money printing. In fact, if anything, they’re more socialist than most other governments that I can think of.

And the thing is, they can do so… until they can’t. Right now, I can’t see anything on the horizon that’d put a limit to wanton money printing and continued bubble inflating. So expect to see that continue for the bulk of the year.

This doesn’t mean it’s smooth sailing, and things go up in 1 straight line.

Even in periods of economic booms, whether it’s fuelled by real economic activity or like in this case, fuelled by money flooding into the system, we will see periods of sharp corrections.

IMO, that sets the tone for 2021. More capital swooshing around in the system, with bouts of sharp corrections, with equally sharp recoveries.

This party continues unabated until… and here’s the irony……… until the pandemic subsides and things return to a semblance of normalcy. It doesn’t even need to be back to pre-Covid days. It won’t.

Pandemic just has to be controlled, numbers start coming down, and this, in TTI’s view, becomes the danger zone.

The rationale is that sooner or later, the punch bowl has to be taken away. It may take some time, but the Fed will have to tighten, and depending on how it’s done, it could be a real dampener on returns.

Returns are always a function of the base price. At such elevated levels, even the absence of more liquidity flooding into the system, never mind the lack of real growth etc, will be a real risk to future returns.

Of course, “lack of returns” usually just refers to market returns.

For the nimble, sharp and insightful investor, there’s always market beating returns to be achieved, regardless of how the markets perform.

Anyway, this is just TTI’s view of how the macro picture looks like for 2021, and that’s notoriously inaccurate.

It also actually doesn’t affect too much of my investing thought processes… except when deciding on the liquidity levels to maintain. That’s all.

With that, let me move on to the main reason for this post: To introduce Tiger Brokers.


Tiger Brokers

By now, Tiger should not be an unfamiliar name to many.

They offer market access to the US, HK, SG, China, and Australia stocks. Not extensive but it’s a good start for many retail investors.

What is most attractive to TTI is perhaps the rates that Tiger Brokers offers at the moment. For SG market, they currently waive the minimum fee and only charge a 0.08% trading fee. This drastically reduces your cost as the minimum fee (ranging from SGD8 such as FSMOne and SCB to SGD25 for local brokerages such as DBS Vickers) does add up and can eat into your returns.

By the way, do you know that if you trade on Tiger Brokers from now till 30th April 2021, you need not pay the minimum charge (used to be S$2.88 per trade)? Check out the promotion here for the minimum fee waiver for SG stocks:

Deep Dive into the Tiger App

TTI explored Tiger Brokers and had a look at the features and the tools.

The Tiger team incorporates social features into the app, which gives the users a social experience. This is a differentiator from the usual brokerage platforms where users merely use the app for monitoring their stocks and performing transactions.

This can be found in the ‘Community’ Tab, though I think more can be done to increase engagement.  

One feature worth mentioning is perhaps ‘News’. These are aggregated from multiple data sources such as Yahoo Finance, Street Insider, Dow Jones, Reuters, etc.

You can also take a look at the ‘Discover’ tab, where it shows stock activities (hot stocks with top buys and sells of the day).

For illustration purposes, I will be using one of the top generals, i.e. GME, for the walkthrough below. This walkthrough will include screen grabs from both the desktop app and the mobile app.

Mobile App & Desktop App Walkthrough

For serious investors or traders looking to deepen one’s analysis, it’s worth downloading the desktop application to enjoy Tiger’s extensive tools and resources. Here, I will share a few that caught my attention and those I use in my assessment.

Market Data

Tiger provides the following market data types for the respective markets:

  • US and SG: Level 1 (live market data)
  • HK and CN: Level 0 (stock market information needs to be manually refreshed by scrolling)
  • LON and AU: Delay (LON delayed by 15 mins and AU by 20 mins)

For a trial, I explored only the US, HK, and SG markets (in order of frequency). For the US market, the real-time, live market data stands out since you will need to pay a fee to access such market data on other brokerage platforms. For HK market, you’ll have to manually refresh every time to obtain the live prices, such as by scrolling the page. A bit more clicking and scrolling to do, but if it could potentially save you some dollars, why not – unless you trade the HK market actively, that is.

Tip: I just found out that Tiger Brokers offers free 30 days Level 2 US market data for signing up (refreshable by claiming in rewards centre).

Level 1 market data grants you access to the order book where you can see the best real-time bid-ask volume quotes. For longer-term investors who are not bothered by the slight change in stock prices, Level 1 quotes are more than sufficient. For more active traders looking to perform scalping or who are more sensitive to smaller price changes, they should consider Level 2 quotes as these will provide more information, such as market depth chart and big trades notice.

Fundamental Analysis

  1. Tiger’s fundamental analysis information is pretty comprehensive. It includes basic information such as the company’s profile, your finance 101 (e.g. income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement), valuation analysis, and stock diagnosis, among other data.

Other interesting analyses that can be found include short interest, capital flow, and large orders.

Oh, by the way, does all this sound oddly familiar: short interest and GME? TTI once dived into the analysis of short interest here after GME rallied 44% in a single day. Certainly an indicator I would pay attention to.

Technical Analysis

Nothing much on technical analysis except wanting to highlight something that caught my eye: the Distribution of Chips (CYQ). Yes, the red-green graph on the right. Here’s a brief definition of Distribution of Chips from Tiger:

Here’s how the CYQ looks like from the mobile app:

Fairly interesting. Something fun TTI would add to part of the analysis to complement the chart reading.

Extension of Tiger Brokers’ Promotions

These are the two main promotions that Tiger is currently running:

  1. No minimum charge for SG stocks till 30th April 2021.
  1. Welcome gifts and referral promotions till 31st December 2021.

Once you open an account or if you manage to get a referral who signs up using your link, you get to enjoy the following promotions that Tiger is currently running.

Once you successfully open an account, you will get 5 commission-free trades for US and HK stocks.

If you get your referral to sign up, you will get free 30-days level 2 market data for US stocks.

Here comes the interesting part. Just for fun. I did some math and notice you will make the highest return on your capital if you deposit only SGD2000 and pocket the SGD30 stock voucher (that’s a whopping 1.5% return!). The return drops to 1%, 0.7%, and 0.33% for deposits of SGD5,000, SGD10,000 and SGD30,000 respectively.

If you are keen to give the Tiger Brokers platform a try, you can sign up here and get the rewards that I shared above.

Written by: Team ThumbTack, in collaboration with Tiger Brokers.