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The Singapore government encourages citizens to save. In pretty much the same way they “encourage” you not to litter, and policemen “encourage” crack dealers to surrender. It’s mandatory, is what we’re saying. Hence, the much grumbled about Central Provident Fund (CPF). In this article, the crew at MotleyFool explains how it’s more flexible than we think:
Now that I’ve promised never to be involved, peer-to-peer car sharing is taking off in Singapore. You people; just because I’ve had a few accidents doesn’t mean you shouldn’t rent to me, dammit. “There’s like, a department in the insurance company named after you“. Heh heh, yeah, my premiums now exceed my COE. But assuming you’re not like me, have a look at this new car sharing system:
Credit card bills: Like someone took a sledgehammer to the groin, found a way to package the pain, and then mailed it to you in triplicate. For anyone with multiple lines of credit, sorting through their bills is as pleasant as chewing rusty nails. With that many cards to pay off, which one deserves the most attention? With some help from SmartCredit.sg, I explored some strategies for handling your credit card bills:
What if I told you I’m going to eat as much as I can now, so I won’t have to eat next year? Yeah, stupid, and a good analogy for saving to get rich. There’s a huge difference between “rich” and just “not poor”. Investing makes you rich; saving keeps you from bankruptcy. Good financial sense is a balancing act between the two: not letting your money stagnate with savings, and not blowing it on bad investments. In this article, we dispel some common myths about savings:
As of 2011, there are almost 25,000 un-discharged bankrupts in Singapore. The good news is the number of bankruptcy cases has dropped, by more than 20 percent since the ’90s. And now that MoneySmart is up, no one will ever go bankrupt again. I mean, have you been reading my articles? My advice is so good, I discharge a bankrupt every time I twitch. But just in case I’m exaggerating a bit, here’s an article that explains what bankruptcy entails:
Saving money is the first step to financial freedom. A little baby step though, and it’s not going to win you the rat race. In Singapore, interest rates are rising faster than a fat man’s blood pressure at bacon buffet. To meet it head on, you need financial growth as well as savings. In this article, Mr. Propwise examines the dangers of stagnant savings:
Ever since the fall of Lehman Brothers, structured deposits have been the financial world’s equivalent of leprosy. If you’re selling them, no one even wants to inhale near you. But as of 2010, structured deposits have been creeping back into the Singapore market. Banks like UoB and Citibank have made some enticing offers; and public opinion has gone from “lol” to “Umm…maybe”. So, are structured deposits a good deal?
Think you’re prepared for the worst? Think again. If your security comes in the form of insurance policies and untapped credit cards, you’re like a made-in-China MP3 player (i.e. always on the wrong track). Nothing beats having a private stash for emergencies, as Mr. Tan Kin Lian pointed out in this post:
Fixed deposit accounts are like health food: good but unappealing. Banks typically find them a hard sell, since most people like having their money where they can reach it. Then there’s worries about emergency funds, which fixed deposits get in the way of. In light of all this, what can Fixed Deposits really do for the average Singaporean? MoneySmart finds out about the 3 best Fixed Deposit Accounts.
REIZO is a custom tailoring business, recently opened at Wilkie Edge. In a world where tailored suits cost more than blood transfusions, Reizo manages to deliver quality at cut rate prices. That isn’t the only unusual thing about them; this fresh start-up had some unlikely roots. MoneySmart did some probing, and we nabbed while we were at it.