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3 local banks, 3 REITs and SIA.

Monday, January 11, 2021

This blog is actually the second reply to a reader, csky, who is interested in knowing how much have I invested in DBS, OCBC and UOB, amongst other things? 

I decided to publish this as a blog as there are probably other readers who might be interested in this. 

The question started with why didn't I channel funds I used to increase my investment in IREIT Global into Sabana REIT instead? 

In reply, I said: 

"There isn't any brilliant reason behind this. 

"It is simply timing. 

"I like what Sabana REIT's activist investors are doing but I was not sure if they would be able to block the proposed merger. 

"I only added to my investment in Sabana REIT in early December when the proposed merger was scuttled. 

"The purchase of more IREIT units at between 58c to 62c a unit happened in October and November."

I ended that reply with just one sentence on the size of my investment in the 3 local banks as a whole. 

It might have confused csky and here is my second reply to his follow up comment: 

Just to be doubly sure you got the right message, it is the combined value of my investment in the 3 banks which is bigger than the combined value of my investment in AA REIT and IREIT Global. 

As to the stuff I read to stay up to date, The EDGE is a weekly read for me and The Business Times can be interesting too.

I try to keep things simple during this crisis, avoiding speculation as much as I can, as there really isn't much clarity as to how long the COVID-19 pandemic and its deleterious effects might last. 

Although we have some vaccines ready for use now, we also have new variants of the COVID-19 virus and more countries are imposing lockdowns again.

To be safe, my strategy in 2021 will probably stay the same as my strategy in 2020.

Doing so might mean to err on the side of caution, of course. 

I mostly look at what businesses have and what they can deliver now even during a pandemic rather than what they might be able to deliver after we emerge from the pandemic. 

This made me avoid investing in SIA even as its stock price plunged, for example. 

I might be missing out on some extraordinary gains now and in the future but, like I always say, peace of mind is priceless. 

As for trying to stay up to date while actively gaming, Neverwinter's latest module is launching next month which will mean less time for blogging.  



csky said...

Thank you AK! :)

AK71 said...

Hi csky,

Stay safe and good luck to all of us. :)

ang said...

Hi AK71,

This is a random question that is not related to this post.

I recalled you blogged about occasionally performing short-term trades to nibble in the market. I've been investing in the stock market for more than 10 years now and mainly taking long positions. I think I've done pretty well so far and making positive returns.

Lately, i've been reading up and gaining interest in trading options. Was thinking of going in-depth understanding them and trading it to supplement my otherwise boring portfolio. Just wanted to hear your thoughts about options, and whether you do trade them?

Thank you!

AK71 said...

Hi ang,

Boring portfolio that pays is good for lazy AK. ;p

Have not done any options trading before, only stocks. :)

1. Trading around core positions for extra money.
2. Sell into the rally and stay invested.

MT said...

Hi AK71

Can I find out how much is your subscription to The Edge magazine?

I was a subscriber long time ago and had subscription discounts. But discontinued after they removed the discount. Wanted to find out if there is still a discounted rate for subscription.


AK71 said...

Hi MT,

I actually don't know because I get mine free from somewhere. ;p

Unknown said...

Hi Ak,

I have been following yr blogs for a couple of years.

Just wondering if u invest in the hong kong market?

Thank you and wishing you a safe, healthy and prosperous 2021:-)

AK71 said...

Hi Unknown,

Not directly, no.

Some of my investments like OCBC have exposure to the Hong Kong and Chinese economy.

Safe, healthy and prosperous 2021 to you too. :)

SgFire said...

Hi Ak

What do you see in sph ? Many retirees loss their shirt in sph

Unknown said...


mind I ask how you get yours free? ;)


AK71 said...

Hi SgFire,

SPH? Apart from its real estate investments, not much.

1. The fate of my investment in SPH.
2. Sizing my investment in SPH.
3. Investment in SPH is larger now.

AK71 said...

Hi MT,

Eh, I cannot say too much but ask your broker or your banker if they are able to get you free stuff sometimes. ;p

Egg said...

Hi AK,

I'm looking into investing in REITs for the first time.

Have noticed you talk positively about AA REIT in previous blog posts.

Just wondering if AA REIT is a relatively "safe" REIT to invest in? Have noticed that the gearing is not that high compared to some of other REITs which I take it to be a more conservative type.

AK71 said...

Hi Egg,

I have published a blog in reply to your comment:
Should we invest in AIMS APAC REIT in 2021?

Good fortune to all of us. :D

blight said...

Hi ak,

Any thoughts about digital banks potentially disrupting our traditional brick and mortar banks' businesses?


AK71 said...

Hi blight,

Digital banking is coming but it will take time to ramp up.

Our local banks have not been sitting idle and have also gone the digital route in recent years.

Many years ago, Mr. Lee Kuan Yew said that our local banks should consolidate and suggested that 3 bigger local banks would be better than having many smaller ones.

That was how the big 3 local banks came to be.

Digital banks will have an uphill battle if they go face to face with the big 3.

The path of least resistance would be to go to places which are underbanked in the region.

We will have to wait and see what happens.

Eddy said...

Hi AK, Good morning!
Like to share the above news. It seemed that this potential IPO is a life saver for SPH in current bad economic situation. Hope SPH has a substantial amount investment in it. What’s your take on this? Thanks

AK71 said...

Hi Eddy,

Well, every little bit of good news helps. ;)

Eddy said...

This seems like a positive news for S-Reits...

AK71 said...

Hi Eddy,

Whether it happens or not or how much of an impact it would have on S-REITs is speculative.

However, we should expect the chase for higher yielding assets to continue as long as interest rates stay ultra low or even negative.

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