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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Economical Way to Lose Weigh

Nowadays, people are slowly aware of the importance and benefits of keeping a body fit. Women choose to lose weight, so that they have better body shape that can indirectly attract attention of men, while many others lose weight to have a healthy living.

If there is a need for you to lose weight, you could opt for a smarter and more economical way, the HCG diet. It only cost about 69USD in comparison to those who go for injection or slimming programs that might requires you to dig deep. The effect of HCG treatment is as good as those who go for injection. There will not be any fear of pain as well.

If you are not sure about the effectiveness of HCG, here are some basic facts that you should know. HCG is a natural hormone or protein substance that helps burn off unneeded excess fat. It also alter your diet and preference of food in a healthy manner.

For those of you who are afraid of side effects, the HCG drops are homeopathic, so they are safe and have virtually no side effects. If you are in need of a weight loss method and exercise and strict diet doesn't seem to work for you, the smartest and economical way to do so would probably be going for the HCG diet.

Monday, February 21, 2011

EPF declares 5.8% dividend

Well, guess what....the long awaited EPF dividend annoucement for most Malaysians is finally over. EPF declares 5.8% dividend in a year. Read more for the explanation from the EPF. I will blog a post that will again compare EPF vs KLCI maybe by end of this week.

PETALING JAYA: The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) has declared a dividend of 5.8% for 2010, up from 5.65% declared the year before.

It will pay out a total of RM21.61bil to members, an increase from the 2009 dividend payout of RM19.37bil.

EPF declared that the rate, which was approved by the Finance Minister, was the “highest dividend payout amount ever”.

EPF’s total investment assets stood at RM440.52bil as at Dec 31 last year while its gross investment income was RM24.06bil.

“The dividend rate underscores an impressive year in which gross investment income reached a historical high of RM24.06bil, reflecting a 39.76% increase over the RM17.22bil recorded in 2009,” EPF chairman Tan Sri Samsudin Osman said in a statement yesterday.

Samsudin said last year’s investment income was especially driven by the per­formance of equity investments boosted by improved financial and economic conditions.

“The dividend amount paid out is derived after deducting net impairment allowance on financial assets, investment expenses, operating expenditure and statutory charges as well as dividend on withdrawals,” he said.

Equities, the statement said, was EPF’s largest investment income contributor at 45.45% or RM10.94bil, followed by loans and bonds, Malaysian Government Securities, money market instruments and property and miscellaneous income.

According to the statement, two-thirds of EPF’s total investment assets last year remained in low risk fixed-income instruments with stable streams of income.

“As a retirement fund, our primary objective is the preservation of capital while adding value to members’ retirement savings.

Members may check their EPF account statement for the crediting of the 2010 dividend via EPF Kiosks, counters or i-Akaun, from today.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

How the Middle Class Became the Underclass

As I was browsing through some Financial articles, I came across this one .... How the Middle Class Became the Underclass. I am sharing the article because I feel that the article really fits the blog theme, in which we are talking on the Realm of Wealth. The article simply reflects the truth of the rich will get richer.

Below is the full content of the article which you can also get it from Yahoo Finance.


Are you better off than your parents?

Probably not if you're in the middle class.

Incomes for 90% of Americans have been stuck in neutral, and it's not just because of the Great Recession. Middle-class incomes have been stagnant for at least a generation, while the wealthiest tier has surged ahead at lighting speed.

In 1988, the income of an average American taxpayer was $33,400, adjusted for inflation. Fast forward 20 years, and not much had changed: The average income was still just $33,000 in 2008, according to IRS data.

Meanwhile, the richest 1% of Americans -- those making $380,000 or more -- have seen their incomes grow 33% over the last 20 years, leaving average Americans in the dust. Experts point to some of the usual suspects -- like technology and globalization -- to explain the widening gap between the haves and have-nots.

But there's more to the story.

A real drag on the middle class

One major pull on the working man was the decline of unions and other labor protections, said Bill Rodgers, a former chief economist for the Labor Department, now a professor at Rutgers University.

Because of deals struck through collective bargaining, union workers have traditionally earned 15% to 20% more than their non-union counterparts, Rodgers said.

But union membership has declined rapidly over the past 30 years. In 1983, union workers made up about 20% of the workforce. In 2010, they represented less than 12%.

"The erosion of collective bargaining is a key factor to explain why low-wage workers and middle income workers have seen their wages not stay up with inflation," Rodgers said.

Without collective bargaining pushing up wages, especially for blue-collar work -- average incomes have stagnated.

International competition is another factor. While globalization has lifted millions out of poverty in developing nations, it hasn't exactly been a win for middle class workers in the U.S.

Factory workers have seen many of their jobs shipped to other countries where labor is cheaper, putting more downward pressure on American wages.

"As we became more connected to China, that poses the question of whether our wages are being set in Beijing," Rodgers said.

Finding it harder to compete with cheaper manufacturing costs abroad, the U.S. has emerged as primarily a services-producing economy. That trend has created a cultural shift in the job skills American employers are looking for.

Whereas 50 years earlier, there were plenty of blue collar opportunities for workers who had only high school diploma, now employers seek "soft skills" that are typically honed in college, Rodgers said.

A boon for the rich

While average folks were losing ground in the economy, the wealthiest were capitalizing on some of those same factors, and driving an even bigger wedge between themselves and the rest of America.

For example, though globalization has been a drag on labor, it's been a major win for corporations who've used new global channels to reduce costs and boost profits. In addition, new markets around the world have created even greater demand for their products.

"With a global economy, people who have extraordinary skills... whether they be in financial services, technology, entertainment or media, have a bigger place to play and be rewarded from," said Alan Johnson, a Wall Street compensation consultant.

As a result, the disparity between the wages for college educated workers versus high school grads has widened significantly since the 1980s.

In 1980, workers with a high school diploma earned about 71% of what college-educated workers made. In 2010, that number fell to 55%.

Another driver of the rich: The stock market.

The S&P 500 has gained more than 1,300% since 1970. While that's helped the American economy grow, the benefits have been disproportionately reaped by the wealthy.

And public policy of the past few decades has only encouraged the trend.

The 1980s was a period of anti-regulation, presided over by President Reagan, who loosened rules governing banks and thrifts.

A major game changer came during the Clinton era, when barriers between commercial and investment banks, enacted during the post-Depression era, were removed.

In 2000, President Bush also weakened the government's oversight of complex securities, allowing financial innovations to take off, creating unprecedented amounts of wealth both for the overall economy, and for those directly involved in the financial sector.

Tax cuts enacted during the Bush administration and extended under Obama were also a major windfall for the nation's richest.

And as then-Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan brought interest rates down to new lows during the decade, the housing market experienced explosive growth.

"We were all drinking the Kool-aid, Greenspan was tending bar, Bernanke and the academic establishment were supplying the liquor," Deutsche Bank managing director Ajay Kapur wrote in a research report in 2009.

But the story didn't end well. Eventually, it all came crashing down, resulting in the worst economic slump since the Great Depression.

With the unemployment rate still excessively high and the real estate market showing few signs of rebounding, the American middle class is still reeling from the effects of the Great Recession.

Meanwhile, as corporate profits come roaring back and the stock market charges ahead, the wealthiest people continue to eclipse their middle-class counterparts.

"I think it's a terrible dilemma, because what we're obviously heading toward is some kind of class warfare," Johnson said.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Knife Sets For Home

Starting a family means a whole lot of commitment. One of the major commitment is the house. To have a comfortable life, one should have a comfortable home, equipped with everything that a house will need to have ranging from bed to kitchen appliances. A lot of new couple neglect knife sets, but having complete knife sets mean that the couple can prepare dish and cook at home.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Using Payday Loan To Solve Temporary Credit Crunch Situation

Most of us at one point of time or another might suffer from credit crunch due to a lot of unforeseen circumstances such as accidents, house broken in and many more. This is not to say that we never have a proper budget to cover when bad things happen, it is just that sometimes bad things happen so drastically until we might stumble upon credit crunch.

Of course, a good way to avoid temporarily credit crunch is to save up to six or even a year of salary, but what if we run into credit crunch situation when just started to work? How are we going to have six months of salary in our savings? Not possible.

During the credit crunch situation, first of all, it is best to get financial help from family and friends, who can provide financial assistance without charging interest. By doing this, we can repay the debt to them in the following month when we have our first paycheck.

However, sometimes, the financial situation is so bad that even with the financial assistance from family and friends, it is still to be resolved and because we just started to work, it is not likely we can get any personal loan or credit cards from any banks due to low credit score.

This is where payday loans might come in handy as one can get payday loans almost instantly and without requirement of any proper documentations and credit score, but do take note payday loans interest are quite high - which is why after we get our first paycheck, the money should go to the payday loan first.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

2011 CLSA Feng Shui Index: Watch the Metal Rabbit Bounce

As we are still in the Chinese New Year mood, let's look into what the Feng Shui master said about the overall market sentiment for the Rabbit Year. I even have a post on Investing With the help of CLSA Feng Shui Index last year, so this year we can even review some of the prediction to see whether any of the prediction comes true.

The following is the excerpt from CLSA website on the 17th CLSA Feng Shui Index:-

17th CLSA Feng Shui Index: Watch the Metal Rabbit bounce

Hong Kong - Wednesday, 19 January 2011 - CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets (“CLSA”), Asia’s leading independent brokerage and investment group, publishes the 17th CLSA Feng Shui Index (‘CLSA FSI’) report today with a tongue-in-cheek look at what 2011 holds for equities, commodities, property, celebrities, and the zodiac signs in the year ahead.

The year of the Metal Rabbit promises plenty of luck and material gain for investors, with many signs favouring the accumulation of indirect wealth. But, with a continuation of last year’s conflict between heavenly metal stem and earthly wood branch, get set for more volatility (though less than we had with the Golden Tiger).

This year’s CLSA FSI report includes the all-new ‘Sector-Vector Detector’ with the outlook for 10 key investment areas, including gold, as well as: our feng shui guide to Hong Kong; fates of the famous such as Ben Bernanke and Kim Jong-un; tips for getting luck to flow your way and much more.

The 2010 Year of the Golden Tiger CLSA FSI predicted the performance of the Hang Seng Index (“HSI”) so precisely that even we were a little surprised. Although past performance is no guarantee of future returns, we are confident that the HSI will provide great opportunities for investors to buy and sell their way to profit over the months ahead.

For the market, February 2011 should see a slow start to the year, with the Rabbit reluctant to emerge from its hole for fear the tiger still lingers. March calls for patience as opposing forces test investors’ metal. As the Rabbit finds his feet, wealth will come from the West in April and prove a great month for those with stamina.

May begins with one of the year’s four most auspicious dates (14 May), but we expect a tumble in June, providing a great buying opportunity for the savvy. Investors may want to rethink their summer-vacation plans: we see markets rising sharply over July and August. Money will flow.

With Fall comes a fall: the CLSA FSI predicts a sharp decline in September – but not for long. October marks a sustained market rally with money flowing abundantly through to the end of November. However, investors should remain focused as markets decline during December. Come January 2012, the Bunny bounces back to close the year on a high.

Sector-focused investors should pay attention to the five elements: Metal is hot, water is bubbly, fire is on fire, wood would if it could and earth is soiled. So where to invest? It will be a great year for Financials, Gaming, Gold, Resources and Transport. While gold didn’t break US$2,000 per ounce as we predicted in 2010, we are confident the Rabbit will provide the carrot this year. It will be a good year for Oil and Gas, Technology, Telecoms, Internet and Utilities, but an unexciting time for the earth-related Property sector.

In terms of the Zodiac, 2011 most favours those born in the years of the Cow, the Sheep, the Dog and the Pig, while Tigers and Roosters will experience a bumpy year. We foresee a great year for HK Tourism Board Chairman James Tien Pei-chun, a fire dog, and Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s well-fed heir apparent, a water dog whose birth date has been amended to make it more auspicious.

This year’s most auspicious dates are 14 May, 4 August, 15 November and 16 January, while the least auspicious are 16 June, 22 June, 23 September and 15 December.

All in all, the year of the Metal Rabbit provides great opportunity for investors to reap the rewards of astute investing, but they should be forewarned: those who chase two rabbits will not catch one.

source: CLSA

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Wishing Everyone A Healthy and Prosperous Rabbit Year

Wishing everyone a Happy Chinese New Year :D. Hopefully everyone will be healthy and prosperous in this year of this Rabbit year.