For the past decade, Isaac Chin has been a full-time investor after a career as a chartered accountant. “I didn't have an inspiring career as an accountant. Nothing great came out of it. If I have to work hard for a salary and put up with a lot of stress, I might as well work for myself - and earn more,” he said. Now aged 64, he has reaped handsome profits from investing in property, equities and bonds.


Issac_friend4.14Issac with Keng Ann, an ex-classmate from Queenstown Secondary School, at the ancient city of Avignon.Photos courtesy of Isaac Chin

I HAVE JUST made my 8th visit in the last 10 years to Europe, my third to France. We travelled to Southern France, and during the last two days, Paris.

This is the first time I have visited the smaller French cities such as Lyon, Marseille, Nice, and Bordeaux, a famous wine growing area.

France offers visitors excellent wine and food. We enjoyed fine French cuisine such as snails, mussels and lobsters at prices much better than in Singapore.

Hotel room rates were also inexpensive at about S$200 a night for a 4-star hotel, except in Paris where it cost us S$350 a night.

All told, we spent about S$5,000 each for the 15-day trip, which included airfare, hotel, euro- train rides,and 3 sumptuous meals every day.

On this free-and-easy trip, travelling in a group of four worked well, at least logistically.

The trip proved both memorable and satisfying because my wife and I travelled with an old classmate of mine (class 1968) and his wife, and we enjoyed the fine things in life together, and sharing our life experiences.

We found it a great blessing being able to travel together in old age, enjoying financial independence, and having achieved a happy family with grand-children, and we still had health on our side.

This is testimony to our small measure of achievement as Singaporeans.

I kept myself very busy and engaged on the trip by trading and keeping up with the performance of my investments. 

IsaacFrance4.14Isaac @ Avignon which was the capital of Christendom during the Middle Ages.

Isaac_Paris4.14Isaac at the Eiffel Tower in Paris.On our last day in Paris, 15 April, I woke up at 3 am Paris time, and proceeded to sell my last batch of 75 lots of A-Reit x $2.33 (total: $167,250), which was bought a month earlier at $2.12 apiece.

I had sold 153 lots x $2.26 average on 3 April, totalling $345,780.

Just before the trip, I had bought 125 lots of Suntec placement shares x $1.605, and sold at $1.68 each on 3 April.

I bought back 120 lots x $1.69 on 15 April.  Yes, I bought back at a higher price than I sold at just less than 2 weeks earlier.

This was a tactical move because the STI and A-Reit were rising strongly, but Suntec was stuck at $1.69 that day. I sold A-Reit and bought back Suntec simultaneously.

I have exceeded my target investment return in the first 3.5 months of 2014, chalking up about $200,000 in realised and paper gains in a very volatile and uncertain market. I still hold about $2M of shares of SPH, SingPost and Suntec REIT.

My greatest concern now is how the market will react to the QE tapering which has begun and is likely to end in 2014 Q3.

The Fed will raise interest rates sooner than expected and we shall witness the final showdown.

Currently, I hold mainly shares in Suntec and SingPost, which remain my favorite stocks. They are both defensive in nature, high dividend yielding, and offer good growth potential.

I hold substantial cash reserve, ready to use in the event of a market crash.

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Comments  

#1 Thomas Ong 2014-05-15 23:37
Hi, Isaac, Inspirational life story, thank you for sharing, please keep us update on your thought and portfolihttp:// nextinsight.net /index.php/stor y-archive-mainm enu-60/924-2014 /8397-notes-fro m-paris-qi-sold -a-reit-2014-ga in-is-s200kqo regularly, as there are many avid followers here...are you still holding to corp bonds like Ezra?..thanks

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