Dec 27, 2014

How Xiaxue vs Gushcloud Saga teaches People to Set Up An Investment Scam

Some of my friends are curious about why I am so interested in the recent Xiaxue vs Gushcloud Saga. (Here is a good summary by Online Citizen ). One of my friend even thought that I was part of Gushcloud.


My blogs are not affiliated with any organization even though I somehow got lucky and my SG Unfit Runners blog managed to get into the finals of Singapore Blog Awards.  What I blog about (Running & Finance) is too niche for these social media organization to take notice. When's the last time you hear a financial blogger being headhunted by Nuffnang or Gushcloud? Nerds (There! I said it!) like us don't make very good influencers (We don't look good in our #OOTD) though we do know how to make money from the financial markets.

Dec 22, 2014

First Shipment of Wongamania 1st Edition Arrives in Singapore!


2 years of cumulative work and Wongamania 1st Edition reaches Singapore shores at last! We have air flown in our first batch of 150 Wongamania sets in order to sent out all our available stock to our Crowdtivate crowdfunding so that receive it before Xmas! We are shipping the rest of the stock in batches in by truckloads and the entire stock is expected to reach Singapore by 30th December. Thank you to all for your support and patience!

Dec 16, 2014

Wongamania's Crowdfunding Campaign Ends. Thank you Supporters!

Our crowdfunding campaign at Singapore crowdfunding platform has finally ended on Monday (15th Dec 2014). Even though it is a pity that we fell short of our crowdfunding goal of $10,000, we learn a lot about the ins and outs of starting and executing a crowdfunding campaign and what are some of the improvements that we can include in our next crowdfunding campaign.

What? Another crowdfunding campaign? Are you going to relaunch Wongamania again?

The Wongamania Design Story: Trimming the Fats and Game Balancing (Part 3)

Here is the story of how Wongamania came to be:
Part 1: The Genesis of Wongamania 
Part 2: Concept to Prototype


In Part 2 of Wongamania Design Story, I was elaborating how I realized that I had stuffed too much contents into the game and I had to trim the number of card designs from 100 to around 50.

Game mechanics testing using pieces of paper.

The first thing that I needed to do is to cut down the number of card categories in the game. The current card categories at that point of time were: Health, career, law, incident, global, professional and assets.

Dec 8, 2014

The Wongamania Design Story: Concept to Prototype (Part 2)

Here is the story of how Wongamania came to be:
Part 1: The Genesis of Wongamania


Initial blueprint of Wongamania


 When I first came up with the initial concept of Wongamania, there is so many cool stuff that I wanted to implement.

The basic concept of Wongamania works like this.

1) Players are given a basic income every turn to help them build up their resource. The currency system and the action cards draw from the same base. Meaning that by taking action, you are losing out on money, while if you try to accumulate money, you will lose out on actions that can potentially earn more money or slow down your opponents.

2) The players are suppose to make more money through investing and taking risk by navigating through an economic cycle that goes through Recession, Recovery, Growth and Stagnant phrase and investing in assets

3) The asset cards consist of stocks, properties and bonds. However, each of the asset class has a different buying price and income flow at each different phrase of Wongamania.

Dec 3, 2014

What Will Happen when Financial Insitutions Reveals the Truth of their Advertisements?


Protecting Wealth for Generations... Until 2007...
 I am sure that we have all been bombarded by advertisements from financial institutions with a beautiful family in a beautiful room looking at their beautiful investment portfolio and smiling happily with a beautiful advisor.

Hey! We are Running Out of Oil in 10 years Time... NOT!

The recent collapse of the Oil market from $105 to $68 at the time of writing has led to many speculation that this might spark off a chain of bankruptcy and default among the Energy companies. Thanks to the rise of China and other emerging nations, oil prices have been hovering above $80 for the past 5 years and this has led to many companies and nations dealing with the energy market borrowing aggressively to leverage on this very profitable energy market. With a rapidly falling oil price and rising USD, there will be a wave of defaults and the question is: Will this lead to a chain effect like what happened during the 2007 subprime crisis resulting in another possible financial market collapse?

Nov 30, 2014

Who Knows which Industry is worth 35 Trillion dollars?

It's a lazy Sunday morning and I am doing my usual stuff, eating breakfast and surfing facebook.

I came across this sponsored post that screams

TIRED FROM YOUR CURRENT JOB?

How to start a business with low start up cost in a 35 Trillion Industry


Well, I am pretty happy with my job, but I don't mind another business whereby people slave away doing the hard work for me. Wow, a 35 Trillion Industry! Does the ad means 35 trillion dollars or 35 trillion people or 35 trillion planets.

Nov 28, 2014

The Wongamani Design Story: The Genesis of Wongamania (Part 1)

After graduation, I didn't want to follow the same corporate path taken by most of my friends. I always wanted to start my own company. It was 2003 and Singapore is just starting its evolution towards a financial hub after experiencing a deep and long recession. I have some ideas to start a children financial education company with a good friend at that point of time. However, we were concerned that we have no money, no connections and no knowledge at that time and we decided to work in the corporate work briefly before coming back together to start the company. He went on to join a marketing and event company while I joined a wealth management firm.

My friend enjoyed his work in the corporate world so much that he decided to stay for good. We never got down to starting that company. On hindsight, we should have started the company there and than. Who knows, we may have already established a pretty good brand name by now.

Nov 25, 2014

Why Boardgames in Asia are Old and Tired

When I was developing the Wongamania card game, I did a short google search on "board game" "card game" "Asia". The first few hits that I have gotten were on the traditional Asian board games such as "WeiQi" and "XiangQi". Other top hits include Asian inspired board games designed by western board games designers. There seems to be a lack of table games designers and Asian designed board games. Everybody in Asia seems to be obsessed with video and mobile games these days, when the trend is reversing in US and Europe, where board games are on the rise.

Sales of board games are on a rise in United States at a rate of 15%-20% in the past few years. More money is raised from tabletop games via crowdfunding programs than digital games in 2013. Top digital mobile games like Angry Bird and Candycrush are creating their own board games. One of the top reason for this reversal of trend, is the new wave of young people, whom decided to unplug from their mobile devices and social media, and engage in more sociable activities, like board games. This is an interesting article from New York Times on the rise of board games.

I did a simple Google image search and these pictures will tell you all about the state of table games industry in the different parts of the world. 

Board Game Industry in Asia. Stuck in Ancient Times
Board Games in US. Bright and Fun looking. They still love Monopoly!
Board Games in Europe. Strategic thinking needed.

 What's the reason for such a low interest in tabletop games in Asia? 

Nov 24, 2014

5 Ways Investment Scams Gain Your Trust ... and Money..

Financial products and money making opportunities are exploding across the world as investors look for new avenues to grow their wealth in this low interest rates environment. One of the most prominent bloom is the rise of the unregulated High Yield Investment Products (HYIP). These products typically offer high "guaranteed" returns of 20% or more and are often associated with a Ponzi Scheme. 

The recent explosion of a $1 Billion Ponzi scheme, SecureInvestment in America has hit the headlines of Bloomberg again. Forex Investors May Face $1 Billion loss as Trade Site Vanishes.
Here is the corporate video for SecureInvestment.


What is interesting is that the people behind SecureInvestment (The name itself is a big red flag!) are so marketing savvy that their website is more popular than forex.com, one of the world's largest forex trading platform, at one point of time. This Bloomberg article exposed some  of the marketing gimmick behind this Forex Trading Scam which they used to gain investors' trust... and their money.

Here are some of the tactics they used:

Nov 17, 2014

Economic Feeding Time for Bunnies




For the past 8 months, I have been erring on the side of caution as I feel that there is quite a number of risks out there that will potentially derail the stock market. Some of the risks are still around but one of the biggest risk to the global market has been somewhat deflated, which makes it safe for this scared bunny rabbit to poke his head out to scavenge for some food.

Nov 14, 2014

How to make a Suspected Scammer Wash Dishes at a Restaurant

This post was first posted on Recollections of a Money Manager during March 2014. Recollections is an online diary of my journey in the wealth management industry since 2005 and I decided to turn that site private since I prefer to keep the musings to myself. However, there is quite a few interesting articles which I thought I should repost at Xeolyenomics. Here is one of my favorite article.

Today, I had an interesting meeting with a suspected scam artist.



How I Blew $2,000 on a Forex Workshop

Creating Millionaires... Through Forex Trading... Hopefully?

Recently, I was reading a Bloomberg article The Lure of Forex: Conflict, Debt and Loss in a $400 Billion Market .

It's an interesting article that explores the Forex education workshops in America and how these firms market their workshop to get students to pay a few thousand dollars to learn about Forex trading.

Nov 4, 2014

Why Are there So Many Angry Traders at Wall Streets

The highly anticipated market correction for 2014 came... and went, with the damage barely even felt in the US stock market. The US S&P500 fell 7% within 2 weeks, and recovered everything and more, within 7 days. However, the damage caused by this correction, can still be felt in other markets, primary in Europe and the Energy markets. A series of actions by the 3 most important central banks in the world basically cause the correction to reverse it's track almost immediately. The best quote on this whole episode can be sum up by the chief market technician at Sterne Agee & Leach Inc: “?%$!&#!!”




The global stock rally is further driven by the additional stimulus measures by the Bank of Japan at the end of Oct. The BOJ, concerned by the slow-down in the domestic & global economy, the potential drag from increasing their consumption tax from 5% to 8%, lead to an unexpected and unprecedented monetary loosening in Japan. The measures are two-folds:

Nov 3, 2014

Wongamania around the World - The Story Behind...

Many of you are fascinated on the reasons on why I have been putting Wongamania on my head while traveling around Europe.

Now, everyone is demanding that I put Wongamania on my head when posing with the box game. OMG!

Here is a short history how it came about.

One fine evening, as I was making the movie for the Crowdtivate campaign, I got so bored and decided to take a few crazy poses with Wongamania.

Fooling around with Wongamania while filming for the Crowdtivate Video


Oct 23, 2014

It's a Bird, It's a Plane, No! It's SuperFed!



Evil Xeo with his evil doves, trying to destroy Wall Street by hoarding lots of USD...
No. SuperFed is not some health supplement that will eradicate Ebola and save the world.

It's actually stands for "Super Federal Reserve System of America" or more commonly known as the US central bank.

The Villain known as Xeo Lye, was rubbing his hand in glee as the global stock market crashed, taking down all the billions of dollars every day. There were panic on the streets as the men on the streets were shouting, "The stock market is crashing! Ebola is going to kill us!"

Just when the villainous Xeo Lye thinks that his plan watching the global stock market burn and crash with a highly possible 20% market correction, SuperFed flew in and smack our evil villain with his super powers.

Oct 8, 2014

Troubled Times for Asia and Europe. Commodity Prices take a Beating

The month of September saw the economy of the different regions diverge even more significantly. The US economy strengthen and with the prospect of the US central bank ending their QE bond purchase program and a possible earlier than expected rise in the interest rates, the US stock market becomes more volatile than usual. The development from Europe and Asia made investors flock towards USD, causing the USD appreciate dramatically, not seen since the 2007 financial crisis. 

Trouble Brewing in Asia and Europe
The economy in China continues to indicate a slow down and decreased the possibility of hitting the 7.5% growth target. The China government has loosen some of the money supply but this doesn't seem to encourage global investors from moving into the China equity market. The "Occupy Central" movement further discouraged the investors from investing into the Hong Kong stock  market, of which almost 50% of the capitalization are made up of Chinese companies.
A protester (C) raises his umbrellas in front of tear gas which was fired by riot police to disperse protesters blocking the main street to the financial Central district outside the government headquarters in Hong Kong, September 28, 2014.
(Reuters / Tyrone Siu)
The Japanese Yen continues to slide towards a record low as the Japanese central bank made no indication to stop their own monetary loosening  program. The slide in the Japanese Yen creates an additional risk that emerging market currencies might cause an extended sell-off that will lead to further inflation and potential foreign debt crisis.

Oct 3, 2014

Review of 5 Elements of Successful Investors by Big Fat Purse

A big thanks to Big Fat Purse and Alvin for reviewing my book. 5 Elements of Successful Investors. You can buy the book from all Kinokuniya Bookstore in Singapore and all major bookstores in Malaysia or you can get a discount by supporting our crowdfunding campaign at Crowdtivate

You can read about the review here.


Sep 16, 2014

Wongamania @ Bursa Malaysia with Sunway University


The Wongamania team, in collaboration with Bursa Young Investor club and Financial Youth Intelligence, conducted the 2nd Wongamania event supported by Bursa Malaysia. We hosted 160 students from Kuala Lumpur's Sunway University. Here are some of the photos and Instragram pictures the students have taken. 











A Funny Episode while Planning for our Wongamania Crowdfunding Campaign


Our Crowdfunding campaign kick off officially on 15th of August.

Setting up the entire campaign is a pretty intense experience. Here is a breakdown on the amount of time I took to setup the entire campaign.

Sep 11, 2014

The Bull Strikes Back! Implications of recent Currency Movements, Global Trade and Household Allocation

The recent "correction" lasted a mere 2 weeks, before the Bulls rushed back into the market to fill the gap almost immediately. Although I managed to take advantage of the correction and allocated a small portion into Europe, the opportunity is lost before I can fully exploit it. However, 2 recent indicators are pointing towards a more sustained correction in the near future.

Sharp Rise in USD

The immediate, most significant indicator is the USD/SGD trend. The USD is often seen as a safe haven in times of global turmoil and there is often a strong accumulation of USD right before any major correction occur. The USD has risen strongly against SGD for the past 1 month from the lows in Aug when the global stock market hit its most exuberant state. The recent sharp spike in USD indicates a strong accumulation of USD by the Big Boys. Something is certainly brewing. Our significant portfolio position in USD money market funds benefit greatly from the recent spike.

Sep 8, 2014

Yeah, I am going to get a high powered, high paying job in the 2nd largest bank in Hong Kong! Or not?

One fine day, I received an invitation for a request for connection at LinkedIn.


Wow. Looks like a big shot from Hong Kong based Hang Seng wanted to make an acquaintance with me! Does she by chance is entranced by my sterling resume, superior writing skills and wanted to offer me a high position job in one of the biggest banks in Hong Kong?

Or she is memorized by my good looks and wanted to be a "friend"?

Sep 6, 2014

5 Elements of Successful Investors - Book Review by SG Young



Thank you SG Young Investment for reviewing our book and giving it such a good review!

I always have much respect for this young gentlemen as his articles are a honest and thoughtful reflection of the money problems of the new generation. It is not surprising that he is able to garner the attention of the young adults as he is able to address their hopes, concerns and problems. I am a regular reader of his blog myself.

Do drop by his blog and take a look of some of his interesting articles at sgyounginvestment.blogspot.sg

Aug 23, 2014

Wongamania@Bursa Malaysia with UTAR Kampar

The epic selfie with the students from UTAR Kampar!
23th August marks the first major Wongamania workshop, in collaboration with Financial Youth Intelligence and Bursa Malaysia, to host 130+ students from UTAR Kampar. The event was held in the prestigious Listing Hall at the stock exchange, the auditorium where successful Malaysian enterprises take journey from private companies into publicly listed companies.

The students have a great time learning about economics and bankrupting their friends through unexpected economic crisis. Morale of the day: Always be prepared because you never know when an economic crisis will strike.

Congrats to Munnychan who won himself a limited launch edition of Wongamania as part of the instagram selfie competition. Look for #wongamania in your instagram for more creative selfies that the students took!

Staff from Bursa Malaysia and FYI setting up the tables the night before

Selfie with the hardworking staff from FYI

Adele Tang, the workhorse of FYI explaining the rules of the game
 
A Paranormal view of the entire Listing Hall

Winner of the Instagram Selfie competition! Congrats!

Aug 20, 2014

A Small 10% Move into Europe

German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at the EU headquarters in Brussels, to discuss whether to tighten some sanctions in response to the intensifying conflict in Ukraine Photo: Getty

I ended my monthly review post for July with this statement,

"The global stock market has fallen 4-10% since the last week of July, with the European markets bearing the brunt of the damage. It is still too early to call for a market correction yet, as the Bulls haven't really given up the strong rally which they have enjoyed for the last 3 years. However, a stray missile from the Russian backed Ukrainian rebels had started the wheels of a possible 10% correction into motion."

The global stock market has rebounded since a week ago and the bulls are looking to regain their trend after being knock down by the Ukraine crisis. This will be the most critical stage of the Bull run as any failure to turn the investors' psychology around to a more positive one, will probably lead to a lost of control by the Bulls.

Aug 17, 2014

Wongamania Preview Session with Big Fat Purse

Guess who dropped by during the Wongamania preview session?

The entire team from Big Fat Purse came by to try out the game on their own! Glad to meet some of the most prominent and insightful financial bloggers in Singapore!


Aug 13, 2014

Interview with Big Fat Purse

I have always been a big fan of Big Fat Purse and I am pretty honored to be interviewed by them.

You can read about the interview here: Fun Games to Teach You About Finance and Investment

Aug 9, 2014

The Events that Broke the Back of the Bull

The event that turned the tide of the global stock market
Rob Stothard—Getty Images
The global stock market seems to be unstoppable come July 2014. There are some analysts citing that "Selling in May and Go Away" is dead as there was no immediate risk to the global economy. The US economy is growing at last with all major indicators on a rise. The events over at Ukraine had been glossed over as immaterial and the Europe central bank affirmed their decisions to keep interest rates low. Investors were positive over at Asia as China and India seemed to have gotten their economy into order. All was well, until a stray missile shot down an airline passenger.

Aug 8, 2014

Launch of Limited Edition Wongamania with Bursa Malaysia

Team Wongamania and Team FYI
From Left: Oliva Florence Sengkey. Made Lidya, Sam Chiang, Xeo Lye, Teng Hau, Siew Ming, Adele Tang

Today marks the launch of the Limited Launch Edition Wongamania, together with our partners, Bursa Malaysia and  Financial Youth Intelligence (FYI)  at the Bursa Malaysia Building at Kuala Lumpur

We had the chance to share the game with the staff of Bursa Malaysia and a few selected student leaders from major universities in KL. They were among the first people in the world to try out the Limited Launch Edition Wongamania. Everyone I spoke to praise the breadth and depth of Wongamania and many people were asking us when are we going to officially launch the game. I aim to see the main edition of Wongamania to be out by the beginning of November! Stay tuned!


Here are some of the feedbacks on Wongamania posted on Instagram!



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