iCon 2016: Investing is for Everyone

The biggest annual investment conference is back and is now on its 4th year with a brand new roster of speakers known in the Philippine financial industry. Among them are my good friends Randell Tiongson (the organizer of iCON) and Marvin Germo, an expert in stock investing.

icon 2016

Last year, I was able to bring two of my kids and a friend’s kids to the conference. Usually kids get impatient with long conferences but my kids listened till the end. Now, they are more confident and manage their own savings with increased knowledge.

To read about our iCON 2015 experience, click here.

Continue reading

Dear fresh college graduates, your work attitude matters more to employers

Let me start this post with a true story.

One of the biggest mistakes I have made in my working life was to approve the hiring of someone who came from one of the top 3 desired schools by employers and who graduated Cum Laude. One red flag during the interview which I noticed (but mistakenly ignored) was the fact that this person kept asking what the salary would be.  Rather than be mindful of possible implications of that kind of work attitude, I went ahead and recommended the person for hiring, thinking that grades reflected a higher level of intelligence that would compensate for a self-interest attitude.

WRONG!!! Not only was the person totally wrong for the job required but I found myself either re-doing or completing tasks assigned. What my instincts told me about a self-interest attitude became even more evident as time went on. I was actually relieved when the person eventually resigned.

What does that story have to do with you, my dear college graduates? There used to be a saying: “It’s one thing to GET a job; it’s another thing to be able to KEEP it“. But if I were to go by a recent Jobstreet.com survey, you probably won’t even get hired, in the first place, unless you bear the right kind of work attitude that employers are looking for.

A total of 550 companies that used Jobstreet.com to select interviewees submitted their responses to a survey. Read carefully what the survey reveals.

Continue reading

Money Saving Tip: Pay Your Realty Tax Early


When do you pay your annual realty tax?

Sec. 60 of the Real Property Tax Code (or PD No. 464) states:

“Payment of real property taxes in installments. — Real property taxes may, in the discretion of the taxpayer, be paid without penalty in four equal installments; the first installment to be due and payable on or before March thirty-first; the second installment, on or before June thirty; the third installment, on or before September thirty; and the last installment, on or before December thirty-first, except the special levies authorized under Sections forty-seven and fifty-five of this Code which shall be governed by the local ordinance or Department Order issued by the Secretary of Finance, as the case may be.”

For taxpayers who choose to pay the entire year’s realty tax within the first quarter, there are discount incentives.

Continue reading

The Art of Minimalism and Creating Liquidity

Photo source: Trudy Hylant of Art by Trudy

Photo source: Trudy Hylant of Art by Trudy

After over a quarter of a century of marriage and four kids, I have seen how stuff in the house has accumulated, piled up and taken up precious real estate space at home. It was not so bad when it was just the two of us back then. But as the kids started coming, we had to make room again and again and again for new furniture, their clothes, toys, books, etc. And, as they grew older and more fashion-conscious, their stuff also added up.

I have been looking around the house and I have come to the conclusion that I do not need all these stuff. In fact, I still have wedding gifts (yes, MY wedding gifts!) still unused in one closet. So I’ve set myself on a path to minimalism (as best I could) by getting rid of things I may never ever use or have more sets than I need.

Continue reading

Investment Scams are Proliferating. Be Careful!

I know I have written already about pyramid scams and cited one case of Emgoldex, which is now under investigation, but since then, so many other clones of pyramid schemes have cropped up.

The latest one being investigated is OneDream Marketing headed by a certain Arnel Gacer who, as of this writing, could not be located by the authorities. Similar to previous pyramid schemes that SEC had warned about, One Dream people allegedly offered investment slots of PhP 888 with an exit or pay-out promise of PhP 1,300 after 4 days. A PhP 1,776 investment slot would result in a pay-out of PhP 2,517.60 and so on. Investors were also promised PhP 44 per investment slot for each recruit or direct referral they bring in.

One Dream's domain is now available again. This is  what I found in cache.

One Dream’s domain is now available again. This is what I found in cache.

Continue reading