Portfolio

Buying into China's cleaner environment theme
SINGAPORE (June 25): It has been another tough week for global stocks. The escalating trade rhetoric between the US and China is hurting investor confidence, especially in perceived riskier and export-reliant emerging markets.  My Global Portfolio fared comparatively well against this backdrop, bolstered by gains for technology stocks, which are seen to be more insulated from trade ...
In need of a comprehensive sustainable growth strategy
SINGAPORE (June 18): This week, I would like to share some thoughts on a topic that has dominated Malaysian news headlines and generated much debate among market commentators, analysts and investors alike. Mega infrastructure is perhaps the most oversold investment theme coming into 2018 and has been the key driving force behind construction stocks listed on Bursa Malaysia. That all changed ...
Tech giants regain glamour
SINGAPORE (June 11): The series of unprecedented events currently unfolding in Malaysia continues to capture our attention; many events were expected and a few less so. As fascinated as we are with domestic news, though, the world continues to spin. Much has been said about the foreign-fund selloff on Bursa Malaysia — net outflows total more than RM2.1 billion ($703.5 million) year to ...
Stock options can be made to better align management with shareholders… but not the conventional kind
SINGAPORE (June 4): Last November, I wrote an article questioning whether existing stock option plans were good for shareholders. I have no doubt that the theoretical proposition is valid: that if the interests of senior management are aligned with those of shareholders through long-term incentives, they will work towards achieving a company’s strategic objectives to enhance value. The ...
Is Ant an overvalued giant?
SINGAPORE (May 28): Alibaba Group Holding’s Ant Financial Services Group is set to become the world’s most valuable fintech company. An upcoming fundraising of US$10 billion ($13.45 billion) — which, according to reports, has been oversubscribed — will value the company at US$150 billion, up from US$60 million just last year. Unusual for such fundraising exercises are the stringent ...
The perception and consequences of rent-seeking
SINGAPORE (May 21): The Malaysian stock market reacted far better than initial prognoses by most market analysts, on the heels of the shocking — though not wholly unexpected, if the mini rally for certain stocks during the week of May 7 is any indication — defeat of the long-ruling coalition, Barisan Nasional (BN), in the 14th general election. Even the ringgit is holding up fairly well, ...
A once-in-a-lifetime event… an exceptionally good week for Malaysians
SINGAPORE (May 14): Words cannot begin to describe how we feel, sitting here, writing this article with tears in our eyes and hope in our hearts. We had our regular piece all laid out and ready to go. But how could we not write about this incredible, unbelievable event in history? On Thursday, May 10, 2018, many Malaysians woke up (at least those who went to bed, many did not) to a new ...
A basic guide when investing for yield
SINGAPORE (May 7): Buying a high-yielding stock seems like a pretty good idea when we have heightened market volatility. For starters, companies that pay higher-than-market-average dividends tend to have mature businesses that are more defensive and hence, their share price movements are usually less volatile. Worst comes to worst, one will still get a steady income stream while holding the stock ...
Nine Dragons... lowest valuation play on e-commerce
SINGAPORE (Apr 30): Stocks in my Global Portfolio ended mostly lower in the past one week, mirroring weakness in global equity markets. Investors are nervous when it comes to equities, particularly as worries grow over rising interest rates. Yields on 10-year US Treasuries rose above 3%, a level not breached since early 2014. While this is still at the lower end of the historical range, it is ...
Our conviction of DIP Corp remains, despite a collapse in stock price
SINGAPORE (Apr 23): A strong start to the US corporate earnings reporting season is giving beleaguered stocks a much-needed boost of confidence. Worries over geopolitical tensions, trade and regulations of tech companies remain and are likely to keep volatility at elevated levels, but the rebound is a welcome relief. Most of the stocks in our Global Portfolio closed higher for the week, ...