/* */

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Study Says Women Are More Realistic Investors

Article from DowJones When it comes to investing, men and women hold to traditional stereotypes, according to a recent study. Male investors are more confident, while women are more realistic and risk averse, according to the 2006 ShareBuilder Women & Investing Survey, which polled 965 women and 1,066 men over the age of 18. The study, surveyed clients of ShareBuilder, an online brokerage geared for self-directed investors, had a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points. Young men, not surprisingly, are the most assured investors: About 33% of men under 35 are very confident they will meet their investment objectives versus 18% of women. However, about 50% of women under 35 are “somewhat confident” they’ll meet their objectives, versus 45% of men, says ShareBuilder, of Bellevue, Wash., where 60% of new accounts are opened by investors under 35. “Women are more realistic about the progress they are making,” says Jeff Seely, ShareBuilder’s chairman and chief executive. “They are clearly more concerned about saving for the future. Men investors are a little more self-assured, but not necessarily with good reason.”

Monday, March 27, 2006


I recently bought some shares of NVDA last week after it tumbled on last Wednesday at $48.50. Since then the stock has been heading upwards. It's now at $52.80, or an unrealzed gain of about 8.8%. NVDA is a great company. It has strong fundamentals - $5.5 cash per share, no debt, 20% 5-year growth rate, and a foward P/E of 20. Nvidia makes great graphics cards, the new nForce4 SLI series are the fastest in the market. The 5-day chart looks strong and there's a lot of potential in this stock. The stock just broke 52-week high today and reached 53.07.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Quote of the Day

A man who gives his children habits of industry provides for them better than by giving them a fortune. - Richard Whately

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Blogger Maintenance

Blogger is down for maintenance. There seems to be a lot of down times recently. Maybe it's time to switch to my own hosting.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

RSS for my Site

How many of you use RSS Readers? My feed URL is: http://feeds.feedburner.com/GrowingMoney There's this other tool called FeedBlitz. I wonder if it's useful. Would you prefer to receive updates via RSS or emails?

Note Taking (2)

OQO Model 01+ I was thinking of a handy and digital way to jot down notes and I saw the OQO Model 01+ on a PC magazine. This thing is about the size of a PDA but has the power of a small notebook computer. The 01 model aslo comes in a tablet PC version as well. That's convenient for scribbling ideas and thoughts on the bus or subway. But the price is very steep, the tablet version costs $2100. Specs from the website:

The OQO model 01+ ultra personal computer (uPC) is a fully-featured Windows XP computer. The OQO has a 1GHz processor, a 30GB hard drive, 512MB of RAM, a color transflective display, and integrated wireless, as well as FireWire and USB ports. Just 4.9 inches long, 3.4 inches wide, 0.9 inches thin, and weighing only 14 ounces, the model 01+ can fit in a pocket or purse and go with you anywhere. For easy typing and cursor control it has a complete thumb keyboard with TrackStik and mouse buttons as well as digital pen and thumbwheel.
Does anyone own or has any experience with this ultra portable computer?

Link Swaps

I notice there are a lot new PF blogs lately. If I don't have your link or vice versa, let's do an update. Just post a comment and let me know.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Question to Financial Bloggers

Does your friends know about your blog?

Stocks Are Good Long-Term Investments

Stocks: The Asset of Choice for the Long Run

Web Hosting

I'm thinking of getting a new domain and server to host my blog. I'm currently on Blogger. Everything is pretty much set up for me. I know some of you financial bloggers host on your own domains. I wonder how many of you do that, and what are the expenses for web hosting? What hosting packages did you get? Where do you get your templates and how do you set up your blog. Also, how much do you make in ads? Is it enough to cover the hosting expenses?

The Top Part-Time Business Schools

I was reading The Top Part-Time Business Schools article in the Forbes magazines and I was considering the MBA program. The only problem would be that I have to pay everything out of pockets. I thought of the expenses and they're just too high. The 5 year part-time MBA program in my school of choice, NYU (Stern) is $166,000. That's a lot of money. I ran some numbers on the Business School Calculator and the payback period comes out fives years and the 5-year MBA gain as a % of expenses. That doesn't look very appealing at this point.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Note Taking

I always have a lot of thoughts when I'm out on the streets or on the bus or train, but I usually don't have paper or pen near me. I keep my thoughts in the back of my mind, but I tend to forget them after I get to my computer. Now, I try to carry a pen on me, but even that is not efficient enough. There should be a mind recorder that can record all my thoughts. Wouldn't that be cool? How do you keep tabs of your thoughts?

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Need to Time Manage

Spring is coming. Today is sunny and the streets were packed with people. People were coming from all directions and every corner was loaded with humans. I haven't seen that many people on the streets for a long time. It reminded me of how busy NYC can get. Then I started to think of all the things I need to do. I usually put them in the back of my mind, but I really have to start taking notes. I have to find a way to organize all the notes and thoughts in my head and form a list that can I update and reference at all times. Time management is very important. There are always tons of things that need to be done, but I need to plan ahead and set priorities. How do you manage your time and stay organized?

Friday, March 10, 2006

Positive Employment Results from DOL for Feb

Employers Boost Payrolls by 243,000 in February The job data report looks very nice. This is a bullish sign for the market and the stocks should be doing well for today.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

401(k) Is An Account

After speaking to several people about their retirement savings, I've realized that some people still don't understand what 401(k) is. 401(k) is a defined contribution plan in which the employee can elect a portion of his or her pay check on a pre-tax basis towards his or her retirement savings. The name 401(k) is derived from the section the plan falls under the Internal Revenue Code. Many people confused 401(k) as an investment and often say that his/her 401k is doing well. Some people ask me what are the returns for a 401(k). First, I give them the confused look. Then, I explain it to them. 401(k) is a tax-sheltered account (as well as an IRA), and in that account, you can designate the investment(s) of your choice (usually mutual funds available by your provider). So, the returns for your 401(k) depend on which funds you pick to invest inside the tax-sheltered account. In layman's terms, a 401(k) is a shell, and it is what you pick inside the shell that grows. For example, I have a 401(k) with my employer. Inside my 401(k) account, I have two mutual funds -- the S&P 500 index fund and a bonds fund. So when my funds do well, I say, "My 401(k) funds (or my 401(k) portfolio) have returned 10% over the past two months." I hope this gives you a better understanding of what 401(k) is, and next time when someone tells you his/her 401(k) is doing great, you can point out to him/her, "It's the funds in your 401(k) account that are doing well."

The Turtle Wins The Race

Everyone wants to get rich quick, because it's easy and everyone likes shortcuts. But in reality, how many legitimate get-rich-instantly stories are there? Maybe once in a while someone hits the jackpot in lottery. Or someone receives a generous inheritance from a distance uncle whom he didn't know existed. Or someone discovers a pile of gold in his backyard. So, there are a few stories like these, but chances are... that person in the story is not you. In real life, getting rich or attaining a sizeable amount for retirement is a slow and dedicated process. The book, The Millionaire Next Door shows that most of the rich folks attained their wealth by saving up over decades. You must constantly remind yourself, the turtle is the one who's going to win the race. Saving up and investing wisely is a huge part of working towards financial independence. And you want to protect your base. It's better to have your wealth grow slowly and steadily than have it grow fast and disappear.

Seagate Launched Perpendicular Recording Technology Hard Drives

http://www.efytimes.com/fullnews.asp?edid=10585 An excerpt:

“Seagate is helping system builders meet growing demand for notebook PCs with desktop capabilities by delivering 2.5-inch disc drives that provide some of the industry’s highest levels of power efficiency, ruggedness, performance and capacity,” said Rajesh Khurana, country manager, Seagate India and SAARC. “Our transition to perpendicular technology increases our ability to meet the needs of our growing customer base.”

Quote of the Day

The surest way to establish your credit is to work yourself into the position of not needing any. - Maurice Switzer

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Tough Day for Storage Sector

It’s a tough day for the storage sector. Seagate (STX), Western Digital (WDC), and Maxtor (MXO) all were down in anticipation of a price war. Seagate is down 5.7%, Western Digital is down 7.9%, and Maxtor is down 5.9% as of writing of this post. According to the article, It's a Hard Day for Hard-Drive Makers, it looks like Seagate is in a good fighting position and Western Digital is on the edge. Seagate is efficient in their productions and with the completion of the merger, they’ll be able to expand their market exposure.

Looking at one-day graph of Seagate, it looks like STX has bottomed out from the news and money is pouring back in. The hard drive sector definitely has a lot of room for growth and buying Seagate (STX) is a great way to capture some of the returns.

Hard Drive Sector Down

Seagate's (STX) price dropped to the mid 25's. Seagate is not alone, the whole hard drive sector is down as a whole after a downgrade in Western Digital. It looks like Western Digital is cutting off margins because of higher component costs but Seagate will not be affected. Seagate has the most advanced technology in the hard drive industry, however, Seagate may be hurt by the integration of Maxtor.

Still, over the long-term prospect, I think Seagate will do very well, and the stock price shall reflect that. This short-term price drop makes it a great opportunity to buy. I loaded up at $26.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Protect Your Base - with high-yielding savings accounts

In reponse to protect your base, here are some guaranteed investments. They are savings accounts that are high-yielding and liquid. EmigrantDirect 4.25% GMAC 4.60% Virtual Bank eMoney Market 4.60% IngDirect 4.75% HSBC Bank 4.80% Surprisingly, EmigrantDirect is the lowest of the bunch. HSBS has become really competitive these days.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Getting Rich - The Solid Way

I spoke to my boss, who was an investment banker for many years, and asked him, “What is the fastest way to get rich?” He answered “Pay yourself first.” It’s a historical and proven method that is written in many books and websites. Paying yourself first means setting aside a portion of your paycheck and save it up. He also said, “Protect your base.” Protect the principal investment. You want to protect yourself from losing the principal; losing your principal makes it more difficult to catch up. So, you must guard your base. After you generate enough interest from your principal you could use that extra money to take more risk. If you lose the principal, you would not be able to take much risk. Therefore, protecting your base is crucial. Once you have guarded your base you’ll be on your way to getting rich.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Found a Tax Accountant

I usually file my own taxes because it's pretty simple. I just take my W-2 and 1099-INTs and entered them in tax software and submit my 1040 electronically. However, in 2005, I purchased an investment property and I believe it's better to have a professional handle my tax return this year. I've been asking around for a referral to a good tax account that can not just help me file but one that can also answer questions and help me plan out taxes for the year. I got a referral from one of my friends who told me about his accountant. His accountant seems to handle his tax return very well so I contacted his accountant. I got a quote for $250. I thought it was a little high even for my kind of tax return. It may be an investment property but it's relatively easy. But my friend said he's worth the price, so I'm planning to go with his accountant. How much do you pay to file your taxes? If any of you have an accountant that you want to refer in the NYC area, please let me know soon.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

401k Portfolio Update and Re-Allocation

I have only three funds in the account: a S&P500 Index fund, an Utilities fund, and an Emerging Markets fund. My returns for year to date is 8.6%, and for the past twelve months is 27%. Those numbers are pretty impressive. Zooming in to the one-month performance, the emerging markets and utilities fund returns is negative. Both of the funds has had a stellar 12-month run. The utilities fund had a 18% return and the emerging market fund had a whopping 41% return. I'm afraid this year, both of the funds may slow down or even turn around. To protect my profits, I'm going to reallocate my portfolio. After going through a list of funds and their fund facts I've found two new funds I like. They are the Fidelity Advisor High Income Advantage and the T. Rowe Price Growth Stock Fund. I like the story of the T. Rowe Price Growth Stock Fund and I'm going to move all of my S&P 500 Index fund money to it. The Growth fund long term track record is better than the S&P 500's. Also, I'm betting that the large cap growth companies are going to do well in the near future. The Fidelity Advisor High Income Advantage is a very nice bonds fund and should be a good protection against down markets. This how my 401k portfolio will look: Current Allocation Emerging Markets 53% Utilities 38% S&P 500 9% New Allocation Emerging Markets 35% Utilities 35% Growth 21% High Yield Bonds 9%

Cisco and Seagate

The market is doing well today. It looks like spending is back up according to Yahoo News, Consumer Spending Gives Economy a Lift.

Cisco (CSCO) is having a great day. It's at $21 as I'm writing this. It has paid well for those shareholders who have been patient. Sometimes it takes time for a company to be discovered by big institutions or time to recover from a crisis.

Apparently, Seagate (STX) is also having a great day. It's up 70 cents to $27.27. Seagate is getting much more notice now and they should. They are the top hard drive manufacturer and have great storage technology. Their new perpendicular drive technology is being covered in PC magazines and will receive more attention. The stock price is highly underpriced at a P/E of 12.8. There should be plenty of room for stock growth.