Keep your investments simple
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Leap into prosperity this CNY 💰Get a $88 head start to growing your wealth.

Keep your investments simple

Updated
3
Jul 2024
published
3
Jul 2024
A kid drawing

So Sin Ting serves as the Chief Client Officer at Endowus, Asia's premier digital wealth platform. With over 15 years of experience, she has worked at top banks in Hong Kong and Singapore, including Morgan Stanley and Nomura.

In her recent interview with the Strait Times, she discusses her investment journey, career, balancing life goals with financial planning, learning from early mistakes, and the importance of financial literacy and retirement planning.

Three questions

Q: What is in your personal portfolio?

A: My investment choices and asset allocations are based on my life goals, which help me understand how much I need to invest, the amount of cash flow I need, and the level of risk I can take. The bulk of my assets are with Endowus, via equity in the company and invested on the Endowus platform.

I invest my CPF Ordinary Account and Supplementary Retirement Scheme account. I also invest cash across three main “buckets” – a short-term liquidity bucket concentrated on cash management funds, a mid-term bucket with fixed income funds, and a longer-term bucket that comprises an equity-heavy Flagship Portfolio.

My long-term bucket with the Flagship Portfolio holds the majority of my funds and has an asset allocation of 80% in equities and 20% in fixed income.

On top of these three buckets, I have a small satellite portfolio invested in China funds, which unfortunately has been challenging over the last few years.

When you go through major life events, it is also an opportunity to revisit your investment plan. I have definitely changed my investing strategy since starting Endowus and having a daughter. As a mum and entrepreneur, time is my most precious commodity. It is always such a challenge to carve out and dedicate time to different parts of my life.

As for further investment plans, I am thinking of allocating some money to multi-strategy hedge funds and private market funds for additional diversification and lowered volatility, for instance.

However, given that a significant part of my investments is already invested in my company and my husband is also heavily exposed to illiquid investments, I also want to be careful about adding more semi-liquid investments to my portfolios.

My financial plan goes beyond my personal investments and ensures that my family’s well-being and future are covered. We have insurance policies in place for the family, but I personally prefer to separate investments from insurance so we do not own any investment-linked insurance products.

Q: What was your biggest investing mistake? Which was your best investment?

A: Like many of us, I have made my fair share of investing mistakes. At the beginning of my investment journey, I invested in some “fad” stocks that friends recommended, which lost most of their investment value. I am not sure why we thought that we could outsmart the market!

In the last few years, some of the private venture companies that my husband and I invested in have been written down to hardly anything. Thankfully, we had put in smaller amounts of money. The big learning for me is that it is important to right-size your tactical investments. It is also important to always understand what you are invested in.

My best investment is equity in my own company. Many of us have poured in our life savings to grow Endowus, as we are in it for the long game and believe we are building the wealth management experience of the future.

Q: Describe your lifestyle.

A: I own a four-bedroom apartment near Orchard with my husband. I also drive a second-hand grey Mini Cooper Clubman.

Retirement planning is extremely important to me, and is another crucial bit of education that we impart to our clients, especially women. Women statistically outlive men, and that makes saving up for retirement even more important and challenging.

That being said, I think the concept of retirement will look very different for our generation versus our parents’ generations. To me, saving enough for retirement is about having the freedom to choose when I stop working for a pay cheque, and having the freedom to pursue work that I am passionate about while being able to spend quality time with loved ones.

A lot of my values around money are shaped by my family. My father was and still is extremely frugal – you can count on two hands the number of shirts he owns. He is a strong believer in spending within his means and taught me the importance of saving for a rainy day.

However, education has always been extremely important to him. The one thing I was always allowed to spend money on growing up was books. My siblings and I have amassed a large collection of books in my parents’ home, and we hope to pass down our collection to our children one day.

Top three investing tips from Sin Ting:

Arm yourself with knowledge: Gaining financial literacy will really give you the confidence to take control of your financial well-being.

Invest with intention: Adopt goal-based, long-term investing strategies.

Set up automated investments: It helps keep us disciplined and takes the emotion out of investing.

Start investing with interest-aligned financial advisors in Endowus

Sin Ting's journey underscores the importance of aligning your investments with your life goals and seeking knowledgeable, interest-aligned advisors. Her experience in the wealth management industry and personal investment strategies highlight the potential benefits of thoughtful, goal-based investing. 

For those looking to start their investment journey, partnering with advisors who align your financial interests in Endowus can significantly enhance your ability to achieve your aspirations and secure a prosperous future.

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