Showing posts from July, 2014

Smelling a Rat: Tell-Tale Signs of Fradulent Schemes

A recent story in The Star highlighting 'the future richest man in the world' setting up shop in Malaysia is just the latest example of people getting excited by schemes promising easy money without risks. These schemes keep cropping up even though investors keep getting burned.

Maybe the people and investors involved are different but the same type of schemes never fail to attract participants, not only in Malaysia. It just shows that many people still think that there is a way to get rich without hard work or being extremely lucky.

People generally want  high returns without any risk. That is why Bernard Madoff was so successful in the US until his scheme unravelled. He offered fixed returns to his investors. Apart from that, investors also tend to gravitate towards investments that are currently hot.

Realising this human weakness, fraudulent schemers will always tailor their offerings according to what people want. For example when gold was riding high, there was a number o…

Malaysia Is Still Beautiful In My Eyes

I've been reading a lot about how the country has turned ugly with hatred, racism and bigotry raising its collective ugly heads. Maybe it's true, but I feel that these people and their views have been around for quite some time, a very long time, and they will continue to have their say in the future.

The reason we feel their threat now is that their voices have been amplified by social media and the Internet, with issues going viral fast. Those who read have the impression that they represent more people than they actually do.

There is another, equally damaging school of thought trying to convince people that the country is falling apart. This is far from the truth. Malaysia has its fair share of problems, but we are not falling apart. Other countries also have their problems, some way bigger than us.

The economy is growing reasonably well and asset prices have been rising steadily. Yes, it's heading towards bubble territory but this is true in other growing Asian cities …