Archive for April, 2006

Guaranteed to beat the market

As my Business Finance lecturer Asjeet would say, "there's no such thing as a free lunch." However Taiwan seems to be handing them out like nobody's business with market manipulations that would have made Rene Rivkin jump with glee.

It's been a week since I started a share market game and already I have noticed some very dubious activities. You see, here in Taiwan there are so-called "experts" and "professors" on TV that teach you how to read various kinds of technical information, each having their own special method of deciphering the mysteries of the stock market. "The dip in the line here, followed by this squiggle means BUY! BUY! BUY!" They obviously don't believe the market is efficient.

When we were building our portfolio at the start of the game, as if by magic, a SMS arrives telling us that such-and-such expert is recommending a certain stock as he believes that it will sky-rocket. Since we weren't playing with real money, we decided to put it to the test. Indeed its price has been rising steadily with very one-sided buying and no selling. Obviously someone was pressing the buttons. ASIC would be having a field day if this happened in Australia.

Anyways, below is a typical traffic jam in Taipei city.

Taipei traffic jam

We got Hyundai's and Subaru's (don't worry, inside joke).


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And let there be rain

So the heavens opened up today sparing no soul from enjoying the wonders of wet pants and shoes. Taiwan's monsoon season has well and truly started with a month of wet, hot and humid uncomfortableness to be expected which will leave even the most avid rain lover delirious and huddled up in a small dark corner.

Maybe some good will come from it, especially in the form of a big boost to Taiwan's economy from the unprecedented large number of NT$100 umbrella's sold on the street. Not to mention the lack of Vitamin D I will be getting too.

Just a photo of a tolling station on the National not-very-Free-way on a rainy day.

Rainy day on the freeway

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So today is the 5th day that I've stayed home resting from symptoms ranging from sore throat, runny nose, coughing, headache, dizziness, weak stomach and fever. After popping some pills and getting plenty of sleep it's now heaps better, though I've managed to waste a weekend and the chance to go to a Japanese buffet with unlimited wine/champagne and Häagen-Dazs in their fridge.

Guess I'll have to settle for toast with Nutella and Beqa cheese slices… weird but yum.

Toast with Nutella and Beqa cheese slices

If you haven't noticed, yes, the Nutella here is Hello Kitty sized. Just they way they like it here in Taiwan. Below is a comparison between the Aussie one and the Kawaaaiii!!~~ kekekeke \\// one.

Hello Kitty Nutella

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I hope my fellow Aussies enjoyed their chocolates and bunnies, kind of miss the caramel filled chocolate eggs. Then it's followed by ANZAC day, full of national pride, mateship and respect for those who risked their lives to preserve the freedom we enjoy today. Though I hear the Turkish veterans will now officially be allowed to march since they were honorable opponents. Wonder if they'll let the Germans, Vietnamese or Japanese march too? That's gotta be kicking up some dirt.

Anyways I'll leave you with a shot from the Lantern Festival showing a replica of Taipei 101 and its surrounding buildings as well as the identifiable bridge that I don't know the name of.

Taipei 101, Lantern Festival 2006

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