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They couldn’t keep him on the job for 1 more year to 65 years old

This is supposed to be an economy that is doing well. Yet there are structural changes that happen due to globalization that we do not see a high level of before the 2000s. Right sizing, or strategic firing seems to be the order of the day.

I recently read this blog, can’t remember which one, but I think he is an investment advisor, talking about why folks such as cleaner or waiter won’t strive to improve and are content to that level of job.

Sometimes, perhaps he has to experience some things for himself to know how to best tackle problems like that.

Perhaps, the leaders making the decisions need to listen to the ground more. They say they will. I wonder how many have felt that the country have move to be better since the last election.


One good friend of mine worked in a company that compensates not too bad. Very well by middle income standards. The issue is that he works in an industry where majority of the once lucrative business division are not going to operate any more. The technical stuff, are moving to India, or Poland.

Singapore is just freaking expensive as a cost center.

Its on a consistent basis that I hear him talk about firing. This time he survived for another year.

2 of his colleagues aren’t that lucky this time. They are aged 40-50 and have been with the company for 14 years. Its hard to find work in that industry. I find it hard to believe considering every one seems to want to go there.

It may be a case of me being an outsider that I don’t see much of the rot.

There don’t seem to be good news all round. He told me about his former lead. Got retrenched. The local positions are rare. The china positions though, are adequate. You would have to relocate.

No extension on the last day

Another old friend shared an even cuter tale of an uncle’s friend who is 64 years old working in a US DRAM Semiconductor firm. He has been there for 30 years. That’s a long time to be somewhere.

They didn’t want to extend his contract, and his job scope is readily deployed to a fresh grad.

The best news is that they let him know on the last day of the contract.

Where is the fucking compassion there. 30 years. Last day you let him know. I have to calm down to know that they are not escaping some 65 year eligibility pension scheme by not extending the contract at 64 years old.

You don’t ask us to be loyal if they don’t show it the other direction.

The need for the second profession

The majority of the advice seem to say that you got to upgrade and make yourself relevant. Does that always seem valid that every 40-50 year olds are able to smoothly upgrade and then be important managers?

Especially in a country so dependent on MNCs.

The civil servants can most likely take this route. As long as they don’t make a large error, there are certain resilient nature to the job. If you continue to enjoy it.

For the majority, I can’t help but feel, somewhere a long the lines, you have to prepare for a different job. A job that you can handle with 40 year old energy rather than the gang ho 25 year old.

And perhaps somehow you need to start preparing for it.

There don’t seem to be a lot of resource on this. Most of the resources happens during the last structural unemployment where, its to ’retrain’ well paid professionals to work in sectors where they get significant pay cut.

What is a profession that fits the energy of a 40 year old upwards?

Perhaps a consultant based on the experience build up? How do companies reach this group of people?

Perhaps they can conduct a course to the next generation? There is just so much demand for it that perhaps this is not a good alternative.

How can this ad hoc demand versus supply be liquidfy Uber-style?

Perhaps we need a niche Task Rabbit, or in the local context, Task Amigo.

The difficulty in building adequate wealth

Everyone tells me its difficult to form a family yet still have adequate wealth for retirement.

From the looks of it,  retirement is so yesterday. That Wealth Fund’s purpose should more to be for financial independence or 40 year old backup fund.

If you have a privileged job, its better to be sensible and realize that things could turn out like my friend’s industry.

If both spouse makes 10k, they can attempt to save up 8 k per month. 10 years and that will be 800k. That’s a nice amount to work with. A good 40 year old backup fund.

How much is enough? What is retirement like? No course?

The plight of someone needing one year of income more near retirement age is not uncommon.

I feel that we (and I mean general wealth management resource in the world) don’t focus much on retirement planning and spending, and have best practices to learn from perhaps because almost 80% of the folks are in an accumulation phase.

Wealth spending is a totally different ball game. The kind of risk and needs are totally different.

I’m sure that if we are a well run country with good government, they would have seen the need to tap their great resources to provide this form of education.

The crux is that perhaps a person can readily retire at 45 years old, or that he can work in a part time job at 45 and have enough margin of safety, but no one tells him that is the case. How do we bridge that? We need more knowledge and education there.


It’s the start of the year and I am feeling rather down already. Seems family are struggling with work stress and couldn’t have a spouse stayed at home to take care of the kids because we NEED 2 incomes. Now its these 2 retrenchment sharing.

Not a good start to the year. Not good at all.


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Monday 20th of January 2014

Keep up the good work dude. Hope things will get better for your family and you soon. HUAT AH!


Monday 20th of January 2014

Keep up the good work dude. Hope things will get better for your family and you soon. HUAT AH!


Monday 20th of January 2014

Hi there,

thank you so much.


Saturday 18th of January 2014

Hi Kyith. Cheer up! Everyone experiences life struggles, especially in Singapore. As long as there is discipline to practise financial prudence, and also at the same time one diligently strives to improve employability, retirement may not be a far-fetched dream. And one should not forget to be content and grateful for the limited possessions and wealth one has. So brighten up, it's Chinese New Year soon!


Saturday 18th of January 2014

Hey there. Yeah I hope some retirees share their experience, it will really help us understand retirement and make us understand some life lessons that we can learn from them

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