Link Roundup #10: 10 Things to Know This Week

Accelerate your personal finance knowledge with this regular feature on Ringgit Oh Ringgit – the Link Roundup! I promise you’ll find these 10 links informational 🙂

1. Share your suggestions for #belanjawan2019 – Ministry of Finance Malaysia

Wanted: your suggestions! Saw this tweet from the Ministry of Finance – decided to share here for wider reach!

The 12 categories are:

  • Cost of Living
  • Education and Training
  • Public Sector Reform
  • Technology and Innovation
  • Entrepreneurship and Business
  • Access to Financing
  • Income and Employment Opportunities
  • Rakyat Welfare and Well-Being
  • Healthcare and Healthy Lifestyle
  • Housing, Infrastructure and Public Safety
  • Social Justice and Equitable Development
  • Environment and Sustainable Development

For more information, view the Belanjawan 2019 page (English version).

You can submit your suggestions on Twitter (click here to see the current #belanjawan2019 discussion on Twitter), but I suggest you submit directly at the Belanjawan 2019 main website at this page.

If you have suggestions on how the nation should spend its money, remember to give them by 30 September 2018, because YB Lim Guan Eng will present it on 2 November 2018!

2. Ten Things I Never Knew About Las Vegas Until I Ran a High-Roller Suite – Bloomberg

Wacky stories about crazy-rich gamblers, as told by someone who did a stint there (and probably blacklisted after the article is out). All I can say is, man, rich people are weird.

3. Nine out of 10 Malaysian students work while studying: HSBC survey – The Star

Lots of interesting findings from the HSBC survey…

  • 9 out of 10 Malaysian students work while they are still studying. Two-thirds of them do it to earn money
  • Malaysian parents say they contribute an average of RM24,100 towards children’s university education (not per year. In total.)
  • But students estimate they spend RM67,600 in total to cover tuition fees, accommodation, bills and lifestyle costs. Which means they need an additional  RM43,500 from other sources
  • “Malaysian students spend a large proportion of their time in paid employment – an average of 3.4 hours a day, more than they spend in the library (2.1 hours) or studying at home (2.3 hours)”
  • “Separate research on the topic suggests that when the number of hours worked per week by a student exceeds 20 hours, it has a negative impact on grades
  • BUT: “the same piece of research also concludes that the academic performance of students who work 10-19 hours per week was superior to their peers.”

I can’t help feeling like we as a nation are failing our students…

4. 47% of youths have high credit card debts – The Star

I’m sharing another The Star article. Not for the headline, although that’s important too, but because it’s such a hot mess.

  • Paragraph 1 said 47% of Malaysian youths have high credit card debt (did not elaborate on what constitutes ‘high’), and 38% have personal loans
  • Paragraph 2 said more than 3,400 people between 20-30 years old sought counselling and help from AKPK in 2017
  • Paragraph 3 quotes BNM Assistant Governor Nazrul Hisyam Mohd Noh: “I challenge all of you to break the myth that the young generation are not financially savvy and do not contribute to these statistics.” A little bit patronising, but okay.
  • Paragraph 4 elaborates the #IDAREYOUChallenge (?????) held by the Malaysia Life Insurance Association (LIAM) and Education Ministry. Apparently it’s a competition to select the best marketing presentation and video on the importance of life insurance among 10 finalists from four universities
  • (I have to point out that nothing much appeared online when I tried to look for that #IDAREYOUChallenge thing)
  • Paragraph 5-8 mentions insurance statistics, insurance products for the B40, and a quote (not very important – awareness of insurance is important, la di da)
  • Paragraph 9 congratulates Lee Ming Chin from UM for winning the #IDAREYOUChallenge took home a combined RM17,000 in cash (nice! Good for you girl!)

Like I said. A hot mess of an article. Who wrote this?? Why suddenly debt topic become insurance topic one??

Plus can we address something more important? If #3 said that the majority of Malaysian students work to earn extra money, and #4 said young people get into debt anyway, doesn’t that mean the REASON why almost half of us are in debt is because – drumroll – we’re not paying them enough for their work?

Stop bloody blaming us for our debt. Sure, some of us have a spending problem. But most of us try our best to juggle work and studies and STILL find it hard impossible to cope with the cost of living and cost of education.

5. How I Built My Edible Garden Under RM1000 (Part 1 | Part 2 ) – JewelPie

I am absolutely floored by Sara’s passion for healthy cooking, to the extent of growing her own organic farm. You hear this kind of stuff overseas, but not in Malaysia!

Plus, she wanted to show how the garden could be done on a budget just to prove it’s possible. How can you not respect that!

Hats off to you, Sara. Check out NewMalaysianKitchen to get her recipes (I convinced her to have a halal section lol)

6. BirthdayBeep Service 

You already know you can get specific promos and freebies on your birthday (or week or month), right? I always want to take advantage of these, and always wish there’s a way to just find them conveniently. I want them nicely compiled for me, so malas to search around!

Well someone took the idea and went wild with it. BirthdayBeep is a new, FREE email subscription service that does exactly that! On your birthday month, you’ll get an email with all the offers and freebies you can only redeem for your birthday!

(Note: Have not tried. My birthday is in May – long time to wait. If you’ve received the email, can you give a review in the comments section?)

7. WhatsApp Has a New Feature That’s Going to Make It a lot of Money – Inc

Soon, you’ll be able to text businesses on Facebook via Whatsapp for Business’s new API (reminder: Facebook owns Whatsapp).

And businesses can respond for free, but ONLY if they do so within the next 24 hours. If they reply after that time frame, they will be charged a fee.

Hell yeah faster replies to customer inquiries. Hell yeah less phone calls to businesses.

8. A mom transforms old clothes into trendy outfits — and the before-and-after photos are incredible – Business Insider

Mama’s got sewing skillz! You MUST see the before/after pics – if it wasn’t mentioned, I would have believed they are two different garments, not the same one!

Honestly, I’d love to pick up sewing as a skill, but I know I just don’t have the passion for it. Do you even know how much you can earn if you offer sewing services, especially around festive seasons and to upscale clients?

(Actually, I also don’t know how much, but I assume a lot. It’s uncommon for tailors to be fully booked months before Hari Raya. Higher demand means you can command higher rates!)

9. Google, Apple and 13 other companies that no longer require a college degree – CNBC

Trends from big companies do tend to spill over, so expect this to become a norm soon! Eh wait this is Malaysia. Okay maybe give it at least 5 more years (is that too soon also?)

Haha, dark humour aside, isn’t this a cool trend? Don’t get too excited though – this doesn’t mean no skill also can apply. Employers still will want to see what you can bring to the table, either from coding bootcamp or vocational classes.

10. Why Concert Tickets Are Way Too Expensive, According To The People Who Really Know – The Fader

TL;DR – Staging costs are higher (they’re getting more and more elaborate now), scalpers, and booking fees.

The content is US-specific, but we can see concert ticket costs rising here in Malaysia too. Wonder if there are other factors pushing up the prices locally? Anyone from the industry can chip in?


That’s it for this round, catch you next time! Want to submit a link you thought was great? Reach out to me on FB or Twitter.

To read past link roundups, please click here.

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