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ian_g

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About ian_g

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  1. A very interesting and well written OP a lot of which is also along my lines of thinking. I live in Taiwan and there is also a crazy housing bubble over here (more than the UK in my humble opinion). The way I explain it to myself is that there are a lot of incredibly wealthy people in this world, and they understand that with interest rates on the floor and the dilution of FIAT currency they need to preserve wealth. They do this by buying up housing stock/land (there must be very little return on investment over here due to the sheer number of empty properties). However, I believe that this will change in the (hopefully) near future, and yes, I think crypto-currencies could indeed be the trigger. To be more specific, I think it will be gold backed crypto. There are numerous companies that are now developing this idea which will combine the long term stability of gold with the instant transaction capability of crypto-currencies. Maybe the transition to a gold backed system could be the trigger for the HPC as the upper classes move their wealth?
  2. Could this be the game changer? No wonder China have been importing all that metal recently. Things may be about to get very interesting. https://asia.nikkei.com/Markets/Commodities/China-sees-new-world-order-with-oil-benchmark-backed-by-gold?page=2
  3. Cheers... I thought something might be wrong as I posted it.
  4. The policy paper from last month was an interesting read regarding negative rates. file:///D:/Internet%20Downloads/pp080317-negative-interest-rate-policies.pdf
  5. Essentially yes, but for huge amounts the costs involved in doing so mean that it's better to leave it in the bank and take a hit. The powers that be are well aware of the problems at hand (even if we don't hear about it so directly through the media) and are discussing ways around it. Jim Rickards is one of the best people to listen to about the future of money and how he believes that in 2007 the central banks bailed out the private banks. This time it's the central banks that will need saving by the IMF. In fact the IMF changed certain rules regarding the interest rates on SDR's to accommodate the (never supposed to happen) negative interest rate environment. They still haven't worked out what the solution is... although one of the ideas is to move to electronic money to get around the 'problem' of negative rates. If you want to really go down the rabbit hole read some of the PDF's released by the IMF regarding negative rates. https://www.imf.org/en/Publications/WP/Issues/2016/12/31/Breaking-Through-the-Zero-Lower-Bound-43358
  6. Ten years ago, I was the enthusiastic science teacher that scoffed when I was warned that over 50% of teachers quit within 5 years. Unfortunately, I've added to that statistic as I quit after 4 years. Actually, I haven't quit teaching, just changed country! Obviously, it depends on your personal circumstances in the UK but it's not as difficult as you might fear to start a new life abroad. I teach English at a public school in Taiwan and love my job over here.
  7. Very good topic question as initially I thought that it was just England that was bubbly. I was amazed when I came to Taiwan to find the same, if not worse, situation.. it's pretty obvious that there's a bubble over here. Not just my opinion as Government officials recently reported that Taipei city satisfies their criteria for being in a bubble. House prices in Taipei are currently running at 12 times average income. Other parts of Taiwan are cheaper but compared to local wages still massively overpriced. Average wage is about 50,000Nt per month (1000 pounds). A person I know recently purchased a serious 2 bed rabbit hutch apartment, dark, dingy in an old building for equivalent 140,000 pounds. Taiwan has a huge percentage of property owner occupied at the moment, who knows what the young will do.
  8. ian_g

    The Real Cost Of A House

    Numbers may seem reasonable enough for a new build but what about if I want to buy an older property? No need for labour costs as it is already built, bricks, roof materials that have been subject to weathering for 80 years. Classic guitars, cars, rare antiques fair enough for inflation... but bricks. wow.
  9. ian_g

    Zopa Peer To Peer Lending.

    There's an interesting piece in the FT today 'Big banks muscle in on peer-to-peer lending' Not sure how similar Zopa is to the case studies in this article though?
  10. "The Telegraph has heard from a number of readers who are concerned that their lender will force them to switch to a repayment mortgage – which would be far more costly on a monthly basis – or worse, sell their property." Surely as an intelligent journalist she should at least use the phrase 'the property' As a HPC'er I read the story and that's the first thing that stands out and makes me angry. I'm sure many other people who aren't in the HPC family would read the story and have more sympathy for hard working families losing their homes.
  11. So the banks didn't/don't have as much capital as they should... but now they are able to bring forward help to buy 2 and issue a whole load of new mortgages?
  12. ian_g

    Hong Kong

    Been following this website for many years and left the UK to work in Asia as, like many on here, I couldn't face 25 years of debt for an overpriced asset. I actually live in Taiwan, working and saving for my eventual return, but this caught me eye yesterday so thought I would share. Hong Kong property sales are down 60 percent from a year ago, providing the first clear evidence that new government policies are slowing down one of the world's hottest markets. The Hong Kong Lands Registry recorded about 4,400 sales in April, worth a total of $4 billion, a 48 percent decrease from the year before, CNN reports. http://www.worldpropertychannel.com/asia-pacific-residential-news/hong-kong-property-sales-hong-kong-lands-registry-midland-realty-luxury-homes-6830.php The banks raised rates back in March by about half a percent, obviously having an effect. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-03-21/hong-kong-homes-face-20-price-drop-as-banks-raise-rates.html
  13. I totally agree with the majority of your post but having taught in the UK, and now teaching in Asia, I can assure you that children in the UK are definately taught critical thinking skills and how to make informed decisions. Unfortunately the vast majority of kids are subjected to huge amounts of peer pressure, predominantly because of the media as you say. A lot of them take for granted what the older generation would class as luxury items, a huge reality shock will hit a lot of households very soon, if not already.
  14. ian_g

    Digging Your Own Grave

    Ok, I've been reading these forums for what seems like forever but I feel compelled to reply to this thread because it simply ties in with a lot of my beliefs. I also worked in China last year teaching English at a university and managed to live off £500 a month in my free apartment and restaurant meals/beer most evenings. Why did I do this? Well, after 4 years teaching science in a mainstream high school in northern England I became disillusioned with the fact that even though I am reasonably well educated, and work very hard in a stressful environment (please don't start the 'teachers have it easy' line) I simply couldn't afford to buy a house in an area that I feel my credentials matched up to. I literally felt like a slave to the system and figured that escaping was the only option that would improve my quality of life. No regrets. The only problem with this scenario is that, as a previous poster stated, you cannot save money. I put away £100 a month out of my £500 which enabled me to holiday during the summer but I would like to move back to the UK at somepoint and so need more income... hence I am now working in Taiwan. As for living on the dole? Well, I guess I have that 'work ethic' as most people do. I enjoy working, I enjoy making a difference to people's lives as a teacher and I couldn't imagine life otherwise.
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