Business trip – Africa

Hi All,

I just finished my suitcase for a 10 days business trip in Africa, more precisely 6 days in Malawi and 4 days in South Africa.

These are 2 of my favorite countries (business wise) where I have been in Africa.

Malawi is one of the poorest country in the world, it is located in between Mozambique, Tanzania and Zambia (countries that visited already). It has a population of around 16 mio. with a GDP of 3.7 bio. $ a life expectancy of 55 years. More than 60% of the GDP is coming from Agriculture mainly growing tobacco. It has significant issue with malaria and aids like the region and in general the African continent.

But the people in this country are so generous, alway smiling and ready to help you. One since that I learn is to respect the way they work and live, don’t expect everything to be fixed by the next day, but it will… one day and the African way (with a lot of creativity and innovation).

Now going to South Africa or Cape Town is like being in Switzerland, unfortunately with the insecurity that the country is facing, but the landscape is just incredible. SA is amazingly cheap for us leaving in Switzerland, the wine cost almost nothing and it is beautiful, the meat is so cheap that is almost credible. I remember once going to a very nice restaurant, having starters, 1Kg of beef filet and desserts and clearly with a great red wine, the bill for 2 people was no more that 55 USD, which in Switzerland only the main course for one will cost you 50 USD.

So I am looking forward these 10 days of business trip.

I will keep you posted during this time, to get news from Africa.





2014 1st pillar (Social Security fund) statistics

Hi all,

I just read an article from Bilan (Swiss economic/financial magazine) where they presented some statistic related to the 1st pillar or our social security fund (AVS) at the end of 2014 and found it quite interesting.

In order for you to remember how the Swiss retirement scheme works:

  • Refer to our post (Saving %), where we describe in some details the 3 pillars concept.
  • Official age for retirement is 65 years old (AVS).

In summary, we can learn that 2.2 mio of people touched the 1st pillar in Switzerland or in a foreign country, for a single retired person the average monthly payment was 2024 CHF or for a couple where both are retired a monthly payment of 3359 CHF.

I went to the official site of the AVS and search for some information and found a link where you can estimate your future monthly payment, after inputting the requested data and considering that Mrs RA50 will not work and therefore not contributing to the fund and that I would continue paying the maximum amount until I am 65 years old, we should receive 2120 CHF.

This monthly check would represent 23% of our expenses, considering our actual life style.

Now, as you know, we are expecting to retired when I am 50 years old, meaning that we will not touch this rent before I reach 65 and if we don’t contribute during this time at our own expense, the rent will be significantly reduced. I still need you figure out the exact details.

Any details of your retirement benefits?



2014 Final dividend distribution

Dear all,

As mentioned on the 21st of May, we received our latest distribution from Credit Suisse (CSGN.VX) based on our actual portfolio.

Our total dividend pay check was 29’817 CHF vs. 32’267 CHF, some people will say that it’s a significant loss, but you will see below that it is the opposite and generated a additional net gain of more than 9’000 CHF.

So how can it be:

If you recall, we made a post related to our 204 estimated distribution on March 2, (Dividends estimation update), where we were expecting a total dividend from UBS of 7’500 CHF, this distribution included the 0.5 CHF per share as normal dividend and 0.25 CHF of special dividend for the shareholders that accepted the change of the UBS business model. To receive this special dividend, you must have the shares at the time of the change until the ex-date.

As UBS made a great 1st quarter announcement and the share took more than 7% in one day, we decided to sell our position to benefit of the generous capital gain of 12’300 CHF, this happened a couple of days before the ex-date and therefore, made us losing the special dividend for our 2014 dividend distribution.

Now you will ask us, and what is the financial impact of this change, refer to table below:

With Capital gain Without Capital gain Net gain Net gain (%)
Share sold 12’230
Normal dividend 5’000 7’500
Total gain 17’230 7’500 9’730 230%

As you can see, we made a net gain of 9’730 CHF or 230% vs. only the expected dividend, and on top we bought the same day 10’100 new shares, which is 100 additional shares compared to our previous position.

Including our bank transaction fees, we have now a selling price of 20.17 CHF. The closing price on Friday 22nd is 20.33 CHF therefore we already start making some gain.

In conclusion, we are very happy with our strategy to maximize gain where and when we can.

What do you think?

Cheers, RA50

CS (CSGN:VX) pay check

Dear all,

Finally the last pay check of the year for our portfolio, as you know in Switzerland the dividends are paid once a year.

So I finally decided to take the cash distribution instead of the dividend distribution (Credit Suisse (CSGN.VX): dividend or shares).

Today, we received our dividend check from CS (CSGN:VX), based on the 4’700 shares we own, we received a comfortable check of 3220.0 CHF, this dividend is free of Tax as it is a cash distribution.

At the end of the month, I will make a final summary of the dividends received. It slightly lower than expected and will the reason.



Why people are not saving for retirement?

Dear all,

Last Wednesday, I discussed with one of my colleague, this mid-30’s guy, has been working part-time for a long time and last year, our company offered him a fix position, meaning: increase salary, 4 weeks vacation per year, 1/2 the health insurance paid, 2nd pillar contribution, etc.

I asked him if this new life (fix job) has changed his life, he said: yes! but now I am working more, I have more stress and pay much more taxes! So far nothing special as it makes sense to all of us, but then I asked him what about saving for his retirement, he look at me with two large open eyes, and repeated, saving for retirement? but for what?

I was under shock, I told him, but now you can make a 3rd pillar account, save on taxes, or pay back your pension fund, or save some money for emergencies, he continues to look at me like if I was insane.

I understood that he is not interested in his future because he leaving one day after another one.

I must say that it is really difficult for my wide and myself to understand that kind of position after all we are doing to ensure an early and comfortable retirement.

Not everybody has the same goals in life, but I believe that it should be a must to think about the future.

Do you know this kind of people? what do you do?



UBS (UBSG:VX) pay check

Dear all,

Today we received our dividend check from UBS (UBSG:VX), based on the 10’100 shares we own, we received a comfortable check of 5050.0 CHF, this dividend is free of Tax as it is a cash distribution.

If you remember (Portfolio decrease and increase), last week, we sold our entire position and made an important capital gain of 12’230.0 CHF, we directly bought the 10’100 shares, so this month with UBS, we made a net profit of 17’280.0 CHF

At the moment, we are going to keep this cash position until we have an investment opportunities.

How is your May dividend account?



Net worth update May

Dear all,

I took the opportunity to update our net worth page based on the our company pension fund annual report (Net worth). In the past, we were not taking in account this value, but considering that, if we leave Switzerland, we will get the full amount, I thought interesting to budget it.

So our net worth, significantly increase by 341’000 CHF to reach a total of 1’469’660 CHF or 1’572’537 USD.

The snow ball continue to roll and roll and roll.