My heart to educate Pinoys financially

Here’s a nice interview by my friend and best-selling author Rose Fres Fausto. This is a very intimate and personal discussion on how I started with this profession, my struggles, my redemption and why the advocacy became my passion.

Rose Fres Fausto is the author of 2 best-selling books, Raising Pinoy Boys and Re-Telling of the Richest Man of Babylon. Rose and his husband investing expert Marvin Fausto and I are kindred spirits in the sense we all are passionate in reaching out as many Pinoys and enabled them financially.

Thanks Rose for exposing what’s really in my heart in this very engaging interview! Visit Rose Fres Fausto’s website HERE.



Get my books!

Do you want to get copies of my book? For the holiday season, we are offering free shipping for Metro Manila and only P60.00 for Provincial addresses.

Money Manifesto: Lessons in Personal Finance is now available for order. This book has been creating a big impact to a lot of people and has been endorsed by a lot of people like BSP Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo; singers Christian Bautista, Ogie Alcasid & Mark Escueta, economist Alvin Ang, stock market expert Marvin Germo and many more. This book is a very personal and practical and it will touch your heart and not just your mind.

Money Manifesto contains several topics on:

Part 1: Money Behavior

Part 2: Financial Planning

Part 3: Investment

Part 4: The Economy

Part 5: Life Matters


Money Manifesto: Lessons in Personal Finance is available at P600.00 per copy.

Money Manifesto book 3D


You can still get my first book No Nonsense Personal Finance: A Step by Step Guide. This book has reached best-seller status in less than a month and has been featured in numerous publications, TV & Radio programs, etc. My first book has been used as a resource material for training programs, educational institutions and even churches.

No Nonsense Personal Finance book contains the 5 steps to achieve financial peace:

Step 1: Improving Cash Flow

Step 2: Getting Out of Debt

Step 3: Setting Up Your Emergency Funds

Step 4:Getting Protected from Life’s Risks

Step 5: Investing for Your Future

No Nonsense Personal Finance: A Step by Step Guide is available at P500.00 per copy.

No nonsense cover


Here’s a treat for you! Get both books at only P900.00 — a discount of P200.00 for both books!

Books Collage


Here’s how you can order:

1) Deposit the payment to BDO #6440069496 or BPI 0249-1113-09 John Randell Tiongson

2) Take a photo of the deposit slip and send to along with your complete address and contact number.

3) If you want the book/s autographed, please indicate it in the e-mail.

 * Offer ends on Dec. 28, 2014



Free mutual fund starter funds for raffle

prosperity fundsGreat news to those attending the Money Manifesto Conference this Saturday (Nov. 29, 2014). Our sponsor, Sun Life will be raffling of Sun Life Prosperity Funds worth P5,000.00 each to the lucky winners!

What are Sun Life Prosperity Funds?

Sun Life Prosperity Funds
Simplicity, Accessibility, Affordability and Returns. These are only a few of the benefits that a Sun Life Prosperity Fund investor receives.

  • Affordability: For a minimum of Php 5,000, one can jump start an investment account and be on his/her way to prosperity
  • Higher potential returns*:  The Sun Life Prosperity Funds is  a family of funds that caters to various risk appetites and investment horizons. Whether you’re a conservative or aggressive, short term or long term investor, at least one fund is suitable for you to achieve your investment goals.
  • Diversification: For as low as Php 5,000, your investment is instantly diversified among different financial vehicles in order to minimize risk.
  • Flexibility:  Risk appetite tends to change over time and should you feel like changing where your funds are placed, you can do so accordingly up to four times in a year at no charge!
  • Liquidity: Sun Life offers the option to redeem fund shares any time on a business day at the current fund value.
  • Professional Portfolio Management: The Sun Life Prosperity Funds are managed by  top notch investment professionals who are dedicated to ensuring that the funds generate the best returns over the long term.
  • Global Expertise: Sun Life Asset Management Company, the fund manager and distributor of the Sun Life Prosperity Funds is a member of the Sun Life Financial Group of Companies operating in Canada, the United States, United Kingdom, Hong Kong, China, India, the Philippines and Indonesia.

For more information on Sun Life Prosperity Funds, visit

To know more about the conference, CLICK HERE.

See you this Saturday!

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Investing in good and bad times


To a great degree, investments are generally affected by economic cycles. You always hear people encouraging you to make investments because the economy is good. You also hear businessmen complain a lot when the economy is bad. The economy goes through changes from time to time which we normally refer to as economic cycles.

Economic cycles are fluctuations in the economy between periods of expansion or growth and contraction or recession. Factors that determine cycles are usually Gross Domestic Product (GDP), interest rates, employment numbers, consumer spending and the like. Investopedia further explains: “An economy is deemed to be in the expansion stage of the economic cycle when gross domestic product (GDP) is rapidly increasing. During times of expansion, investors seek to purchase companies in technology, capital goods and basic energy. During times of contraction, investors will look to purchase companies such as utilities, financials and healthcare.”

People are more likely to invest their money during when the economy is in its growth cycle and they are likely to stay away from investing when the economy contracts. What should be the right investment approach during the economic cycles? Should you stop investing when the economy is down and invest when it’s growing?

Economist and finance advocate Dr. Alvin Ang’s position is as follows:

“My take on business cycles is that they are closely related to productivity growth. Sustained growth of productivity usually predicts expansion. The investment strategy during this phase should be aggressive commensurate to the growth of productivity. It’s a time for accumulation as household capacities are expanding as well. During slowdown of productivity growth, leading to Decline, investment strategy should mimic the rate of productivity slowdown. During recession productivity falls sharply. Investment becomes least priority but the strategy is to continue with an established base amount at least 10% of the rate invested at aggressive phase. This should go up commensurate to the rate of recovery.”

Seasoned stock market investors, especially the more aggressive ones like Marvin Germo may take a contrarian approach when it comes to investing in economic cycles. Stock prices usually would go down prior to any economic decline so they will start to stay away from the market even if the economy is still not yet at a decline. The stock market will usually be at it’s lowest during a recession which is a signal to investors to start accumulating good quality stocks at a bargain. I once heard a stock market expert say to ‘start selling stocks at the sound of bells and start buying at the sound of alarms’; in other words, buy when people are afraid to buy and sell when people have been buying like crazy. This approach is typical of many who have a trading strategy. Recessions to them are opportunities to make a killing in the market. Interestingly enough, many of SM’s major investments were also done during bad economic times (SM North EDSA, Mega Mall, etc.) since cost of land, labor, etc. are much cheaper. In 2013, the economy was doing really well, and yet there was a big correction in our local markets. In the short term, prices may not always be a true representation of real value. The chart below shows the performance of the PSEi in 2013:


PSEi 2013

Other investments such as fixed income are also economy sensitive but not as anticipatory like stocks. When the economy is in a decline, prices of bonds normally go down and with that, yields of bonds will go up as a result. Although not as volatile as stocks, capital losses can also be experienced if you have a short-term orientation.

If you are a long-term investor and you are investing according to long-term objectives such as retirement, education funding, etc., cycles should not have an adverse effect on you. In a longer period, say 10 years and while markets will go up and down, and even experience crashes such as the 2008 crash, it is expected that markets will recover and will still go up despite volatility. For long-term investors, the issue is not so much on volatility but really on time. I often remind people that stock market investing is not just about timing, it is also about time. The general rule in investing is this: the longer, the better. The chart below shows the PSEi in a 10-year period. You can see that the market, though very volatile is on an upward trajectory in the long term:

10 year PSEi

Fixed income investments (Bonds) will not have any capital loss and yields will be realized if it is held up to its maturity. Just like stocks, bonds will do well in a long period, with less volatility.

When investing, it is very important to determine your investment objectives and time frame first. It is generally a good idea to hold on to your investments up until the time you need it and if your horizon is rather long, say 10 years, you should not be too nervous every time you hear negative news about the economy. A properly diversified investment strategy should allow you to hit your objectives even with the different economic cycles if you in the long run. Opportunities are also there for the taking when economy goes down, as long you are patient enough to wait when the economy rebounds and you have the appetite to take risks.

But alas, always remember that money and investments are just tools and they are not the end goal. In God’s economy, there are no recessions.

“But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.” – Matthew 6:20, ESV

Learn more investment strategies at the Money Manifesto Conference. To register, CLICK HERE.

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Dave Ramsey on changing our views on money

daveramseyscissorsI have said it time and time again and without shame that Dave Ramsey is my role model and benchmark when it comes to my finance advocacy

What makes Dave Ramsey really good is his straight-to-the point and no-nonsense approach with personal finance. Here’s a great video on why we should start looking at money differently and go against what the world has been teaching us. It’s time to go against the normal!

Like Dave, I believe the bible holds the answers to our many financial questions… as well as all the other questions we have in life.



Before investing your money


A lot of people have always asked me about investing – where to put their money, how much to invest, do they buy stocks or mutual funds, etc. They are all great questions and those are important issues to address. However, before even thinking about putting your money somewhere, there are a few things that you need to take care of first:

1) Money Management – proper management of your finances is the foundation of your quest for wealth. If you are like most of us, your money doesn’t come in just one shot – they come in and go regularly and your investments will do well when you can add to those investments pretty regularly. You can only keep on adding to your investments if you know how to save properly… and you can only save properly if you know how to spend properly. Create and stick to your budget, as that will be your most important weapon in building your wealth.

2) Emergency fund – I cannot emphasize enough the importance of building a buffer fund before investing. Investments are volatile, well at least the good ones are and there is always a danger that when you liquidate your investment, it may have not earned yet or worse, its lower than its original amount. The buffer fund will allow you to keep your investment funds untouched since you have another fund to dip your hands into when emergency strikes. 3 to 6 months worth of expenses is a good emergency buffer fund.

3) Investment objectives & time frame – what are you investing for? Many people invest without really know why they are investing in the first place. Knowing your objectives and time frames will allow you to match the right investment instruments that will be best for you.

4) Risk tolerance – it is good to determine your risk appetite before jumping into any investment. A lot of people invest money into risky instruments and yet they are not prepared to handle investment risks which causes a lot of frustration that leads to a lot of stress. Never invest without knowing the risks.

5) Time – think long-term. There are no short-cuts to wealth and you need to be patient in building your wealth over time. Do not take short cuts and do not be in a hurry as those actions can cause you to make a lot of financial mistakes.

Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty. – Proverbs 21:5, NLT


Get finance & investing tips from the Money Manifesto Conference this Nov. 29, 2014 at the SMX Aura! For inquiries, visit HERE

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Why time is your greatest asset

invest-time (1)There are 3 areas that you need to consider before investing: investment objective, risk tolerance and time frame. It is prudent to know those things first before even considering what investment you should be looking at.

Let’s discuss about the 3rd element for consideration — Time.

I have often said that time is perhaps your greatest asset, well aside from yourself. Why is that so? Time is a great way to reduce risk, especially the volatile investments (which are of course, the better investments). Values of investments are often affected by markets and the economy in general. There are good years and great years and unfortunately, there are bad and horrific years when it comes to investments. But, if you have a long term of investments, the chances of you making a big gain in your investment is much better. While good investments are volatile (like stocks), they are generally going to go up in the long term, say over 10 years. That’s the assumption that you are properly selecting stocks based on value and not on hearsay. Investments really grow over time and the longer the time you have, the better the chance for your investments to grow.

In 2008, the whole world was in panic with the financial crisis brought about the sub-prime crisis in the U.S. To learn more about the sub-prime crisis, check out Investopedia. Although the Philippines was not exposed to the whole mess, the financial tsunami that happened in the U.S. had a huge negative effect world-wide. I remember that a lot of people were panicking at that time and many first world investors saw a lot of their money gone in a a flash. Back home, the stock & bond markets were also suffering as collateral damage from the U.S. problem. If I remember it right, Philippine stock market index lost by more than 50%. People who invested in mutual funds or UITFs saw their funds go down by as much as 3o to 50% and I was one of those. While I felt really disturbed by the whole meltdown and the loss of a lot of money, I remained calm because my purpose for investing was long-term anyway. While a lot of people I knew pulled out their investments, I did not do so because my time frame was a rather long one anyway. That decision paid well after since the markets have not only recovered, they have grown substantially over time.

In 2004, I decided to place some money on an equity mutual fund. Not much growth really happened in the following years and worse, the fund saw a big dip in 2008. I kept the money there since I do not need it anyway. A few weeks ago, I got a statement for that particular fund and despite having bad years and really bad years, the good and great years have allowed the investment to grow by 400% from its original amount or a compounded annual growth rate of 14.8% p.a.

In 2008, I decided to put my daughter’s money in a UITF balanced fund — a few months before the great financial turmoil. Like most funds, they lost as much as 30-40% of its original value in a matter of days! Since those funds were for the future of my then high school aged daughters, I just kept it in the fund and never bothered with the losses since my investment horizon was long termed anyway. Today, the value of the investment is about 220% of its original amount, or a growth rate 14.05% p.a. over a span of 6 years.

Time is indeed a great asset and it is a great way to reduce your risk. Given enough time, you can either be an aggressive investor or a conservative investor and both strategies will work. If you are a risk taker and you loose money from investments, you still have time to recover your losses and gain from the bullish years, like my 2 stories. If you are not a risk taker, you can still do the safe but sure way and your money will still amount to something substantial with enough time. However, you can’t be aggressive when you don’t have enough time anymore because it is dangerous to put invest money only to find out that you actually lost part of your money when you need it most. When you are a conservative investor, your money will not amount to something substantial due to the low yields you are getting and the short time for it to grow.

Always remember to be prudent with your investments, but use time as a great leverage for you to achieve your goals.

Get more investment ideas from the Money Manifesto Conference on Nov. 29, 2014. Details HERE

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Money Manifesto Conference 2014

Join my last public event for 2014, the Money Manifesto Conference on November 29, 2014 at Room 1 at the SMX Aura in Taguig City.

What is this conference all about? 

This event will highlight valuable personal finance learnings that will instruct, inspire and empower the audience to achieve their goals in life.

Joining me for this event are my friends Jayson Lo and Carl Dy.

A much sought after motivational speaker, Jayson Lo is the best-selling authors of “YOUnique” and “Debtermined”. He will talk about the money behaviors people have and how to have the proper money mindset to get out of debt and achieve your goals in life.

Carl Dy is one of the country’s foremost expert in real estate investing. He recently authored a booklet titled “6 Steps to Renting out your Condo.” He will show us the right way to invest using real estate and that this is not an investment limited to the ultra rich.

Incidentally, my newest book “Money Manifesto” will also be launched during the conference. This book has been highly anticipated and has been recommended by BSP Deputy Gov. Diwa Guinigundo, Rivermaya front man Mark Escueta, economist Dr. Alivn Ang, international celebrity Christian Bautista, RFP’s Henry Ong, Stock Market expert Marvin Germo, BPI’s Marketing head Jojo Ocampo, international investing expert Jess Uy, and many more.

The conference is for only P750.00, a bargain for the quality of seminars we offer. What’s more, if you register and pay before November 12, 2014, you only need to invest P500.00

For inquiries and registration, please get in touch with Carl Magsino at 0917-4433832, 988-8469 or email

You can also register on-line by visiting —

This conference is presented by BPI and Sun Life. Supported by the RFP, Angat Pilipinas Coalition and Alveo Land.

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Retire 2014 Reload

Studies shows that only 1 to 2 out of 10 Filipinos prepare for retirement. Studies also reveals that the few who prepare for retirement, most of them will only exhaust their retirement funds halfway through retirement.

Filipinos are experiencing longer life expectancy but unfortunately, huge costs are needed to live a life of comfort during those years.

Consider this: If you can generate 75% of your pre-retirement income during your retirement years, you will live a life of comfort; if you can only generate 30-50%, you will live a life of struggle. For a 20 year retirement, you need at least 20 years of preparation — if you plan to retire at 60, then you should start preparing at 40.

Attend RETIRE: No Nonsense Retirement Planning Workshop and learn how to properly prepare for your retirement. At the end of the full day workshop, you will be able to prepare a comprehensive retirement plan that is suited for you and a plan that really works. Find out how you can truly live a life of comfort & learn about the proper investments that is best suited for your needs objectively from two of the most recognizable finance advocates of the country.

For inquiries and registration, email

retirement poster 2014



My newest book, Money Manifesto

Deputy BSP Governor Diwa Guinigundo, international celebrity Christian Bautista, rock star Mark Escueta, best-selling Author Dennis Sy, stock market advocate Marvin Germo, economist Dr. Alvin Ang and others have all agreed that Money Manifesto is a book worth reading.

What is this book all about? It’s a personal finance book that discusses a wide array of topics: Money management, Investing, Economics plus more… but, this book is more than just about the finance topics — it talks about my experiences and the experiences of others too. When my editor was working on my book, she said that this book seems to be more personal and has more heart.

Money Manifesto is a 300-page book that took me many years to write and like my other books, this one is intended to go beyond sharing information, this book is meant to encourage and to inspire the reader.

This book will be available in November 2014.

Money Manifesto book promo