Valuable takeaways from Professor Daniel Kahneman, one of the most influential figures in behavioral finance

We usually get to see renowned figures on the TV rather than in real life. Like Nobel Laureates it’s more likely for us to hear of their names than get to know them. We might assume such knowledgeable and impactful figures as Nobel Laureates to be difficult to comprehend as their knowledge may be beyond our understanding.

But seeing Professor Daniel Kahneman’s session at the 71st CFA Institute Annual Conference overthrew the misconception; the Nobel Laureate in Economic Sciences spoke in clear and easy to understand terms of thought-provoking messages. Here are my valuable takeaways from him.

On planning fallacies and ways to avoid:

  • Whenever there is judgement, there is noise.

  • Algorithms are noise-free and better than human judgement.

  • People underestimate uncertainties the market holds.

  • Optimism is everywhere when people plan.

  • Optimism is a risk.

  • The remedy is a broad view.

  • Take an outside view.

On how to be happy:

  • When there is a problem in life, ask advice before making a decision.

  • People to turn to for advice: people who like you and do not care about your feelings.

It’s wisdom to remember. What do you think?



我是在第71屆CFA Institute(特許金融分析師協會)峰會上聽到丹尼爾·康納曼教授的分享的。教授是行為經濟學的權威、諾貝爾經濟學獎得主,與我們分享他的深度智慧時,由淺入深,清晰易明,實在讓我敬佩不已。






The world’s 1st blockchain-powered trade finance deal

This month saw the exciting news of HSBC and Dutch Bank ING making a commercial trade finance deal using blockchain, which was the first application of this disruptive technology in trade finance. The banks handled the transaction for the US agriculture group Cargill, for a shipment of soybeans from Argentina to Malaysia. The transaction time and paperwork exchange would normally take 5 to 10 days but the technology shortened it to 24 hours.

The transaction was completed on Corda Blockchain, a platform developed by the R3 consortium. The technology substantially cut the transaction time, allowed real-time tracking of goods and documents in a more secure manner, and facilitated instantaneous paper reconciliation. The transaction is a milestone for blockchain application in the banking industry. Let’s see what will come out of it in the future!



這次的交易在區塊鏈聯盟R3的Corda 區塊鏈平台上完成,不但省時,並且安全地進行實時貨品和文件追踪,以及自動對賬。這次區塊鏈技術應用是該技術在金融業應用的重大突破,為區塊鏈金融奠下一大重要里程碑


A Day in Harvard

Finally I got a chance to visit Harvard last June.  It was an amazing day!

Did you know?

  • Harvard is the oldest institution of higher education in the United States, established in 1636.
  • Their motto is Veritas (Latin for “truth”)
  • They have an income of US$5 billion in Fiscal Year 2017 (with Expenses of US$4.5 billion)
  • Harvard has the largest endowment among any academic institutions (US$37.1 billion in Fiscal Year 2017)
  • Harvard has 48 Nobel Laureates, 32 heads of state, 48 Pulitzer Prize winners

I stayed at Sheraton Boston Hotel this time.




  • 哈佛大學建於一六三六年,是美國歷史最悠久的高等學府

  • 校訓是「真理」(拉丁文︰Veritas)

  • 二零一七年度的收入為五十億美金,開支為四十五億美金

  • 哈佛的捐贈基金高達三百七十一億美元,冠絕所有高等學府

  • 哈佛畢業生有四十八個諾貝爾獎得主,三十二個國家元首和四十八個普立茲獎得主


3 things to make your day easy

Every CEO has a busy schedule and wants to have either more time a day or a super assistant.  Without either?  My mentor advises me to start early and write up a to-do list before everyone else enters the office.  Sometimes this works perfectly.  A lot more times, the list becomes so long that stress builds up and kill my day.

One of the things I have started learning recently is to restrict myself to have 3 things in mind every day.  Don’t get me wrong.  This does not mean I only do 3 tasks, but 3 major groups of stuff that I should be caring of in mind.  This helps me judge what I should or should not do.  To be precise, this approach helps me to say no to a lot of things that either do not fall into any categories of these 3 things or may have negative impacts in accomplishing them.

So what are these three things?

1. Delegate my to-do list

Before, like many others, I sometimes did not feel like what I should do as there appeared so many things that were of high priority.  The situation became worse when there were ad hoc stuff coming up, ad hoc phone calls, ad hoc problems to solve, etc. It was so hard to focus with such distractions.   Now, I delegate my to-do list to my executive assistant, and sit down with her every week to plan out together the priorities and ensure there are some spare time as contingency.   When I have new ideas and something I want to do, I ask my assistant to have it included on my to-do list.  For the rest of the time, I can just sit back and let my assistant advise me what I should do in a given time.  I can devote totally myself on the tasks themselves without worrying what to do next by when.  How wonderful the peace of mind this is giving me!

2. Forget my calendar

Everyday, I receive on average 10 appointment invitations.  The time spans range from like this afternoon to some time next year.  Some invitations come with fixed date, time and venue.  A lot more of them are tentative, subject to changes.  It takes up a lot of time and human memory to handle.  Some friends of mine use 2 monitors at their workspace.  One for working, the other for calendar showing meetings and appointments.  Some use laptop computers and tablets.  I tried similar approaches, too.  In any case, the idea is to make it easier to manage the schedule.  Some lucky ones rely on their very smart assistant to check the calendar and advise their availability.  I found this approach still demanding me to make, not necessarily at the right moment, the judgement and decision.  What I do now instead is to totally forget my calendar, and rely completely on my assistant to manage it.  Of course, my assistant and I have common understandings on how to handle and prioritise.  So, I do not need an extra monitor to show calendar, and I am not interrupted to think about whether I should or am available to attend an appointment when I am working very hard on something that I am paid to do to grow the company.

3. Create Time for Myself

When I first brought up this idea to my assistant, she was very surprised on what she had heard.  She asked whether this would create time for her too!  I explained to her how important it was to me to bring myself joyfulness from work.  Yes, I know, I work when I work.  But how many times I had new initiatives that I would like to move forward but had to stop due to absence of time!  If I were to have more time, I could have done that. Creating extra time for myself makes me happy!  Of course, if I can squeeze a few hours to enjoy music and sunshine by the pool or beach, that would be perfect!

Of these three things, after all, I am still in the process of learning to live with them. While I find a lot of fine-tuning essential, I trust there will be many interesting stories down the road.  Would love to share with you here when time comes.  Have a happy day!





1. 交託要辦的

2. 忘記我的月曆

3. 留些時間給自己