Saturday, September 27, 2014

Cong. Karlo Nograles: Meaningful change makes a nation

Congressman Karlo Nograles has always known in his heart the renewing possibility of change. He believes that every individual has the resources within himself to change the course of his life. The Representative from District 1 of Davao City understands that the greatest and most significant societal changes begin with small, simple steps.

What is more life-changing than education? In his first term as a congressman, Karlo trained his eyes on education, particularly on the post-secondary level. “I just felt that government wasn’t paying enough attention to kids after high school,” says Nograles.

Congressman Karlo Nograles is a typical protective and loving husband and father to his wife Marga and his three children, Mateo, Massimo and Nikka
Through Oplan Kaalam (Oplan K), Karlo supports the full tuition and fees of thousand of students in state-owned University of Southern Philippines, University of the Philippines-Mindanao and other public and private colleges and universities across Davao City.

In addition, the program has also handed out thousands of technical-vocational scholarships to poor students in the barrios. “The youth become more empowered with higher education,” Karlo, who finished his law degree at the Ateneo de Manila University, says. “They are sustained with the means to provide a brighter future for themselves and their families.”

Davao City Representative Karlo Nograles showing his support as he waves the Philippine flag during the canonization of St. Pedro Calungsod at Vatican City, Rome, Italy. 
But for Karlo, it is not enough that the youth are educated and have their families secured: they also have to play a role in community transformation. In order to stress the importance of the youth and their involvement in community service, Karlo has led some 5,000 scholars in various community programs such as tree planting, coastal clean-ups, recycling, reading and literature programs, and school feeding drives, among others. “Every person has the capacity to serve the community, and the only way we can change the world for the better is to help others and always pay it forward,” an admirable life philosophy he continues to advocate from his training in the Ateneo and the Jaycee movement.

Now serving on his second term, Karlo is motivated to cultivate the seeds planted by education, volunteerism, and civic-mindedness to further fruition. Karlo is now committed to creating sustainable community-based livelihood programs and employment opportunities, in line with his current position as Chairman of the Committee on Labor and Employment at the House of Representatives.

Representative of First Congressional District of Davao City Karlo Nograles
Under the supervision of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Karlo has been bringing job fairs to the 54  barangays under his jurisdiction, right to where the people are. “Since many of the poor and unemployed have no means to go around and look for work, then we must bring all these job vacancies down to the impoverished communities, and together with potential employers do the job interviews then and there,” Karlo says. “Never underestimate the power of a job; it allows people to provide for their needs and enjoy the honor and dignity of hard work and self-reliance.”

First District of Davao City Representative Karlo Nograles pushes for the passage of Philippine Green Jobs Act to create green jobs that will help curb the ill-effects of climate change.
The concurrent vice-chairman of the House Committee on Human Rights and Committee on Revision of Laws also brings to the barangays various community-based skills training projects, such as basic welding, plumbing, beauty care, and commercial cooking. “These are skills that are easily learned and are easily employable, and such trainings should therefore not be confined to schools and classrooms but must be accessible by the poor who need them most.”

For his exceptional vision and leadership, Karlo was hailed as Outstanding Congressman by SuperBrands Marketing International in 2012. The following year, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) also conferred to him the Regional Kabalikat Award for 2013.

Cong. Karlo Nograles of first district of Davao City passes House Bill No. 4969 that promotes climate-smart industries and services 
Now, Karlo has set his eyes on sustainable development. He recently filed a bill in Congress seeking to generate eco-friendly jobs that will help reduce environmental risks posed by business enterprises with the help of green technology. His Green Jobs Act aims to not just preserve the environment, but to ensure that we are able to sustain a better way of life and at the same time protect our planet for future generations. For Karlo, change in the individual means change in the community and ultimately, the country.

Friday, September 26, 2014

P85M worth of PA insurance from Malayan Insurance on National Assurance Day

In an effort to promote the importance of non-life insurance to the public, Malayan Insurance will be making available Php 85 million worth of personal accident cover on October 6, 2014, to registrants in the company’s National Assurance Day promo.  

The Malayan group policy has a total combined maximum limit of Php 85 million which all registrants with valid confirmations of cover will share at the end of the campaign.

Malayan Insurance said the date will be called its National Assurance Day and hopes to begin a yearly tradition every October beginning this year to encourage Filipinos to seek protection.

“National assurance day is our way of supporting the Insurance Awareness Week of the Philippine Insurers & Reinsurers Association (PIRA) and the insurance industry. Reminding everyone that things can go wrong and that it is a good idea to have a backup plan when something unexpected or untoward happens,” said Malayan Insurance PA Underwriter, Mr. Anthony M. Labindalawa.

Further, Mr. Labindalawa explained that the NAD is one way to celebrate the insurance awareness week by giving the Filipino insuring public some peace of mind. 

“Aside from creating awareness of the importance of non-life insurance, the NAD is one way for us to give back to the community in anticipation of our upcoming 85th founding anniversary,” said Malayan’s Digital Marketing Head, Aldous Anacion. 

Getting a free Malayan PA cover on NAD is simple: one only needs to visit and register at the promo micro site at starting September 6, 2014.

Another way to register for NAD is by “liking” Malayan’s Facebook page at Facebook/MalayanPH and click on the NAD link.  

On October 6, all those who registered will be included in a free Group policy composed of basic accidental death, dismemberment and disability covers. The full promo mechanics is posted at the NAD micro-site and Malayan’s FB page.

The certificate of cover will be sent to the registrant’s email a week after the promo. Malayan is able to deliver its policies in digital format – rather than just the traditional paper and ink policy – because it has a valid electronic COC approval from the Insurance Commission.

The promo is open to all Filipinos ages 18-65 years old.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

About Manulife Investor Sentiment Index in Asia and Manulife

Manulife’s Investor Sentiment Index in Asia is a quarterly, proprietary survey measuring and tracking investors’ views across eight markets in the region on their attitudes towards key asset classes and related issues. The Index is calculated as a net score (% of “Very good time” and “Good time” minus % of “Bad time” and “Very bad time”) for each asset class. The overall index is calculated as an average of the index figures of asset classes. A positive number means a positive sentiment, zero means a neutral sentiment, and a negative number means negative sentiment.
The Manulife ISI is based on 500 online interviews in each market of Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Japan, and Singapore; in Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines it is conducted face-to-face. Respondents are middle class to affluent investors, aged 25 years and above who are the primary decision maker of financial matters in the household and currently have investment products.
The Manulife ISI is a long-established research series in North America. The Manulife ISI has been measuring investor sentiment in Canada for the past 15 years, and extended this to its John Hancock operation in the U.S. in 2011. Asset classes taken into Manulife ISI Asia calculations are stocks/equities, real estate (primary residence and other investment properties), mutual funds/unit trusts, fixed income investment and cash.

Manulife is a leading Canada-based financial services group with principal operations in Asia, Canada and the United States. Clients look to Manulife for strong, reliable, trustworthy and forward-thinking solutions for their most significant financial decisions. Our international network of employees, agents and distribution partners offers financial protection and wealth management products and services to millions of clients. We also provide asset management services to institutional customers. Funds under management by Manulife and its subsidiaries were approximately C$637 billion (US$597 billion) as at June 30, 2014. We operate as John Hancock in the U.S. and as Manulife in other parts of the world.

Manulife Financial Corporation trades as ‘MFC’ on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under ‘945’ on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at

Filipino investors optimistic on pensions, but based on some risky assumptions – Manulife Survey

Did you know that the majority of Filipino investors are satisfied with  their government pension – but that sentiment is based on specific assumptions and a cash-dominant approach to retirement working out, according to the latest Manulife Investor Sentiment Index.?

Two-thirds of respondents said that they are confident that their government pension  would be enough to meet their needs upon retirement – the highest level of all surveyed markets. In contrast, across all surveyed markets the proportion of confident investors was less than 40 percent, and as low as one-in-ten in some markets.

While such optimism seems positive, the survey shows it is based on some risky assumptions. First, investors expect their retirement income to be relatively high, at 92% of their current income – the highest estimate among all surveyed markets (Asia average 69%). Second, they expect their retirement expenses to be relatively low, at just 61 percent of their current income, at the lower end of surveyed markets (Asia average 66%). Third, nearly all (95%) said that in retirement they expect to rely on private healthcare – by contrast, in every other market only a minority expected to rely on private healthcare (Asia average 38%).

“Filipino investors have high estimates of their retirement income. Even if these turn out to be right, they may not be enough to cover their actual costs,” said Ryan Charland, CEO of Manulife Philippines. “Today, people generally expect their retirement to be active, and that means expenses will likely be much higher than what many realize. In addition, healthcare tends to cost a lot more than people expect. In Asia healthcare costs have risen about twice the rate of inflation over the past 10 years. Of course, it’s even more expensive if you go private.”

The survey highlights that Filipino investors have a high degree of reliance on their government pension, with only one in five owning an additional, private pension plan. Instead, many expect to fall back on other, less assured, largely cash-forms of income, notably savings (which they expect to make up 37% of their retirement income) and inheritance (12% of their retirement income) – in both cases the highest reliance of any surveyed markets. This cash-dominant approach to retirement is reinforced by the finding that, on receiving their pension, Philippine investors plan to deposit nearly half into the bank, the second-highest level of all markets (Asia average 35%).

“We know that Filipino investors like to hold cash and are among the most cash-heavy investors in Asia. The latest survey shows us they also plan to be Asia’s most cash-reliant investors when retired,” said Mr. Charland. “Keeping cash in the bank provides minimal returns, which may not even keep up with inflation. Their retirement optimism would have a sounder basis with a more balanced portfolio, especially given that retirement today can last 30 years or more.”

Manulife Financial Corporation trades as ‘MFC’ on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under ‘945’ on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at

Saturday, August 30, 2014


With seemingly so many property choices for a vacation home in Tagaytay, it can be overwhelming to make decision on where to invest one’s hard-earned money. The best way to decide is to step back and focus on your goals for investing:

Are you looking for a very private, secure, and relaxing vacation home? Do you seek a place that helps you find wellness and good health? How about a home that provides the pampering and luxury you deserve after all the hard work you do all week—plus the ability to maximize your returns?

If all of that sounds good to you, then there’s really no other place in Tagaytay that fits the bill except Anya Resort and Residences. It is a harmonious blend of luxurious amenities, world-class service, wellness opportunities, and the best value and return for your investment.
Anya’s 5.7 hectare property is nested in a secluded portion of Tagaytay located along Buena Vista Hills Road, in  Barangay  Mag-asawang  Ilat, Tagaytay City. The beautiful and relaxing ambiance of landscaped green spaces provide a refreshing setting for the various amenities—all designed for wellness, rejuvenation, and pampering. It is open to visiting guests and vacationers, as well as to investors who wish to purchase their own residential units.

True health and wellness is integral to Anya’s commitment to visitors and homeowners. Wellness is about enjoying life to the fullest, free of stress and disease, with enough energy, and the resilience of face life’s challenges and bask in successes great or small.

Achieving true wellness at Anya is the result of both its environment and the healthy lifestyle that its guests and residents enjoy. Wellness treatments like massages, facials, body scrubs and others soothe away stress and stimulate the body’s natural defenses.
The total Anya experience combines these treatments with healthy and delicious cuisine, and the solitude amid nature’s power to renew and rejuvenate mind, body, and soul. 

“Health experts have been telling us that a stressful lifestyle contributes to or even causes most of our illnesses. This is what makes Anya a great opportunity not only to enjoy world-class amenities but also the chance to live healthy and well, and improve quality of life through our holistic treatments and the healthy lifestyle we provide,” said Santiago Elizalde, Senior Vice President of Roxaco Land Corporation.

Wellness amenities

Anya’s master-planned design is shaped to cooperate with to its location’s natural terrain, in order to make the property environmentally friendly. The resort and residential areas are surrounded by pocket gardens, streams, and brooks, and pathways of stone and wood. There are areas meant for yoga, meditation, and other healthy activities.  There’s a spa, a gym, separate pools for guests and residents, the Living Room, and a Borderless Library.

With the Borderless Library guests and residents take a book or an e-reader and bring these anywhere in the property to enjoy some quiet time with enjoying literature and get comfy while expanding their minds.

Three dining areas will provide healthy, international cuisine: Café Amra and Lounge; Pizzeria Anila; and Samara Terrace Restaurant.  These foods are not just gourmet dishes but healthy feasts as well, courtesy of resident chef Carlo Miguel. Guests and residents may also order food to be brought to the Living Room, the Residents’ Pavilion, or their residential units.

The vegetables used in Anya’s dishes are grown at the property itself using all-natural, organic methods to preserve on only the tasty, crisp freshness of the ingredients but all to retain their health-giving nutrients.


Anya residents will receive exclusive pampering at The Residents' Pavilion, a private complex only they are privileged to enjoy. The Residents’ Pavilion is .perched atop the resort’s highest point and provides an excellent view of Anya’s amenities. The exclusive Residents’ Pool provides a chance to relax by the water’s edge while enjoying a snack and a refreshing drink, reading a book, or surfing the Internet. At the Residents’ Pavilion, sunny days, dawns, and dusks become magical moments with family members.

Two other swimming pools are also at the resort. The Resort Pool is located right in the middle of Anya’s various amenities and activity areas. The young ones, especially, will enjoy a fun time at the pool while in close proximity to food and beverage service. The Concierge Pool, on the other hand, is another private area where residents can be pampered with a butler service and a relaxing massage from on-duty masseuses.

The pampering of residents is only possible through the warm, all-encompassing and detailed service given to guests, residents, and investors. It is a unique brand of service that is truly Filipino—and Filipinos are known all over the world for their friendliness, cheerful, and caring attitude at they attend to customers’ needs. . Filipinos are practically the backbone of the global hospitality industry. This is the personalized, signature service at Anya that goes above and beyond.


The luxurious, international-quality accommodations of Anya along with the personalized service provided make it the ideal investment. Investors may choose from several types of units including 1) Guest Room/Studio; 2) One-Bed Suite/Residential; and 3) Two-bed Presidential/Residential.

Anya is in partnership with leading brands, distribution channels, and marketing firms to assure investors that room revenue remains at peak level. Anya is also a securitized asset so it has ongoing capital appreciation. So far current projections place cash yields at 8 percent per year based on the purchased asset price. 

Vista Residences: Structures of Style and Substance

As the condominium boom shows no sign of abating, an alarming trend is becoming noticeable: some of the high-rise towers being built are starting to look the same. Perhaps, the real estate company has either consciously chosen to only have one look across their developments or they tap the same architectural group, whether in-house or not. The downside to this practice is that the buildings become boring and interchangeable, pulling no element of surprise. You see one and you see all.

For Vista Residences, part of Vista Land & Lifescapes which is acknowledged as the biggest homebuilder in the country, part of the solution to break this monotony is to collaborate with a variety of architectural firms who have produced beautiful, breathtaking structures in the past. “We don’t subscribe to one specific look when it comes to our buildings,” says Beth Kalaw, Vista Residences HRB Division Head. “We avoid that by working with architects who have different design philosophy. We allow them to express their strengths. This is the reason why we don’t have  developments that look exactly the same.”

Some of the “starchitects” that Vista Residences has tapped through the years include Arc. William Coscolluela of WV Cosculluela & Associates for the Mosaic and KL Mosaic Towers, Felino Palafox of Palafox and Associates for Trevi Towers and Arc. Carmelo Casas of Casas + Architects for The Gallery. All three buildings are located within or near the Makati Central Business District.

For the Mosaic and KL Mosaic Towers, Coscolluela designed the structures in a hexagonal form to give them a classic and contemporary look. Working with the tenets of green architecture, Palafox oriented the structures of Trevi Towers in such a way that they can harness the full potential of the wind to encourage natural ventilation. Casas, on the other hand, envisioned The Gallery as a collection of clean, modern lines.

In its other developments such as The Currency (Ortigas CBD), Wil Tower and Symphony Towers (Quezon City), Vista Residences tapped the US-based, international architectural firm RTKL whose local partner is Arch Haus Asia Consultants. They may have been designed by the same group by their looks can not be more different. The Currency is a single-tower expressed as two wings, the Wil Tower projects its mixed-use identity with its podium of retail spaces, while Symphony Towers shimmers like emerald, mirroring the fluidity and hue of the fountains in the courtyard shared by its two buildings.

Aside from high-rise residences, Vista Land has also created sumptuous communities composed of mid-rise condominiums amid wide, open spaces. These include the six-tower development Brescia Residences in Fairview, Quezon City which evokes the style of an Italian villa; Pine Crest in New Manila, whose three towers sit on 8,000 square meters, large areas of which are strewn with pine trees; and The Presidio in Sucat, Parañaque whose 16 mid-rise condo buildings, located in 6.8-hectare development, are designed to take in a view of Laguna de Bay, an environmentally protected site.

Backed by more than 30 years of experience of its parent company Vista Land, Vista Residences makes sure that all the developments follow building and environmental codes to the letter, respect the historical attributes of the site and take consideration of the surrounding communities. “We can proudly claim that we don’t cut corners in our developments,” Kalaw, “We only work with the trusted names in the construction industry. We always emphasize that speed should never be a reason to compromise the safety and the integrity of a building.”

An example that Vista Residences doesn’t just build indiscriminately is 515 Shaw, a two-tower heritage-oriented project located in the corner of Laurel Street and Shaw Boulevard in Mandaluyong City. The design and construction team took every step to assure that the home of the late President Jose P. Laurel would be safely and beautifully integrated in the building’s overall structure.

Another step the company is taking in its construction practice is toward green architecture. As mentioned, Vista Residences has turned Trevi Towers as a generator of wind for natural ventilation. Its project at Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City, Avant at the Fort, has been designed to embody green architecture through and through.

Benefiting from the shade of nearby structures, Avant at The Fort allows ambient light, but not heat, to filter through the star-rated glass, minimizing the use of energy. Its design, just like Trevi Towers, also allows for cross ventilation to pervade through hallways and units. Its ground level is framed by an espalier that allows for the integration plant life while shaded swimming pool and private massage coves are surrounded by greenery.

“Starting from the blueprint, we make sure that a building has its unique architectural identity that will make stand out from the rest,” says Kalaw. “What remains consistent is the way we devote every necessary solution and step to make it well-built. Yes, our buildings are stylish but its style rests upon a safe, solid foundation.”

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

SYOSS by Henkel Beauty Care

SYOSS is a Japanese hair-solution brand that brings salon-beautiful hair to every Pinay. Made by Henkel Beauty Care, SYOSS is co-developed and tested by top Japanese professional hairdressers and stylists. It encompasses hair care, coloration and styling solutions in order to deliver salon-quality results at affordable prices. 

Henkel operates worldwide with leading brands and technologies in three business areas: Laundry & Home Care, Beauty Care and Adhesive Technologies. Founded in 1876, Henkel holds globally leading market positions both in the consumer and industrial businesses with well-known brands such as Persil, Schwarzkopf and Loctite. Henkel employs about 47,000 people and reported sales of 16.4 billion euros and adjusted operating profit of 2.5 billion euros in fiscal 2013. Henkel’s preferred shares are listed in the German stock index DAX.

Lamudi: Find the Best Real Estate Offers Around the World

Lamudi was launched in 2013, is a global property portal focusing exclusively on emerging markets. 

The fast-growing platform is currently available in 28 countries in Asia, the Middle east, Africa and Latin America, with more than 500,000 real estate listings across its global network. 

The leading real estate marketplace offers sellers, buyers, landlords and renters a secure and easy-to-use platform to find or list properties online.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Protect Your Family and Home from Water Damage this Rainy Season

That’s not all. Doors that get filled with moisture can swell-up to the point where they don’t fit door frames anymore. Moisture accumulation in the home can reach electrical wiring—flickering house lights may be a sign of this. That’s a fire hazard right there.

In a tropical country like the Philippines, where we experience several months of monsoon rains, floods, and typhoons, it is essential to waterproof our homes to protect our investment and maintain the most important shelter for our family.

Here are some essential tips on how to keep our family and our house protected from water damage this rainy season.

Focus on prevention. Preventing water damage is always the better option than having to fix it when it happens. Effective prevention means using the right product to waterproof your home. Some people think that elastomeric paint is a good solution; however, it is a temporary one at best.

Elastomeric paint eventually peels off as moisture sets in the walls, ceilings, and floors. It becomes brittle over time and flakes or fades away.  Another downside is that elastomeric paint is toxic—something that many homeowners don’t usually know about.

A superior alternative to elastomeric paint is a “cementitious” or cement-based waterproofing product. Such a product bonds with the concrete or cement surface where it is applied. It becomes part of the wall or the ceiling, or the floor. It does not peel off like paint. It does not crack or flake. If you’re waterproofing anything concrete or cement, especially, your best bet is a cement-based waterproofing product like Super Thoroseal.

Super Thoroseal seeps into and bonds permanently with the concrete or cement surface, effectively sealing even the tiniest pores or spaces so that moisture does not go through. Best of all, Super Thoroseal is non-toxic. It can even be used in swimming pools and be in contact with drinking water.  Be sure to use Super Thoroseal to waterproof your toilet and bath, your firewall, and basement.

Super Thoroseal may be applied even on wet surfaces. Simply mix 1 gallon of Super Thoroseal with 1.5 liters water, then it is ready to use. It is strong enough to withstand extremes of temperature, weather, abrasions, and even exposure to environmental chemicals.

Plug active leaks ASAP. What if there are cracks on your concrete wall and the rain is pouring outside, sending water into your house? What you need is Waterplug, a cement-based product that immediately plugs the leak and seals the cracks— it is specifically formulated so you can apply it even while a leak is ongoing.

Waterplug is a fast-setting, fast-drying hydraulic cement designed to plug active leaks in concrete surfaces and structures (even concrete water tanks). Amazingly, Waterplug sets in just three minutes so you’ll have your leak plugged in such a short time.
Waterplug is non-toxic and very strong. Once it is set and bonded with the concrete, it can withstand a force of up to 1,500 pounds-per-square-inch (PSI). In comparison, an open faucet has a force of about 40 PSI. Waterplug can also be used to seal cold joints and even anchor bolts of gates and other fixtures.

Flexibility. Some parts of a house are more prone to experiencing movement or tremors—for example, a roofdeck, the upper floors and walls of a house, or a tall building. For such structures, it’s best to use Optimum Flex, a cement-based, flexible waterproofing product; its optimum flexibility keeps concrete surfaces sealed against water and moisture despite movement and tremors. Without such flexibility, an ordinary sealant would crack.

Optimum Flex is very easy to use thanks to its pre-packaged, pre-measured components. It’s composed of a powder and an emulsion that are simply mixed together without having to do any measuring anymore. It only takes a short time for Optimum Flex to dry, set, and bond permanently with the concrete surface. It may be applied in wet areas.

For real and effective protection against water damage, remember to choose cementitious or cement-based products like Super Thoroseal, Waterplug, and Optimum Flex. Depending on which area of your house, building, or establishment you need to waterproof, these products provide superior protection.

Super Thoroseal, Waterplug, and Optimum Flex are distributed in the Philippines by Jardine Distribution, Inc. To know more about these waterproofing products, call or text the Engineer Lunas Hotline 0920-910-2629 or go to .

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Sustainable Developer Signs Partnership With Lamudi

Property portal Lamudi shocases Primavera Residences, firs eco-friendly residential and commercial development in CDO.

Global property portal Lamudi is now listing the first eco-friendly property in cagayan de Oro, through a new partnership with award-winning developer Italpinas Euroasian design and Eco-development corporation (ITPI Corp).

Primavera Residences is a new eco-friendly condo development in Cagayan de Oro, the capital city of Misamis Oriental province. Featuring high-quality Italian design, the development is capable of generating its own energy, minimizing power usage and maximizing natural light and ventilation.

Lamudi Philippines currently showcases 19 units from Primavera Residences on its platform. Jacqueline van den Ende, co-founder and Managing Director of Lamudi Philippines, said the partnership with ITPI was the perfect match for the Lamudi website.

"This partnership is line with our goal to bring quality properties from our trusted brokers and developers to all Filipinos, both here and abroad. Green living issues are becoming increasingly important to local house-hunters. For this reason, Lamudi hopes to make more sustainable development like Primavera Residences available on its website" she said.

Primavera Residences employs passive cooling technology which allows for shadow and sunlight control, wind cooling and shape performance. As well as offering great accessibility to schools, places of worship, transportation and commercial establishments, the ten-storey twin tower development is built to withstand typhoons and earthquakes.

Architect Romoro Nati, CEO and Executive Chairman of ITPI, said sustainability was a key feature of all his company's projects. "We look at the bigger and how our projects impact their surrounding environment. We have our own unique approach in property development that benefits not only our stakeholders and investors, but the local community and environment as well," he said.

Primavera Residences has unique built-in features that boost the development's green credentials, Nati said. "Shadow control is provided by brise soleils and cantilevered edges, as well as scaling windows or terraces and adjusting them following orientation. The south-facing windows, for example, are smaller than those on the opposite side of the buildings. The internal vertical atrium found in both towers is an efficient wind cooling system that enhances the cross-section layout of the units," he added.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Philippines Investors Remain Most Optimistic in the Region – Manulife Survey

·         Philippines investor sentiment remains most optimistic in the region, alongside Malaysia
·         There is strong support for raising the retirement age
·         Over two thirds say leaving an inheritance to their children is their primary retirement concern

·         Reliance on private healthcare expected to rise in retirement, yet healthcare insurance ownership levels remain low

Philippines investor sentiment slipped in the first quarter of 2014 but remains the highest in the region, alongside Malaysia, according to Manulife’s latest quarterly survey into investor sentiment in the country. 

While optimism is down slightly from the previous quarter (-8 to 58), more investors still regard it as is a good time to invest and sentiment remains overwhelmingly positive. At the asset class level, sentiment dropped across the board except towards cash; although again, investors remain optimistic about all asset classes (equities lost 7 points to reach 41, fixed income was down 15 to 45, mutual funds declined 16 to 35, and investment property slipped 9 to 70).

“Our second survey of investor sentiment in the Philippines continues to reveal great optimism. A strong stock market performance during the quarter and strong economic growth expectations look to be underpinning the upbeat sentiment,” said Ryan Charland, President and CEO, Manulife Philippines.
The research, part of the Manulife Investor Sentiment Index (MISI) survey,* shows that sentiment in the Philippines is joint highest with Malaysia, and at 58 is more than double the regional average of 24 (up two points from 22 in the previous quarter).

“Stocks were up 9 percent in the first quarter thanks to company earnings being in line with or better than estimates. Yet, sentiment may have built in a higher inflation outlook and the rise in banks' reserve requirements, which was interpreted as a prelude to further tightening measures to curb strong liquidity growth,” said Ms. Aira Gaspar, Chief Investment Officer, Manulife Philippines. “We expect sentiment towards equity to pick up from here, as resilient domestic consumption and rising investment spending are supportive of an upward corporate earnings trajectory.”
Official retirement age should rise

Despite the optimism, the research does show that Philippines investors are concerned about their retirement, including the need to continue working beyond the official retirement age and their ability to meet family responsibilities during retirement.

Philippine investors are strongly (64 percent) in favor of increasing the official retirement age, a good deal higher than the Asia average (51 percent). The official retirement age in the Philippines at only 60 years is below the Asian average, with most countries in the region currently setting retirement at 65 years.
Also, with life expectancy in the Philippines up significantly in recent decades1 there is a sense that the official retirement age is out of step, leaving investors an increasingly lengthy retirement to save for.

“People know that the social safety net is not going to cover all their needs when they retire and that they’re going to have to fend for themselves,” said Ryan Charland, President and CEO, Manulife Philippines. “The gap can be made up by working in old age, but an alternative route is to invest as soon as there’s some extra to put away and to do so consistently throughout your working life. That way, by the time retirement comes around, the compound returns from investments can provide a much-needed income top-up.”

Concerns for the financial health of the family a top priority

The investor sentiment survey also highlights the importance that Philippines investors place on providing financial security for their families.

Their largest retirement concern is their ability to leave an inheritance to children or heirs (69 percent of investors). Their second biggest concern is health deterioration (60 percent) followed by a fear that they will need to support their children financially (37 percent). In addition over four fifths of investors in the Philippines, more than any other country in the region, expect to support their spouse in retirement.

Healthcare anomalies

Almost nine out of ten investors expect private healthcare services to handle their medical needs during retirement, which runs counter to the rest of the region where the average is just over one in four. However, only 40 percent of Philippines investors have private medical insurance and only 60 percent expect to purchase or maintain personal health insurance during retirement. Despite such large numbers not having or not expecting to have private healthcare insurance, only 15 percent are worried that healthcare will be unaffordable in retirement (less than half the regional average).

“Investors think that healthcare will be somewhat affordable, but if they don’t have insurance, it will be an out-of-pocket expense,” said Mr. Charland. “With medical expenses continuing to rise over time and at a greater rate than inflation, Philippines investors would be wise to factor that into their retirement planning.”

For more findings and related information from the Manulife Investor Sentiment Index in Asia, please visit

*About Manulife Investor Sentiment Index in Asia
Manulife’s Investor Sentiment Index in Asia is a quarterly, proprietary survey measuring and tracking investors’ views across eight markets in the region on their attitudes towards key asset classes and related issues.
The Manulife ISI is based on 500 online interviews in each market of Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Japan, and Singapore; in Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines it is conducted face-to-face. Respondents are middle class to affluent investors, aged 25 years and above who are the primary decision maker of financial matters in the household and currently have investment products.
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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Feng Shui expert Master Hanz Cua

Master Hanz Cua. 2014 will be a hot year as disasters will continue to devastate parts of the country, a popular Feng Shui expert, revealed in a press conference today.

"We will experience hotter weather this year. Rain will be less which will create havoc to the agriculture sector,'' said Feng Shui expert Master Hanz, during a press conference in Mandaluyong City.

Still reeling from the effects of super typhoon Yolanda that devastated several provinces in the Visayas region last November and killed more than 6,000 persons already, Master Hanz forecast the possibility of another weather disturbance near the strength of super typhoon Yolanda to slam the country.

"It's the Year of the Horse. The Wood and Fire elements will be dominant in 2014. And because it will be hot this year, water is expected to evaporate fast. It's effect could trigger strong weather disturbances. Another super typhoon is not far-fetched. Later, we should expect heavy rains and more floods,'' said Master Hanz.

Master Hanz Cua

Fire is one of the prevailing elements this year. With this, expect heated arguments, anger and ever war on the forefront. There will be tensions in the Middle East and Korea as well.
Master Hanz also foresee another disease of pandemic proportion that might hit the country sometime between April and September.

Sex scandals and love triangles will still heat up due to the appearance of the Peach Blossom Star. "Relationships will also be 'hot.' Many people will do everything for love,'' Master Hanz said. Yet the year 2014 will be a good year to get married. 

One of the good news in 2014 is that the Philippines will maintain good economic growth. It will rise in April, which he said, is a good month to invest in stocks.

Master Hanz said that the lucky businesses for 2014 include telecommunications which belong to the Metal Element and restaurants under the Fire Element. 

Sectors deemed lucky are Southwest, South, West and Center. Northeast, East and Southeast are unlucky. Lucky colors this year are red, orange, yellow, and green.

This year, the Yellow Misfortune Star sits on the Northwest. "Every year, those who practice Feng Shui always take note of the Yellow Misfortune Star because that's the area where misfortune will likely to hit,''Master Hanz said.

Last year, the Yellow Misfortune Star affected the center sector. "There were earthquakes and weather disturbances that hit the central part of the country.'' In 2011, the Misfortune Star hit the East sector where a tsunami devastated Japan, an Asian country located on the east.

But Master Hanz, who is also into face reading, Chinese astrology, and tarot and palm reading, said that these problems can be cured with correct practices and enhancers. "With correct charms and practices, the problem can be cured 90 percent. We still make our own destiny.''  
2014 is the Year of the Horse based on the 12-year animal cycle which appears on the Chinese zodiac sign. While the tradition originated from China, Filipinos have embraced the culture of Feng Shui for many years now. The Chinese New Year will be on January 31, 2014.

Master Hanz shares his reading and forecast at Level 1, EDSA Shangri-la Plaza Mandaluyong City or e-mail at Visit website or contact 0922-8290382. Follow him on Tweeter @ masterhanz168, Facebook and Instagram