Too Little Time, Too Much to Tell

Let me give you a breather from all my Cebu City Map series and talk about something supposedly entertaining, until you watch it. I've seen "The Seeker: The Dark is Rising". No, don't ask me about where I saw the movie, this entry is not about that. This wouldn't be much of a spoiler also since I wouldn't be talking about the plot either. This would probably have to be my 2 cents on the movie in general.

I have not read the novel and neither have I heard of it prior to watching the movie, so my only source of information about its story was the movie itself. The story was fairly simple; nothing shown in the movie that got too complicated. But that was actually one failure they had. It showed nothing about the past of the groups' beginnings. It said that the boy was "the seventh son of a seventh son", so what? Did it mean that his father also had 6 big brothers? And then what? Or did it mean the generation to which the father belonged to? Why the coincidence to the rise of the dark side? How were the "Older Members" of the society chosen, where they the 6th son of a seventh son that they didn't qualify for the job? (Ok, I'm being corny! LOL!) Where the "Old Members" related to the boy's family and indeed they belonged to the same family tree? Or were the "Old Members" also seekers in their youth but their powers have now faded?

Darn, at the end of the story, you'd end up making your own storyline than be convinced of what was presented. And oh, I watched the movie because I don't have time reading the novel. Watching it was like entering the movie house at the middle of the show, you wouldn't know how it came to be other than the fact that the boy had the responsibility to save the world and he had powers, for some reason though, I did not see him using it during times of battle.

There clearly were numerous attempts of mellow-dramatic scenes, but it failed miserably. It was like the scenes were very much in a hurry to have itself done and move on to the next that it ended up being just a show of special effects rather than a story-teller. There have been movies which lasted for 3 hours or more yet it gained a lot of revenues. So budget constraints might have been the factor of cutting a movie that could have been great, but that was one movie very much in a hurry to be done and over with.

I felt terrible after watching the movie. Not that darkness failed to conquer the light, but darkness indeed conquered my imagination. I didn't know what to make up with it. I had lots of questions about the movie that now I'm trying to google the story just to feed my inquiries.

Cebu City Map to Business: Borderless Trading

The world has once again shrunk to a diameter-feet lesser and the CEBU CITY MAP magnified to the world. Paypal just introduced a new innovation by allowing its account owners trunsfer funds to local Philippine banks. What's more exciting about it is that a minimal fee of Php.50 pesos is charged for fund transfers lower than Php.7,000 while free if higher than the latter amount. (Heck, this could be a paid post and me earning! Where are you Blogvertiser! This is Blogvertiser stuff!)

Anyways, this news simply makes money-making online a lot more interesting. Aside from the fact that Blogvertiser makes this stuff a lot cooler. Prior to this, cashing up one's paypal funds ended up with only two easy options, one was opening an account from a specified bank or having it applied to one's visa card. This feature not only opens e-commerce at a personal "blog advertising" driven trading but further gives e-commerce entrepreneurs a wider option to sell to the world. This opportunity creates a borderless CEBU CITY MAP business, or rightly - a MAPLESS CEBU CITY.

Cebu City Map to Business: A Team Effort to Improve

I personally know only two cebuano blog authors so far, the rest - I know them to be either found on a CEBU CITY MAP or cebuano but outside the country through blogging. If I would look at the CEBU CITY MAP, it is undoubtedly a very small place where I can travel anywhere within CEBU CITY from one point to another at no more than 45 minutes, street traffic being normal. It is thus quite surprising how small CEBU CITY is yet not once have there been a meet of cebuano blog owners that I have heard of. Well, at least not one which there have been a public announcement of such.

Blogging, as an organized group interest has not yet been given much attention to put the CEBU CITY MAP on the blogging community. My personal opinion on this is that though people, even cebuanos want to connect with other people online but blogging for a lot of them is simply just that, a personal web log. That being personal, writing an entry therefore require not much of inter-action with other people and not even fellow blog enthusiasts. As a medium of self-expression, a cebuano or blog author in general simply has one consideration in writing a piece and that is himself.

However, I do believe that just like any hobby or passion that has inter-action, a group interest activity may further enhance not just the writer but also the activity itself. CEBU blogging might have a stronger impact to CEBU CITY if this would be geared to an effort on which goal a group directs on. Someone to take the lead may just be what the group needs to draw a blogging CEBU CITY MAP.

CEBU CITY MAP to Business: Vogue Cebu, vogue!

I attended a forum related to Philippine economy and an emphasis on Cebu City Map to business scenario last week, where one of the speakers talked about finding the innate ability of an individual. By knowing a person's innate strength, that innate capability will be the person's investment to whatever venture he/she gets into. In as much as a businessman knows his market, that businessman must also know himself to drive whatever passion he has for business.

There are a few things I am passionate about which I think I could contribute Online to Cebu City Map to business. I am very much fond of technology, perhaps because I find it as another medium of artistic expression. Take for example digital photography where even inanimate objects are brought to life. I have seen a few pages of the coffee table book entitled "Cebu - Pride of Place" and I find it beautiful. It shows Cebu's richness in culture and diversity yet perfectly intertwined.

I have been yearning to study photography for quite a long time now and this year may just be the time to start it. With the occasional travel that I do through work, this hobby could be a great mixture. This could already be it, I can feel the shutter in my fingers ever more closely than before. So Cebu, prepare for the poses as I may be nearing you. Who knows, I might just be contributing to Cebu City Map to business and it’s Online presence.

Numbers in Action

I am a geek, in a way I think. No, its not because I was suddenly inspired by Bill Gates' latest $19.9M donation to IRRI, nor was I all of a sudden an adoring fan of Steve Jobs. I just surmised that I may be a geek after all.

If I would have been a lot younger, being tagged as a geek would instantly mean social death especially if I were either an elementary or high school student. I remembered watching "Pirates of Silicon Valley" which supposedly was a story about how Bill Gates and his team started what is now known as Microsoft. But then again, that is "Silicon Valley" and I was in Cebu City which meant that geeks were simply that, social outcasts of the majority.

I love accounting and a lot of people could attest that I love the profession I am into. Having said that fact though, I just feel that accounting indeed is a bit geeky. There is simply nothing melodramatic that goes on while doing it. I think that it is actually a reason why there have been no movie or television series even in the United States that depicts a life of a CPA. How could an unbalanced trial balance put the world's fate in peril? LOL! It even gets more geeky when accountants already discuss about accounting laws.

But beyond all that, I simply love the profession. It could be way far-off that CSI stuffs but the adventures of an unbalanced worksheet just appeals fun to me. The sense of satisfaction that I get from delivering a financial statement report is just right for me.


I enjoy reading a lot, that was the inspiration of this blog, which I have also manifested on my second post. My day online starts by visiting CEBU’s community dailies to update myself of things that keeps my city busy. I have set-up my web browser’s favorites by grouping the ONLINE NEWS sites together so I would merely have to click on the link one after the other. Simultaneous with opening the news, I open a separate tab for my CUBICLED PLAYGROUND, of course. It for me is also news of how the site has been visited while I was off-line. Those of course are also simultaneously browsed while waiting for the emails that have waited for my local inbox to be opened from yesterday’s closure of the LAPTOP. CEBUANO multi-tasking at its best, LOL!

After those extras done, I then start my feed readings. I feel that I could be more updated, of what other bloggers who I have linked with have written, easier by subscribing feeds on their blogsite. Those who have frequently visited my site as to extend their regards may feel that I may seem snobbish of not visiting their sites in return but believe me when I say that I am well aware of what you guys have written. From time to time even, when I feel that I have some thoughts on the things fellow bloggers have published, I comment on those. I feel that with this activity, I have reached the far corners of the world yet still be in my beloved CEBU CITY, right down from MY CUBICLE.

I don’t often do blog hopping but I love the idea of it. It somehow tells me how small the world is and how easily I could travel the world yet be just right in the middle of CEBU. I believe that more important than such an activity is to update on the news of fellow bloggers by subscribing feeds. I am perhaps an easy loyalist. I am loyal to CEBU and I am fascinated by my linked bloggers.

CEBU’s Photo Perfect

CEBU has a lot to offer to artists which I think is the reason why I have been captivated by art more. If some call themselves frustrated singers, frustrated basketball players, then I could call myself a frustrated artist. What captivates me with artistry is not only the sense of freedom that it gives but beyond it is ability to convey itself a message through a medium other than words.

I have some friends in the Information Technology industry, some in Advertising and some in Marketing. The innate perks I see on their job is that it allows them to be an artist. My friends in the who are into website development clearly is able to exhibit art in the designs they deliver to clients, so do also with those in Advertising and Marketing.

ACCOUNTING is rather more science than art. Perhaps the interpretation of certain transactions gives one a sense of independence as to its treatment, but bottom-line is that accounting laws be foremost considered. More than ever, ACCOUNTING policy making and interpretation have been ever more stringent following corporate collapse of mammoth business organizations in the past few years. It has even anchored more of itself on its conservative nature though have been responsive to the present demands of business, even in the local CEBU arena.

These I believe is what has driven me to blogging. Perhaps, my eccentricities have long been tamed enough that it looks for ways to manifest itself. In as much I love and enjoy the cubicle adventures of a corporate warrior, the artistic adventurer also wants a piece of my identity. I have for so long been at awe of visual art, specifically photography, in its ability to give objects a chance to project itself beyond what it is. These are the sides of my personality coin, I suppose and CEBU’s treat of sceneries and culture is just waiting for me to take the plunge.

The ISLANDS that Divide us Draws us CLOSER, from Cebu to the World

No man is an ISLAND. Even the PHILIPPINES, looked for companionship the it decided to gather a bunch of it's friends and called itself the PHILIPPINE archipelago. Being a TROPICAL COUNTRY, we are blessed with lots of exotic BEACHES, some of which distinctly it's own that nowhere else in the world exists. Our ISLANDS prides itself with lavish VACATION BEACH RESORTS and DIVE SPOTS, yet still be within reach to CITY life amenities, which CEBU CITY is very much known for. These places are even more memorable because of loved-ones and friends that we share with.

Francine, who used to enjoy the beautiful BEACHES during her childhood in the PHILIPPINES, who I think is also a CEBUANO, gave me this tag. Nice to have such wonderful friends from CEBU to the rest of the world.

After serious and cautious consideration…your contract of friendship has been renewed for the New Year 2008! It was a very hard decision to make. So try not to screw it up!!!My Wish for You in 2008;
May peace break into your house and may thieves come to steal your debts. May the pockets of your jeans become a magnet of $100 bills. May love stick to your face like Vaseline and may laughter assault your lips!

May your clothes smell of success like smoking tires! May happiness slap you across the face and may your tears be that of joy. May the problems you had forget your home address! In simple words …May 2008 be the best year of your
And yes Francine, from MY CUBICLE, CEBU CITY, I send you my warmest regards!

From Cebu and Beyond

One of the great things about blogging is that you gain friends from here to the other side of the world. Beng (who's somewhere in the US) shared with me this tag. Cut and paste the following starting here. I have randomly selected 5 of you below to be tagged and I hope that you will similarly publish this post in your blog. You will have to tag 5 other bloggers and just keep adding on to the list. (Do not replace, just keep on adding! Yes we hope it will be a long list!)It’s real easy! Tag others and see your Technorati Authority increase exponentially! The benefits of Viral Linking:- One of the fastest ways to see your technorati authority explode!- Increase your Google PageRank fast- Attract large volume of new traffic to your site- Build your community- Make new friends!

The Strategist Notebook
Link Addiction Ardour of the Heart
When Life Becomes a Book
Malaysian Life
What goes under the sun
Roshidan’s Cyber Station
Sasha says
Arts of Physics
the legend lives
My View, My Life
A Simple Life
Juliana RW
The Callalily Space
PetraSummer in Blue
My DanceFloor
Wandering Thoughts
Bits and Pieces
A Journey to Life

One distinct trait of Filipinos is that wherever we may be in the world, we always feel a sense of Home when we know that a kababayan is part of our circle. It simply makes us feel delighted that we still have contact to our birthplace. I'm tagging my filipino blogging contacts located outside of the Philippines on this, LOL!

Cebu Sinulog, Me and this Cubicle

My last post was last Friday prior to the Sinulog 2008 weekend. My Sinulog was different this time though as there were things I was able to do last year that I wasn't able to do now, but that was most probably because of the scattered rains during Saturday and Sunday. Nevertheless, I was able to do the things I thought I should join in, and not only me but the relatives as well. In fact, my nieces were able to have their photos taken together with my uncle who joined the San Diego Dance Group contingent (as he always does and most definitely on Sinulog 2009 and so on).

I purposely didn't post an entry last Monday and Tuesday because I simply got burned-out with all those SEO experimenting that I did last week. I didn’t also want to post an entry when I just felt that I have nothing to talk about, I just felt burned-out and felt a loss of topics to write about. I realized that beyond all the SEO maximization that I do on this blog, I should have written more, and I should write more. My goal for this blog is to post relevant topics and enriching topics not only personally but of my profession, but aiming for that simply burns me out.

Interestingly, there are key words that I think I should focus more on, not only of the wars of Abs-Cbn and Gma as I miserably failed on that experiment. As I believe I am already way out of the Valentine's day gift ideas and Valentine's day surprises SEO maximization that I fell I would rather leave the same to those who's good at the topic. My topic on financial ratio analyses are still getting hits from time to time especially on my "Show Me the Money" posts or "Making Cows turn to Cash". At least these gives me the stamina to continue on this thriving blog and focus on what I have always planned for it since.

Though this is clearly niching but this might just have to be case of Cubicled Playground. I may as well have to focus on being a work related blog or business blog as this is what I feel I could be good at anyways. As boring as it may sound, seem or really is, that that may simply have to be Cubicled Playground - Business Blog niche. Oh, perhaps until such time I realize my project on getting my hands on those DSLR cameras.

Of Teleseries and Reality

It's not that I am a die-hard fan of whichever of the two GIANT TV NETWORKS at war. I just happen to be a buff of horror movies, and wherever there is one showing, I will try my best to watch it even if that means following a TELESERIES. I am talking about the television series "Patayin sa Sindak si Barbara". It's shown in Abs-Cbn while Gma shows Kamandag during that time-slot.

I have mentioned in a separate post that during the Sinulog week, my relatives on my mother's side usually hold the annual clan reunion as this is also the time when most of our relatives from abroad comes home to Cebu. Yesterday, my Lola's sister and Uncle arrived from Chicago. They said SINULOG is on full swing IN CEBU as they themselves were greeted with SINULOG dancers upon arriving at the Mactan International Airport. They were actually on one of the balikbayan trips scheduled to arrive on that day.

As customary for my clan, we welcome the arriving relatives in throngs at that airport. Among those who even fetched my Grand Aunt and Uncle were my nephews and nieces. Lucky for them - my nieces and nephews, I mean, they were the first ones to receive news of their pasalubongs.

Lola: Girls, I have a surprise for you!
Nieces: Yehey! What is it Mommy?!
Lola: I brought you baby dolls!
Nephew: Hala! Patayin sa Sindak si Barbara!

My nieces though were happy that they'd have something in store for them when they arrive home, were already frightened of the thought already.

As expected, it took the whole family the entire afternoon to convince my nieces that the dolls were beautiful and far from what they saw in television. The nieces were so afraid upon seeing the dolls that they cried when they saw it.

It's freaking similar, looked really like the one used in the show!

Sinulog in Cebu Tag!

Francine tagged me on this. This could be a breather from my post experiments and my UPDATES FROM CEBU about SINULOG. (hehehe, still managed to put in something from my experiment after all).

How long have you been blogging?
I started about June last year with the same title but used the wordpress platform. My Cubicled neighbor Novz showed me some of the cool stuffs he was able to do with his blogger site so I shifted to that sometime November.

What inspired you to write a blog, and who are your mentors?
I find it easier to give out talks rather than write that I think is why I went into blogging to develop more my writing skills. I was more enticed on the programming/HTML aspect of blogging rather than blogging itself that I joined the bandwagon but I know I was way too late than the rest of the blogging world. I started out with blogging from a lot of inputs from my good friends the Magnificent Perez and Novz and by reading about blog develop from everywhere else.

What are the 3 things that you love about being online?

1. the tons of information the helps me both personally and professionally.

2. the interaction with readers who from time to time comment on my posts.

3. the sense of ownership that I feel of whatever appears on my blog.

What are the three things that you struggle with in the online-world?

I honestly don't feel any struggle with blogging or being on-line. I always find myself on the learning end with the new stuffs I learn from other bloggers or from the news, which is simply superb. I guess being in front of a computer at least eight hours a day, blogging becomes a welcome refreshment from the routines of a CUBICLED setting.

Would Pinay $candal make it to the top?

I am going off-topic (again!) today by continuing a little experiment I have started out yesterday, which touches on SEOs. This SEO game, blogging has become so much more interesting. I am so far from being a learned though, as I am yet a toddler in this arena. But of course, I shall get over this I know, as with any experiments - there will be it's conclusion.

And importantly, I try to hold up my forte for Cubicled Playground (IN MY CUBICLE), as this is what I truly know much of and LOVE. Speaking of LOVE, in barely a month from now, it will already be VALENTINES DAY. But that is so far yet, I've got SINULOG in CEBU to celebrate this Saturday and Sunday. My vacation leave form is even ready IN MY CUBICLE.

But before I go any further, let me talk again about BUSINESS. It is important for businesses to have maximum exposure. There are a number of ways to give your company/ies maximum exposure. A CORPORATE BLOG may be of use to showcase your company's products or services. In a way, I think sponsored posts is a medium of CORPORATE BLOGGING, where such names of COMPANIES appear as either a part of the post's content or an acknowledge sponsor of such content. More directly, it offers the reader a link to the BUSINESS' website. CORPORATE BLOGGING though may be more directed and exact on the points it delivers, as product names and its specifics are clearly identified and explained.

Internet, since been public in the start of 1980s have really evolved from a mere network of dedicated information sharers to now a wide world of surprises. Television, with the likes of ABS-CBN or GMA, don't anymore have the monopoly of international advertising. BLOGGING with the CORPORATE nature have made the world of BUSINESSES.

The good thing about this experiment is that it gives me the excuse of being incoherent in my writing.


The NETWORK WARS have arrived on blogosphere. Not that bloggers have taken the stand on which side of the fence they are, whether they are for GMA 7 or ABS-CBN 2, but rather have banked on the SEO powers of those TELEVISION NETWORKS' searchability. My good friend Novz, have from the beginning seen the potential of creating traffic from the ABS-CBN vs. GMA, he now is reaping the rewards. I just hope that this competition between the two NETWORK GIANTS, which have not turned a bit sour due to the AGB NEILSEN SURVEY issue, would not cross-over to their home talents - STAR CIRLCE and TALENT CENTER (which now hosts quite a lot of good and promising young actors and actresses of the new generation by the likes of Piolo Pascual, Angel Locsin, Claudine Barreto, John Lloyd Cruz, Bea Alonzo, Richard Gutierrez, Izza Calzado, Dingdong Dantes, Marian Rivera and Dennis Trillo). These issues clearly overshadows PINAY SCANDALS down the SEO arena.

PAGE RANKING have made a buzz lately. A lot of blogsites have either been given a higher PAGE RANK from a PAGE RANK of 1 or from a none existent PAGE RANK prior to the updating. Interestingly, there are also those who have not received a PAGE RANK or ZERO PAGE RANK due to the still imposed penaly by google. As for me, a high PAGE RANK would be great but as long as VISITORS and READERS drop by MY CUBICLE every now and then, my CUBICLED PLAYGROUND would be happy.

I hope ABS-CBN and GMA airs Sinulog

Having been almost at almost the same age as the Sinulog festival itself, I could fairly call myself well-informed of the activity. I remember even the days when I had to sit over my father’s shoulders just to watch the parade pass by us. I have even been a participant at one-time during my elementary, of the grand parade being a part of the "Landonian Tribe" contingent. I've experienced how it was to wear an elaborate costume and at the same time dance the Sinulog beat under the scourging heat of the sun for almost about 10 hours. Interestingly, I remember not ever feeling tired even from the weeks of evening practices up to the grand parade itself.

My mother's side of the family is very active of the Sinulog. My uncles, being kababata to the owners of the renowned San Diego Dance Company made us, which of course include my uncles, me and my cousins, be part of a number of Sinulog parades. Sinulog fiesta is usually the time where we hold our family reunion on my mother's side, since Cebu is really my maternal ancestry is rooted.

Here's my survival list for those who which to join all the activities for the Sinulog starting Saturday up to Sunday.

1 - Prayer First
The grand parade happens to be a Sunday so better fulfill your obligation first before the merry making. It would even be better that you attend a mass at the Basilica if you're up to the challenge of haggling amongst the sea of people who attends the masses during that day.

2 - Use Coin Purse
Rather than using your usual wallets, I suggest you use a coin purse just big enough to carry some cash and an Identification Card. The streets will be overflowing with people and you'll be literally face-to-face with a lot strangers so you would rather put your mind on the merry making rather the worrying of pick pockets. Using a coin purse will give you the convenience of tucking it in the front pockets of your pants where it will be safe from strange hands.

3 - A scarf or a sarong would be handy
A sun screen would only last you for at most four hours so it would help if you bring with you a scarf or a sarong to protect you from the sun. Bringing a bottle of sun screen simply takes away the adventures for the day.

4 - Keep dehydrated
That wouldn't be much of a problem as there are plenty of sources for that. Every corner you look, there is most usually bottled waters for sale.

5 - A good pair of shoes
Forget those fancy sandals or expensive high heels. Though you wouldn't be going on a mountain climbing, but your feet will fighting for walking and standing space every now and then during that day so better be equipped with that.
My uncle will be arriving tomorrow together with my lola from abroad, so that simply means that reunion activities kick off.

Running down my veins

I have mentioned on a prior post that I have been married for two years already. I likewise have indicated that I have a 1-year old son. My father is of Chinese descent. In fact, my grandfather, Angkong, came to the Philippines via small boats which were the only mode of transportation if one came from China. So that makes me the third generation Chinese immigrant in our family tree.

But my family has long been Filipinos, both on paper and in lifestyle. My grandfather having been married to a Filipina, have long lived and adopted the Filipino way of life. Though from time to time we call each other by the Chinese way of calling a family member as a sign of respect such as Angkong for grandfather, Anya (eldest son), Atche (eldest daughter), Sho-te (youngest brother) and many others, we have so little of the Chinese tradition left in our family. Our family does not anymore practice the use of Chinese speaking in the household, which is still very common in a lot of Filipino-Chinese families. I don't even speak Chinese anymore, not only because of choice but because I don’t know anymore.

Though I was able to attend Chinese school in kindergarten, which my mom told me that I did quite well at speaking and writing Chinese, but that was all it. I don't anymore have Chinese words remembered, except counting down from 1 up to 10. Being 25% Chinese, there are only three words I will never ever forget as this identifies me of my paternal ancestry. These three words are the only left that I know by heart and could even write them down in Chinese characters - and these refers to my Chinese name. Even with the limited Chinese that I know of, I even know the meaning and the rationale behind it.

And now that I am a father myself, I plan to continue the tradition of giving a Chinese name to my son. By upholding this tradition, at least I would have maintained some semblance to our Chinese ancestry.

Business will soon be as easy as ABC

As a person with a career in finance, there are instances that friends ask me on opinions which would relate to their finance needs. One common question that I get from friends which would relate to finance or finance statutory compliance, especially now that it is January, is with regards to Business Permits.

I was able to attend a convention mid-2007 which mentioned about Cebu City’s Business Permits processing steps faster. The topic was handled by the government agency’s head, who incidentally was also a member of the professional organization which I belonged to. By that time then, the presentation focused more on the initial steps being undertaken by the Department of Trade and Industry Region VII, which is located here in Cebu City, to hasten the processing of regulatory requirements in opening a business.

Today I came across an article updating what I have learned of the said endeavor. Let me take you to it:

This project is spearheaded by the Department of Trade and Industry’s National Economic Research and Business Assistance Center in Region 7 (NERBAC). The focus of this department is to streamline business permitting and licensing process to aid new entrepreneurs in complying with government requirements, which is envisioning a one-stop shop for this processing.

Providing a one-stop-shop for business registration (sole proprietorships), permitting and licensing, the department has housed the four mandatory agencies: Social Security System, Bureau of Internal Revenue, Phil Health, and Pag- IBIG under one roof plus the addition of Cebu City government representatives to make processing and procurement of business permit a step easier and more convenient. With this, new applicants for business permits and licenses are spared from the usual tedious process of going from one office to another.

The process that will be undertaken by new registrants would involve registering business names with DTI, registering with the four mandatory agencies and securing a business tax payment certificate that will be needed to later on acquire a Mayor’s permit after certain requirements are complied within 60 days. On this scenario, an applicant can process his application in one day on those five government offices.

This definitely is a clear sign of the government’s desire for entrepreneurs to be globally competitive by reduced cost and less bureaucracy. This is a very welcome news for the City’s business community as this steps are usually the most time consuming process that an a new business undertakes. Further, this will encourage regulatory compliance to even those micro-sized businesses that will in effect benefit the country through its tax and licenses payments. Resorting to fixers to process this mandatory requirement will definitely minimized, if not totally eradicated as this would show entrepreneurs that working out the requirement themselves is not that difficult.

My two thumbs up on this innovative idea!

Updates from the Queen City of the South, Philippines

It is good to note that Cebu City is once again noticed for it's potential for being a Business Hub in Asia, as it ranked eighth of the Top 10 Asian Cities of the Future, in a list by the Finance Direct Investment (FDI) magazine of the Financial Times Group. Cebu City also ranked fourth in the list of 10 most cost-effective cities, seventh in the best quality of life category and second in development and promotion, next only to Singapore. To read more on the story, the link is here.

Preparations for the Sinulog grand parade on Jan. 20 are in place with around 13,000 police officers and deputized volunteers to secure the festivity. As of the last count, there are already 24 contingents which have registered for the grand parade, and a few more expected to sign up in the coming days. It is also final that the inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC), who became famous via YouTube on their "Thriller" dance performance, will not be able to join the Sinulog grand parade citing security reasons by the Cebu City Mayor. Tomorrow, Saturday, and on Sunday will be held the Sinulog sa Kabataan sa Lalawigan and Sinulog sa Kabataan sa Dakbayan, respectively. A parade will kick-off at 1pm on both days from Capitol Site going to the Cebu City Sports Center, upon which the presentations of the various contingents will be held. This would be composed of school children, competing in two categories - the elementary and secondary level categories.

In my cubicle: Exemptions on travel taxes for exporters

I’ve read through the website of the Office of the President of the Philippines about travel tax exemptions for exporters, which was signed into law last December 2006. Executive Order (EO) No. 589 exempts exporters joining international trade fairs, exhibitions, selling missions, among others, from paying the travel tax." Exporters will be able to earn savings from the supposed taxes paid during travel through this new law.
The travel tax exemptions cover the following:
  • Participation in outbound or offshore business matching and selling missions organized or duly endorsed by the Bureau of Export Trade Promotion (BETP) of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI);
  • Attendance in international trade fairs and exhibitions organized or duly endorsed by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) of the DTI, the EDC, or the accredited umbrella organization of exporters;
  • Participation as official members of the Philippine delegation to trade negotiations and international conferences duly endorsed by the Bureau of International Trade Relations (BITR) of the DTI;
  • Participation of agents or office representatives of buyers in promotion and marketing activities of Philippine export products in the international market;* Attendance in seminars pertaining to technology, productivity, and competitiveness enhancement duly endorsed by DTI; and
  • Participation in international conferences relevant to international tradeduly endorsed by the DTI.

Under EO 589, requests for travel tax exemption, which shall not exceed P20 million annually, must be endorsed by the Export Development Council (EDC) upon the recommendation of the BETP, CITEM, or the EDC-accredited umbrella organization of exporters.

This move is definitely a welcome help from the government especially on the export industry which is currently adjusting to the strengthening of the Philippine peso. Cebu City most especially is cheerful of this advantage where a lot of furniture exporters are located.

All the President's Men

Internet headlines are buzzing about the Iowa caucus as primary elections in the US go into full swing. This is one of the many steps that the United States goes through in the process of selecting its 44th President. Here are the bets from both parties:


  1. Joe Biden
  2. Hillary Rodham Clinton
  3. Chris Dodd
  4. John Edwards
  5. Mike Gravel
  6. Dennis Kucinich
  7. Barack Obama
  8. Bill Richardson


  1. Rudy Giuliani
  2. Mike Huckabee
  3. Duncan Hunter
  4. Alan Keyes
  5. John McCain
  6. Ron Paul
  7. Mitt Romney
  8. Fred Thompson
All eyes are now in Iowa's caucus as both parties' candidates will be voted on. Already, there are candidates pulling out of the race. Updates of which are found here.

Updating Cebu City

With cellular phones still part of the must haves that every Filipino wishes for, undoubtedly we still are the texting capital of the world. We don't use cellular phones mainly for calls, but we mostly use it for short messaging service (sms) or most popularly known in the Philippines as text messaging. Here is an article from Sunstar Daily on the still text-crazed Filipinos and why the Philippines is still the texting capital of the world.

New Year's celebration is actually just the start of grand festivities for Cebu as this still continues until the third week of January for the Sinulog celebration. This festival complementarily infuses religious and civic activities in one grand celebration which formally starts at about the first day of the Novena mass for the Senor Sto. Nino (Baby Jesus) up to the day of the street parade which we call as the Sinulog.

One controversial move that's making headlines also the past few days is the request of the Provincial Government to have the provincial jail inmates join, at least, on the Sinulog dance showcase as guest presentors. As you may have read or perhaps seen over the net, these Cebu Provincial Jail Inmates made record by dancing Michael Jackson's Thriller and showed it via YouTube (But that’s nothing compared to an appeal on Britney Spears’ Fan on YouTube). They even made it to Time Magazine's list of top videos for 2007, or something sounding-like-that award. For anyone privy to Cebu politics, the governor and the city mayor aren't the best of friends, so I'd leave the math to you.

And talking about that celebration, it's such a boo-hoo that I haven't been able to get that dreamed and dreamt DSLR Camera yet so I think I'd have to pass on my good friend's invitation, the Magnificient Perez and his cousins, on joining the photoshot contest during the Sinulog. That would have been a blast.

Another interesting item today is Cebu's know newscaster and journalist Leo Lastimosa, arrested on the count of Libel. It came from a case filed by the Governer of Cebu Province against the said newsman. Here's the rest of the story from The Freeman Newspaper.

Show Me the Money

The ability of a company to generate revenue and profits is fundamental for both the going concern perspective of the company as well as the returns to shareholders. It is these ratios that can give insight into the ability of the company to earn profits. These ratios give users a good understanding of how well the company utilized its resources in generating profit and shareholder value.

In the income statement, there are four basic ratios - gross profit, operating profit, pretax profit and net profit. The term "margin" can apply to the absolute number for a given profit level and/or the number as a percentage of net sales/revenues. Profit margin analysis uses the percentage calculation to provide a comprehensive measure of a company's profitability on a historical basis (3-5 years) and in comparison to peer companies and industry benchmarks. Basically, it is the amount of profit (at the gross, operating, pretax or net income level) generated by the company as a percent of the sales generated. The objective of margin analysis is to detect consistency or positive/negative trends in a company's earnings. Positive profit margin analysis translates into positive investment quality.

  1. Gross Profit Margin = Gross Profit divided by Net Sales/Revenue
  2. Operating Profit Margin = Operating Profit divided by NetSales/Revenue
  3. Pretax Profit Margin = Pretax Profit divided by Net Sales/Revenue
  4. Net Profit Margin = Net Income divided by Net Sales/Revenue

First, a few remarks about the mechanics of these ratios are in order. When it comes to finding the relevant numbers for margin analysis, the terms: "income", "profits" and "earnings" are used interchangeably in financial reporting. Also, the account captions for the various profit levels can vary, but generally are self-evident no matter what terminology is used.

Second, income statements in the multi-step format clearly identify the four profit levels. However, with the single-step format the financial statement users must calculate the gross profit and operating profit margin numbers.

To obtain the gross profit amount, simply subtract the cost of sales (cost of goods sold) from net sales/revenues. The operating profit amount is obtained by subtracting the sum of the company's operating expenses from the gross profit amount. Generally, operating expenses would include such account captions as selling, marketing and administrative, depreciation and amortization.

Third, FS users need to understand that the absolute numbers in the income statement don't tell us very much, which is why we must look to margin analysis to discern a company's true profitability. These ratios help us to keep score, as measured over time, of management's ability to manage costs and expenses and generate profits. The success, or lack thereof, of this important management function is what determines a company's profitability. A large growth in sales will do little for a company's earnings if costs and expenses grow disproportionately.

Let's look at each of the profit margin ratios individually:

Gross Profit Margin - A company's cost of sales, or cost of goods sold, represents the expense related to labor, raw materials and manufacturing overhead involved in its production process. This expense is deducted from the company's net sales/revenue, which results in a company's first level of profit, or gross profit. The gross profit margin is used to analyze how efficiently a company is using its raw materials, labor and manufacturing-related fixed assets to generate profits. A higher margin percentage is a favorable profit indicator.

Industry characteristics of raw material costs, particularly as these relate to the stability or lack thereof, have a major effect on a company's gross margin. Generally, management cannot exercise complete control over such costs. Companies without a production process (ex., retailers and service businesses) don't have a cost of sales exactly. In these instances, the expense is recorded as a "cost of merchandise" and a "cost of services", respectively. With this type of company, the gross profit margin does not carry the same weight as a producer-type company.

Operating Profit Margin - By subtracting selling, general and administrative (SG&A), or operating, expenses from a company's gross profit number, we get operating income. Management has much more control over operating expenses than its cost of sales outlays. Thus, users need to scrutinize the operating profit margin carefully. Positive and negative trends in this ratio are, for the most part, directly attributable to management decisions.

Pretax Profit Margin - Again many investment analysts prefer to use a pretax income number for reasons similar to those mentioned for operating income. In this case a company has access to a variety of tax-management techniques, which allow it to manipulate the timing and magnitude of its taxable income.

Net Profit Margin - Often referred to simply as a company's profit margin, the so-called bottom line is the most often mentioned when discussing a company's profitability. While undeniably an important number, investors can easily see from a complete profit margin analysis that there are several income and expense operating elements in an income statement that determine a net profit margin. It behooves investors to take a comprehensive look at a company's profit margins on a systematic basis.

Up with 2008 and Money from the Government on the 15th

This is my first post for the year and what a great way to start this with some reminders to my cubicle friends. I suppose our cubicle partners have already registered their books of accounts for the calendar year 2008 and that wouldn't be a concern anymore. So, what activities will keep us busy the coming days will the following:

First, is the renewal of the corporate taxpayer's annual registration which is at 500 pesos. Deadline would be on the 31st of January but that wouldn't actually have to wait until the end of the month. Simply filling up the form (0605) does it. The data to reflect on the form is found in the taxpayer's 2303 or Certificate of Registration, so that shouldn't be much of a bother. Better have this paid now, especially if you're doing manual payment since the queues are really long especially when the deadline's fast approaching.

Second, would have to be the renewal of business permits. This is probably one of the hideous yet simple activities every business establishment goes through every start of the year. I say hideous because of too much red tape for what has been an annual regulatory payment to the establishment's Local Government Unit (LGU) where the Corporation is holding business. This would actually have been simple if LGUs would have maximized computer technology in the implementation of this collection activity but then again, that would have to wait. So I suggest this be right away taken cared off, better yet, assigned to a person to handle this matter. If your company has a Licensing Compliance Department that wouldn't be much of a problem, but if you're company's finance department handles this too, better have this started already as this takes like eternity to finish.

Third would be a compliance requirement of the BIR, our country's taxation agency, which is the Employees Alphabetical Listing. If employees wonder why they need not to file their own income taxes every year, it is because of this - Substituted Filling. What the company does is to report to the government all compensation paid to its employees, including the government deductions made. With that, the employees' taxes are also computed and matched against the taxes withheld by the company for the entire 2007. If withheld taxes, that which is deducted on the employee's pay every payday as advance payment for taxes due to government, shall be refunded or if lesser, will also be accordingly collected from the employee. It would be good to note though that for those which has refundable taxes or excess withheld taxes, that employee will be receiving the excess amount no latter than January 15th, as mandated by the government. So if you know how to compute your tax due for 2007, compare it with the withheld amount collected from you last year and if it's more than what your tax due is, then expect some unexpected blessings on or before this 15th.

Fourth would be the filing of inventory lists of companies as of December 31, 2007. This is to be done by the company's finance department so that should also be planned out already this early. Deadline for the submission of the list to the BIR would also be on the 31st of this month.

That will definitely keep our cubicled finance or accounting warriors busy for the coming days. Anyways at least, we were able to have that much needed rest and relaxation before we head back to our cubicled playgrounds.