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Wishes, wants and the hongbao handout in BT Weekend

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WITH every Budget comes a stack of wish lists from all corners of the economy. Given that a government's fiscal plan surely is not built by wish alone, what purpose do these serve? Brunch in The Business Times on Saturday takes a closer look at the wish list psyche, the recommendations that fall by the wayside, and why public needs and wants need an airing.

Our Raffles Conversation this weekend is with Patrick Odier, senior managing partner, Lombard Odier Group and chairman of Bank Lombard Odier & Co, on his plans for the Swiss bank that bears his family name.

In need of a roadmap to pick your way out of the current market craziness? This Time Is Different in our Investing section presents a blueprint to navigate every bear market. The Fool's Eye View dwells on why you should follow the banks as interest rates rise. CFA Singapore Insights, meanwhile, examines a case of how a company should move forward in the wake of a bribery scandal.

Does it feel like you're living a dog's life? Do we have a psychological bias to focus on the obstacles ahead of us instead of the privileges that we are benefiting from? Cubicle Files takes on gratitude and resentment in the workplace, and what we can do about it.

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Gratitude aside, our Saturday Soapbox columnist suggests that it's time the government rethink its hongbao handouts.

In Cult Status, a look at one of the more successful minimalist brands of our time, and why the Muji ethos works.

And in our Health page, a timely reminder of how over-indulging during the festive season causes digestive disturbances, and how to deal with them.

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