Saturday, January 26, 2019

Annual Performance - sometimes this works, sometimes that works and sometimes nothing works


I felt bad, I don’t have often a down year in my paper securities portfolio. In 2008 I was down 20% or so. And 2018 was another bad year, including some dividends I was down 6.9%. Using market ETFs as the most objective  benchmarks, the TSX did a lot poorer: -8.8%; Canada’s largest 60 publicly traded companies (XIU) lost 9.2% worse than Europe that so many look down on (North American Chauvinism).
Europe was down 7.8%.  Thanks to the poor performance of the Canadian dollar, the S&P500 still made us Canucks 3.6%. So there you have it. If outperformance is a measure of success, than I should be happy but, really I am not. I haven’t entered yet the dividend and interest income for a large part of the year (close to 6 months) so my final annual performance is probably closer to negative 5.5%.

 12 month return
 2018
My Stocks & Bonds
-6.9%
TSX
-8.8%
TSX60
-9.2%
S&P500 in CAD
3.6%
MSCI Europe
-7.8%


This is not for bragging rights, it is more about justifying that I don’t entirely talk through the back of my neck when posting on this blog. I thought I owed my readers a bit of this information. 
I made money on gold (in CAD) and lost quite a bit in gold mining stocks (that is part of the -6.9%). This year's  real estate performance (not part of the paper security portfolio)  was kind of positive. Calgary residential and commercial real estate was down or broke even. This is a distorted picture though. Senior Housing did OK considering Notley's minimum wages; and Hospitality was good – Canmore is recovering (still from 2008!) and income was quite decent. My Mexican performance (I own a timeshare) was spectacular (according to the U.S. real estate agents that are calling me nearly weekly and the owners of the resort – I don’t know how true that all is). 
Then the profits on building my new residence are terrific but this is not in terms of cash flow. In fact, to costs of housing my business and my current place of living bear down severely on the cash flow.  Overall, my net worth increased just fine in 2018 while 2019 may promise to be quite good  – especially if we get a decent year in the stock markets – I certainly hope so. To be honest, many including myself are pretty sick of the prolonged oil patch downturn but… that is investing: sometimes this works, sometimes that works ,and sometimes nothing works.

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