2018 Performance Scorecard

2018

With only 1 trading day remaining in 2018, its time to review how 2018 went for me.

Career

2018 has been a busy and transitional year for me. My company went through a restructuring exercise which resulted in my team in Singapore going down from 2 to 1 (Yup I’m the only person in my global team based here LOL) so I had to try to pick up the slack where ever I can. I shared my views on corporate restructuring here if you want to know more.

I had my crazy 7 weeks 7 cities work travel recently so that’s another one for the list of memories I’ll carry with me. I shared part 1 of my insights from my work travel here and will get to part 2 next year.

One plus side I feel was that I’m more bonded with my other colleagues both locally and overseas as I have more airtime and more opportunity to show my abilities to them. This also resulted in simple collaborative work that I wouldn’t have imagined doing in 2017. Slowing building bridges with my limited time in the office.

Investments

As previously mentioned, it was a tough year for me as I transitioned from a growth at all cost strategy to a hybrid income strategy. While it has not been an absolute nightmare performance as I avoided most of the horror shows (OUE Commercial Trust, Keppel KBS REIT (which incidentally looks really interesting now) and Asia Pay TV Trust to name a few), you never feel good when you make losses for the year.

Going forward I’ll be relying heavily on my StocksCafe figures instead of my own calculations as previously in 2017.

Let’s kick things off with a portfolio review.

Portfolio

PortfolioPortfolio GraphAnnual Portfolio Value

There were no transactions this month, other than scrip dividend for AA REIT, which I opted for due to the relatively attractive offer price. I took 100 units and the remaining dividend in cash so that I can avoid holding odd lots.

December was a particularly difficult month as the Santa rally did not materialise due to China economy worries, the Fed raising rates yet again while striking a more cautionary tone and of course, the US Government shutdown. As long as Trump keeps acting stupidly, Government shutdown is something we’re going to have to keep dealing with.

2018 Dividends

  • 2018 Dividends collected: $4,377.71
  • 2017 Dividends collected: $1,136.42
  • Upcoming Dividends:
    • SingTel: SGD 489.60 (XD)
    • Frasers Property: SGD 186 (CD)

Dividends has significantly increased y-o-y due to a more income focused approach.

XIRR and Time Weighted Returns

After clawing back to almost even in November, the broader market correction in December ultimately determined my investment performance for the year. XIRR moderates to 12.24% over 5.5 years (2013 figures are only for 4 months).

Conclusion

Overall, it was a disappointing but satisfactory year. Not too many highlights but I’m glad to complete the year unscathed in my career and outperforming the STI and S&P 500 in my investments. It could have been way way wayyy worst.

That’s it from me. Good riddance 2018 and Hello 2019! Happy New Year everyone!

Happy Hunting,
KK

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2017 Performance Scorecard

2017

It’s Christmas eve, so tis’ the season to be reflective? 🙂 As this is my first annual review on this blog, this is going to be a long post, so grab an iced tea and sit tight.

Career

2017 has been a significant year of change for me, having to adapt to a new work environment, new job and hit with restructuring within the company. It’s been a hell of a ride and I would say 2017 was the year I grew the most professionally since joining the workforce.

Looking to 2018, hopefully I get a positive resolution to the restructuring, or else I’ll be back in the job hunt.

Investments

On the investment front, only 1 word can describe my year’s performance.

Awesome

This year was my best annual return yet, owing much to the improving US earnings, tax reform speculation and some stock speculation turning out swimmingly. Although I’ve sat out the cryptocurrency mania and probably missed out on easily doubling, tripling or even quintupling my money, I’m happy with my overall performance and will be looking to replicate it next year.

Milestones

If you have been following my blog, you will know that I achieved a 6 digit portfolio in September – October after 4 years in the market. It took a lot of patience and constant disciplined saving of a sizeable portion of my income (accountancy grads get low starting pay after all) to get here. I’m grateful for the progress I’ve made and hopefully the next 100k comes sooner by the power of compounding.

2017 XIRR

XIRR stands for extended internal rate of return, a measure of return which takes into account the timing of capital injection and cashflows. The following chart depicts my XIRR over the years against performance of SPY, the S&P 500 ETF:

2017 XIRR

This year’s XIRR was exceptional at 33.83%, outperforming the SPY by roughly 17%, which is Pogchamp

As you can see, I had 2 pretty much dud years in 2015 and 2016. This was mainly due to me trying to trade around my core positions (FB and GOOGL mainly) too much, resulting in me missing out on a lot of the upside. Performance was further dragged down by Keppel Corporation’s decline in 2015 that spilt over to 2016 as well as Disney’s decline on cordcutting worries in 2016.

Those 2 years taught me that I suck at timing the market. As such, you will see later that I had very few transactions this year, resulting in a whole lot of unrealised gains.

Given this year’s stellar performance, my XIRR since 2014 was boosted to 15.22% overall, pretty decent if I might so.

Portfolio

A quick portfolio update before diving into the annual review:

SGD HKD 2017USD 2017

This month’s performance was driven largely by gains in Valeant Pharmaceuticals and the overall US portfolio on the backs of US tax reform bill being passed by the US Congress and Senate. This is offset slightly by the decline in Keppel Corporation from the 52 high.

The only significant transaction this month was of course my purchase of Tencent. One for the future.

With that out of way, here’s my annual portfolio value over the past 4 years mapped against my total capital invested:

2017 Portfolio Value

Currently, I’ve cumulatively poured in roughly SGD 78k in capital into my portfolio, which is valued at roughly SGD 117k in the market, determined using the following exchange rates: SGD/HKD – 5.81 and USD/SGD – 1.3448.

2017 Top 5 Portfolio Contributors

2017 Top 5 Contributors

As you can see, most of my winners I’ve been holding for more than a year.

My anchor stocks Google and Facebook had a stellar year on EPS growth and tax reform speculation (and realisation). I remember the first stock I ever bought was Facebook in 2013 at $47. At $177.20 now, I’ve learnt that you don’t trade Facebook, just own it.

Keppel Corporation – I got in in late 2015 and continue to hold it on improving fundamentals.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals – This was a speculation I initiated this year in March, betting on the CEO’s ability to reduce the company’s debt as he was a great operator at Perrigo. I sold in August, realised my mistake and immediately bought back. It has paid off handsomely with 80+% gain from my initial position.

Bank of America – I’ve held this for 2 years on rising interest rate speculation and it has almost reached a double for me. With the possibility of further rate hikes in 2018, it should be good news for the US bank with the largest deposit base. The only risk being that rising interest rates could cause an inverted yield curve, a historical sign of impending recession. This has been called into question, but something to watch out for.

I don’t have any losers on my portfolio at the moment. My only relative underperformer would be Walt Disney, which until its recent deal with 21st Century Fox was doing nothing for me due to declining ESPN subscribers.

Dividends

I started the year looking to boost this area of my portfolio as I look to milk more passive cashflow from my portfolio, which is partly why I bought into Keppel REIT and Frasers Centrepoint Limited this year. Frankly US stocks do not offer attractive yields and coupled with the 30% dividend withholding tax, what you do eventually receive is peanuts. Here’s a dividend summary for the year:

2017 Dividend

This compared to SGD 494.13 in 2016 is an improvement, but I’ll be on the constant look out for undervalued dividend paying stocks.

Conclusion

This year has been a great year to be a US stock picker. With markets at all time highs, a pro business US President (let’s not debate how ridiculous he is), improving US economic indicators, it’s simply stock heaven.

So here’s me signing off on a great year and wishing everybody a Merry Xmas and Happy New Year!

snoopy-christmas.jpg

How did you do in 2017? Do let me know in the comments or email!

Happy Hunting!
KK