Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Sell Grafenia! (Portfolio Sale)

What well-informed readers this blog has! No sooner had I bought Grafenia in February 2015 than 'Anonymous' piped up to tell me it was a mistake.

Today saw a 25% drop in the share price - and he told me (I'm assuming it is a he, and one-and-the-same) that I could get out 'clean', taking into account the dividends (follow the link above to see the comments). He was and is right. I'm out.

But what lessons are there here?

Getting the Best Rate at Ratesetter

If you haven't looked at the peer-to-peer lender RateSetter yet, you might be missing a great way to hold cash. I'm not the only one to say so: as their web site proudly claims, it was voted best peer-to-peer lender by Which? readers.

I have recently introduced my son to this way of investing cash. It took a bit of explaining but he's got it now. And we both recently lent our cash out at a rate of 6.3%. Here's how to get the best rates.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Over 1 Million Page Views!

 According to Blogger stats, this little site has received over one million page views.

Thanks for visiting!

The DIY Income Investor

Not As Bad As It Seems?
For this DIY Income Investor it's been a horrible couple of months - my family portfolio is down nearly 5% on the year. So I have taken my own advice - I've left my investments to look after themselves and got on with other activities.

It is hard for anyone invested in the stock market not to be spooked by the sudden downturn but it is rarely correct to sell up when prices are diving. As long as you have targeted reasonably sustainable yields, you should be able to weather a short-to-medium period of depressed prices by just sitting tight.

But all is not 'doom and gloom' - there might be some light appearing at the end of the tunnel.

Monday, 17 August 2015

Doom and Gloom

Trouble Ahead Sign

We are going through difficult world financial times, which the London Stock Exchange is reflecting in its loss of all 2015 FTSE100 gains.

If you are a Buffettarian, you will know that the best time to buy is when all others are fearful. And the signs could not be worse...

Monday, 10 August 2015

Cycles (Portfolio Buy)

The DIY Income Investor portfolio is languishing somewhat this year, barely maintaining its total value. The migration into diversified income-oriented Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) over the last couple of years was meant to provide stability - but coupled with reasonable gains, not stagnation...

Economies - and therefore financial markets - work in cycles of confident exuberance followed by panicky fear; and unfortunately these cycles can span several years. So, it's difficult to tell whether one particular investment strategy will work in the medium to long term. For the time being, I'm going back to basics that have worked over the last 10 or so years: purchasing more focused investment instruments.

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Buying and Holding - and a Recovery (Portfolio Sale)

For a DIY Income Investor - indeed for all stock market investors - one of the hardest things to do, apart from selling losers, is to do nothing. When the prices of your holdings are wilting, there is an inbuilt, instinctive reaction to run away - the 'flight' instinct. This is when unseasoned investors panic and sell out - turning a paper loss into a real cash loss.

However, as an income-oriented investor you have a great behavioural support - the income.

Friday, 3 July 2015

African Gold! (Portfolio Buy)

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Having become a bit disillusioned with the performance of my 'high yield' Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) in the DIY Income Investor portfolio, I've decided - for the moment - to go back to doing what I seem to have done best: buying individual high-yield securities.

This time, I'm back to dividend shares, although these are slightly over-represented in the portfolio (which is intended to be split broadly 50/50 between dividend shares and fixed-income securities of different types).

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Do ETFs Behave Differently? (Portfolio Buy)

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As usual, a DIY Income Investor portfolio sale - viz. the recent Berkeley Group cash-in - leads to the difficult decision of what to buy now. This is always a challenge because, having been successful at making money (quite a lot in that particular case) you don't really want to blow it on something that will then tank.

This decision is all-the-more difficult because the strategy I have adopted in the last year or so (which involves building up the proportion of ETFs - Exchange Traded Funds) does not seem to be working very well.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Investing by Numbers (Portfolio Sale)


After weeks in the investing doldrums, it's nice to wake up in the morning and see something happening with the DIY Income Investor portfolio: one of the bigger holdings has shot up by around 8%!

The new strategy of buying more Exchange Traded Funds (currently 43% of the  portfolio) is working in one sense: not a lot of attention is required - but not in another: the price trends are slow (and at the moment not all that favourable, it has to be said).

So a bit of positive 'market action' has cheered me up a bit.