Sunday 26 August 2012

Portfolio Buy: Standard Chartered Perpetual Corporate Bond (LSE:ESC6)

With some cash to get working in my DIY Income Investor portfolio, I have opted for another fixed-income investment - maintaining the broad 50%/50% allocation between these and high-yield dividend shares.

Finding a new purchase proved to be more difficult than expected...

Friday 24 August 2012

When 'Perpetual' Isn't For Ever

A puppy is not just for Christmas (as we say in the UK). And so are most of the financial securities bought for the DIY Income Investor portfolio - usually this is a 'buy and hold' strategy. The simple reason is that this is much easier to manage on a DIY basis compared with a strategy that involves a lot of buying and selling.

However, nothing lasts for ever - like the spinning top, entropy increases and eventually triumphs. And sometimes the financial ground can shake underneath you - an unsettling experience.

Wednesday 22 August 2012

Portfolio Buy: Intermediate Capital Group (LSE:ICP)

On a recent visit to Monte Carlo, seeing the expensive yachts on display in the harbour made me wonder about how really rich people invest.

Avoiding tax is probably an important part of it (otherwise, why would they all be squeezed up in that harbour) but the other tools of wealth management are probably closed to us ordinary investors...unless we can access them 'through the back door'.

Tuesday 21 August 2012

A Question Of Trust...

I don't invest in funds, primarily because I don't want to pay someone to do something I can do myself (and possibly do it better); the fees charged can be quite high and would eat up a lot of the potential gains of any underlying investments. So, no funds for the DIY Income Investor.

But investment trusts (which are closed-end funds constituted as public limited companies) are not quite as bad, fees-wise - and they have the flexibility to borrow to improve their performance. So, when The Merchants Trust came up on my yield radar I thought it might be worth a look.

Sunday 19 August 2012

Are You Keeping Up With The Joneses?

Some US Joneses?
Judging yourself by the absolute returns of your portfolio is OK up to a certain point - for example, you probably want to beat the loss of value due to inflation - but it makes more sense to compare yourself to other investors.

An interesting new tool has been developed by InvestorBee, a new online investment company, on how to compare risk and performance (for UK investors), as well as giving some data on how private investors have performed.

Wednesday 15 August 2012

To Sell Or Not To Sell...(Inmarsat)

It's always nice when one of your investments increases in value - it's a kind of validation of one's skills (although somehow the 'losers' always seem to outnumber the 'gainers').

Still, it does present a bit of a challenge, as selling always seems to be one of the hardest decisions to make - harder even than buying.

Here's the problem...

Friday 10 August 2012

3 Weeks On Holiday - Piling on the Pounds

I've just spent three weeks on holiday without access to market information, so I wasn't sure how my portfolio was doing. What is more, I didn't have access to my bathroom scales either, so the status of wealth and weight was uncertain.

On returning home, it's a case of 'good news and bad news' - both involving an increase in Pounds.