Tuesday 30 July 2013

28 Days Later...

Emerging into the sunshine after being out of touch again for a couple of weeks, what does the financial landscape look like?

Still no sign of hordes of zombies: well, maybe a couple lurking in the depths of the DIY Income Investor portfolio but they seem to be under control for the time being.

After another trip - this time to Ireland, and again unplugged, without access to the Internet - I can assess the impact of a further couple of weeks of the portfolio on autopilot.

Wednesday 17 July 2013

Portfolio Sale: Tullett Prebon (TLPR)

The post-holiday profit-taking continues with an opportunistic sale of part of my Tullett Prebon shareholding, bought only in April 2013. So, once again, I demonstrate that my rather dubious 'buy-and-hold' credentials.

TLBR was my largest dividend share holding (and one of my top 3 holdings overall - although none amounts to more than 5% of the portfolio), so I was glad of the opportunity to both take a profit and reduce my exposure.

Taking a 35% profit and reducing risk is all the more indicated as we are shortly off again - this time to the south of Ireland, to enjoy a week or so of what looks like being untypically sunny weather! So it is a good time to clear the decks a little.

Portfolio Sale: SSE (Scottish & Southern Energy) (LISE:SSE)

Utility shares have been taking a hit recently (particularly my holding in National Grid), probably because they are similar in nature to a fixed-income security, with their (usually) government-sanctioned rates of return and good dividend yields.

Unfortunately (or fortuitously, you might argue, if you are a 'real' buy-and-hold investor) I missed the price peak on National Grid. Moreover, I have read a couple of articles suggesting that SSE might struggle to maintain its dividend.

So when, on return from holiday, my SSE showed a nice capital gain - I pressed the sell button.

Monday 15 July 2013

14 Days Later...

Why did the polar bear
 cross the road?
Wow! After having been off-the-grid for the first two weeks of July (because of ridiculously high Internet charges on board our cruise ship, as well as broadband problems at home) - and reaching the most northerly point I am ever likely to reach (Spitzbergen, 78 degrees North) - it came as quite a shock to catch up with changes in the DIY Income Investor portfolio.

The background was that the month of June had been particularly punishing, with a substantial drop in value of the portfolio (4.3%) - so I logged out of my computer at the beginning of our family holiday with some concerns about whether this precipitous fall in market values would continue.

So, after finally crunching the numbers, the results are in: but how did the portfolio do without my expert fine-tuning and daily monitoring?