With 2 tradings days remaining in 2019, its once again time to review how 2019 went for me.
The hospitality trading environment was challenging this year. With political unrest in various countries and the US-China trade war, travel demand was dampened. Consequently, my employer should not have performed up to expectations this year. We’ll see when the latest quarter results is released.
Couple this with a transition in my work focus from travel heavy to desk bound affecting my level of contribution to my employer, I don’t expect too much bonus payout next year.
The only highlight was starting my Masters Programme and meeting a whole bunch of new people. Juggling work and studies is not easy, but I find it deeply rewarding. My first semester’s results was released in mid December. Barely missed the GPA for dean’s list, but I am satisfied with my performance.
I expect 2020 to be more of the same. Hopefully, I’ll find a way to deliver more value to my department next year.
Let’s start with my regular portfolio review.
Portfolio @ December 2019
A Stellar December
My portfolio performance in December really surprised me as a couple of catalysts came together to drive my portfolio to new heights.
My portfolio increased $12,963, comprising of capital injection of $4,473 from the Ascendas REIT rights issue and $8,490 of capital gains. Avenue Therapeutics was by far the stand out performer of the month, contributing the bulk of the month’s capital gains.
Avenue Therapeutics came to life when it filed a NDA for its IV Tramadol drug with the FDA. The price movement since has been a surprise as this event was planned and announced a couple of months ago. Just goes to show that markets are not very efficient sometimes, especially for small caps. That said, any event that drives the price closer to its takeover offer value, I’m in favour of.
That said, I can’t claim credit for Avenue Therapeutics being such a winner so far. Credit goes to the fabulous blogger Thumbtack Investor for doing much of the heavy lifting. Love reading his often contrarian and deep value ideas, an area I have limited competency over. Do check him out over at his blog or on Investingnote where he is much more active on.
Coupled with a general Santa rally and Manulife US REIT’s index inclusion, my portfolio was pushed to an all time high of $189,066.
There was only 2 transactions this month – the results of the Ascendas REIT rights issue and AIMS APAC REIT DRIP.
As outlined in my last portfolio update, I adopted a way buy Ascendas REIT at a price closer to the rights issue price of $2.63.
The REIT manager made me sweat when they announced the results of the rights issue. 96% acceptance of rights entitlement meant very few units were available for excess applications!
Thankfully, I’m happy to report that my strategy worked as I was allocated 1,700 units total. This brought my per unit cost for Ascendas REIT down to about $2.70.
As for AIMS APAC REIT, I’ve decided to slowly accumulate the position through DRIP or market purchases if the unit price on offer is OK. This is to capitalise on the Industrial REIT consolidation trend that is potentially coming from ESR Cayman.
2019 Annual Review
Let’s take a look at my annual performance. As usual, I’ll rely heavily on Stocks.Cafe to provide my performance computations.
2019 is undoubtedly my best year on record ever. Back in 2017, I recall thinking that I would never be able to repeat that year’s awesome performance. Who knew I would be able to beat that year’s performance handily this year.
I’m also starting to feel the benefits of compounding. This is because I’ve managed to grow my portfolio to a size that absolute returns start to feel significant.
As I’ve told my friends, building the first $100k on an average salary is extremely painstaking. However, when you get over that hump, you find that your early years of hard work starts to pay off.
XIRR and Time Weighted Returns
My XIRR and TWR for this year was phenomenal at 27.85% and 26.36%. The amazing thing is that the SPY clocked in with a TWR of 32.67% this year, beating me handily. A real testament to the potential of index investing.
As such, I’ve managed to beat the SPY in 4 of 6 years since starting my investing journey with a 15.93% average XIRR.
I’m 2 years into my transition from a growth strategy to a barbell approach. This has resulted in increases in dividend income over the past 2 years. As I don’t get paid a AWS, I see my dividend receipts as my AWS. Haha 😛
Based on my current portfolio, Stocks.Cafe forecasts a dividend payout of almost $7,900 next year. Hope to grow that further next year.
The perennial struggle to keep fit continues. This is probably the area that needs the greatest amount of work for me. I’ve never set actionable and measurable targets for this area before, which is probably partly why I’ve not achieved much in this area (other than pure laziness).
As such, here are my goals for next year.
- Lose 20kg
- Visit the Gym at least twice weekly
- Close my Apple Watch rings 80% of the year (292/365 days)
Readers and friends, please hold my feet to the fire if I do not achieve these goals by the end of 2020.
4. Blog and Side hustle
The progress I’ve made on this blog / hobby this year is something I did not anticipate achieving.
I started writing as a way to document my thoughts and share ideas with the public in 2017. I never imagined it evolving to being invited to media events, meeting the management of some REITs, appearing in a podcast, freelance writing for DrWealth and meeting a bunch of like-minded awesome people in the process.
Of course, thank you, the reader for reading this amateur blog. To the 19 and 37 people who subscribed to my blog and liked my Facebook page since my last portfolio review, welcome and hope you like you’ve read.
Thank you for the journey this year. Wishing all readers a Happy and Prosperous New Year.
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2018 Performance Scorecard
2017 Performance Scorecard
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