Investment Performance April 2008 (+3.89%)

This is an ongoing monthly update on how our equity investments are performing. Please see this background on the investment tool I developed and how I am using it to track our performance against a benchmark to measure our progress or lack thereof.

Its still a work in progress, any feedback is appreciated and may be incorporated into future monthly reports. The only equity investments not covered are:
1) my 401k which is invested in institutional index funds through my employer that I haven't found a tracking symbol for.
2) investments roughly worth less than $500, simply because I don't have the time and energy to keep up with them. I am thinking I will sell these off at some point and add the proceeds to my current investment portfolio because they are too much work to track.

April Highlights:

  • I completed maxing out our Roth IRAs for 2007 by adding an additional $1,300 above my wife's normal $400 monthly contribution to her Roth IRA.
  • I made a contribution of $305 to my SEP IRA. My 2007 taxes are not done yet so I did a back of the paper calculation to estimate how much ore I could contribute.
  • Remaining investments have be part of our ongoing monthly investments - Pfizer DRIP ($50), IBM ESPP (payroll deductions), and Roth IRA ($800) contributions for my wife and I. Pretty self-explanatory.
  • IBM has continued to perform well. I have gotten in the habit of selling some of our IBM investment each year during the summer since we have monthly investment contributions through my ESPP so that we don't become super-overweight in IBM. I'll be looking to sell off another block hopefully around July.
  • Merck and Vanguard Total Stock Market Index (VTI)l paid dividends this month. A small amount of the Merck dividend is not revinvested due to those shares being held directly.
  • I believe my next step is to determine what my target allocation is so I can create a blended index benchmark to compare our nvestment performance to. RIght not I just compare it to VTI, but that ignores our desired exposure to other assets.

April 2008 Investment Report:

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Comments (3)


I hope you are all safe. I know the earthquake has affected much of China. I have contacts in Shanghai that reported the government tells them that there were 170 deaths. The Boston Globe is reporting nearly 5,000 deaths.

Looks like your tracking error from the VTI total US market is getting smaller (-1.5% last month and -1% this month). The tracking error is still sizeable and needs to be addressed.

I continue to think this portfolio is ridiculous.

The companies are large blue chips with a smattering of funds, and a lot of the positions are in the ~ $1,000 and less range. As the previous commenter noted, the return lags the VTI.

Why not just hold the VTI?

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A personal finance weblog of my journey to reach my goal of $2 million + the value of my primary residence.
Current Net Worth: $1,574,185

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