Thursday, January 30, 2014

Financial Review - January, 2014

January was an ugly month for my investments.

Net worth fell due to the sharp declines in the equity portfolio which were only partly offset by the combined effect of dividends, favourable FX movements, rental income and a small end-of-year balance received from my employer. Expenses were low.

Here are the details:

1. my Hong Kong equity portfolio took a beating during latter stages of the month, giving up the gains in early January and a bit more. The only dealings this month were a large investment in CNOOC (HK:883) and a very small one in China Starch (HK: 3838);

2. my AU/NZ equities declined - with most shares being down a bit. I made a small investment in Grange Resources (ASX: GRR); equity ETFs were down in line with the local markets. There were no new purchases;

4. my commodities were flat. Silver is my only position;

5. all of my properties were occupied with all tenants paying on time. There was one minor repair bill on the Hong Kong properties this month and will be several in February (either related to buildings which received notices for a mandatory window inspection or remedial work on a change of tenancy). One tenant has given notice to terminate her lease effective mid-February and a replacement tenant has signed up at the same rental. Another property will become vacant in mid-March;

6. currency movements were positive, with a small increase in the NZD outweighing a small fall in the AUD. I converted some HKD into AUD this month;

7. my position in bonds remains small. I purchased some short term CDs denominated in RMB;

8. expenses were low.

My cash position fell slightly. I currently hold 48.9 months of expenses in HKD cash or equivalents. This is now calculated on a different basis from last year - I have included the principal component of the mortgage on our home and added some additional near cash items to the calculation.

For the one month period, my net worth fell by 0.74%. The year to date decrease is 0.74%.


Another Hong Kong Lawyer said...

Discovered your blog when reading a comment of yours at Mr. Money Moustache.

I am also a lawyer based in Hong Kong just starting to strategize about FI / retirement.

Congratulations on reaching financial indepdence and actually taking the plunge. It will be interested to read about how it goes for you. For myself, I assume that FI (which is a long way off for me) will mean leaving HK in order to reduce costs, and it is interesting to read about someone who is able to stay.

traineeinvestor said...


Thanks for reading and leaving a comment.

The first four months have been interesting - test driving the new medical insurance policy and the portfolio taking a hit from the share market and the AUD/NZD declines - but it's all going well so far.

Although I am not planning to leave HK, if I ran into financial difficulties that would certainly be one option we would consider.

Hope it all goes well for you.


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