Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Monthly Review - January 2012

January saw the value of the portfolio move significantly higher, largely in line with the movements in equity markets and favourable exchange rate movements.
Positive cash from on the properties (fully leased), an excellent savings rate (low expenses) and my end-of-year payment added to the gains.

Here are the details:

1. my Hong Kong equity portfolio appreciated.  I purchased shares in VTech, HKR International and China VTM;

2. my AU/NZ equities appreciated;

3.my ETFs appreciated in line with the local markets, with all being positive. I sold the last of my Lyxor ETFs (a small position in the Lyxor Commodity Fund). I made a small addition to my position in the DB Vietnam ETF;

4. my commodities advanced, led by silver.  Following the sale of the  Lyxor Commodities Fund my direct exposure to commodites is now very small;

5. all of my properties are occupied with all tenants paying on time. Some minor repairs were incurred this month.  One property will become vacant at the end of February.  While I will miss the reliable and long standing tenant and will have to do some decoration work, it is likely to get a higher rental next time it is leased out;

6. currency movements were positive, as the NZD and AUD appreciated against the HKD/USD;

7. my position in bonds remains small. No bonds were purchased this month.  I would like to add some more bonds to the portfolio but am finding direct purchases of bonds through the banks I have accounts with to be something of an exercise in frustration in Hong Kong;

8. I had no open derivative positions;

9. savings were excellent with very low expenses (even without my end-of-year payment).

My cash position increased significantly due to the sale of the Lyxor Funds and the end-of-year payment being signifcantly greater than the new investments. I currently hold 56.7 months of expenses in HKD cash or equivalents. This is an all time high - in fact it is too high given current inflation levels and the near zero nominal yields on bank deposits.

For the month, my net worth increased by a huge 9.04%. The year to date increase is 9.04%.  The year is off to a good start.

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