Monday, 25 July 2016

Portfolio Value and Net Worth catch-up - to June 2016

It's been a while since I last posted one of my regular updates on how my goals or quest for Financial Independence is going. There are various reasons for the delay (yes I know excuses, excuses!):
- I was on a 4 month break from working a full-time contract when I started the blog, so had a lot more free-time available to write. Since the start of June I've been working a full week again
- I've been through the whole house sale and move process, which doesn't end on the day you pick-up the keys to your nice new house. We've been slowly working our way through a mountain of boxes trying to find places to best store everything
- I've been working on some income generating side hustles (kindle publishing and a little dabble with matched betting), which have been taking up a considerable amount of my free time because I'm new to them and learning as I go

All of the above have been impacting my precious free-time and thus the time available to write for this blog. I have missed posting about my progress I must confess, and I also feel guilty at times for letting my posting schedule slip. So I'm going to try to play catch-up on the posts about my finances and my goal progress...though it may be a somewhat slow process, please be patient!

So here's a catch-up post covering my progress toward achieving my second goal for 2016 which includes the pursuit of Financial Independence. This one is about my Portfolio Value and Net Worth for the months April to June 2016.

Portfolio Value - end Jun 2016

My portfolio includes the savings and investments in my Freedom Kitty as well as my Personal Pension, the combination of which make up my "FI Before 50 Roadmap".

Here is the end of June value of my Freedom Kitty including the interim valuations for April & May:

After maxing out my contributions to the 2015-2016 ISA in March I could make no further contributions to it. I continued to put savings for my Freedom Kitty aside in my current account during April, May and June, but because I wanted to choose a new ISA provider for the next tax year I did not actually invest during those months (more to follow on this in July's update), so the savings have not been listed here.

As you can see, the end of June value of my ISA was £14,728, which is less than its value when I did my last post in March, and overall down by -£1,282.53 on my original investment. However the value had been much better in May, having increased by £421 on March, but then Brexit happened and everything went wobbly! I'm not too concerned because I can already see improvements during the month of July so things are getting back on track again.

Here's how the Freedom Kitty is tracking for the year - I've set myself a target of £23,000 for this calendar year (Jan-Dec 2016):

At 64.03% I've actually gone backward on the progress I'd made in March (which was at 66.54%), but I have half the year to go and I'm still over 50% of the way toward my Freedom Kitty goal for 2016. With my additional savings to be added in the latter half of the year, and hopefully a bit of a rally for my investments I am optimistic that I will still make my target.

Here's how the Freedom Kitty is tracking against the overall target of £209,590:

A slight drop from 7.3% to 7.03% since March, but I think I should still be able to achieve 10% by the end of the year with a little bit of luck.

It's been an interesting few months for my Personal Pension. I decided to instruct my pension provider to cut the employer contributions being made by my Limited Company because of the period of time I was not working (4 months) and therefore not billing for any sales into the business account. Until this point the contributions had been set at £3,000 per month which is a lot to eat away from the company's cashflow, when said cashflow is not being replenished. I asked to drop the amount to £1,000 per month. Unfortunately, despite being advised that it's easy to change the regular contribution amounts when I first began the pension, there have been a few hiccups at the pension provider in making the change so my figures will reflect the sporadic nature of what has ensued! I've been promised that things are now sorted and should be consistent moving forward (not to mention apologised to with flowers and wine!)

So here is the end of June value of my Personal Pension

Even though my pension contributions have effectively been reduced to £1,000 per month from May, at the moment I am still on target to hit my overall £2,000 per month goal. This is because I have contributed an excess £3,000 across the months of February, March and April. I will need to see how things go later in the year to decide whether I'm brave enough to attempt to change my regular contribution amounts back up to £2,000 (I need a few months of consistent withdrawals by my pension provider for my confidence to be restored!)

Here's how the Personal Pension is tracking for the year - I've set myself a target of £110,000 for this year:

Great progress here since March, I've now got just under 47% of the way to go to hit my pension target for this year.

Here's how the Personal Pension is tracking against the overall target of £364,965:

I've achieved 26.15% of my overall target for my Personal Pension goal, which means I'm now over a quarter of the way there, a really nice milestone for me...happy days!

Net Worth - end Jun 2016

I don't include assets such as car, valuables or house sundries in this calculation - it's really only the big or purely savings items I choose to include. The credit card debt listed is my monthly spend which I always pay off in full each month by direct debit. Following the house sale and purchase we've just been through, my net worth has seen a little dip because I used some of the equity from my house sale to fund my share of the stamp duty for our house purchase. Since March my net worth is down by £5,492.05, but I'm sure it will be on the up again soon as I continue to invest and of course over time we'll be paying our mortgage off which will help.

So at the half-way point through the year, I'm very happy with where my FIRE funds are at. Given that I didn't even have a plan for FIRE at the start of the year I'm really pleased with my progress. I'm looking forward to a strong second half of the year now that the big expense of the house move is complete and I am back in a paying freelance contract - not to mention the income generating side hustles which I've started.

So, I'm interested to hear how you're getting on now that we're over half-way through 2016. Have you seen much impact in your investments as a result of Brexit? Have you been enjoying the unusually hot British weather?! As always I'd love to hear from you and appreciate your comments...


  1. Hi OR

    Great update, despite all the red numbers which have been caused by Brexit. It's funny that Brexit made my portfolio go up, so I guess we're just invested in different stuff.

    As you say, given that at the start of 2016 you didn't have a plan for FIRE, the fact that you are documenting, tracking and setting goals is a huge step forward and with your new job and house move over, the funds should start rolling in.

    Good luck with the Kindle publishing and the matched betting.

    I've loved the few days of hot weather we've had (yes, even up north we had a bit of a heatwave!) - with my niece and nephews over, it meant that they could play in the garden instead of being cooped up inside.

    As we had such a long winter, I'm hoping we get a drawn out summer - all I'm asking for are a few unrainy weekends!

  2. Hi Weenie,

    Thanks for stopping by. I think that although my figures in June were hit a bit by Brexit, July is actually looking a lot better - so when I post my next portfolio update things should look rosier.

    It seems like the hot spell in the UK has now passed, well at least in the Midlands it has. We've had rain the past couple of days, and the humidity is gone (which I'm grateful for). I agree with you , some nice rain-free/sunny weekends would be wonderful and a drawn out summer too. I hope you're getting to enjoy the time with your family over the summer, it must be so nice having them visit.


  3. PinchThePennies31 July 2016 at 18:44

    Hi OR,
    Interesting post. Would you be able (and willing) to share what you're invested in in your S&S ISA and your pension? Maybe as a separate post? I've had a look around your site but couldn't find anything - I may have (possibly) been looking in all the wrong places though.

    Regards, Pinch

    1. Hi Pinch,

      Thanks for your question...I had always intended to list my investing choices on the blog each month, however for various reasons I've only actually done one of these posts so far (for February). At the time I only had details of my pension investment split, so I haven't actually written about my ISA's yet.

      Here is a link to the February post:

      I am hoping to get caught up on my posts over the next few weeks to bring me up-to-date, and will include more info on my investments...particularly what I've ended up doing with my ISA this year.

      Thanks for stopping by.


    2. PinchThePennies1 August 2016 at 10:18

      Hi OR,
      Depending on your circumstances (in work, studying, in-between-everything etc.) and time available I would advise against trying to catch up with any posts you would have wanted to write and publish since February this year - although I do appreciate the intention. Then again, at the end of the day - life just happens.

      Just carry on from where you are now, I'd say.

      Regards, Pinch