Mar ’18 Performance

So the month has ended and a bit more volatility than we have seen for a while (or is it just that it’s gone down for once?). So how have the investments fared this month? As I covered in my “How I measure performance” – basically I take the value of the portfolio at the end of last month, add on any contributions for the month, and that was my starting value. End value is the value at the end of the reporting period. Simples 🙂

So, what did March do for me? I was feeling very positive until the drops started kicking in at the back end of the month, but that said it means my GTP ISA will buy more!

‘folio Perf. Notes
Company Pension -1.55% No income generated as all funds are in growth or reinvested
Personal Pension -3.94% No income generated as all funds are in growth or reinvested
ISA 1 -2.55% No income generated as all funds are in growth or reinvested
ISA 2 -2.97% The performance does not include the income that was paid out into my account
ISA 3 0.01% Although dividends are paid out, they remain in the ISA wrapper, and will get reinvested for growth. The performance figure includes both the Capital growth, and also income received which will get reinvested.
ISA 4 -2.74% Go T’ Pub ISA
FTSE-100 -2.42% This excludes any dividends
FTSE-250 -1.15% This excludes any dividends
FTSE-All -2.20% This excludes any dividends
S&P500 -3.50% This excludes any dividends
Dow Jones -4.54% This excludes any dividends
VWRL -4.91%
VHYL -4.94%
GBP/USD 2.07% This was taken on the spot rate on the close of the last day of the month. Going forwards I will pick up the exchange rate from for consistency and real life 🙂

So a lot of negative numbers there for the second month in a row. This puts me back to pretty much the same value I had back in November. Whilst a little depressing, I am still in wealth building mode so it just means I can buy more while they are cheap – something I have been waiting for since the bull market started so very long ago!

The one shining surprise in all this was my self managed ISA. Whilst 0.01% increase isn’t anything to shout about, the fact that it remained positive despite the large drops everywhere else. This was despite a shortfall in the dividends this month from the same time last year – attributable to the fact that I sold some of my stock that paid out, and the change in the GBP/USD exchange rate meant dividends were smaller.

Last summers rebalance of ISA 3 is now working its way through the numbers so I think I have mostly taken the hit on lower dividends, but the lower volatility is also helping.

Oh well, as I am currently not reliant on them I can continue to reinvest.

Although ISA2 looks very bad, it is continuing to pay out a steadily growing income stream

So, what does this look like in pretty pictures?


So almost a year on and £10,000 invested wouldn’t have shown that much growth when you keep hearing about the historic returns. Just do remember that these figures banded about are average over years.

My forecasts still show that I will not hit the number I need by June 2025 however that is based on 4% growth and no increase in savings, something which I have changed. Increasing the payments into my other half’s ISA and hopefully also my GTP ISA that will soon make up the shortfall.

And what of my other non financial performance? Well I am pleased to say that the stone of weight that I lost has so far stayed off and seems to have balanced, however I haven’t yet managed to shake any further but I am hoping that I will get below the magic 14 stone soon…

How was your March? Were you caught in the falling market or did you buy more?



Author: fireinlondon

Fighting the high cost of living in London

8 thoughts on “Mar ’18 Performance”

  1. Hi Fil

    No major wobbles for me i put an extra 500 in my p2p account with ablrate. This takes me to 5k out of a total of 55k non pension saving. I’ve also decided to put another 5k into a ‘safer’ p2p so have opened a new isa with lending works (yes i realise i could have just put it in ny current isa and transferred but I’m not wanting to put any more in ablrate and this will keep me honest by making it harder to add more – the recent issues with another site and the number of people who have obviously been drawn in by 10%plus returns and put way more than they should have done is a timely lesson. There by the grace of God and all that)

    This gives me 10k at average 9%return tax free well diversified and half backed by both insurance and a provision fund. So safe
    Enough for me to risk losing the lot if both platforms go down and both fca authorised so little risk of fraud . My girlfriend has 5k in savings and she’s not as zealous on the savings front as me so weve agreed to count this as part of our emergency fund. This gives me 15k in cash as a good buffer for any down turn. I reckon 51 to 55 will be my retirement date so 14 to 18 years unless i inherit. assuming a 5% return which may be optimistic. Its an interesting debate i think how much is enough. You don’t provide actual figures on your blog do you in terms of net worth as alot of bloggers do? Is that because it can be viewed as boasting?


    1. Hi FBAB,
      Thanks for stopping by again 🙂
      Congrats on the extra 500 going in – it all adds up, and pretty quickly! Always worth spreading some of the risk around – its the reason I currently use 3 different S&S ISA providers so that I reduce my potential risk… it is a pain, but worth it.

      9% tax free return is not to be sniffed at all and it all keeps that nest egg growing. Well don’t forget you may still be able to access your pension at 55 (unless they do change the law), in which case that should almost make it a guarantee? It is always difficult to know what rate to predict – I always use a 4% rate, on the grounds that it is post inflation and a little conservative – I have beaten that I think every year bar 1 when there was a downturn.
      As you say – what is enough? For one person enough may be multiple times what others think they need. I have several figures in my mind – enough to “survive” (i.e. not need to work, slimmed down lifestyle), “work optional” (i.e. current lifestyle) and “ideal” (i.e. to be kept in a lifestyle I wish to become accustomed to!).
      Until I hit enough to pay my bills and mortgage, I don’t even think about it – just keep hammering those savings over!

      No, I don’t provide numbers. If you make it to one of the FB FI London meet ups I can explain in person ;-). Not really anything to do with boasting but more that I give %ages to show where the money goes and just how you trim, rather than people being able to say “Oh well you earn X” or “Well your mortgage is very cheap” (it isn’t!) or “Well I couldnt possibly make my lunch out of toenails” or some other pointless comment 🙂


      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yeah understood. Its also not a very British thing to talk about finance’s. I’ve just helped a friend of mine with a financial review and was a really interesting experience. Shes a typical high earner 60k plus bit had a very frugal lifestyle so has built up about 70k in cash savings thats sat there earning 1% in her current accounts. Shes also got 4 old work pensions and no idea what she needs to save soI offered to help. Not advise her on what to put money in (im not an Ifa) but to show her what i do and why. She didn’t even know bow how much she was putting into her pension. She found it really useful but there was a moment when i said lets look at your pay slip tosee what’s going in your pension from a%pov. She automatically paused and i was like. ‘Ive just seen your pension, savings etc and you’re just about to see my spreadsheet where i track my net worth whats the problem 😜’. It was useful for her to see someone earning similar amounts and how much i had (slightly less savings but 4 times more in my pension). Ive often thought if either retraining as an ifa or starting a financial coaching business as i found the whole thing really fulfilling. I suggested a stocks and shares isa and initially she was reluctant.i asked why knowing the answer already ‘i might lose the money’. I said but you’re invested in a pension? Of course she said. I what’s the difference if you want you could just invest in the same thing in an isa. I loved seeing the light bulb go on lol. I also made the point she had 70k earning about 800 a year and no plans so even if she lost it would it really matter.

    I find the psychology of money quite interesting. In alot of ways im a bit too anxious about having enough(more so now im divorced and with my girlfriend i am the main breadwinner) . I think that’s a feature of the fire community. Compared to most people im rich enough already and im 37. If i liquidated my assets i could probably ‘live’on what I’ve got already so why am i anxious?
    Maybe i should start a blog.’ scared of FIRE’😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi FBAB,
      Sometimes I am happy to chat in the pub but not on the internet!
      It is always interesting to know and a big boost to be able to support people in building their future fund, in particular to make it work harder for them! But as you say the payslip is a very personal thing for some reason in this country – to be fair only my IFA has seen my pay cheque!

      As you say it is fascinating – I am probably worse as I don’t have enough in cash (ever!) which isn’t good for me in terms of sleeping but I make my money work hard as soon as possible.

      And why not blog 🙂


  3. “This puts me back to pretty much the same value I had back in November.”

    When I read this, I had a look at my own numbers and I’m the same! Is that a good thing? 😉

    But like you, as I’m still accumulating, so it’s no concern, just investing more and hopefully getting more value!

    Interesting to see that you have several numbers in mind – I currently only have a “work optional” and “ideal” number, not worked out what my “survival” number is but perhaps that because I don’t want to know it, otherwise I’d start aiming for that, instead of trying to reach higher for the others (if that makes sense!).


    1. Hi Weenie,
      Thanks for stopping by again! Haha glad to hear I am not the only one that is back to where they were, but as you say its still just plugging away and buying more at a cheaper price!
      As you say, plug away and wait!

      Yes, given the numbers and the time I find it keeps me an immediate target so that I can scrape by, and then knowing everything else is getting me a more comfortable life – I am still aiming to get the largest possible number, preferably more than even my largest number!

      Liked by 1 person

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