Monthly Archives: January 2018

January 2018 investment trust review.

January investment, a good start.

My new ‘capital growth’ investment trust portfolio has started the new year in a positive fashion. Of the ten trusts only one, TR Property, is currently in negative territory. All the others have moved positive more than sufficiently to cover trading costs et. cetera, which is rather nice.

The area showing the greatest growth is currently the Far East. My Baillie Gifford Shin Nippon and Templeton Emerging Markets ITs showing gains of 5.1% and 4.3% respectively. However my stand-out performer is the (high risk) Vietnam Enterprise, up a fraction over 10%. Quite how long this rate of growth can continue… we’ll just have to see. TrustNet gives this fund a FE Risk Score of 219 (cash score:0, FTSE 100 index score:100) so a fair bit of volatility must be expected.

Overall, for this investment trust growth portfolio we’re looking at a gain of 3% so far this year.

My income portfolio is also up since the turn of the year, by 0.6%. Not massive, but competing with the FTSE 350 index. I’m more than happy with this considering this is a long term income-targeting selection of investments.

As for how things may for these investment trusts for the rest of this year, I guess I’ll have to start drinking a lot more tea so I can get practicing my tasseography. (I must confess to being particularly attached to gunpowder tea; a light slightly smokey-tasting green tea.) This skill will probably be as useful as reading all the current thoughts and comments being put out by many (highly paid!) brokers and financial advisor experts. Or perhaps buy shares in companies that do 3D printing, hoping they will be able corner the market in producing a better quality crystal ball for the financial wizz-kids to gaze into. Their abilities make Professor Trelawney’s look positively amazing.

New Investments

New year, new investments

First, looking back at the investment trust income portfolio.For the year 2017 it grew 12.9% in value, added to that must be dividends of around 4.5% of original amount invested. This compares to a FTSE 350 Total Returns index gain of around 12% for the same period.  (Investments in Brunner IT, City of London, F&C Capital and Income, JPM Claverhouse, Merchants, Murray Income, Schroder Income & Growth, Scottish American, Temple Bar, and Value & Income.)

So no changes to the portfolio, steady as it goes.

As for the large cap ‘BullBearings’ portfolio, ummm… a mix of finding myself too distracted with other things and the BullBearings stock market simulator website closing has killed this one off. Since it was set up on the site last March it has grown by over 10% but with no more BullBearings let’s clear the decks and start again. Ten investment trusts, each with equal weighting, bought right at the start of January. The idea is to hold these for the year, however a (flexible) stop-loss of around 12.5% (danger zone, may sell) to 15% (cut and run time) is on the cards. Investment trusts are usually not the most volatile of shares, so this should not result in too much churning. If this works then great. If it doesn’t work well, then a case of ‘learn from the experience’.

Allianz Technology (Technology)
Baillie Gifford Shin Nippon (Japan)
Blackrock Throgmorton (UK)
Edinburgh World Wide (Global)
JP Morgan American (America)
Schroder Asia Total Return (Asia ex-Japan)
Templeton Emerging Markets (Emerging markets)
TR European Growth (Europe)
TR Property (Global Property)
Vietnam Enterprise Investments (Vietnam)

This selection covers most of the obvious areas, though perhaps an odd one out being Vietnam Enterprise investment trust. With wage costs in China now approaching the level of many western countries, labour-intensive industries are moving their production facilities across to relatively low cost Vietnam. So this one has been added to give a little extra spice to the selection.