September 2019 Savings, plus other updates

Update is later than usual but this might become the norm, not sure. Still no real blogging routine yet and I wasn’t about during the weekend to get this out.

Anyway, for those concerned, my nephew survived the few days with me, wasn’t late for school once and didn’t miss his bedtime (by much… 🙂 )

So how did I get on in September with my savings?

I saved 52.9% of my net salary! This was the first month that my sis contributed to household bills since she moved in and I invested the cash straight away.

Of course, at some point, all my utilities direct debits will go up, with me no longer being in the house on my own, but I’ll save as much as I can while I can!

The above savings includes top ups of £120 matched betting profit (from last month) and £126.22 affiliate income from OddsMonkey (thank you to all who signed up via my links!).

Shares and Investment Trusts

Thinking about greener investments, I started investing in Greencoat Wind UK plc.

Current share/IT portfolio can be found here.

(Entire portfolio here)

Future Fund 

With the pound taking a pounding and markets generally on the up, at the end of the month, my portfolio stood at £179,130.49. This puts me in really good stead in my race to £200k, although with Brexit (or not) looming, who knows how things will look by the end of October.

Dividends and Other Income

Another fairly average month for dividends: Continue reading

My Random Share Portfolio, plus Meet Up Reminder

Long term readers may recall my fascination with randomness and investing.

One of the first ‘investing’ books I read was Burton G Makiel’s ‘A Random Walk Down Wall Street’.

You know, the one where he mentions that a bunch of blind-folded monkeys could do better than expert stockpickers. This fascination and curiosity led me to running my own Monkey Stocks League, where I had my own randomly picked portfolio.

Time has meant that I no longer run the league but I now find myself in another position to have a part of my portfolio which is made up of random stocks.

Enter Freetrade

For those interested, here’s my review of Freetrade.

As a result of Freetrade’s referral scheme and thanks to interested souls clicking on my links, I now have a tidy little portfolio of random shares.

Basically, every time someone I refer signs up, we both get a free share. Here’s a screenshot of some of the freebies I’ve received:

I’ve yet to be awarded a high value share – some people have received Tesla shares, worth around £190!!

Here’s my entire portfolio so far:

I’m not sure what I’m going to do with these – maybe hang on to some of them, maybe sell some of them.

If I sell some, perhaps I’ll use the funds to buy more of the ones I’m keeping…

Anyone interested in a great investing app plus a free share, whilst helping me grow my random portfolio, please drop me a DM via twitter or contact me via the Contact me form for a one-use only link.

I currently have a ‘mystery’ share queueing, courtesy of Tony from One Million Journey – thanks for using the link, Tony and fingers crossed we get good shares! 🙂

FIRE Meet Up Reminder

Just a reminder of the Manchester FIRE meet up next Friday, 27th Sept.

It’s taking place in the ‘Well Area’ of the Rain Bar, 80 Great Bridgewater Street, Manchester, M1 5JG.

6pm – late

Hopefully see a few of you there for a few beers and some pub grub (you don’t want to see me drinking on an emtpy stomach!).

August 2019 Savings

Just the basic numbers update as I’ve found only a small window of opportunity to post this!

So how did I get on in August?

I saved 46.5% of my net salary – not bad, and the good news is that this should continue to improve as my family settle in (separate post on that at some point…).

The above savings includes top ups of £43.27 from TopCashback*, £80 matched betting profit (from last month) and £68.74 affiliate income from OddsMonkey (thank you to all who signed up via my links!).

Shares and Investment Trusts

No new investments – I just topped up existing ones.

Current share/IT portfolio can be found here.

(Entire portfolio here)

Future Fund 

A lot of up and downs but my portfolio seems to have weathered it quite well, not moving much at £174,085.

Dividends and Other Income

A fairly average month for dividends: Continue reading

Return of the Dogs!

I can’t think of a better time to post about my Dogs of the FTSE experimental portfolio, just as the markets are apparently tanking!

Is this just a blip, or the beginning of the inevitable end of the bull run?

Whatever, I’m still investing and I intend to document the bad times as well as the good times.

As a reminder, here’s the Dogs of the FTSE strategy:

  1. Choose the ten FTSE 100 shares with the highest yield (subject to my criteria*)
  2. Invest equal amounts in all ten shares
  3. Hold for a year (give or take a week)
  4. At the end of the year, sell the ones no longer in the top ten, replace with new shares with highest yield
  5. Repeat from step 3

[*criteria being that shares already in my portfolio are not included, nor any where a dividend cut has been announced]

Note that this is my ‘fun’ portfolio and represents less than 2% of my Future Fund.

Here’s how my last portfolio finished in Feb 2019:

Full end of 12-month update is here if you’re interested.

There was a delay in setting up the next portfolio as I had to wait for the 2019 tax year to commence to open my new ISA with a new provider.

So in June, I went about setting up my Dogs of the FTSE 2019/20 portfolio! Been a bit busy so this post has been languishing in my drafts!

So, in accordance with the strategy:

Six Dogs Set Free (Sold):

  • Marks & Spencer Grp plc (MKS)
  • National Grid (NG)
  • Rio Tinto plc (RIO)
  • Royal Dutch Shell plc (RDSB)
  • SSE plc (SSE)
  • United Utilities Group plc (UU)

Total received from sales = £1,333.20

Total Dividends received = £175.90 (note I continued to receive divis until I sold in June)

Profit/Loss from original investment = £57.94 (3.9% gain)

It was not easy at all pushing the ‘sell’ button for some of those but I am committed to the strategy.

Also, it was hard swalllowing the 6 x £9.95 trading fee (with AJ Bell) – if not for the fees, I would have doubled my profit/gain and this is the main reason why I moved to another provider, where the fee for buying/selling will be a big fat zero.

Next, in accordance with the strategy:

Six Dogs Rounded Up (Bought): 

  • Standard Life Aberdeen (SLA)
  • ITV plc (ITV)
  • Aviva plc (AV)
  • British American Tobacco plc (BATS)
  • Direct Line Insurance Group (DLG)
  • HSBC Holdings (HSBA)

I’m not timing the market, just bought at whatever the price was in June.

So here’s how the Dogs of the FTSE Portfolio 2019/20 looks as at today:

Best of breed or mangy mutts? All pretty much looking like they’re the latter right now!

Over this same period, the FTSE 100 Total Return was minus 1.46% so the Dogs are lagging a bit on -5.10% including dividends.

I’m not sure I can do quarterly updates as before – perhaps half-yearly updates on how this portfolio is doing.

Random Shares Portfolio

I’ve been testing Freetrade’s free share referral scheme and now have a bunch of free shares, thanks to those who have clicked on the link and topped up their accounts – hope you were all allocated decent free shares in return.

When I get round to it, I’ll provide an update on what random shares I was awarded and how they are getting on.

If anyone would like to try out Freetrade’s app and bag a free share in the process, drop me a note via @QuietlySaving or my Contact Form.

The free share referral scheme will be rolled out to all shortly, which will allow all Freetrade account holders to be able to refer.

And finally….

Possible Blog Delays in Future…

D-Day is imminent, my living situation will be completely changed from this weekend.

I’m feeling both excitement and dread. And rather stressed.

I have no idea how I will be able to continue to post regularly and keep my blog secret from my family so don’t know when I’ll be able to post again.

I hope I’ll work something out.