I noticed over the past months that a lot of my initial holdings, from when I started the blog has been performing extremely well. I always try to evaluate if what I have been doing make sense, or if I should change my investment strategy. So I decided to check, how well has my starting portfolio done in comparison to my real portfolio? In my real portfolio (as you know) holdings have been sold, trimmed and a lot of new holdings have come into the portfolio. Has all the work of throwing out old investment cases and adding new ones added significant amounts of alpha, or has it even been destructive?
My assumption is that I just hold the starting portfolio from March 18th, 2016. Since one of my holdings, SAFT was bought by Total, that holding is just placed in cash. Because of this cash levels will be high and on average at similar levels to my real portfolio.
So how will this starting portfolio hold up against all my “clever” moves where I took profits in some holdings, cut my losses in others and found new good investment cases?
Somewhat crushing results, where I’m exactly neck and neck with my starting portfolio. Looking at risk adjusted returns I’m slightly slightly ahead. My real portfolio had a standard deviation of 12.4% versus the starting portfolios 13.6%.
How the result was achieved for the Starting Portfolio
Basically the explanation is that I made the mistake of selling two holdings that did extremely well after I sold. Zhengtong Auto and Highpower International. I didn’t have the staying power and bought into other holdings that did well, but not nearly as well as these two. Other than that, I made the right decisions, exiting many of my other holdings like SAS Preference shares, Criteo, Ctrip and MQ holding, all four under-performing quite a lot.
But how ironic to end up in the same place after 1.5 year of struggling to beat the benchmark. Hopefully I at least learned a thing or three, that’s the main point of all the hard work..