December 2011 Investment Comparison Report (+0.36%)

Jan 10, 2012 @ 10:13 am by EMS

We beat our benchmark of VTI in December 2011 by .36%.  Our portfolio increased in value by 1.74% while VTI increased 1.38%.

Our stock performance for 2011 is summarized in the below table:


So, we only beat our comparison index in one-half of the months.  However, if you sum up the totals, we managed to stay ahead over the entire year by .67%.  October was our best stock performance month, with a gain of over 8%.   Likewise, September was the worst month with a 6.26% decline in investment value.  We did improve significantly from when I started keeping track of these values in 2010.  In that year, we trailed the VTI index by .12%, so 2011’s performance did beat that by nearly three-fourths of a percent.

2011 Wrap Up

Jan 03, 2012 @ 01:07 pm by EMS

In comparing 2011 with previous year’s total net worth gains, I was surprised to see that 2011 was our second worst year in net worth change.  I then went back and compared our yearly performance with our stock market comparison index (VTI), and saw that the large increases we had seen in past years had more to do with market performance than I initially believed:

So even through the market was basically flat in 2011, we still increased our net worth by almost $30,000.

I also went back to look at our 2011 spending vs. 2010 spending and found the numbers to be comparable.  There were a few places where we overspent, but in most of the cases, we managed to decrease our spending over the year, especially in groceries and dining costs.

All in all, I think 2011 was a good year financially.  Much more importantly, we’ve been blessed with good health, good friends, and good family.

Our financial plans for 2012 are basically to stay the course.  Our immediate goal is to pay down the credit card charges that we encountered over the holidays and then begin paying down the home mortgage again until we hit that 2034 pay-off date again.  I think we can reach that goal in 2012 pending no more refinances and a little concerted effort.  The only major expense that I can foresee in the upcoming 12 months is the need for a new (used) vehicle, as our 2004 minivan will soon hit 150,000 miles.  We’ve been saving for a sizable down payment for this anticipated expense, so we’ll be ready when the time comes, which hopefully won’t be until November or December of this year.



December 2011 Net Worth Report (+$2,584)

Jan 02, 2012 @ 11:15 am by EMS

Although December was by far our most expensive month due to the holidays and a new computer purchase, as well as over $1,000 deducted for vehicle depreciation, we managed to post a decent net worth increase.  Our investments did very well and beat the market’s overall performance by a fair amount.  December was also a “3 paycheck month” for my wife, and that contributed a good bit towards the increase as well.

I’ll have a year end post to summarize progress made in 2011 and identify goals for 2012 posted in the near future, but overall, it’s been a good year financially.  We made some progress on our goals and even through we didn’t get our home mortgage paid down as much as I had hoped (partly due to the refinance in October), I think that goal is attainable in 2012.

Net Worth Report December 2011

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