1 Year Return On My $150,000 Portfolio

It is now September 8th, 2014 and that makes it one full year since I bought the first stock (CHL) for my $150,000 portfolio. Now is the time to figure out what my return for the year was and you can see those numbers below. 

Starting Value = $150,000

Value 1 Year Later = $165,417 (this value includes dividends)

1 Year return = 10.28%

The formula used to calculate the percentage is:

return %

$150,000 Portfolio

My portfolio had a rough start as my China Mobile purchase immediately went down from the purchase price of $56.15 to the mid $40’s. But rather than sell, I stuck with the stock and now have a nice gain to show for it. I then bought Hewlett Packard and Apple in December and those were the stocks that brought it out of the red and into the black for good

I’ve Had A LARGE Amount Of Cash For Much Of The Year

I still have over $50,000 in cash so only 2/3 of my money is in stocks at the moment. Additionally, throughout the just completed one year period, most of the time I had even more than that in cash so I am very happy with the total return. Cash right now is making close to 0% so that is not benefitting me in any way. But, I don’t want to put everything in the market right now.

The stock market keeps pushing to new highs and that has made me weary from the very beginning. It has definitely affected how much of my money I wanted to put in stocks and how much I wanted to keep on the side, just in case the market started to go down.

What Should You Do? Keep Cash Or Go All In With Stocks?

What you decide to do or not do in regards to how much to have in stocks and how much to keep in cash will depend on you. That means it depends on your age (amount of years you have to invest), the amount of money you have to invest, your risk tolerance, and just generally how comfortable you feel having money in the stock market.

For some people with a high risk tolerance, they are fine with everything being in stocks and they are a young enough age that they can wait out any market downturns. For other people though, they might choose to be more conservative and have a percentage in cash that makes them sleep better at night. It is totally up to you what you decide is best for you and discussing such matters with a financial planner might be advisable if you have doubts.

Like I always say though, the first step is to just get started. Most people never learn anything about investing their money and know nothing about the stock market. That is their loss. It is important that you learn all you can and take control of your own finances so you don’t have to rely on someone else who you might not even know or trust. Start slow, but do get started! 

12 Responses to “1 Year Return On My $150,000 Portfolio”

  1. max says:

    Hi Bruce,
    I have asked you some questions in some other posts, but somehow I cant find out those posts/pages?
    Is there any way for you to look for and help me get back on track?

    Appreciate your help!

  2. New Investor says:

    Your one year return of 10.28% compared with S&P 500 Index 2013 gain of 29.60 % seems small. What do you think?

    • Bruce Alan says:

      New Investor,
      1) my gain is from September 9, 2013 to September 8, 2014 which is a very different time period than the S&P gain you quote.
      2) for much of the history of my portfolio, I have had less than 50% of it in stocks. The rest in cash that pays nothing. Like right now I have more than half of it in cash.

      So yes, as I explained in my article, I am very pleased with my gain.

      • New Investor says:

        I understand we are not comparing exactly the same period. I am glad that you are happy with your return. I just want to point out that your 10.28% return is because of a bull market but not your stock pick. One investing fundamental is diversification which you are obviously lacking in your portfolio. Good luck.

        • Bruce Alan says:

          Your comment did not show that you understood different time periods were involved. I have also never talked about diversification and I have never pretended that this portfolio has any. I’m sorry that you are so offended by this website.

          • New Investor says:

            I am not offended by your web site at all. This is just an observation I happen to see. I think the whole point of your web site is to encourage people investing in stocks. I am simply stating the fundamental of investing. Hopefully it will provide some good investing ideas for new investors.

  3. Linda says:

    I heard google stock price is high. It seems to be a leader in innovation. Have you considered buying its stocks?

  4. Stacey Litberg says:

    Aloha Bruce, I find you and your site intriguing and informative. I am definitely interested to see what else you are going to do with that initial $150K. I am also curious about your educational background and interested in hearing about what you do with the rest of you day. Ok, just call me “Curious George.”

  5. Clinton says:

    Do you think a return of 10% on 150,000 is much compared to what that amount could do for you in your own business venture? I think making 15K or more by wisely investing your money is great! Just wondering if you have put energy into seeing what the return could be starting your own small business like a franchise of some sorts.

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