I almost have a green quarter until the rout over the past two weeks! In the end, portfolio hits a new low for the year, wiping out 60% of the 2020-2021’s gain. Unless something miraculous happens in the last quarter, 2022’s performance will rank among the worst annual return since I started investing.

Annual ReturnYearEvent
-39%2008Global Financial Crisis (sub-prime loan)
-22%2022Inflationary pressure, Geo-political uncertainties
-21%2000Dot.com bubble
-21%2004my own poor performance?
-15%2011European Sovereign Debt Crisis
-10%2015China sell-off
-10%2018US-China trade war

There is still some way to go before going below the -39% return during GFC. However, I am pretty sure that I am having my biggest loss now in absolute value. If we sort the above table by year, then you can see that my portfolio has a double digits drop every 3 to 4 years. So negative annual portfolio return is not something unusual. I am hopeful that in a year or two from now, I can say “every crisis is different but it will pass eventually”.

Against the benchmark, I am underperforming both ES3 and SPY which has a YTD performance of +3% and -19% respectively. While it never feels good to underperform, this is only a 9 month figure. If I zoom out to the inception of this portfolio at 2020, then I am outperforming ES3 and on par with SPY for the moment. But more about this when I do my year end review.

I am keeping a close eye on how my portfolio, especially the US sub-portfolio, performs in the next one to two years. If I continue to underperform, I am likely to reduce individual stock selection and buy more index for the US market in the future.

Year to Date Dividend

Dividend received is the soothing medication. No matter how the market values the companies by their share prices, businesses that have performed well, continue to reward shareholders with dividend.

Is the increase in dividend organic or is it due to more money being plonk in?

A look at my transactions show that I have added and sold the following income counters over the past 9 months.

CounterShares boughtCounterShares sold
MPACT2 000CLCT– 8 000
MLT1 200Boustead– 8 000
HRnetGroup18 000KDC– 14 000
FLCT5 000

As seen above, I actually sold more than bought (even in monetary value if you bother to compute). So I would say the increase is due to some companies increasing their dividend this year. Some of the more significant increase (5% and more) are from these companies.

  • AEM
  • HRnetGroup
  • Mapletree Logistics Trust
  • The Hour Glass
  • Microsoft
  • Tractor Supply

I continue to believe that most of companies in my portfolio can sustain their dividend. With an uncertain outlook,I do sense the companies are being cautious too. Hence companies such as UMS, Micro-Mechaincs, Venture have not increased their dividend despite announcing strong results. I am cautiously optimistic that even if they have a weaker performance next year, the companies are able to maintain or at most decrease the dividend slightly.

Top and Bottom 5 Counters

Top 5GainBottom 5Loss
The Hour Glass6%ISRG-48%
Raffles Medical-1%SHOP-74%

It’s no surprise that the top 5 comes from the local bourse and bottom 5 from the US market. As I am still confident of the mid to long term prospect of the companies, I am still holding on to all the above companies. Their performance might come under pressure in the coming year due to the macro uncertainties but I believe they will be able to weather the storm.

Thinking Forward

My largest concern is further escalation of geo-political tension, else I think the rest of the issues can be managed. My stance has not changed. I have liquidity that will last me for at least 3 years, so I will stay invested with my current portfolio. However, I am unlikely to inject more cash into my portfolio. At most, I might make some minor purchases with the dividend from the upcoming quarter.

For CPF investment, I have a bit more flexibility. Besides buying some T-bills, I will also be adding to Lion Global Infinity Stock Index Fund if it continues to drop in the coming months. I am also considering buying some ES3 if STI experiences a significant drop in the last quarter.