Thursday, January 11, 2018

Projection for 2018

My fair weather forecast for 2018 is a net worth gain of about AUD 250k to reach about AUD 2.3 million. It is based on expected salaries and retirement contributions, an increase in spending of 6% and an 8% rate of return on investments.

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

ASX200 Alpha and Beta

Another new chart:

This is based on regressing my returns in excess of the RBA cash rate on the ASX200 returns in excess of the cash rate using 36 months of data. Clearly there is a negative correlation between alpha and beta. In recent years beta is less than one and alpha greater than one. Alpha was very negative during the financial crisis and there are some wild swings before that. The tech crash also had hugely negative alpha. Looks like I outperform in bull markets and underperform in bear markets but that it isn't all just due to too much leverage.

Saturday, January 06, 2018

Annual Report 2017: Graphs

So here is how the last year looks on a graph in the context of everything since 1996:

The blue line is the sum of the other three lines. Medium term balance is liquid assets, the green line is retirement accounts. Both of these and housing equity increased. Markets performed well this year and we saved more.

This graph provides a slightly different view, breaking things down according to savings and profits. I don't break down housing equity into the two components as it's not worth it yet...

Though we are making savings outside of retirement accounts and housing equity - the blue line is rising - the slope is shallower than before we bought a house and had a baby but steeper than last year. So, a lot of this year's increase came from profits. In the long run we have done much better with retirement than with current accounts in terms of profits. Half of our retirement accounts are now made up of profits and half from contributions.

The next graph shows actual monthly non-retirement savings since 1996 and a 12 month moving average:

I have truncated the axis at -$15k - we dissaved $53k in January and $118k in February 2015 as we bought the house. After the big transfer of savings to buy the house, savings recovered, but to a lower level than in recent years. In the past year they have edged back up again to an average of $5k per month, though they are very volatile.

Friday, January 05, 2018

Housing Saving

A new chart - monthly housing saving:

It's mostly mortgage principal payments. Initially, we made our downpayment in two payments over two months. I've truncated the scale at $10,000 - saving in January 2015 was $37k and in February 2015 $115k. The main interesting thing on the graph is the upward trend over time. This reflects the increasing money in our offset account and the resulting lower interest payments. As a result, the part of our mortgage payments that's reducing the principal increases over time. The periodic spikes are the three mortgage payment months - we make a mortgage payment every two weeks. The red line is a 12 month moving average.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

Annual Accounts 2017

This is our annual account - the sum of each of the monthly accounts I've posted - in Australian Dollars (one Aussie Dollar is currently 78 US cents - see accounts in USD at the end of this post). First a reminder about how these accounts are laid out: Current account is all non-retirement accounts and housing account income and spending. Then the other two are fairly self-explanatory. But housing spending only includes mortgage interest. Property taxes etc. are included in the current account. There is not a lot of logic to this except the "transfer to housing" is measured using the transfer from our checking account to our mortgage account. Current other income is reported after tax, while investment income is reported pre-tax. Net tax on investment income then gets subtracted from current income as our annual tax refund or extra payment gets included there. Retirement investment income gets reported pre-tax too while retirement contributions are after tax. For retirement accounts, "tax credits" is the imputed tax on investment earnings which is used to compute pre-tax earnings from the actual received amounts. For non-retirement accounts, "tax credits" are actual franking credits received on Australian dividends and the tax withheld on foreign investment income. Both of these are included in the pre-tax earning but are not actually received month to month as cash.... Finally, "core expenditure" for housing is the actual mortgage interest we paid. "expenditure" adds back how much interest we saved by keeping money in our offset account. We include that saved interest in the current account as the earnings of that pile of cash. That virtual earning needs to be spent somewhere to balance the accounts... It is also included in the "transfer to housing". Our actual mortgage payments were less than the number reported by the $8k in saved interest. For current accounts "core expenditure" takes out business expenses that will be refunded by our employers and some one-off expenditures. This year, I think there are none of those one-off expenditures. Oh, "saving" is the difference between "other income" net of transfers to other columns and spending in that column, while "change in net worth" also includes the investment income.

We earned $201k after tax in salary, business related refunds, medical payment refunds, tax refunds etc. We earned (pre-tax including unrealised capital gains) $107k on non-retirement account investments. Both of those numbers were up strongly from last year as Moominmama went back to work and investment markets performed very strongly in the first year of the Trump Administration. Total current after tax income was $308k. Including mortgage interest we spent $101 up 7.5% from last year.

$7.6k of the current investment income was tax credits, which actually was down on last year. Finally, we transferred $50k in mortgage payments (and virtual saved interest) to the housing account. The change in current net worth, was therefore $160k. Looking at just saving from non-investment income, we saved $60k. Both these numbers were up strongly from last year.

The retirement account is a bit simpler. We made $47k in after tax contributions and the value rose by an estimated additional $126k in pre tax returns. $15k was the estimated tax on that and so the increase in net worth was $158k. Taxes are just estimated because all we get to see is the after tax returns. I do this exercise to make retirement and non-retirement returns comparable.

Finally, the housing account. We spent $14k on mortgage interest. We would have paid $23k in mortgage interest if we didn't have an offset account. I estimate our house is worth $2k more than I did last year based on recent sales in our neighbourhood. After counting the transfer of $50k into the housing account housing equity increased $31k of which $27k was due to paying off principal on our mortgage.

In total net worth increased by $350k, $135k of which was saving from non-investment sources. Comparing 2017's accounts with the 2016's, we saved 34% more and net worth increased by 61% more. Total after tax income was almost half a million dollars, up 52% on last year. It is hard to get my head around that number and reconcile it with our fairly modest lifestyle. Of course, most of it was earned in retirement and non-retirement investment accounts and it includes a lot of notional unrealized capital gains. In 2008 we had a net loss of $150k...

Here are the same accounts expressed in US Dollars:

Because of exchange rate movements "non-core" investment earnings don't translate from one set of accounts to the other at a regular exchange rate. The "core investment earnings" takes out that exchange rate movement.

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

December 2017 Report

The optimistic annual projection was AUD 2 million. We exceeded this, reaching AUD 2.064 million at the end of this month. I'll do an annual report soon.

Here are our monthly accounts (in AUD):

"Current other income" consisted entirely of salaries (after tax) this month and was $13.1k. Spending (not counting our mortgage) was moderat at $6.2k. After deducting the mortgage payment of $4.0k (which includes implicit interest saving due to our offset account - the actual mortgage payment was about $994 less than this), we saved $2.9k on the current account and added $2.2k in housing equity. Retirement contributions were $3.1k. Net saving was, therefore, $8.2k across the board.

The Australian Dollar rose from USD 0.7571 to USD 0.7813. The ASX 200 gained 1.81%, the MSCI World Index gained 1.65%, and the S&P 500 1.11%. All these are total returns including dividends. We gained 1.43% in Australian Dollar terms and 4.67% in US Dollar terms. So, we slightly underperformed the Australian market and strongly outperformed international markets because of the rise in the Australian Dollar against the US Dollar.

The best performer in dollar terms was the Colonial First State Geared Share Fund, gaining $9.2k followed by Colonial First State Developing Companies, which gained $4.5k. Generation Global Share FUnd was the worst performer losing $0.3k because of the fall in the US Dollar against the Australian Dollar. Australian Small Cap stocks was the best performing asset class in percentage terms, gaining 3.54% followed by Commodities at 2.89%. Private equity was the worst performing asset class, but it still gained 0.45%.

As a result of all this, net worth rose AUD 32k to $2.064 million or rose USD 74k to USD 1.613 million.