After goodness knows how many weeks of in essence just parking my butt on the sofa, I am at last hitting the keyboard once again and starting on a blog. It is quite weird and I feel like I can hardly type (usually I can sort of touch-type a little but not with much speed and constantly having to tap the ‘Backspace’ key because of the errors that emerge on my screen) but my plan is to just ease myself back into it and to type what I can tonight (it is late in the evening on Tuesday 29th December) and then pick up the remains over the next couple of nights before it goes live. Unless I get it all done tonight of course !!
I don’t intend this to be a long blog but I am just heading forth with it and have no particular plan but I just want to get back in the habit. Incredibly this is most likely the longest spell I have had of not typing anything after writing WheelieBlogs for over 6 years; and it has been sort of nice not doing anything but it is a false world and there are loads of blogs in my head that need getting down on electronic paper and out into the big wide world.
I always do a ‘Wheelie’s Xmas Message’ sort of thing but clearly this year I am a bit late so I have dropped the Xmas tag and it will be just a New Year Message. That’s fine and it is useful for me to help get me back in the swing of things gently. In case you do not know, I have had a couple of health bits of aggravation which started with me essentially being on the verge of snuffing it but it then turned out that it was ‘just’ a bladder infection and the Emergency Doctor who had the pleasure of attending Wheelie Towers, gave me some seriously heavy-duty Horse Pills to sort it out.
Almost needless to say, the Horse Antibiotics were not enough for my particular nasty bug and within a few days I could tell the Infection was coming back. Just in the nick of time I spoke to my GP on the day before Xmas Eve (Xmas Eve, Eve) and of course they had no record of what the Horse Pills were (don’t ask !!) and I ended up getting MacroBID (sounds like a big takeover !!) which is pretty much the go-to Antibiotic of choice for Quacks these days. I have nearly completed the course and they seem to have helped a bit but I get a horrible feeling (literally) that I will need more to finish the bug off.
On top of this I also managed to be a total numpty and to cut my hip when transferring out of my wheelchair late one night. In all honesty that has been the bigger problem because once the Horse Pills were being sloshed down, my stomach area seemed better and I could have been up and about but the cut was right on my left hip where I sit in my wheelchair, and keeping pressure on there would have caused severe pressure sore problems. So I had little choice but to get on the sofa and keep my hip in the air – very uncomfortable.
I managed to record one or two ‘Twin Petes Podcasts’ but I couldn’t use my laptop easily and I decided to take the time to just do nothing and to not write at all and just to get myself fixed. Oh, before I forget, that Blog Article I was on about for a Magazine emerged the other day and you can find it at the link below. The Editor was going to chop it a lot because it was very long but on reading it I don’t think he has changed it all that much and I am very pleased with the Article that went out – see what you think:
You want page 38 and I think that link takes you to it. The plan is to issue this as an Educational Blog on my website in a few months time.
On the subject of forthcoming blogs, once this one is out I plan to write the ‘Scores on the Doors 2020’ which as always will be a comprehensive review of how my Portfolios have done; and it will include lots of other stuff like the fact I have only spent about £16k this year on my living expenses (not enough beer due to pandemic !!) and the performance of things like my Prudential ‘With Profits’ Fund which has been stunning. If you click on the ‘Category’ ‘Scores on the Doors’ on my Educational Blogs page, then you should find plenty of examples of the layout I will follow from previous years.
On that subject of performance, I am really happy with how 2020 has turned out and I have made a surprisingly large amount of £££££s when I consider the utter smashing that the Markets got back in March/April and the recovery since has been truly incredible. I have no doubt that a lot of people will have moved into cash and not been able to get back in fast enough to take advantage of a lot of the rally – and no doubt many will still be sat on a lot of cash. I know loads of my mates on Twitter etc. have done really well this year and it is quite miraculous. Anyone who has managed to come out of this year in good shape with a Portfolio that might be breakeven or down a little, shouldn’t be too upset and that is actually a creditable outcome when we consider the drama that has been going on.
My ‘Normal Trading ISA’ (see my ‘Portfolios’ page for details on my pots) has done pretty decently and my Spreadbetting Account has done nicely (although as always it is never quite as good as I would like !!) but I think my Income Portfolio will be just slightly down on the year. Much of that will be due to Dividends being cancelled and the performance of the Bank I hold, HSBA, and probably RDSB which got hit a lot. Other than that, Stocks like IGG, TEP and AZN have done very well so it might all balance out quite well. In consideration of the fact it is a ‘do nothing’ Portfolio I am not too upset with the likely performance. In addition, I have not been reinvesting in it this year which will have dragged on the performance a little I suspect. I will know in a couple of days how it has done !!
Oh yes, back on the Blog Slate – after the Scores on the Doors 2020, I intend to start a couple of ‘Buy Rationale’ Blogs which are for LOK and BAR (see my ‘Trades’ page for more details) and then I have something half written which I need to pick up again and figure out what it is all about and to get it done. In all honesty I have totally forgotten what the subject matter is but I am sure it is something with an Educational bent.
Earlier today on Twitter I wrote some text about how I had been really fired up for 2020 as we went into January and of course then the Covid whacked everything hard and sort of derailed my intentions – although in truth I am rather pleased because it enabled me to test my Hedging Approach in a real live battle and I am extremely happy about the outcome and it certainly proved that my obsession is built on strong foundations.
For several years my fascination with Hedging caused me (for several reasons) to take my eye off the ball a bit with my Stocks and I know my Yearly Performance suffered as a result. Having now got my Hedging to a situation where it works and I am controlling the way it plays out, I am able to refocus on my Stocks and for 2021 I am expecting good things as my knowledge and experience of various different Portfolio Management skillsets gets deployed in anger and with an attitude of making good money as easily and as low risk as possible. I am pretty sure I have that figured out.
I am really pleased with how the Twin Petes Investing Podcasts are developing and I am confident we have a format for them now that Listeners are really enjoying and I see it as a very useful and sort of intimate way of getting information across to WD Readers and Followers, rather than just good old-fashioned text. We have plenty of ideas of how to develop the Podcasts and Listeners will most likely experience several of these as 2021 progresses – it is a fun thing to do and the response from Listeners has been totally knock-out. Thank you so much for taking the time to listen to these Podcasts and for all your support.
I won’t go into the gory details, but in the last 6 months I have been talking a lot to a Specialist around my daily routines and the changes we have made should give me significant health benefits as time goes forwards. It should mean I have a bit more time and I am less stressed with my health and that can only be a good thing for me personally but also for the whole WD thing because I should have more time to devote to it. In theory it should mean more time for my Investing activities which might help my performance and it should also give more time for my life outside of Investing etc.
After such a weird year with the C19 stuff and with my own health just being pretty annoying for probably 2.5 years now, I am having serious thoughts about 2021 and what I will do. One huge change might be that I will do nothing in the Jardin De Wheelie, which normally has lots of spuds, tomatoes, courgettes, lettuces etc. and I might leave it ‘fallow’ and give the land a year off. I really haven’t decided but I just fancy having freedom this year from the strains and demands of the garden (watering is particularly time consuming and a bit annoying) and doing more stuff like wheeling round to the local coffee shop and going to Virginia Water and wheeling around there which is rather lovely and good for me in terms of exercise. I also have 2 cars to enjoy !!
Hopefully I will get some strawberries with very little effort.
Something I really want to do loads more of is to be in The White Hart at Winkfield on an extremely regular basis and I am sure loads of mates I know through Twitter etc. will not need much arm twisting to get them to join me. As per that DIY Investing Magazine article, I intend to organise another WheelieBash and it would be wicked if we get the biggest one ever and I am sure after this year lots of people will be eager to come along.
With the tweaks I made to how often I put blogs out, with a regular Weekend Blog and then an Educational one every couple of weeks or so, I think I have got the demands of writing on me about right and I will continue in that vein in 2021. We will keep doing the Podcasts every 2 weeks and of course I will be Tweeting a fair bit no doubt. I would like to engage more on Twitter like in the old days but I find the demands on my time are pretty horrendous and I know Readers/Followers appreciate this. Of course my DMs are open so feel free to contact me at any time – I won’t be quick at responding, but I will respond.
So that just leaves me to say a huge THANK YOU for your continuing support and also for bearing with me whilst my health has been somewhat sub-optimal. Good luck for 2021 and fingers crossed we will get this C19 crud out of the way and we can all get on with the important business of living our lives to the fullest extent !!
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