Monday, December 30, 2019

2019 Xirr Performance & Other Reviews

As we entered the final phase of the end of the 2019 year, it's time to do a review of how the year went for us and what lessons can we learnt from this year.


From a career's perspective, things are looking rather decent with not much progress from the very last I changed job which means things are not taking a big scale as much as I had expected. Still, it was an interesting year because this is the year I've changed industry and met variety of people in the industry which I would have never met had I remained in my earlier role.

The good thing about the change is it also allows me to look at a different lense on a totally new perspective on start up, unicorn companies and VCs and this will come in a lot handy when analysing the Nasdaq companies for me in the future.


Health on a personal front was excellent this year.

I started eating healthier intake of food such as kale and strawberry for breakfast and less on sugar intake in particular.

I also had time to instil more discipline on exercise and had my children followed me as well.

Because of this, the number of times I fell sick during the year was much lesser compared to the past and this will be a good foundation to continue in the 2020 ahead.


This is one aspect which we deliberately made it a bit of struggle.

Cash flow was a lot tighter this year than the previous year as we had invested most of the cash for our hard cash down-payment for our new house and also made some payment for the hospital bills we incurred.

Because of this, there is very little cashflow that is available for stock investment and hence my focus will be on generating more capital again in the next few years to come through my job.

For some reason, this feels very much like when I had started my first job as a fresh grad some 10-12 years ago, except the difference now we have two homes on hand.

Stock Performance

Stock performance was a little lackluster this year especially in the 2H of the year after I sold off my Vicom and NetLink Trust stakes in Aug.

The first half of the year was exceptionally great as my biggest position Vicom gained 19.2% when I sold all of them at an average price of $7.15. Had I hold it until today, I would have been able to make more as Vicom is currently at $7.77 but it is incredibly difficult to predict.

Since then, the proceeds have gone to other investments that I made in DBS (short), Starhub (short), HK Land, all of which has not really took off in the 2H.

Because of this, the return this year has slightly dipped during the 2H of the year, though still outperform the larger market at 17.4%, as compared to 8.9% for the STI ETF. 

Against, the US market though, it has underperformed with all 3 major indexes gaining more than 20% in 2019.

The next few years is likely to be a rebuilding process for me again and I am certainly hoping that market dips along the way would look to enhance that process faster.

I am also likely to engage the global companies more, especially tech companies in the US, given my current competencies in these areas have widen than before so it will be interesting to have them more diversified into my portfolio wealth building.

Here's wishing every readers of this blog a Merry Xmas and a happy new year 2020 ahead!

Thanks for reading.

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  1. Hi, with your obvious interest in equity investment and also a long term track record of investing in this space, I am curious as to why you decided to put all your capital into another property instead. You are one of the few people who made money in 2015 and 2018 where most lost money. Your returns on equity investing are likely higher than any future capital gain on property and you now have huge concentrations risk in one asset class where there is a high probability of oversupply in the next few years. So why do it? Were you seduced into thinking that property returns in the future will be like the past, we are at very different stages of evolution and rental yield has fallen so much it hardly covers costs and interest.

    1. Hi Anony

      I've detailed them in my article here (

      It's for personal reasons, not relating to returns.

  2. The fact that you have 2 properties at this age is amazing! Best of luck in 2020!

    1. Singaporeans are too property obsessed. Our private property prices are already the second highest in the world after Hong Kong and see what has happened to Hong Kong as a result. The past is not the future. Property prices in Singapore will not go up like in the past unless we are willing to accept a large population increase with native Singaporeans being the minority. So future upside is limited. With sufficient capital, anyone can buy a property but few can invest as well as B can in equities, beating property returns by a wide margin.

    2. Hi MIM

      Happy new year.

      Thanks, but I think most people are probably doing better, have a great 2020 ahead.


    Hi, I've been following your portfolio and noted you were one of those that had a huge warchest. Despite holding so much cash, you managed to outperform the market. Just wondering, is your XIRR based on your entire portfolio including the warchest or is it only the equity returns?

    1. Hi

      Only equity returns.

      I don't usually hold large warchest over a long period of time. I allocate them through buy and sell frequently.

  4. your returns put 99% of fund managers to shame, if indeed such are your returns. you should be a fund manager. cheers.

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