Net Worth Update: December 2017

Well 2017 is over; let's hope 2018 is as generous! This past month we again made no new contributions to investment accounts. However, there's a nice chunk of cash in our chequing account ready to be dumped into our Questrade TFSA accounts this coming week!

In other news, I'm in the process of moving our non-registered (Cash/Margin) account from Questrade to Interactive Brokers. The registered accounts will stay at Questrade as I generally love them and their interface is super easy to use.

Like Questrade, IB is another non-affiliated independent brokerage. The decision around this move was mostly logistics and costs.  IB is cheap, powerful, their margin costs are super low, and their currency transactions are nearly at par. It simply works better for my trend investing strategy.

In November, we finished the month with a total of $645,265 in our investment accounts. Despite no new contributions, great investment returns in December propelled our accounts forward once again.

I hope through sharing our real numbers you will be inspired to start saving and investing young—it pays!

The Current Numbers

Here are our current Investment Assets as of the last trading day in December. We invest in TFSAs, RRSPs, and a joint Cash/Margin Account. We use a trend investing strategy to determine what we buy and when we sell our positions.

January 1 of the current year is in brackets to help illustrate the change during the current year. Net Worth Change reflects the total increase/decrease of this past month including new contributions.

The Investment Return is the total year-to-date return on our investment positions, corrected for new contributions at the end of the month. Due to the end-of-month adjustment, the true rate of return on a daily adjustment basis would be slightly different dependent on the intra-month return on the new contribution.

Total Investments:  $670,856  ($441,813)
Net Worth Change:  +$25,591
30x Rule Safe Annual Income:  $22,362  ($14,727)
YTD Investment Return:  35.0%*

Stay tuned as later this month I'll be doing a full recap on 2017 including our income, annual savings rate, investment return fine-tuning, and full financial picture including pension plan stuff.

*After reviewing the calculations, I actually understated my return from January through November on a monthly adjusted basis. This is the corrected number. It would be slightly different if corrected for the exact date of each contribution, the investment purchase, and the returns on that contribution within the month, but I'm not going to get that technical for this purpose.

Background Story

My wife and I are 20-something professionals working in the public sector. We don't earn enormous salaries, but by keeping our spending under control we save a large portion of our incomes each month. Our Investment Assets are 100% the result of our own hard work and the return on investments; we have not received any gifts or won any lotteries.

While we both work in pension careers, for this purpose we don't include pension values in our net worth nor pension contributions in our savings. Our investment assets and contributions are from our net paycheques.

We invest primarily with index ETFs using a trend strategy that I personally developed and maintain. To keep our investing costs as low as possible, I use Questrade as my online brokerage—they do not charge trading commissions for purchasing any ETFs. Where index ETFs are not liquid enough for a position size, I am open to using highly liquid stocks which have a close beta to their sub-index.

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