Finances & Money Investing

Oooh, I shouldn’t have looked [Investments]

I knew it would be bad, and I have no reason to worry about our market investments because we’re young enough to recoup it all (hopefully), but since I calculate our net worth monthly, I had to look at the damage to my Roth IRA and Rollover IRA.

Here’s a sampling of our investments and their current gain/losses (hint: they’re all losses). Keep in mind, though, that this is the total loss since purchase, not just this year. Some funds/stocks were purchased years ago, while others were purchased more recently:

  • EBAY: -34.02%. Apparently my hunch that people would be using eBay more with the market down was ill-timed with some radical changes enacted by executive management that caused a furor from sellers and buyers alike.
  • PBW: -37.21%. This is a clean energy fund (ETF). It’s been taking a beating all year for some reason, but I’m too lazy to figure out why and too smart to sell when it’s down. I don’t need to “cut my losses” because I bought this for the long haul.
  • GABEX: -8.98%. This is actually one of my better performing funds this year, until the last month. So much for their 5-star Morningstar rating. This is an equities securities fund.
  • JAOSX: -28.51%. This is an overseas fund and was an awesome performer its first year, but tanked this year.
  • NBPTX: -25.02%. This is a mid- to large-cap fund with over 2% invested in Berkshire Hathaway (had to throw that out there). It’s been so-so since I bought it
  • PNRZX: -21.55%. Apparently you can’t even buy this fund anymore through eTrade, but it had its high points last year. The focus is Natural Resources (such as oil, gas and minerals) and of large companies specifically.

So those are the main assets in my Roth IRA, and my total return on my Roth since I opened it in 2005 is -25.66%. Wow, it was up on the positive that high just last year! How much difference a year and a bad economy can make.

My Rollover IRA, which contains my 401(k) investments from 2 past employers, has a similar portfolio mixture and is down -22.63% since inception (around 2005).

It hurts to see how much we lost, but I’ll restate that since we’re still young, we shouldn’t change our investment strategy drastically. The intent was to buy stocks and funds that we would hold at least 3-5 years and then reevaluate. Now is reevaluation time for a few of these funds, and since they’re down, I’m not selling at a loss!

But for those of you closer to retirement, I don’t envy you one bit. I’m sure you’re finding that even the wisest investment decisions have taken a beating and you may even have to postpone retirement for a few more years until you’ve made back some of these losses. Just remember, you can never time the market as an investment strategy and expect to always win.

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Clever Dude


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