Wednesday 29 May 2019

Lagging my 'stretch' benchmark

One 'benchmark' that I use for evaluating how well I am doing at increasing my net worth is the cut-off amount for the annual 'rich list' of the 200 wealthiest Australians - I compare my NW to 1% of the cut-off figure. The latest 'rich list' will come out this Friday, but they have already announced that the cut-off amount for being included in the list has increased to A$472m this year. So my 'benchmark' aspirational figure is A$4.72m for the end of 2018 (the list takes several months to compile, so I compare the annual figure to my previous year-end NW estimate).

Unfortunately my NW has lagged this benchmark during 2018. I'm guessing this is mostly due to:

1. A large fraction of my NW is tied up in our home, so the deflation of the Sydney (and Australian) residential real estate bubble has had a major negative impact on my net worth

2. Although the exact make up of the 'rich list' won't be known until Friday, looking at some of the names that have dropped out of the 'top 200' suggest that many traditionally rich families, while doing OK during 2018, were surpassed by the rapidly rising fortunes of several people involved in the Australia 'tech' industry. The founders of Atlassian are one example.

I don't expect 2019-2020 will be particularly good for my NW either, as I will be spending quite a bit of my cashflow on my uni studies and the running costs of my new financial planning business. Hopefully by the time I finish off my masters degree at the end of 2020 (or early 2021) my business income will at least be sufficient to cover running costs (even if I'm not still not drawing any 'salary' from the business). In 2021 the business will either be running profitably, or I'll shut it down. And in 2021 if I enrol in a PhD in financial planning the uni fees may be covered by RTP (research training program) funding.

If my business does start to generate profits from 2021 onwards, I may start to make some progress relative to the 'rich 200' benchmark.

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