Wednesday 1 April 2020

Putting a foot into the water

Yesterday I decided to invest a bit more in the market, buying about $5K worth of each of the ETFs on my 'list' via my Commsec margin lending account. The total invested was less than the $50K I'd put into the Commsec ML account via a  drawn down on my St George portfolio loan, so there isn't any prospect of getting a margin call, regardless of how badly the market performs in future. So although I'm investing using borrowed funds, it isn't quite as risky as a straight out margin loan.

Anyhow, after the orders were filled yesterday, my current portfolio of securities held on my Commsec and Leveraged Equities ML accounts is:

This snapshot doesn't include the managed fund investments held on my St George ML account or the CFS Geared unlisted fund investment that is also on my Commsec ML account (those were included in an earlier post), as my yahoo portfolio tracker only includes my ETF and share investments.

I'll see how the local and US stock markets performs over the next few weeks/months before deciding whether to increase my investments. I still suspect that the markets have reacted to the various economic stimulus packages and rate cuts in a way that would be rational if this was a financial/economic crisis alone, but may not be applicable to the current situation. The medical aspect of this current crisis may well mean that people don't get back to 'business as normal' even after  governments ease the current 'lock down' style restrictions. After all, most of the 'social distancing' and other regulations that have had an immediate economic impact are intended to 'flatten the curve' and allow ICU capability/staffing in hospitals to be ramped up to cope with an influx of Covid-19 patients over a longer time period. When restrictions are eased there is likely to be a 'second peak' of even more cases and deaths than before, but at a time when hospitals are better prepared to cope with the need for ICU treatments. So, even if 'social distancing' rules have been eased, it may not restore economic and social activity to previous levels if the populace is still concerned about the levels of Covid-19 cases and risk of serious illness. After all, by the time restrictions are eased, while some people may be very keen to get back to 'normal life' and socialise, others may have got used to the 'new normal' and continue to work from home, avoid shopping and eating out, etc. So the economic recovery may be quite slow once the current 'lock down' period has passed. Still, one has to start investing again at some point, so when the market has rebounded about 10% from the recents lows, but is still about 35% below its February highs, it is probably a reasonable time to start making some investments for the 'long term'. After all, even the Great Depression was a 'buying opportunity' when one views market returns over the scale of decades rather than weeks, months or even years...

Then again, as John Maynard Keynes famously quipped "In the long run we are all dead", so this viewpoint is probably more applicable to DS1 and DS2 than myself ;)

Subscribe to Enough Wealth. Copyright 2006-2020

No comments: