My first investment blog post was nearly 2 years ago now. I wrote that after buying shares in Premier foods for 4p each. The company was heavily in debt, but the shares went to 18p before a 1 for 10 share swap. They are still at 129.59 at the time of writing. That’s a return of over 220% so far!
If you’re a regular reader then you know I opened an account with Zopa in 2011. It doesn’t make me a fortune, but the return has been more than from the banks. The current return for investing over 3 years is about 4.5% after fees. On the savings the average household in the UK has, that’s about £90 a year.
According to the ONS, we are now much happier, cheered up by the Olympics and the Jubilee last year. Married couples are happier than single people, apparently. I can imagine some graduate researcher knocking the door of an unmarried mother in the Black Country and asking if she’s happy, just after she’d applied the Anusol to her latest tattoo.
I watched a programme on TV last night about the Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts. It was all very posh and the artists that were accepted were so privileged and excited. There wasn’t an Ant-and-Dec accent in the house. The Black Country didn’t seem to be represented either…
The river in the picture is the River Tame. This photo was taken last May, but I drove past there yesterday and the flowers are just starting to bloom again. They seem to grow all along the Tame, I’ve seen them at Walsall and Dudley.
This week George Osborne told the world that the government wants to sell it’s shares in Royal Bank of Scotland, signalling intent to dump billion of pounds worth on the stock market. This was done to coincide with the bank announcing huge ‘paper’ losses. Not surprisingly the banks share price tanked on the stock market and so did Lloyd’s Banking Group. Well done George…
Walsall Art Gallery was in the news this week, they spent £471,000 on a bid to bring the Turner prize to Walsall. No, they didn’t get it; it went to Glasgow. They could always spend a few quid giving me an exhibition. I’ll send them some pictures to print, frame and put in the gallery. If they are throwing money around, why not throw it at someone local? (more…)
We all complain about our lives, but we do little to try to change them. I was reminded the other day that there are billions of people worse off than me. Many people my age can’t even switch a computer on, let alone type a blog and run a website. I have known things to be much worse than they are now. 2008 was a bad year and I resolved to make 2009, a lot better. I wrote a novel!
We hear a lot about so called ‘safe havens’ for investment funds. The United States was a ‘safe haven’ for many US investors and the UK has seemed a safe investment for many funds compared to Europe. It’s not just Government bonds that are seen as ‘safe havens’ by investment fund managers, but blue chip shares too.
I went to Aldi yesterday in search of a few bargains. I particularly wanted fruit and veg, I had run out after the long Bank Holiday. Recent research has implicated infections as the cause of even more serious diseases and so it’s important to get vitamins and minerals. I think antioxidants like vitamin C are important. I managed to get broccoli, for 49p; that’s usually on offer. I also have the grapes, 1.29 for 500 grams. I find that there isn’t a great choice of meat and often the shelves need restocking. I do pass Asda on the way back though and so could pop in there too. I have a few things from Asda (more…)
Buying in a bear market
When there are more sellers than buyers in the market, traders call it a bear market and when the buyers outnumber the sellers, they call it a bull market. This appears to be a bear market; but the government is buying back it’s bonds by ‘printing’ money. What will the financial institutions do with the new money they get from selling bonds? I think they are buying shares in the markets again but being very selective. I have bought shares in another company that is making a loss; the Royal Bank of Scotland Group. (more…)