Investing, News

Stockspot performance update: December 2019

Here’s a review of 2019 at Stockspot, our biggest year yet for client returns, new articles, research and product releases.

Stockspot performance returns

The Stockspot Portfolios delivered exceptional returns for our clients in 2019 ranging from 13.9% to 19.9% after fees. This in a year when interest rates in Australia were cut below 1% and most savers weren’t able to get much more than 2% in the bank or term deposits.

1 year3 years (p.a.)5 years (p.a.)Total return
(high growth)
(moderately conservative)

Returns as of 31 December 2019 after fees

It’s our sixth straight year of positive returns across all of our investment strategies. We’ve achieved these returns while taking roughly half the risk of only owning Australian shares because we’re diversified into global shares, bonds and gold.

All 5 of the assets we invest in performed well in 2019. In addition, the index ETFs we’ve selected for clients performed better than the majority of other funds available, including managed funds and Listed Investment Companies (LICs)

The Australian share market enjoyed its best year in a decade. Our Australian shares ETF rose 25% in 12 months. The big return for Australian shares in 2019 came after a year when Australian shares generated negative returns in 2018.

If you take the average of the last 2 years you get close to the long term typical return of around 10% p.a. from Australian shares. It’s an excellent example of why you need to stay invested through inevitable bad years in order to enjoy the good ones. 

The market moves over the last 2 years also point to the benefit of dollar cost averaging. Stockspot clients who ignored the negative news headlines at the end of 2018 and added to their portfolios did very well in 2019 as the market returned to its long term trend upwards.

Historically the share market has risen in 7 of every 10 years so it’s important to not panic in years when it’s down. Being diversified into defensive assets like bonds and gold also helps to keep you invested through the inevitable tough years like 2018 and is what kept all of our portfolios positive that year.

Australian and US share markets both reached new all time highs in 2019. We explored whether it’s sensible to be buying when the market hits all time highs. The results even surprised us!

What does 2020 have in store?

We don’t have the answer, nor does anybody. That’s why you’re best to ignore share market predictions, particularly ones from people predicting a crash. JP Morgan recently published a chart showing how much money you would have lost if you had followed the predictions of ‘market experts’ who predicted a crash in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. The end result – you could have lost up to 60% by listening to these ‘market experts’.

Source: JP Morgan

It’s a good reminder of why we ignore market predictions. Instead our portfolios are prepared for any market environment by being well diversified, keeping costs low and keeping your portfolio rebalancing on autopilot to avoid behavioural mistakes and make the most of market dips.

Top articles of the year

Investor education is an important brand value to Stockspot. Our aim is to help more Australians understand investing and their personal finances a little bit better than they did the day before.

That’s why we’re proud to have published over 90 blog articles in 2019  which was our most on record. We wrote many to answer common client questions like “When is the best time to invest?”, What’s the difference between a dividend and a distribution?” and “Should I pay down my mortgage or invest?.  

Below are some of the most popular articles each month of 2019 in case you missed them. We’ve also made our annual Investor Handbook available to download.

Download our most popular articles for 2019.

We look forward to another great year in 2020. We’ll be releasing new dashboard and app features throughout the year, continuing to improve the Stockspot client experience and writing plenty of investing articles for our blog and newsletter. 

Thanks for trusting Stockspot on your investment journey. 

Founder and CEO

Chris has been vocal in calling out the industry 'Fat Cats' and is known for telling it as it is. He was an inaugural member of two Advisory Committees for the industry regulator ASIC, and was previously a fund manager at UBS. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Co-op Scholarship) from UNSW.

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