Month-End: June 2022

Today’s not only the end of June but the end of the Master’s first year in school and just before we nip off for a month’s holiday and I’ll be turning 40. So it’s a suitable time to take a look back at how our life (both financial and familial) is going.

School’s Out for the Summer!

The Master has finished his first year in school. It’s funny how fast it’s rolled through – I can still remember his first day and now it’s all old hat. He’s done really well in school when it comes to academic achievement. He has got “early” results for all of his P1 assessments and given that only 80% pass for each one, he’s not in the bottom 20% for anything. If that isn’t a reason to be cheerful, I don’t know what is.

On the other hand, he hasn’t fallen into a group/clique/gang at school and is his own man. It could be a sign that he’s independently minded or that he can’t make friends. The Lady and I are always pushing to help his social life and we have a good group of friends who live nearby and go to the school. Maybe we’re doing too much of the heavy-lifting. Or maybe he’s just 5 and what we think now isn’t correct and will be out of date soon anyway.

Holiday!

We’re off on holiday on Saturday, taking the ferry from Newcastle to the Dutch Riviera. I was planning to work from holiday but I’ve managed to discharge most of my duties with a lot of midnight oil over the last few weeks. So, I expect to be largely free from work over the next 4 weeks as the Lady (who has work) and I see if we can go nomad during the 6 week Scottish school holidays.

The Big 40

I’m hitting the half way point of my life – at best you can say that I’m plateauing but the truth is that my best years are behind me. I’m old and getting older.

When we are back from holiday I might have a party. I don’t know yet but I’d of course like to see friends.

Family Finances

Unless you are living under a rock, the world financial system resembles a large balloon which is rapidly leaking air and it might just burst. The air is capital that is being destroyed – like hundreds of billions of speculative value wiped off tech stocks, crypto and the like. What is clear (to me anyway) is that not only is the bubble collapsing but that there is so much volatility in the markets.

I updated my portfolio figures earlier this week and again this morning and the drop was about 4% – and I’m not a HODL investor.

Luckily, I think that my investments and money silos are resilient enough to withstand the manic-depressive invisible hand that’s jerking Elon Musk off.

I’ve avoided tech and crypto for this very reason – but the rise in valuations to crazy values has made a lot of people very rich and pushed up all stocks to some extent. Now that the bubble in deflating/bursting it’ll create carnage.

Income

Income has been good in June with lots coming in from my company and the Lady working steady.

Dividends

Total dividends were in the region of £6,000 for the month. This included £350 for hosting our Ukrainian family. My hydroelectric power plant shares paid an annual return of £690, ISAs £500 and VCTs gave £630. The side-hustle contributed about £3,750 which is probably the high water mark.

Spending

Spending was just under £5,000. Who knows that it all goes on. Some of that spending was related to our Ukrainians and some of it holiday related. We didn’t really spend it on anything big but it’s death by a thousands cuts. Spending is covered by income though which is good.

Assets

Net assets were down by about 0.6% month on month. I’m happy with that given that things like SMT are down over 40% YTD.

We are actually quite flush with cash right now – just as well that markets are falling, it allows us to invest in at a better price. However, since we are going away for a month, we’ll just keep the money sitting idle and I’ll ignore it all for the time being.

Am I Financially Independent?

Based on the monthly spending and net assets – I’m probably borderline. PWR is about 5% but I conservatively value my final salary pension and could cut costs if needs be. Our biggest discretionary spend is probably on doing things like travel, trips, entertainment and all that. That makes life more enjoyable and, is money well spent. At least I feel that I have financial freedom.

The Future

A month in Holland should be great fun. I hope that it’ll a great formative experience for the kids – one like what I had when I was that age. But nostalgia can’t be directly transferred between generations. I’ll try putting all notions of money out of my head for a month and just enjoy life!

Thanks, GFF

7 Comments

  1. My advice on the Netherlands. (i) If you are cycling along and it’s easy that’s because the wind is behind you. Getting back will be a slog. (ii) Do they still do Indonesian Rijsttafel? It’s been ages but we still remember it fondly.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks.
      Luckily I’ll be slowed down by the kids on the bikes – so I’ll be the battery when they run out of power.
      On Indonesian food – besides the peanuts, I really like it and we’ll be going to a restaurant that does it – hopefully the kids will enjoy.

      Like

  2. Congratulations and happy 40th! Back then, I too thought my best years were behind me and then I turned 50 and realised they weren’t. Sometimes I feel older than I was back then but mostly I don’t. Perhaps I’ve somehow I’ve tricked my brain, think younger, be younger! Not in the dressing as mutton way, but in outlook and curiosity!

    Enjoy your month in Holland!

    Liked by 1 person

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