Friday, May 11, 2007

Investing success (or not) - new feature

Today I'm going to start a new regular feature called "Investing success (or not)." On days where significant things happen in my portfolio, I'll write about it. I may also share updates on the apartment building in this new feature.

With this blog, I want to steer young people (and middle-aged folks too, if you haven't started) towards saving and investing. There are plenty of articles to write about that subject. But I also want to communicate with investors that invest primarily in mutual funds, or even money market funds. I am not recommending the stocks that I own and will consequently talk about. But I will be candid about what I own and which stocks are doing great and which ones are killing me. I hope that it opens the eyes of my readers to the wonderful world of small cap stocks - I have been buying them for almost a year now, and I have killed the market. My 12 month return on my portfolio of small cap stocks is 31.6%, versus 16.6% for the S&P 500 and 11.9% for the Russell 2000.

So take a look at these stocks, if you like. Do your own research and invest at your own risk. Here goes.....

It was hard not to have success today! The DOW was up over 110 points.

Today's investing success:
Novastar Financial (NFI) -- up 8.2% today. I'm hardly jumping for joy, as my lot is still down almost 87% - easily the worst stock I have ever owned, without peer! But any up days with this dog are welcome news to me.

Guangshen Railway (GSH) - up 6.3% today, up 41% over the last year.

Dawson Geophysical (DWSN) - up 5.7% today.

iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 Index Fund (FXI) - up 5.5% today

China Telecom (CHA) - up 5.25%

Today's failures:
PlanetOut, Inc. (LGBT) - down 6.82%. This after being down 29% yesterday. LET ME TAKE THIS MOMENT TO PUBLICLY FLOG THIS STOCK. I wrote here about LGBT, and that you want to keep emotions out of your decision-making. Now that my small holding in this company is down 77%, I say the hell with that. I hate this stock! PlanetOut is a media and entertainment company that caters to the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, and trans-gender community; hence, their LGBT stock symbol. I read somewhere that this company could be a takeover target for News Corp. And I have nothing against the LGBT community, certainly nothing that would keep me from investing in a micro-cap stock. So I opened up a small position, just a few hundred dollars. Well, this one has been nothing but a total disappointment. I have no plans to sell, since I'd reap so little cash by getting out.

Peerless Systems Corp (PRLS) - down 7.19% today, up 8% from where I bought it. This one languished down near $2 before recently rebounding to above $3.50. My position is very small, so I'm not really fretting this one.


Alex said...

Thanks for posting this topic, I think I will derive a lot of knowlege from being able to draw upon your successes and failures.

I too once looked at LGBT (my thought being to investigate an online dating site which would gather enough people to have a network effect, like ebay, which they could take advantage of for profits.) The lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender community seemed like one possibility, but the stock has not been performing well. I think there are some European online dating sites which are doing quite well. I might look into that.

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