January has been another business month. January is the end of the semester which means I have had a lot of exams this month (only 1 year left to being a Master of Science in Civil Engineering).
January was also the month with my last paycheck from my current job. The project I was hired to do is now concluded and my contract is terminated. Therefore, I will have to find another job or use more time on other things. This will also mean that I will have significantly less money to invest in the future if I do not get me another student job.
There is a lot of talks around the P2P lending investors. Which I totally understand with the current conditions. With Envestio and Kuetzal disappearing the investors seem to have a difficult time keeping the positive mindset. With that being said I have done adjustments to my own portfolio. However, I see a lot of investors on social media blaming bloggers. Financially Independent Mom has closed down her blog as someone (what I presume to be investors who lost money in the Envestio and Kuetzal scam) has threatened her. Furthermore, Jørgen has gotten some blame as he visited both Envestio and Kuetzal. Some investors claim that Jørgen should have figured out that they were a scam. I myself have had some comments on my blog that I decided not to make public.
Whether you are a believer that bloggers are a part of the scam or the individual investor has to do their own due diligence, I can say that I personally only support Jørgen and Financially Independent Mom. While this might be an unpopular opinion you have to remember that bloggers (at least these 2) only write about the journey to financial independence. It is not their fault that you lost money in something you invested in, no matter how hard they have promoted something. It is your responsibility to do due diligence and not blame the blogger if the investments fail or turn out to be a scam. Furthermore, most bloggers clearly state that they potentially make a commission (called affiliate marketing) when you signup on a platform through their links (me included, as stated in the sidebar on your right). I am sorry to tell you, but no matter what blog you use have affiliate links. This is how blogs earn money. I get the ethics of promoting. Hence, if Jørgen or others had known that Envestio and Kuetzal were a scam then it is bad. However, I presume that they did not know about the fraud.
General Comments to Portfolio and Income
Based on the current events in the P2P lending space I have now decided to pull out of Fastinvest 100%. I pulled out of Fastinvest because of the lack of transparency on loan originators. While I know that 3 loan originators (Kviku, CAPITAL SERVICE S.A and eCommerce 2020) you either have to subscribe to their newsletter or be an investor. You cannot find this information anywhere on their website. Furthermore, Fastinvest has not submitted their annual accounts by at least 12 months. While the information provided by Jørgen gathered when he visited Fastinvestor has not pleased me either. However, I chose to bypass the information (Mom and boyfriend have a shady past) and believe that Simona does not have to follow closely related bad paths (Go to Financiallyfree.eu Fastinvest review and scroll to the comment made by “Elf”).
I have sold a quite expensive index fund. It was a fund diversified in growth stocks. However, the yearly expense percent was nearly 2%. Compared to other index funds that are ridiculous. The strategy will be to invest in an index fund in S&P500 and a dividend index fund. Lastly, I would like to into a water index, as water is becoming a commodity like silver and gold. However, I cannot find any water index provided by Nordnet. Therefore, I will explore Degiro and have a review of their platform.
Portfolio – January 2020
I do not think it is an understatement when I say that January was a very tough month for P2P lending. First Kuetzal started having suspicious projects (was found back in mid-December) and then mid-January Envestio disappears. Many investors (including myself) have lost money. However, I don’t take the loss too hard, as I don’t invest money that I am not ready to lose. Also, P2P lending is known to be risky so I anticipated this moment right from the getgo when I made the first deposit into P2P lending. New industries always include huge risks (look at Crypto and blockchain companies, how many of them are actually successful?).
Overall, my portfolio did very well. Sadly, Envestio took €1.313 from my portfolio, and the interest is therefore also lost. However, there is no other way to recover than invest in other more trustworthy platforms. That the name of the game baby!
Total Portfolio Value:
- Portfolio value: €4.874
- Net worth: €9.762
- Income this month: €32,34
- Income from blogging: €133,21
- Average interest rate: 12%
As a result of the Envestio scam, my portfolio has, of course, decreased in value. I will work towards regaining my portfolio size (not necessarily in P2P lending). My current idea is to invest in dividend index funds and P2P lending. Both should return a modest return despite a recession.
My portfolio allocation is still going towards increasing my index fund portion. Therefore, I don’t invest much in P2P lending at the current time. However, I am not looking to exit my P2P lending position, I will simply wait to index funds go to about 20% of my portfolio. My goal is to reach a portfolio of:
- 45% = P2P lending
- 25% = Index funds
- 15% = Crypto
- 15% = Cash
But for this distribution to become real I need a total portfolio value of approximately €30.000, based on the emergency fund (15% cash). Therefore, I will work slowly towards a higher exposure to the index funds, while saving the remaining or add to P2P lending.
|Month||Portfolio value||Income||XIRR (interest incomes)||ROI (Capital gains)|
Despite the decrease in my overall portfolio due to Envestio my ROI on capital gains has increased yet another month. Crypto has seen a rather parabolic run. This has increased the value a fair bit, even though I have suffered some losses in P2P lending.
Saving rate and Emergency Fund
In January I actually managed to keep my expenses at a minimum. With the future of potentially not having a student job might have some very hard consequences to my financials. Fortunately, I have good emergency funds, which means I should be able to continue my very modest lifestyle.
Being able to have such low expenses, will also help me when I no longer have a job if that ends up being the case.
No big surprises in the P2P lending portfolio. I lost my Envestio portfolio of €1.313 (including the accruing interest) which has resulted in a decrease of both income and portfolio value. Luckily I wasn’t on Kuetzal as well.
While I did exit Fastinvest I got some interest this month from them as well.
My P2P lending portfolio is currently not that good diversified. While I am using several loan originators on Mintos I think 52% is too big in a portfolio. However, Mintos is the platform I trust the most, so I wouldn’t rebalance my portfolio with the funds on Mintos.
As you might have noticed EstateGuru and LenderMarket are also in my portfolio now. LenderMarket only has €100 currently and I will be testing them for a while. You can read my review of LenderMarket here. EstateGuru is one of the most transparent platforms along with Mintos. Furthermore, EstateGuru does not provide buyback guarantees, so panic cant make them bankrupt.
I haven’t gotten any interest from either of the new platforms. I expect to receive interest from LenderMarket in February. However, EstateGuru does not have that many loans available. Therefore, I will have to wait until the loan list grows, so I can diversify between the loans.
|Platform||Portfolio value||Interest income||XIRR||Invested|
- Started investing: Sep-18
- Average interest rate: 11,4%
- Portfolio value: €1.361,06
- Income this month: €13,89
Mintos has performed the best in terms of interest to date. My interest income grew 38,9% in one month which is absolutely insane. However, I did have a good portion of late loans that were repaid.
I did deposit €117 to Mintos this month. However, it was too late in the month to gain anything from (besides the common months), therefore those €117 did not have an impact on my increased income. However, I hope that Mintos will keep the increased interest rates.
Mintos does not seem to be affected by the Envestio and Kuetzal scams at all. Looking at Mintos statistics January was their largest month ever on funded loans.
I am sticking to my Mintos investment strategy My average portfolio interest on Mintos is back at 13% after the winter months with low-interest rates.
You can sign up to Mintos by clicking this link. You will get a 0,5% cashback on all of your investments in 90 days.
Mintos Performance Over Time
|Month||Mintos income||Mintos portfolio value||XIRR|
- Started investing: Jan-20
- Average interest rate: N/A%
- Portfolio value: €500
- Income this month: €N/A
I deposited €500 in late January. Currently, there are only 2 loans available. Therefore, I have included no chart for EstateGuru. There is nothing to show yet. However, I am looking forward to investing on EstateGuru.
- Started investing: Aug-19
- Average interest rate: 12,18%
- Portfolio value: €421,39
- Income this month: €4,49
Grupeer continues to deliver a stable return. The balance of development and business loans secures high-interest rates and with the buyback guarantee on defaulting loans, there is no fear of bad borrowers. So far the interest has been between €4-€4,5 which gives an annual return between 11,5%-13%.
To rebalance my portfolio I could easily look towards funding Grupeer some more.
Grupeer Performance Over Time
|Month||Grupeer income||Grupeer portfolio value||XIRR|
- Started investing: Sep-18
- Average interest rate: 12,9%
- Portfolio value: €0
- Income this month: €3,31
I stated earlier that I withdraw fully from Fastinvest. This is still true and while I withdraw all my funds, I still got some interest up until the day I sold all my loans. From what I can see on social media quite a lot has withdrawn from Fastinvest, and I am impressed that they have managed to fulfill the buybacks and the withdraws. This brings (some) confidence from my point of view to Fastinvest. However, I will not trust a company offering to buyback any loan right on the spot. If the market was to panic and all investors were to sell their loans, Fastinvest has to have the same amount of cash to withdraw to the investors as they have invested in loans. Which is just unrealistic.
With all that being said, Fastinvest has been a good addition to my portfolio yielding an average of 12,9%. I have no real complaints other than missing information on loan originators and cash drag in May and June.
You can invest at Fastinvest by signing up here.
Fastinvest Performance Over Time
|Month||Fastinvest income||Fastinvest portfolio value||XIRR|
- Started investing: Sep-18
- Average interest rate: 10,28%
- Portfolio value: €76,69
- Income this month: €0,8
Swaper is a good passive platform in my portfolio. It is only 3% of my total portfolio. However, I am never adjusting or looking at the platform. Swaper is so passive and there is literally nothing to do, other than check that I collect the interest on a monthly basis. For that reason, only I could be tempted to invest some more in Swaper. Furthermore, Swaper is such a small part of my portfolio, and I have used it in more than a year now.
However, I am not sure I will increase Swaper as the next platform as I feel consumer loans are a big part of my portfolio currently.
You can sign up for Swaper by clicking this link.
Swaper Performance Over Time
|Month||Swaper income||Swaper portfolio value||XIRR|
- Started investing: Aug-19
- Average interest rate: 6,25%
- Portfolio value: €152,42
- Income this month: €0,79
BitOfProperty is a small platform and there is not much happening on the platform. In November it failed to fund a property due to lack of investors. I fear that if the platform doesnt get more investors that it will ideal until the current properties are due for sale and close down.
The concept of BitOfProperty is very cool, and I like the idea myself. While the yield is much lower than on other platforms, I value it safer as the properties are bought and rented to tenants.
You can sign up at BitOfProperty and start purchasing real estate yourself.
BitOfProperty Performance Over Time
|Month||Rental Income||BitOfProperty portfolio value||XIRR|
Crypto has been on a parabolic run this month, gaining almost €600 in just this one month. I would hope that the raise of crypto continoues. When looking at the halving of Bitcoin, it historically should continue to increase. But let us see crypto is very volatile so it might not follow history at all.
If you had invested $10,000 in Bitcoin at the start of this year, you’d now have $12,400 🤷🏽♂️ https://t.co/gYfhDPnmmx— Pomp 🌪 (@APompliano) January 18, 2020
I would recommend you to purchase crypto through Binance. They are one of the largest platforms in the world while also having a lot of Altcoins.
Want to lend out crypto for an interest in your favorite cryptocurrencies? Sign up through my link and you will get rewarded with $10 when depositing over $200.
- Started investing: Jan-19
- ROI: 11,9%
- Portfolio value: €1014
- Dividend this month: €0,77
This month I sold 1 of my 3 index funds. The funds had high expenses and my evaluation is that long term I can find better performing index funds. I did sell the fund at 127,4 DKK per share, with an average purchase price per share of 112,44 DKK. I, therefore, got a 13,3% profit from the deal. The portfolio value is also not accurate as the sale of my index fund will be reinvested into a new index fund.
Furthermore, the portfolio value is not correct. As I sold my shares in the index fund I have around €500 (including my monthly deposit) in cash in my broker deposit. Every month the 5th I have an automated purchase that invest commission free in some preselected index funds. Therefore, it looks like the portfolio value has decreased in the monthly view. But on February the 5th it will purchase for about €500 in index funds.
Lastly, I have gotten a dividend once again. This time I got a dividend from the index fund I just sold. While it was just €4 it is still something that can be reinvested and compound.
How Others in the Community are doing
When looking at some of the big earning bloggers, I think my current forward movement is quite satisfying. I am only motivated to see that so many are earning so much from investing.
I still hope to be on top of the list someday, but for now, I will accept being at the bottom. As long as we are moving forward, I have nothing to complain about.
From the previous month’s events with Envestio and Kuetzal I have become aware that bloggers are some kind of burden. We are not supposed to make any money from our writing and efforts to help the average investor. Personally I blog as it will challenge myself to learn more about the investments I make. Furthermore, I realize that not everyone has the time that I have to research different things. As time goes by and I learn more and more I become better at the due diligence, which ultimately should bring more value to the readers. If I can earn a modest commission for something I will gladly do so. That is not to be said that I will use unethical promotions or marketing to get everyone to sign up. I simply hope that IF you are going to sign up for a platform that you use my affiliate links, that makes me able to put more time in the blog.
If the general attitude is that bloggers are pigs that should be slaughtered you will no longer see my blog income. However, I value transparency just as much as I advertise the P2P lending platforms should implement more of it.
With that out of my system, I can tell that I had more viewers than ever (hurra!!). I had about 500 visitors more than the previous two months.
You can start your own blog using the best host, with WordPress pre-installed. Anyone can start a blog using Siteground. Create a blog for €3,95 (regular price €9,95) and start sharing your investments or other hobbies/interests. You can use my affiliate link here.
Conclusion of January 2020
It is no secret that a lot has happened in P2P lending the past month. There are lawsuits going against Kuetzal and Envestio. I have personally decided to stay out of a lawsuit. I wish we could throw the responsible behind bars and get justice to the victims.
The future investment-wise is unclear as I will no longer have a job.