Monday, October 1, 2007

Exploring my NetWorthIQ chart

It just occurred to me that I have accumulated six months of month-end net worth data, all of which are captured in my NetWorthIQ profile. Here's the chart:

I thought I'd take a quick look at the trend that my finances have followed since the end of April.
  • May - The beginning of it all. A feverish focus on frugality, a three-pay month and an amazing month in the stock market led to a 75% increase in my net worth.

  • June - Vacation takes its toll. Debts were virtually flat, while May's cash surplus was eaten up by a trip to Illinois. Overall, net worth dropped by 1%.

  • July - Time for a correction. Debts dropped, while cash recovered from June's depletion, and retirement investments slid along with the rest of the market. Overall, net worth increased by 3%.

  • August - Back on track. Cash continued to grow, while the stock markets recovered. Throw in some debt progress, and you have a net worth increase of 31%.

  • September - Life goes on. Cash was depleted again by some car repairs, but market growth and debt reduction translated to a 12% increase in net worth.
Overall, my net worth has increased by 161% since April 30. A couple of things stand out from this analysis:
  • Huge returns are common when starting on a tiny base. When I've paid off results and added another digit to my net worth, I won't be seeing many months with 75% growth. However, for the time being, it's a great motivator.

  • Vacations deplete my savings. This is, on the whole, a good thing, as it prevents me from racking up debt. However, keeping a close eye on spending while I'm away on holiday should help reduce the impact of future trips.

  • With retirement savings comprising so much of my investable assets, my net worth is highly susceptible to movements in the stock market. Look at my May and August numbers. 'Nuff said.
It's encouraging to look at my overall progress, and to see that the chart is trending in the right direction. There will be stumbles along the way, but I'm excited to keep this upward momentum.


Ms. M&P said...

Thanks for the explanations! I was wondering what the background was. It looks like you're making TONS of headway.

Canadian Dream said...

Using % with small values does tend to be a bit misleading at times. Yet the volatility of your net worth actually increases with the market as you go along. When you have $300,000 a -10% day is a loss of $30,000, which would give most people a pause.

I suppose in the end. Use anything that makes it means something to you. If you get motivated that is all that counts.


Loonies And Sense said...

Thanks for the comments.

I agree that my "vulnerability" to market fluctuations will only increase as I get more heavily invested in the stock market.

For now, this is confined to my retirement savings, as I don't have any "investments" outside my RSPs, but as time goes on, I'm sure I'll have plenty of non-retirement investments to amplify the volatility of my net worth.

Fun stuff... :)

SavingDiva said...

161% increase! WOW!!!!!!!!!