Financial Independence · investing

June 2020 Portfolio update: Grupeer presents their plan to repay investors

Investment update in June 2020

The stockmarket didn’t really seem to know what it wanted this month, we had a few drops and a few rises, but in general nothing to indicate that corona is behind us or that we are tumbling into a deeper crisis. I guess the stockmarket really hasn’t made up its mind. Its not unexpected given the record breaking infections that we see across the world and especially in US that is dominating the stock market.

Last month I decided to write off all investments I made in Grupeer as they were officially 60 days late on repayment. As a reminder I had a big investment there of 9000 EUR, so it was a very difficult decision to make. Grupeer remains the center of attention this month and since last month, together with other investors, I have employed a lawyer to assist us to retrieve our investments. On the other side Grupeer has just presented their initial version of their plan to repay the investors. But more about that bellow.

In my personal life since I had a lot more time to spare by no longer travelling and working from home I have taken up various sports. I managed to sport 42 hours in June! Partly due to holidays of course that gave me more time for this, but also because I have been looking for new sports. Right now I am doing mainly mountainbike, tennis, kite and gym. So yes I do spend much more $ on sports these days, but I really put the goal for myself to get into shape and try to enjoy the summer. And at the end of the month its really nice to see the results in Strave, which is my n1 App to track all my activities:

Image result for I am not a financial advisor

My Portfolio

My Portfolio has risen slightly to 64498 EUR mainly because of additional investments. Its good to see that after a few months of a dropping portfolio I am making a recovery.

On the bellow graphic there is three movements that are very clear this month:

  • Continue the sell off of my peer to peer portfolio, so transfered a little over 600 EUR from peer to peer to ETFs
  • Invested about 1300 EUR extra in ETFs on top of the 600 EUR that came from peer to peer
  • The stock market remained stable this month

Lets look into more detail for each of these investment types shall we.

ETFs

It seems the stock market is stabilizing and has no idea if it should move up or down. I made a modest profit this month of 52 EUR, mainly thanks to my IShares Core MSCI EM IMI UCITS ETF (CEMU) that performed really well

Inception DateTotal PortfolioMonthly P&LTotal P&L
SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)31/01/202031411-95-3126
IShares Core MSCI EM IMI UCITS ETF (CEMU)28/02/20202211147-243
Total ETF Portfolio30/09/20193362252-3369

At this point I am really happy I limited my portfolio to just two ETFs, it makes it so much easier to track! And I keep finding it very easy to invest with DEGIRO, I am really happy I chose DEGIRO as broker!

SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)

My World ETF has made a small loss this month but nothing to worry about

SPDR MSCI WORLD UCITSTotal PortfolioMonthly P&LTotal P&L
31/01/202025160.4100
28/02/202023674-3852-3852
03/31/202022851-3362-7214
30/04/2020290343627-3587
31/05/202029590556-3031
30/06/202031411-95-3126

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETF

With a 137 EUR profit it was a second best month for this ETF this year.

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETFTotal PortfolioMonthly ProfitTotal P&L
31/01/2020244800
29/02/20202249-205-205
31/03/20201918.38-331-536
31/04/20202099182-354
31/05/20202064-36-390
30/06/20202211147-243

Peer to Peer

I will no longer keep track of the income I am getting into peer to peer. Instead I am showing the withdrawals here. I sold on the secondary market where possible, but without giving huge discounts. In total I managed to withdraw an additional 2% this month, putting me on 47% withdrawn up to date, which is not bad considering these are long term investments.

PortfolioStartTotal at 29/02/2019Left inpeer to peerExpected end dateMoney left to withdraw
Crowdestor30/09/20192974297907/02/2022100.17%
Grupeer30/09/201989908990In Legal procedure, awaiting Grupeers plan100.00%
Iuvo Group31/12/2019224004/20200.00%
Kuetzal30/09/201910051005Defaulted. In Legal procedure100.00%
Mintos30/09/2019998286501/06/20218.67%
NeoFinance30/09/20191273004/20200.00%
PeerBerry30/09/20192548109405/09/202242.94%
TFGCrowd30/09/2019143421017/09/202014.64%
Total30/09/2019284301514305/09/202253.26%

CrowdEstor

  • I was not able to withdraw anything from CrowdEstor this month, but I expect I can finally start next month as interests are coming in again. As you can see bellow I am expecting quite decent amounts to come in the coming month!

Grupeer

Grupeer has officially defaulted with more then 60 days of delay on my withdrawals. I wrote off Grupeer but there is two points of light at the end of the tunnel that give me hope of recovering some part of my investment.

Legal action

I have grouped together with other investors to prepare a law suit for Grupeer. The main goal of the legal action will still be to ask Grupeer to repay the investments as planned and not to resort to bankrupting Grupeer.

Unfortunately everything is confidential, so I am not at liberty to discuss anything not public here. All I can say its being prepared right now, and it feels good to have legal representation.

Plan from Grupeer

The other point of hope is the plan from Grupeer. Yesterday Grupeer posted they have analysed their portfolio and decided there is 5 Groups of investments / Loan originators.

Group 1: This includes money that was not yet invested mostly and can just be transfered back

Group 2: These are good Loan Originators that are willing to continue payment. They will announce in 2 days if payment will be resumed.

Group 3: These are Loan Originators that have financial problems but are planning to present a repayment schedule by the 20th of July

Group 4: These are Loan Originators that basically refuse or cannot pay anymore. Grupeer states they will prepare legal action against them

Group 5: These are Loan Originators that have not decided yet what to do. They might land in Group 3 or Group 4.

I mostly invested in loans on Grupeer and based on this its clear that it was mainly the B2B that have a lot of issues. The P2P are doing better. I have analysed my portfolio to find out how good / bad I was off and found the following results:

 [visualizer id=”3020″] 

That means that 75% is hopefully in a recoverable state. 3% is probably lost and 22% is unclear but at high risk. All in all my portfolio is not doing that bad, if Grupeer is telling the truth I can hopefully recover a large amount still. As you can see at the graph bellow my portfolio is also doing much better then the average portfolio.

Grupeer does point out it all depends of their bank accounts getting unfrozen, and its not clear yet if that will happen. If it happens then they will resume operations from the 3rd of July for Group 1 and Group 2. Exciting times!

Kuetzal

I am in a legal procedure with Kuetzal and cannot comment on any non-public information. There is also nothing new to add, I expect the next update to be somewhere in my blog from August.

Mintos

I have managed to withdraw about 93% of my cash from Mintos already. My last loans are for 95% in Capital Service, and this is suspended from the secondary market unfortunately. I managed that right now the pace of further withdrawals is going really really slow. Additionally most of my funds are currently stuck in pending payments. All I can do is wait and hope that Capital Service will recover and make faster payments soon.

PeerBerry

Withdrawals are going slow but steady and I managed to withdraw another 80 EUR this month. So far 58% is already withdrawn.

TFGCrowd

I managed to withdraw another 500 EUR of finished projects this month! Im amazed to see the recovery of TFGCrowd. I have one project remaining where I have 200 EUR of principal in, that finishes in September. So far I managed to withdraw 85% of my investments!

My final project is a real estate project in Cambridge. A really good area, so what could possibly go wrong?

Startups

I still have 3500 EUR in startups, right now there is nothing new to report.

Retirement funds

I decided not to update my retirement funds all the time since for most of the funds I get an update just once a year, so I will update it also just once a year. This is from end of 2019. I will update it again in December 2020.

November 2019Current Value
KBC Pension funds7999
First job Pension plan1467
Second job Pension plan592
Third job Pension plan12084

Wins / losses this month

  • My ETF Portfolio made 52 EUR profit
  • Some light at the tunnel for Grupeer, is there a chance I can recover some part of that investment?
  • I tried Kite Surf for the first time and loved it!
  • I also subscribed to a Gym membership, my new gym has something called an egym to help you progress easier on the level you are at

What is next?

  • I will be waiting full of tension to see if Grupeer actually starts repayment the 4th of July or not
  • I want to try to drink less alcohol, as a way to get more into shape. So I am going to try to say no to alcohol the coming month. This with the exception of birthday parties.

I will also post a savings rate update soon! Subscribe and make sure you don’t miss any of my monthly portfolio updates!

Financial Independence · saving

How cycling will help you reach Financial Independence faster

Hobby’s can have a bigger influence then you think about Financial independence. Remember every euro you spend is a euro less you can invest. I have done a dozen of different hobby’s in my life, sailing, surfing, horse riding, scuba – diving, running, swimming, .. and the list goes on. Until I knew FIRE I never really tried to balance the fun it gave me with the cost. If two hobbys give you the same amount of fun then why would you not go for the cheapest hobby?

What do hobby’s cost?

I do not think you should hold back with spending of your favorite hobby. Even if you chose a more expensive hobby. I do think you should control yourself on spending a lot of money on different hobby’s. Generally hobby’s become cheaper the more time you spend doing them. In the initial stage you will usually spend a lot of money on classes and rent of materials. Once you both have the knowledge to do your hobby and the equipment then things will become a lot cheaper for you and things will come down more to maintenance cost.

At the top of the class we have the most expensive hobbys. Yacht sailing for example. Once you passed trough the training lessons it can cost a few 10.000’s to get your own Yacht. Flying airplanes or Hot Air Baloons fall in the same category. You could of course limit yourself to taking classes and renting equipment. But if you plan to do that every week it could get expensive fast.

In the middle class we have hobby’s horseback riding, diving and sailing smaller boats. Even a smaller boat like a laser can cost 5000 EUR to get it. Additionally you need room to store your boat. The same goes for a horse, the costs of a horse are similar to a small boat, but you will pay a bigger maintenance cost. It needs much more room then a boat and of course you need to feed it every day, costing easily a few 100’s per month. The equipment of a diver is not so expensive. You probably have a full kit for 2000-3000 EUR. But you will still spend a lot on gas or travelling to go diving in your country or abroad.

In the lower end we have hobby’s like cycling, walking, swimming, running, playing board games, gaming, dancing, … These usually have a low startup cost, and do not need much maintenance. Probably you can budget less then 100 EUR per month for these and that should be enough.

Why I chose cycling as my main hobby

I got into cycling rather by accident. My sister let me ride her mountainbike and I really liked the way it drove. At some point she convinced me to get my own and I participated in my first tour. The tour was organised, costed about 5 EUR to join, and was about 30 KM. During the tour we met two checkpoints where we could eat and drink all the snacks we wanted. There was signs put up everywhere along the road to make it easy for cyclists to follow the road. I loved the landscapes, nature and I was incredibly surprised of the value for money I was getting here.

It was actually a very painful 30KM, especially the last 10. I was not prepared at all, my tires were at 1 BAR (recommended is 2,5-4 BAR), and I had a big backpack holding some extra drinks and equipment. This made my first ride quite a challenge in terms of effort. But I was happy, I loved it and I had finally found a hobby that I liked and was surprised how affordable it was.

How much does cycling cost?

Just to be specific, the type of cycling I am doing is mountainbiking. I started one year ago with a beginners bicycle I bought at the decathlon. It costed 300 EUR. Of course the type of bicycle is important for your speed, you will go faster with a lighter bicycle, but I do not have that much trouble to keep up with friends or colleagues, in fact at this point I can out-cycle even some of them with a more expensive mountain-bike. At the start of your cycling career getting condition is actually the most important.

My Mountainbike that I purchased for 300 EUR

After you get the cycle I recommend to also got the following:

  • Some kind of membership or subscription. I got myself a membership at Cycling Vlaanderen for 30 EUR. Apart from slightly cheaper tour costs they will also recover you if you have an issue with your bicycle
  • An extra spare inner tire (3,5 EUR) + pins to help you change the tire (about 1 EUR)
  • A holder for my phone, this way I didn’t had to buy a GPS (20 EUR), and I could do tours by myself
  • Extra Power-bank (20 EUR): I needed this to recharge my phone for rides over 55KM
  • Wireless Earplugs for music (30 EUR)
  • A bag for extra gear I can tie to my bicycle (10 EUR)
  • Watterbottle (10 EUR)
  • Helmet (30 EUR)
  • Sunglasses and Rain-glasses(35 EUR)
  • Click-pedals and click-shoes are needed for winter and steep trails in summer (100 EUR)
  • Summer clothing (50 EUR): short trousers, shirt
  • Winter Clothing (200-250 EUR): jacket, long trousers, shoe protectors, gloves, light warm sweater
  • Organised tours cost about 5 EUR each, I do about two per month. The advantage is you get free snacks (all you can eat!) on the tour so you almost save money by participating. Often I also get a free sandwich, fries or a beer after the tour.
  • Powerbars + Energy sugar to mix with water

So year one to startup / total costs was about 1000 EUR. It seems a lot but I did not buy everything at once. If you start in summer you can just start with 500 EUR, and the rest of the year you can slowly build up your gear. Year two will be a lot cheaper since by now I have most of my gear (of course there will be a maintenance cost), which goes back to my first point that every hobby has a startup cost.

With this gear I am able to cycle by myself for long distances in both summer and winter, up to 80 km per trip so far, so for a beginner its really enough.

I estimate I will spend about 400 EUR in year two. 100 EUR for maintenance on the bicycle (I try to do most myself but I cant do everything), 30 EUR for a membership fee, 150 EUR for entries for tours and events, 70 EUR for food (powerbars), and 100 EUR for new clothes if required. I might need to set some extra aside as well for a new bicycle at some point.

One more point. I also really LOVE to cycle in nature. So apart from choosing a cheap hobby I am also happy to have found something I really enjoy.

Additionally I can save some parking costs because I more often take the bicycle to meet with friends, you might save on health costs in the long run and if there is a lockdown you can still visit family and friends 😉

And why not consider replacing the car by cycling all along? Right now thats one step to far for me, but its good I will have the ability and the condition to do this if it would be needed at some point.

Let me know what hobby you do!

So what hobby did you chose? Do you know what it costs you? Please let me know bellow in the comments and don’t forget to subscribe 😉

Financial Independence · investing

May 2020 Portfolio update: Grupeer has gone into default!

Investment update in May

First off I want to start with announcing that I added a new page on my blog keeping yearly statistics. Check them out here. I plan to update this page once a year around May.

With Europe slowly recovering from the Corona crisis as shops and restaurants start to open again all over Europe we can see that last months recovery in the stock market continues. It might be strange to see such a good recovery with so many companies going bankrupt, but we can’t forget governments worldwide are pumping money into the market like crazy. As a result its not really the stock market that goes up but rather the value of money that is going down. Stocks seem to be a safer haven then cash right now.

On the peer to peer market I have rather dramatic news. What I highly suspected would happen has happened. The peer to peer site Grupeer has now over a 60 day delay on payment and is therefore officially in default. Its very difficult to predict what amount of money I will be able to recover here. Its quite hard now to decide if I will already write off this investment while there is still several ways to recover. First is that Grupeer comes trough and continues payments. Grupeer has posted on their Website that they will present a plan in June. So there is a chance that Grupeer will come up with Payments themselves. The second path is by using legal council. Also this path I am exploring. Despite of recovery options, their defaulting leaves me no choice and I have decided to write off the investment. This means I no longer see it as an investment but as a place where I must try to recover money.

I am unable to travel for work but I have grown quite accustomed to working at home. Working from home really works for me. I know it only works because everyone else is also working from home. If I were to be working from home and others went to the office, being a manager, this would not work. I do hope that the company will remember how easy the transfer was, and how efficient we have worked.

I have found to have more time for sports, and have been cycling a lot. I posted last month that I had back issues and this made it hard to cycle. My back has improved a lot since April. I saw a good doctor and he prescribed me some medicine I have to take right before I cycle. This seems to help a lot and my back is doing much better. I feel confident in cycling long distances again!

I also started to run, but I have given up on that. After I ran 10km I found my knees were hurting a lot. I enjoy cycling much more so I am not going to continue running for now.

Image result for I am not a financial advisor

My Portfolio

My Portfolio has made a sharp drop to 62989 EUR caused by having to write off Grupeer as an investment, pretty much decimating my peer to peer portfolio.

On the bellow graphic there is three movements that are very clear this month:

  • Selling off my peer to peer portfolio
  • I wrote off 100% from my Grupeer investment
  • I lowered my investments in ETFs to balance my investment more with my income. I will be investing about 750 EUR / month from now. Once travelling is allowed again I will increase it again.
  • The recovery of the stock market that started last month keeps going!

Lets look into more detail for each of these investment types shall we.

Peer to Peer

I will no longer keep track of the income I am getting into peer to peer. Instead I am showing the withdrawals here. I sold on the secondary market where possible, but without giving huge discounts. In total I managed to withdraw an additional 3% this month, putting me on 45% withdrawn up to date, which is not bad considering these are long term investments.

PortfolioStartTotal at 29/02/2019Left inpeer to peerExpected end dateMoney left to withdraw
Crowdestor30/09/20192974297907/02/2022100.17%
Grupeer30/09/201989908990Defaulted. Preparing legal procedure100.00%
Iuvo Group31/12/2019224004/20200.00%
Kuetzal30/09/201910051005Defaulted. In Legal procedure100.00%
Mintos30/09/2019998286801/06/20218.70%
NeoFinance30/09/20191273004/20200.00%
PeerBerry30/09/20192548118405/09/202246.47%
TFGCrowd30/09/2019143457317/09/202039.96%
Total30/09/2019284301559905/09/202254.87%

CrowdEstor

  • Crowdestor has finally continued to give interest. The recovery period is ending and by the looks of it we are returning to normal. Many of my investments have announced that they would not be using the recovery period but would be paying interest as normal. I have a few investments ending near the end of the year, so from that time I will be able to withdraw. So far this is one of my biggest investments. I should be out fully by 07/02/2022.

Grupeer

Grupeer has officially defaulted with more then 60 days of delay on my withdrawals. As a consequence I need to write off Grupeer as a credible investment and I now see it more as a place where I must try to recover money.

Grupeer has made a nice poster on their website stating their intentions to pay back the investors. In June they will present a plan on how they will do this. I really cannot wait to read all about their new plan. At the same time I am gathering with a group of other investors to get legal representation.

Meanwhile the site still works, and it seems that the site was re-winded to 31st of March. My withdrawals were not approved and the withdrawal button is disabled. I have gotten no interest for the months of April and May so far.

Kuetzal

I am in a legal procedure. While I cannot comment on specifics I can show this public announcement, since its publicly available:

Official notification from Harju County Court Tallinn dd 29.05.2020 Harju County Court Tallinn Courthouse publishes a notice on the basis of subsection 30 (2) of the Bankruptcy Act (PankrS).
By court order No. 29-20.2020 in civil case no. 2-20-2366, the debtor, Kuetzal OÜ (registry code: 14519131, address: Harju county, Tallinn, Kesklinna district, Narva mnt 7b, 10117), in order to prevent the termination of the bankruptcy proceedings and to cover the costs of the bankruptcy proceedings, the amount to be paid as a deposit in the account provided for this purpose shall be 3000 euros and the payment term shall be 12.06.2020.

Mintos

I have managed to withdraw about 92% of my cash from Mintos already. My last loans are for 95% in Capital Service, and this is suspended from the secondary market unfortunately.

Since Capital Service stopped paying, that also means that over half of my money is right now in pending payment status:

Right now I still have faith that Capital Service will recover once the situation in Poland improves. Mintos posted a short anouncement on their blog about this:

PeerBerry

Withdrawals are going slow but steady..

PeerBerry has called me personally to ask me what I would improve. I have mentioned I would like to see a secondary market. They have noted this down, and might add this in the future. Until then I just need to be patient.

TFGCrowd

I managed to withdraw 4/6 projects that finished this month. Another two actually were unable to pay. For those two projects I will need to wait for an additional 60 days for the rebuy has kicked in.

So far I managed to withdraw 861 EUR of the original 1434 I put in, and I should be able to withdraw 200 EUR in June, another 200 EUR in July and another 200 EUR in September plus interest. Its a high risk investment but one where I might actually make a profit on.

How are other peer to peer platforms doing?

I never mention this but there is other peer who also seem to be in trouble. To be clear I am not invested in these platforms right now:

  • Monethera has been declared insolvent so it’s not looking good for investors. It seems Monethera also had very close ties with Envestio and Kuetzal
  • Envestio: investors have united to sue Envestio since the website went down in January 2020
  • Wisefund: whoever has money inthere right now has their money at extreme risk. There is a recent secondary market but discounts offered are so high that its almost impossible to exit!
  • Bondera: bondera, a big and one of the oldest platforms around, is doing partial withdrawals now so people withdrawing will need more time to get their money out
  • Fastinvest: Fast invest was commonly suspected to be a scam, but still many people put in money. Now fastinvest is looking more like Fast Invest, but Slow withdraw. Withdraws are reported to have a month and a half delay! A telegram group has been created for those that are trying to get their money out.
  • Agrikaab: a crazy platform where you could invest in camels. This was even to crazy for me. Agrikaab has gone bankrupt. Good luck to some bloggers to get back their funds from Somalia, one of the poorest and most risky countries in the world to invest in!

ETFs

It seems the stock market is stabilizing, and my portfolio grew with a modest 520 EUR! Its very hard to predict what will happen the coming months. My general thought right now is that when the governments are floating the markets with money the price of money will go down and the price of stocks will go up. But this is quite hard to predict. Interesting times remain!


Inception DateTotal PortfolioMonthly P&LTotal P&L
SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)31/01/202029590556-3031
IShares Core MSCI EM IMI UCITS ETF (CEMU)28/02/20202064-36-390
Total ETF Portfolio30/09/201931654520-3421

At this point I am really happy I limited my portfolio to just two ETFs, it makes it so much easier to track! And I keep finding it very easy to invest with DEGIRO, I am really happy I chose DEGIRO as broker!

SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)

My World ETF has performed great this month, and I am 100% behind my choice of focusing mainly on this ETF.

As you can see there was a small increase of 556 EUR on my ETFs.

31/01/202025160.4100
28/02/202023674-3852-3852
03/31/202022851-3362-7214
30/04/2020290343627-3587
31/05/202029590556-3031

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETF

With a 36 EUR loss this month I would say this ETF has remains quite stable.

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETFTotal PortfolioMonthly ProfitTotal P&L
31/01/2020244800
29/02/20202249-205-205
31/03/20201918.38-331-536
31/04/20202099182-354
31/05/20202064-36-390

Startups

One of my startups where I have 100 EUR in has made an announcement that he has lost its existing customer and its quite hard to gain new customers. It might be the first victim in my startup portfolio of the lockdown.

Retirement funds

I decided not to update my retirement funds all the time since for most of the funds I get an update just once a year, so I will update it also just once a year. This is from end of 2019. I will update it again in December 2020.

November 2019Current Value
KBC Pension funds7999
First job Pension plan1467
Second job Pension plan592
Third job Pension plan12084

Wins / losses this month

  • My ETF Portfolio made 520 EUR profit
  • My peer to peer portfolio was decimated after Grupeer defaulted. Right now I have 5604 EUR active investments left in peer to peer.

What is next?

  • I feel like I need a second sport in addition to mountain-biking. I also sail in summer but that is more sporadic. I might try kite-surfing in June.

I will also post a savings rate update soon! Subscribe and make sure you don’t miss any of my monthly portfolio updates!

Financial Independence · investing

April 2020 Portfolio: Peer to peer withdrawal in progress

Investment update in April

After a few bad months, I can say I can finally start to see some light at the end of the tunnel. The stock markets are recovering, although its not always clear to me why, as I’m still in the midst of a lockdown, but I suspect the fact that the market noticed the world is not stopping because of Corona. Another factor might be that governments worldwide are preparing to inject cash into the economy. If there is more cash the value of cash drops, and stocks go up. The market might already be preparing for those things.

Last month I made the decision to fully withdraw from peer to peer. I have not come back from this decision, and continue to withdraw money every month. Of course these are mostly longer term investments so part of the money is stuck until the time runs out.

I have been in lockdown for about a month and a half now. I try to cope by sporting more. I managed to log 21 hours in Strava in April. I bicycle most weekends and run almost every day after work. Right now I run a steady 7km and I am working to get to that 10km that I set as a quarterly goal.

Image result for I am not a financial advisor

My Portfolio

My Portfolio has slightly dropped to 71872 EUR

On the bellow graphic there is three movements that are very clear this month:

  • Selling off my peer to peer portfolio
  • I continue to invest in ETFs, a steady 2500 EUR / month currently, I can maintain this amount by withdrawals that come from peer to peer. The idea will be that ETFs will fully “eat” my peer to peer investments.
  • The stock market is showing a slight recovery

Lets look into more detail for each of these investment types shall we.

Peer to Peer

I will no longer keep track of the income I am getting into peer to peer. Instead I will be showing the withdrawals here. I will sell on the secondary market where possible, but without giving huge discounts. In total I managed to withdraw already 42%, which is not bad considering these are long term investments.

PortfolioStartTotal at 29/02/2019Left in p2pExpected end dateMoney left to withdraw
Crowdestor30/09/20192974297407/02/2022100.00%
Grupeer30/09/201989908990Considering legal procedure100.00%
Iuvo Group31/12/2019224004/20200.00%
Kuetzal30/09/201910051005In Legal procedure100.00%
Mintos30/09/20199982123101/06/202112.33%
NeoFinance30/09/20191273004/20200.00%
PeerBerry30/09/20192548139405/09/202254.71%
TFGCrowd30/09/20191434112017/09/202078.10%
Total30/09/2019284301671405/09/202258.79%

CrowdEstor

  • I cannot withdraw anything and CrowdEstor has stopped giving interest while Corona is raging. Still CrowdEstor projects continue to receive funding. In one and a half months interest and principal payments should continue. I am looking forward to that. From September I should be able to start pulling money out. I heard some positive news about a Game I invested in Maffia stars. CrowdEstor anounced they are doing really well and expect to repay in full by January 2021!

Grupeer

Grupeer has fired most of its staff and many investors are digging up evidence of fake projects and fake Loan Originators. Support of Grupeer is no longer answering. The only part still alive is a weekly update from the blog.


Having invested in startups for a while, I can really say that when a small company is posting “do not panic” or “there is no reason to panic” then you should be seriously worried.

Withdraws are no longer possible, I am very close to starting a legal procedure together with other investors. The group is investors is lead by Guilermo and he is making great progress in my Kuetzal lawcase.

On 20 May it will have been exactly 60 days since I had issued a withdrawal. From that time I will consider Grupeer in default and write off the investment like I did Kuetzal. I still believe I will be able to retrieve a large amount by a legal procedure, but that could take up quite some time. I am not looking forward to the huge gap I will have in my portfolio update next month when I need to write this investment off!

Iuvo Group

I have managed to sell off all the loans I had in Iuvo for about 5% discount in about a week. So I am very impressed with Iuvo’s secondary market.

Kuetzal

I am in a legal procedure, while I cannot comment on it I can see very positive things happening, and I hope to get some good news in May!

Mintos

I have managed to withdraw about 90% of my cash from Mintos already for average 5% discount on loans. A small portion (5%) is still for sale, and another 5% cannot be withdrawn as the loans are suspended from the secondary market (this includes Capital Service and Monego).

I hear more and more news about LO’s stopping payments. Partly due to Corona, no doubt, but it does make me think that I might have dodged a bullet by pulling out. Just yesterday ExpressCredit was suspended from the secondary market. I had only sold off my ExpressCredit loans about 2 weeks ago. I really feel like a dodged a bullet on this one.

PeerBerry

Withdrawals are going slow but steady..

I have requested information about a possible secondary market to speed up this process, but PeerBerry has mentioned there is no such plans for now.

TFGCrowd

Two projects finished in April, unfortunately only one of them paid the principal. The other one did not pay. TFGCrowd informed me that it falls under buy back guarantee, but that does mean I would need to wait 60 extra days to get my principal out. The strange thing is I did get offered the chance to re-invest the money, but I could not withdraw it yet. I decided not to re-invest.

Six(!) more projects that I invested in finish in May, so total a little bit over 600 EUR! I am concerned what will happen to them, but I keep my fingers crossed!

How are other peer to peer platforms doing?

I never mention this but there is other peer who also seem to be in trouble:

  • Monethera has been declared insolvent so it’s not looking good for investors. I feel a law suit in the air.
  • Wisefund: whoever has money inthere right now has their money at extreme risk. There is a recent secondary market but discounts offered are so high that its almost impossible to exit!
  • Bondera: bondera, a big and one of the oldest platforms around, is doing partial withdrawals now so people withdrawing will need more time to get their money out
  • Fastinvest: Fast invest was commonly suspected to be a scam, but still many people put in money. Now fastinvest is looking more like Fast Invest, but Slow withdraw. Withdraws are reported to have a month delay! A telegram group has been created for those that are trying to get their money out.
  • Agrikaab: a crazy platform where you could invest in camels. This was even to crazy for me. Agrikaab has gone bankrupt. Good luck to some bloggers to get back their funds from Somalia, one of the poorest and most risky countries in the world to invest in!

ETFs

After two bad months there was finally a great month for ETFs, as my portfolio gained 3809 EUR just by the stock market increasing! Looks like the bear might have left the stage and its up to the bull now, buts let’s not get carried away. Corona is not yet banished afterall!

Inception DateTotal PortfolioMonthly P&LTotal P&L
SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)31/01/2020290343627-3587
IShares Core MSCI EM IMI UCITS ETF (CEMU)28/02/20202099182-354
Total ETF Portfolio30/09/2019311333809-3941

At this point I am really happy I limited my portfolio to just two ETFs, it makes it so much easier to track! And I keep finding it very easy to invest with DEGIRO, I am really happy I chose DEGIRO as broker!

SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)

My World ETF has performed great this month, and I am 100% behind my choice of focusing mainly on this ETF.

As you can see the drop was also (slightly) less steep then last month, so perhaps this is a first sign that it will stabilize

SPDR MSCI WORLD UCITSTotal PortfolioMonthly P&LTotal P&L
31/01/202025160.4100
28/02/202023674-3852-3852
03/31/202022851-3362-7214
30/04/2020290343627-3587

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETF

There is nothing special to report with this EFT, it has risen slightly compared to last month.

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETFTotal PortfolioMonthly ProfitTotal P&L
31/01/2020244800
29/02/20202249-205-205
31/03/20201918.38-331-536
31/04/20202099182-354

Startups

Not much to report regarding my startups, right now. In these days no news is good news I would say!

I am considering to invest again in startups, however I would only invest in business that I really believe in and that I see myself using (such as the VR company in Liege).

Retirement funds

I decided not to update my retirement funds all the time since for most of the funds I get an update just once a year, so I will update it also just once a year. This is from end of 2019. I will update it again in December 2020.

November 2019Current Value
KBC Pension funds7999
First job Pension plan1467
Second job Pension plan592
Third job Pension plan12084

Wins / losses this month

  • My ETF Portfolio made 3809 EUR proft
  • My peer to peer portfolio is facing stormy clouds as I might have to write off Grupeer like I did with Kuetzal

What is next?

  • If my running keeps up I hope to cross the 10km in May! Lets see if I can pull it off!
  • I have some back issues that make me cycle less, however I am seeing a sport physician and I hope he will help me to get back on track!
  • The housing market will re-open in May, I have already mailed to plan in my first visit. I can’t wait to continue searching!

I will also post a savings rate update soon! Subscribe and make sure you don’t miss any of my monthly portfolio updates!

Financial Independence · investing

March 2020 Portfolio Update: Peer to peer platforms are bleeding

Investment update in March

I usually post the first of the month. Due to events that I will explain in the blog I took a bit more time.

This is now the second month in a row I need to report bad news. The stock markets have continued to drop, although at the time of writing it does seem that for the moment the worst part is over, or at least the steepest drops. For sure they will keep dropping for a while.

The peer to peer platforms are suffering heavily and are facing massive withdrawals. The worst news for me was that Grupeer stopped processing withdrawals. Because they also stopped processing withdrawals that were on Users accounts it is now very clear that they did not separate investments from the users with their own. There is now plenty of signs that Grupeer might have put out fake investments on their website and might have been at least partly an elaborate scam. Its very difficult to believe Grupeer right now, and as I do not feel confident they still tell the truth I am gathering with some other investors to sue them.

Another consequence of this is that I decided to fully withdraw from peer to peer. Peer to peer has been since September the driving course of this blog, however I do not feel confident anymore that I can make the right investment decisions in peer to peer. Of course it will take time to get out of all the platforms as they are quite longer term investments, I will try to sell off what I can but it can take a few years. In any case I will keep track of that here for at least some time.

While my stocks have dropped a lot more in value they have never kept me awake at night. Kuetzal did when it turned out to be a scam and so has Grupeer. I have underestimated the platform and liquidity risk that are tied to these investments. Even if there is good platforms outthere, such as Mintos and PeerBerry certainly are now, since nothing is regulated and the investments are long term, they can change course in 6 months and your money will be stuck.

I will need to think on if I would then organise this blog differently or not, perhaps I will be giving my savings rate update together with this post? I have not yet decided.

Image result for I am not a financial advisor

My Portfolio

With the stock market that moved back and me going to the Cash Market with my peer to peer investments my Portfolio saw a drop to 78171 (-4910). And this includes me investing an extra 2500 EUR into the stock market. I will probably keep moving what comes free from peer to peer to the stock market.

The idea was to reduce the percentage of my peer to peer portfolio simply by investing extra in ETFs, however this is not an easy task when the stock market collapses. At least withdrawing from peer to peer will speed up this process.


And now:

Lets look into more detail for each of these investment types shall we.

Peer to Peer

I will no longer keep track of the income I am getting into peer to peer. Instead I will be showing the withdrawals here. I will sell on the secondary market where possible, but without giving huge discounts.

PortfolioStartTotal at 29/02/2019Left in the account nowExpected end date
Crowdestor30/09/20192974297407/02/2022
Grupeer30/09/201989908990Considering legal procedure
Iuvo Group31/12/2019224173.9822/09/2022
Kuetzal30/09/201910051005In Legal procedure
Mintos30/09/20199982828207/03/2024
NeoFinance30/09/201912736801/09/2024
PeerBerry30/09/20192548209405/09/2022
TFGCrowd30/09/20191434121017/09/2020
Total30/09/20192843024796.9809/12/2023
  • CrowdEstor: I cannot withdraw anything and CrowdEstor has stopped giving interest while Corona is raging. An understandable decision, but I hope it will be over by the end of summer.
  • Grupeer: Withdraws are no longer possible and it looks like I will need to resort to legal procedures
  • Iuvo Group: Iuvo has a secondary market. I hope to sell a few loans there
  • Kuetzal: I am in a legal procedure, while I cannot comment on it, so far I have a positive feeling about it
  • Mintos: Mintos has a good running secondary market. I put my loans there at a discount of 3-4% right now. Right now they have been selling and I can withdraw around 200 EUR per day. Mintos did announce it would add a secondary market tax of 0.85%
  • NeoFinance: selling went really fast here, I have just one investment remaining. I was really worried here before since some of the investments ran until 2025. I was never a big fan of NeoFinance, I always had negative returns onthere, but at least they are honest, you have a bank account and the secondary market is functioning excellent
  • PeerBerry: There is no secondary market, I might need to hold it out until 2022. But its a good platform so I hope it will be ok
  • TFGCrowd: I have mostly short term projects, so if the platform does not fail I will be able to withdraw everything by September

ETFs

ETF PortfolioStartTotalP/L MarchTot P/L
SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)31/01/202022851-3362-7214
IShares Core MSCI EM IMI UCITS ETF (CEMU)28/02/20201918.38-331-536
Total ETF Portfolio30/09/201924769-3693-7750

My ETFs have had another crazy month with huge losses, at the same time I do feel the worst drops have passed by now and it will start to stabilize in April. I will continue to invest 2500 EUR in my ETFs for now.

I guess this blog will become a great example of what happens when you start to invest in ETFs right before a crisis!

SPDR MSCI World UCITS ETF (SWRD)

My World ETF has taken another hit. Still I will continue to add EUR here every month, as right now they are a lot cheaper, and since I buy every month I do like to buy cheap!

As you can see the drop was also (slightly) less steep then last month, so perhaps this is a first sign that it will stabilize

SPDR MSCI WORLD UCITSTotal PortfolioMonthly P&LTotal P&L
31/01/202025160.4100
28/02/202023674-3852-3852
03/31/202022851-3362-7214

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETF

ISHARES CORE MSCI Emerging Markets IMI UCITS ETFTotal PortfolioMonthly ProfitTotal P&L
31/01/2020244800
29/02/20202249-205-205

Startups

I hold 3500 EUR in startups. I started investing in 2017. This is a long term investment, but I do hope that I will see some return on it at some point.

Retirement funds

I decided not to update my retirement funds all the time since for most of the funds I get an update just once a year, so I will update it also just once a year. This is from end of 2019. I will update it again in December 2020.

November 2019Current Value
KBC Pension funds7999
First job Pension plan1467
Second job Pension plan592
Third job Pension plan12084

Wins / losses this month

  • My ETF Portfolio made 3693 EUR loss
  • My peer to peer portfolio is facing stormy clouds as I might have to write off Grupeer like I did with Kuetzal
  • So in total my worst month so far!

The blog

  • The views of my blog have dropped to 1730. This has mainly to do with the fact I blog less about peer to peer, and more about the stock market. At the same time I do get more traffic from search engines right now and I can see that my search ranking is rising slowly but certain

What is next?

I will search harder for a house, and I do hope that because of the crisis the prices will drop. I actually almost found the perfect house this month. I hesitated and didn’t made an offer. What a mistake! I hope that next time I can decide faster, but for now I will need to wait until people are allowed to sell again. Its very hard to predict right now what the effect on prices will be!

I will also post a savings rate update soon! Subscribe and make sure you don’t miss any of my monthly portfolio updates!