Unremarkable – My Tale.

I notice lately what feels like an increase of what has been a trend on fintwit or HC for a while now where everyone seems to have to have a label.

Many want to claim they are poor old retail being led to the slaughter, and in the eyes of this group if you aren’t one of them you are a pumper and a shill.

On the other end of the scale people seem to want to prove how good they are, or that their content is better than everyone else’s and that they don’t get any value out of SM (Social Media) communities and they are there to provide value only.

Not many people seem to want to say they are just an average trader/investor doing their thing day in day out to make a buck, add some value where they can and accept that they can see value in what others do.

On the back of this I thought I would share my story if only to prove that it is in essence pretty unremarkable.

Let’s cover some of the basics – I am a retail investor, I have never participated in seed, IPO, or a CR. The way people talk on SM would make this seem like it must be impossible for me to make money. Unremarkable

I am 29 and started in the market in July 2015 (so just over 4 years ago). So, I didn’t start as early as some people seem to nor did I start particularly late. Unremarkable

I am not a full-time trader. Again, if you listened to some on SM they would make it seem like this means you can’t make money, or your opinions don’t mean anything, or you’re not as credible as someone who does this full time. Based on this you would consider me very unremarkable. My opinion isn’t worth much at all.

My account balance also likely falls into the unremarkable category. I am not turning over 100’s of millions of dollars a year or throwing $100k at a trade. Again, people would probably say this makes an opinion worth less.

Don’t get me wrong, this is not a tale of woe. None of these things bother me. It is just a preface to a point showing that I am in essence an unremarkable person in the ASX pool.

What I have done is try hard in my 4 years of being in the market. I started with FA and built up my knowledge, particularly of mining projects which I had no idea about at all before entering the market. Then last year I had a shocker and took some losses that I wasn’t ready for. My response this year has been to work much harder on my TA game and try and become a more rounded trader. I have increased my documentation of my trades and performance and what I am doing in the market and tried to be more focussed in what I am doing.

What is the wash up of all this you might wonder? Well I have banked a post-tax IRR of 22% since I started in the market. Is this a spectacular headline number – no probably not. Most people will probably tell you they think they can do better than that. However, I am happy with that as the result of my first 4 years in the market. I didn’t blow up any accounts and I have made money. For me that was a good result. In addition to that I know I have room for improvement in most aspects. I can be more consistent, I have a long way to go on my TA, I am sure I can improve my FA. I have plenty of scope to improve my knowledge outside resource stocks. Again, pretty unremarkable.

However, let’s take a look at that number – 22% post tax return. Let’s assume inflation at 3% and call that a real return of 19%.

Over 10 years that is a return of 469%, over 20 years it’s a return of 3,143%. That is 31.43x your initial sum after tax and in real terms.

If someone could start with even only $50,000 and achieve that result, they would have $1,571,500. If someone could start with $100k that becomes $3m.

Extrapolate that out to 30 years and that becomes 173x your initial investment. $8.65m and $17.3m respectively on $50,000 and $100,000 starting sums. Now some would say that is fairly remarkable.

The moral of this story is you don’t need to be remarkable. You don’t need to play the victim, the helpless retail, the master, none of that is important. What is important is honing your craft, learning everything you can off anyone you can and grinding away. A whole bunch of unremarkable can become remarkable if you commit to it and push yourself towards your goals.

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