Sunday, March 11, 2007

February 2007 Returns For My Model Long-Term Portfolio

February was a very volatile month for my Hypothetical Model Portfolio. The portfolio was performing very well until February 27th when the market corrected with the Dow dropping about 3.3% (416 points), the S&P 500 index dropping about 3.5%, and the NASDAQ composite dropping about 3.9%.

As of the market close on February 28, 2007, the Hypothetical Model Portfolio* decreased in value by $1684.95, or about 1.14% during the month of February. However, despite February's lousy returns, the Hypothetical Model Portfolio is still up about $84.57 in 2007, a gain of 0.06%, as shown on the table below (click for a larger image of the table).

Only two of the holdings failed to decrease in value - the Vanguard Developed Markets Index mutual fund (VDMIX) and the Vanguard Mid Cap Index (VIMSX). VDMIX rose about 0.31% and VIMSX closed the month at the same price at which it ended in January. VIMSX has performed surprisingly well so far this year and is up about 3.65% through the end of February.

Emerging markets were the worst performers, with the Templeton Russia closed-end fund (TRF) decreasing by about 4.40% and the iShares Emerging Markets ETF (EEM) dropping about 3.98%. The only other holding to drop more than 3% was S&P 500 Financial components ETF (XLF), which fell about 3.05%. TRF has now dropped about 18.85% during the first two months of 2007. The primary reason for TRF's poor performance is compression of its closed-end Net Asset Value premium, as I have previously discussed.

It seems as though 2007 is going to be a volatile year. However, stock market valuations, especially those of U.S. markets, are still right around historical averages. Consequently, I don't see a huge sustained market drop happening anytime soon. I still anticipate my Hypothetical Model Portfolio performing well in 2007 and note that despite the February market turbulence, the Hypothetical Model Portfolio is outperforming the S&P 500 Index by about 0.57%.

*The Hypothetical Model Portfolio was created with an investment of $100,000 in securities as of the closing values on December 30, 2005 and an additional $25,000 was invested n securities as of the closing values on December 29, 2006. The reason why the total cost in the chart is greater than $125,000 is because the total cost accounts for the value of distributions reinvested into the mutual funds in the portfolio.

January 2007 Returns

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