My Financial Independence Journey: Monthly Update #9 (September 2017)

Early retirement and financial independence

Friends,

I hope you are all doing well!

I have had a busy month with lots of things happening on the blog and at work – and I managed to get quite a decent savings rate πŸ™‚

What happened in August?

I had my birthday in August and turned 27, which means that I am getting closer to my target of being retired at age 33. For that to happen, I will need to increase my savings rate though.

In August, I decided to do two things regarding my investments:

  1. I changed my investment portfolio to have less exposure to the US. I decided to include a European index (15%) and an Asian index (15%) together with my USA growth index (10%) and USA value index (10%), and my world index (20%). The latter is also quite reliant on American companies.
  2. I decided to jump on the crazy cryptocurrency train and invested a fixed amount of $2,500 (I will not invest more or withdraw anything). I know it is nothing more than a lottery ticket, but looking at the megatrends surrounding blockchain and cryptocurrencies, I decided to take a position for the long-term. I’ll write a post about exactly what I’ve done soon.

August was a quite busy month on the blog too:

  1. I have finally managed to write roughly a post per week this month
  2. I am increasingly getting emails from lots of people with different opportunities – some of them include compensation for various tasks. I am still struggling with how to balance this and I am trying to be as open about these opportunities as possible if I am going to accept them
  3. I finally decided to change my shared hosting provider after having been with iPage for many years. I changed to SiteGround, and I can’t believe how fast my website has become and how good the customer service is. I should have changed provider many years ago
  4. Traffic was relatively flat from last month. I had two insane days last month with lots of traffic because of my fastest growing blog list, so I knew that it would be tough to beat. Despite this, sessions and pageviews grew by 4%, and on a daily basis I am consistently getting more traffic which is great. Towards the end of August, I have started receiving a lot more organic traffic, so I am looking forward to seeing how that will go.

Last month, I decided to pursue three objectives, and I managed to deliver on two out of three.

I have achieved a savings rate of more than 40%, and I managed to front-load some of the writing with one post per week. However, I did not succeed in setting a date for a Danish personal finance meet-up. I really want to, but my calendar has simply not allowed setting a date in the near future yet.

 

The financials: How am I tracking on my early retirement goal?

My take-home income was 32,387 DKKΒ (4,627 USD), andΒ my savings rate was 42%.

My current assets are:

Assets1 September 2017 (DKK)1 September 2017 (USD)1 August 2017 (DKK)1 August 2017 (USD)
Total assets240,88834,413224,97032,139
Peer-to-peer lending15,4422,20615,2912,166
Stock indexes36,7265,24731,8434,549
Cash40,0635,72356,0718,010
Cryptocurrencies19,9082,84400
Pension105,94915,136103,52514,789
Home equity22,8003,25718,2402,606

My total assets including pension of 240,888 DKK (34,413 USD) was an increase of 7.1% up from last month.

My total assets excluding pension of 134,939 DKK (19,277 USD)Β was an increase of 11.1%Β up from last month. This means that I managed to save 13,461 DKK out of my take-home pay of 32,387 DKK, which equals a savings rate of (13,461/32,387) = 42% (up from 27% last month).

As you can see, my stock index investments are still not performing, and it is now the sixth consecutive month (!!) that I have had negative returns. I know that I have to be patient and keep investing, but it gets harder each month πŸ™‚

MoneyMow savings rate over time (%)

My savings rate of 42% for August is good.Β In fact, it is my second highest savings rate ever! It is not perfect considering where I want to go, but I believe it is a good savings rate – especially compared to last month. I still have a target of pushing the savings rate above 50%, which I’ll try to do in the coming month.

Focus areas for the coming month

For the month of September, I have three focus areas:

  1. Aim for a savings rate of more than 50% (I know this might be a bit tough, but I’ll do my best!)
  2. Since I did not manage to set up a Danish PF meetup in the last month, I will make sure to do so next month
  3. I liked how I was able to write posts ahead of time this month, so I’ll try to front-load in September as well

Favorite posts of the month

Once again this month, I had the pleasure of reading great posts by FIRE bloggers:

  • Steve from ThinkSaveRetire wrote a great piece on his “I quit” letter – it sure captures many of the things that I do not like about corporate life
  • Tub of Cash had a really interesting post on the topic of how playing video games can give you an edge in life. I grew up playing video games as well, and I also feel that I learned a lot from it – even though my mom would probably not agree.
  • Sune from Frinans, a fellow Danish blogger, decided this month to switch his blog to English. I really like his posts in Danish, so I am sure the same will be the case in English. Check out his monthly update here.

That’s it for this month. As always, let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Thanks for following my journey!

Onwards,
Carl

 

You may also like

10 Comments

  1. Hej Carl! Just found your blog, and I must say I really like it! I’ve just started blogging at http://www.worldsworstemployee.com (it seems like there’s inflation in the ‘FIRE blogmarket’ in Denmark at the moment).

    I’m looking forward to follow your journey!

    Btw. I’m up for a meeting in Copenhagen!

    1. Hey WWE!

      Welcome to the club! πŸ™‚ Yes, we are indeeed a growing group of people.

      I’ll include you in the Copenhagen meetup.

      Looking forward to following your journey!

      Onwards,
      Carl

    1. Thanks, Jason! Good question πŸ™‚ We are actually planning on spending half the year in a LCOL country and the remaining half in Denmark. What about you?

    1. Thanks, Lasse! I am happy that you are following the progress πŸ™‚ I can see that you have also set up a Blogspot?

      Onwards,
      Carl

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *