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Diary of a Private Investor


“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime” – Lao Tsu

Join me in my quest of learning to navigate the UK stock market in pursuit of financial freedom.

Who am I?
My name is Simon and I am a private investor in the UK stock market. My first foray into the investment world was in the mid-1990s, since when I have learnt many lessons, often the hard way. Somehow, I have managed to accumulate sufficient capital and confidence that I am now able to make a living from my hobby – how cool is that!

But let’s be clear. I am not a market professional, I am merely an enthusiastic amateur. Nothing I write or publish on this site should ever be construed as investment advice.

Why this site?
Good question. Investing is as much a psychological journey as it is an intellectual challenge. This site helps me learn out loud. It enables me to reflect on my decision making and my thought processes at the time. It keeps me accountable and forces me to critically analyse my process. But most importantly, it helps to keep me sane!

If my writings entertain you, cause you to reflect on your own investment strategy or help you to learn, then I am delighted to have you along for the ride.

How this site works
Posts are divided into 3 categories, as follows:

Main Articles – I aim to publish a portfolio review/commentary at the end of each quarter. Additionally, this category includes investment strategies and market comment.

Share Watch – At the end of weeks when there has been meaningful news flow and/or trading activity within my portfolio, this is where I provide relevant commentary.

Company Spotlight – From time to time, I will write an article covering a specific company, usually one that I own shares in. This is an area I have moved away from in recent times for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it is time consuming to provide in-depth company analysis (to research a company is one thing but to then write that research up into a detailed and accurate article is another matter altogether). Secondly, this is not a share tipping site and I don’t want to fall into the trap of having an entrenched position in a share merely because I have been an advocate of it via this site.

I try to be as transparent as I can. Periodically (typically quarterly), I update my current portfolio holdings/weightings. Each week, I Tweet an update of how the portfolio has performed that week and year-to-date, along with any trades I have made that week, if any. On a quarterly basis I update the benchmarked portfolio performance and analysis of items such as Volatility, Yield and Stock Rank.

My Investment Strategy is fairly well established but as this site is primarily about me learning out loud, I’m sure it will be subject to refinement from time to time. And last but not least, I host the annual Twitter comp run by Aston Girl (@reb40) and update results quarterly.

Connect with me
I am always happy to chat about investment matters via Twitter where I use the handle @BrilliantLeader (it’s a long story!).


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