Occasionally subscribers provide feedback to me regarding their experience using the paid services at Natural Selection Self-Investing. I thought I'd pass along a recent email that I received from one of my longest-standing subs. This is a person without previous investment experience who took the time to read and understand the methodology presented on the website and then implemented it in the context of the real-time stock and ETF portfolios as well as the quick-trade set-ups and discussion provided to paying customers.
As I have done on a couple of other occasions since initially signing up for the subscription - at first to learn, follow and 'mock trade' and then to actually implement - I thought I would provide you with an update on returns so far and subscriber experience. Since starting investing and trading six months ago, my total return (realized and unrealized) across all three natural selection investment portfolios is +13.8% (27.6% annualized). Across my the three different portfolios the returns so far are as follows:
Stock portfolio: +8.6% (+17.2 annualized) ETF portfolio: -0.1% (-0.2% annualized) Quick-trade: +27.2% (54.4% annualized) Of the initial funds I allocated to the Natural Selection system/methodology, the split was roughly as follows:
Stock (30%) ETF (30%) Quick-trade (40%)
As I have mentioned to you before, my benchmark is how performance in this system can compare against what I would otherwise be doing with those funds. Other investments I have are primarily in a buy and hold strategy of four low cost index ETFs (HXT, VFV, VIU, and VEE). Total return for this portfolio over the exact same time period has been about -2% (-4% annualized). In other words, my funds invested through Natural Selection methodologies has returned about 16% (32% annualized) BETTER than my benchmark so far. Yes, I know this is a relatively short time frame and I will need to evaluate returns over the longer term time horizon, but so far my experience with your methodologies and analysis is that it has created significant value. Due to market conditions since December, most of my returns have come from the quick-trade side of things, as we have had the Stock and ETF funds on the sidelines and have been rebuilding those portfolios over the last few months. Quick-trade has provided an opportunity to trade and profit from the strong upward trends in several sectors since the lows in March.
My approach on quick-trade has been to buy most of your weekly watch list "buys" and follow your recommendations on taking profits, and honouring stops quite faithfully (well, most of the time, but not always!). So I think it is the analysis and reports that you provide that add the value and by following it, it wins substantially more than it loses.
In addition, your methodologies had me out of positions relatively early in the March market crash, which avoided the losses of buy and hold strategies.
I am excited about the rebuilding of the stock and ETF portfolios and the returns that those may be able to generate, with less active management and trading by me as a subscriber. I certainly like the returns I see from quick-trade over this relatively short period of time and if they keep coming at those levels, it would be tough to justify doing less quick trade. But for me, I find that I need or want to be monitoring quick-trade daily (and a few times a day), which is sometimes tough on busy work days or at times when on vacation, etc.
The reason for me writing is to provide positive feedback from a subscriber and hopefully demonstrate how I see your business adding value for me. I am sure every subscriber's experience is a bit different, but hopefully this gives you some idea how I utilize the information you put out and my high level of satisfaction. I think my subscription ends in Sept or so and I will certainly be renewing. If there are any ways I can help spread the word about your business, help it grow and have others benefit from the value you add, I am more than happy to do that - just let me know.