Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pledge Update November 2009

November 2009 pledge update below; it was an excellent month - in fact our best month ever - surpassing even the high points in summer 2008, so thank you readers. The past month has brought in about $1.1 million in pledges, both from already pledged investors increasing their amounts - along with many new names.  Over 150 people on the total pledge sheet at this time. This total takes us from roughly 54% of our goal to just under 70%, so the brass ring is for the first time tangible.  I will consider this monthly total an outlier and continue with a more conservative projection of a $300-350K monthly run rate go forward, which should still lead to - at worst - a very exciting spring 2010.  As of this writing we're roughly $2.1 million away from goal, and perhaps $1.5M or so away from filing paperwork with the assumption it will take 3-4 months for approvals from the SEC.

If you are a person potentially interested and new(er) to the website, here are the pertinent posts to become familiar with the journey.
  1. The overall goal and why I'm aiming for $7 approx million [Jan 7, 2008: Reader "Pledges" Toward Mutual Fund Launch]
  2. Frequently Asked Questions [May 26, 2008: Frequently Asked Questions] Very important to read
  3. Why I need your state [May 23, 2008: Investment Pledges by State] Keep in mind a state's eligibility can be turned "on" overnight once we're up and running
  4. Most recent updates (this November)  [Nov 4: General Updates]

Let me copy the same caveats for pledges as always:
  1. Assume a pledge amount that is firm based on a fund opening in "6 months" time frame
  2. Assume at any point in 2009/2010 the market may be down 30% from here
  3. Make your pledge based on liquid assets that are not currently in some high octane mutual fund that loses 40% when the market falls 30%, nor gains 50% when the market gains 40%. That money is not something that can be counted on in a volatile market.

Format: first name, last initial, pledged amount, and state you live in. To be clear, you are not sending me money that I'm going to hold until launch when you 'pledge' - you are simply making a verbal commitment: "when you are up and running, I have $X amount ready to invest". You can attach a comment to this post or as most people do, send me an email (my address is found on the upper right of the blog) with the above information. I'd prefer an email if possible.

Name Amount State/Country

Brian 5,000 ???
Heather 10,000 ???
Bob B 50,000 AR
Ed S 5,000 AZ
Alan N 15,000 AZ
Armour B 50,000 AZ
Dharminder M 100,000 AZ
Pat L 10,000 AZ
Art H 50,000 CA
Benjamin W 5,000 CA
Dave K 100,000 CA
Greg B 25,000 CA
Kurt C 10,000 CA
Ron W 10,000 CA
Tom L 25,000 CA
Ted C 5,000 CA
Brian L 50,000 CA
Rich P 30,000 CA
Shannon V 5,000 CA
Sunil K 10,000 CA
Anatoly S 10,000 CA
Wesley W 20,000 CA
Burt B 10,000 CA
John L 5,000 CA
Alven Y 5,000 CA
Piyush M 5,000 CA
Paresh P 5,000 CA
Dinesh K 5,000 CA
Naresh P 5,000 CA
Jay S* 5,000 CA
Shang C 50,000 CA
Henry C 3,000 CA
Charles Y 100,000 CA
George  5,000 CA
Ross T 5,000 CA
James H 5,000 CA
Dana K 25,000 CA
Walt C 30,000 CA
Charles L 20,000 CA
Greg W 20,000 CA
Raj 10,000 CA
Judy M 20,000 CA
Dave H 20,000 CA
Adam B 50,000 CO
Alecia C 75,000 CO
Mike H 15,000 CT
Mark B* 25,000 D.C.
Vic C 10,000 FL
Wes T 10,000 FL
Ron S* 100,000 FL (sailing)
Olivier N 10,000 FL
Bob H 3,500 FL
Chris I 20,000 FL
Patrick L 100,000 FL
Dave C 25,000 FL
Kevin D 5,000 FL
Sandy S 50,000 GA
Mark L 2,500 IA
Jeff M 20,000 IA
Ian J 5,000 ID
Jay S 10,000 IL
Ben 10,000 IN
Jake R 50,000 KS
Bill H 5,000 MA
Bruce W 2,500 MA
John B 20,000 MA
MB 20,000 MD
Raeann 10,000 MD
Mark 60,000 MI
Ralph B 25,000 MI
Scott L 7,500 MN
Tom S 20,000 MN
Marshall H 5,000 MO
Wolfgang S 7,500 MO
George L 10,000 NC
Brian C 5,000 NC
Colleen P 5,000 NC
Adam B 5,000 NJ
David B 50,000 NJ
Frank G 500,000 NJ
Henric B 25,000 NJ
Ryan T 7,500 NJ
B Shah 2,500 NJ
Rama R 4,000 NJ
Richard H 100,000 NJ
Vijay K 75,000 NJ
Andrew 100,000 NV
Gary M 10,000 NY
Rob T 20,000 NY
Igor O* 375,000 NY
Jason N 30,000 NY
Tim C 20,000 NY
Atul R 5,000 NY
Rob #2 6,000 NY
Marc E 7,500 NY
Bob M 100,000 NY
Adam M 10,000 OH
Justin K 10,000 OH
Dilip K 5,000 OK
Blake V 100,000 OK
Bill G 10,000 PA
Jatinder M 10,000 PA
V.K.K. 20,000 PA
Bruce R 100,000 PA
Joe C 10,000 PA
Nathan S 3,000 PA
Robert T 75,000 RI
Heidi H 25,000 RI
Doris S* 100,000 SC
Steve 100,000 SD
Dave S 20,000 TN
Matt S 10,000 TN
Pankaj S 5,000 TN
Joe P 10,000 TX
Doug M 40,000 TX
H.S. 2,500 TX
Ian* 50,000 TX
"Phong" 10,000 TX
Jason D 5,000 TX
AZ 10,000 TX
Glenn J 5,000 TX
Samba V 20,000 TX
Coby S 50,000 TX
Alex T 10,000 TX
Shane V 25,000 TX
Chair 15,000 VA
Lisa 5,000 VA
Zhong L 10,000 VA
Madhu I 25,000 VA
Brian D 50,000 VA
Kevin L* 125,000 VT
Ron 20,000 VT
Linda A 15,000 WA
Scott R 60,000 WA
Mike H 2,500 WA
Eric S 50,000 WA
Cathy K 20,000 WA
"Himalayas" 20,000 WA
Tyler 10,000 WA
Danny N 10,000 WA
Brian J 5,000 WI
Jason E 5,000 WI
Jason 10,000 WV
Stan T 10,000 Z-Canada
Steve L 10,000 Z-Canada
Brian M 5,000 Z-Canada
Stockspeter 7,500 Z-Canada
Anurag V 20,000 Z-Germany
Ken 250,000 Z-Hong Kong
S.E.H. 12,500 Z-Singapore
Junyuan 2,500 Z-Singapore
Tomaz K 20,000 Z-Slovenia
Ward P 2,500 Z-Sweden
KP 5,000 Z-UK
Nestor T 25,000 Z-Uruguay
Harsh N 5,000 Z-UAE

Total $4,882,000
Goal $7,000,000
% of Goal 69.7%

To Go $2,118,000

/Begin Sales Job

Performance Metrics Since August 2007

2009 YTD results here

I do have results from 2nd half 2007 and 2008 as well, but I was working in another platform that did not allow individual shorting in those time frames, so I was handicapped in my strategy.  However, you can see my "first year" results (Aug 2007 to July 2008) here. Short story: we beat the market by about 24% through July 2008 even with major handicaps to our strategy - i.e. only being able to employ HALF of it during a time the market was mostly trending downward. Long time readers will know I called out many individual shorts that ended up falling 50-100% (Freddie Mac, Washington Mutual, Las Vegas casinos, restaurants, retailers, emerging markets, commercial real estate) yet we benefited not one bit from it - so I believe my 2007 and 2008 performance as solid as it was, is substantially understated. In fact we tried to use Ultrashorts (since those were allowed in our old platform) as a hedging technique and even as the sectors these ETFs were betting against fell 50%, we lost money on the Ultrashort ETFs due to their faulty construction for long term holding periods - talk about insult to injury.

I compared myself to my peer groups in the mutual fund world during summer 2008 at various 1 month intervals, we generally were always in the top 10 (not top 10 percentile, but literally top 10 of all equity funds) and had some time as #1. Last time we looked was August 2008.

We left that old tracking platform ( late in 2008 due to the reasons above, plus technical difficulties constantly encountered. So there is a "window" in my performance while I searched for something new I could use - we found in January 2009. That 3 month window was marked by sharp losses in October and then gains in November and December 2008 by the stock market - I was only posting trades on the website at the time but have no "track record" for those 3 months.

So unfortunately I don't have a multi year year track record all in 1 place, nor employing my strategy fully during those 2+ years... only since Jan 2009 can I say it's been what I wanted to do, but this gives you a 40,000 foot point of view of what we've been up to. My estimate is even with the handicaps of not being able to short for the first 16 months, I'd still have the top ranked record among all equity funds since August 2007, and by a long shot. Of course this is only a simulator and actual results in real world would cause more drag to performance, and last but not least I have to give the tagline - past performance is no guarantee of future results. But that's my "resume".


To finish, while economic calls have no bearing on investment results, most of my big picture economic calls from 2007 - early 2009 are all listed for historical reference on my "Economic Forecast / Track Record" tab at the top of the page. I am also confidant that those calls were more accurate than 99.8% of the investment pundits who are celebrated on a daily basis.

The idea of the blog when I started it was to show my track record both on economic calls and investment results in a transparent basis, and hopefully excel. With that track record out in the open, I'd be exposed as a sham or not very quickly. Thus far I am content with what I have shown and the results achieved and if anyone has the time to read the 5000+ posts thus far - they can see for themselves. ;)

/End of Sales Job

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