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Net Worth Report (and market commentary) - End of 02/07

This has been a fun week. I regret I don't have a good link to share with you about Wednesday's huge stock market decline, but business news services seem to be entirely focused on up-to-the-minute reporting and don't make it easy to browse yesterday's news.

But you all know the story anyway — a 9% decline in China (undoing only the previous several days' gains, it turns out) spread to other markets and caused worldwide losses. U.S. markets were down some 3% and change on the day. There were no safe havens; precious metals saw declines similar to equities (although gold ended the month up 2.9% while the DJIA was down 2.7%.)

Despite having a lot of money in the market, I enjoy declines like this. My immediate reaction upon turning on the news was " — yes!!" I know I'm going to be a net buyer for a good long time, so lower prices are to my long-term benefit. There's also something deep in my Austrian soul that's always looking forward to a credit crunch, so anything that has the whiff of money supply contraction is automatically cool. (That impulse might be unhealthy.)

I don't have any particular analysis to proffer about what caused the decline or what you should do about it. I'm taking no action at all; I'm a fairly passive investor. Perhaps lazy is a better word — I have some ESPP shares I've been meaning to sell for a month (because they've passed the holding period for maximum tax advantage) and haven't even gotten around to selling them yet. Oops.

My personal results for the month are skewed by three significant events; the first is a new batch of ESPP shares being purchased and showing up in my account. (I don't accrue for these so they show up all at once.) The second is that my employer pays its annual bonuses in February; the third is its contribution to employees' profit-sharing retirement accounts this month.

These three items account for all of this month's gains. I was otherwise flat on the month. There's a lot of "noise" in these figures due to large changes in home and auto valuations.

Net Worth Figures
Category01/0702/07
Total$505,797.24$528,517.68
Short-term$20,661.57$20,391.99
Medium-term$119,368.99$124,802.32
Retirement$176,003.16$191,317.41
Property$189,763.52$192,005.96

Goal-Tracking Figures
Item01/0702/07
Adjusted Net Worth$469,206.09$495,728.28
Next Month's Target$478,716.19$498,545.29
Estimated Contribution-$62.45-$200.24

Credit Card Arbitrage Figures
Item01/0702/07
Balances @ 0% APR$24,868.60$35,406.84
Monthly Payment$497.37$708.14

You can keep track of other personal finance bloggers at NetWorthIQ. I've updated my entry there.


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Tiny Island