My 2½ year old Bondora portfolio has returned 27%

Bondora is very different to for example Mintos. Two things set Bondora apart from the competition
  1. They issue the loans themselves, and
  2. They don't have a buyback guarantee (Read my Bondora review on why they shouldn't either)
This should at first alarm you. With this kind of setup, Bondora's intresses aren't exactly aligned with yours, as Bondora will make money even if you don't.

More real estate and stocks

Investing is exciting. I have a particular dislike for losing money, but I especially hate losing money due to scams.

Two scams occurring simultaneously has made me question my approach: a heavy peer lending portfolio. In fact, had I been in stocks last year instead of peer lending, I'd be perhaps 50k€ richer today. 🤷

Hindsight is 20/20 and 2019 was extraordinary in terms of stock performance. To me it feels the S&P 500 must be overvalued. The Shiller CAPE is above 30, which is unheard of apart from Black Tuesday of 1929 and the dotcom bubble of 2001.

So what am I going to do?
The original plan was to be heavy in peer lending until valuations normalized. The concern is that to get in "too early" would mean to catch the downturn and lose doubly.

What a conundrum.

But on the other hand, timing the market is really quite impossible. Sure, it will seem obvious after the fact, but it's impossible to predict.

I would not have expected stocks to gain 29% in 2019, but they did. And they could again.

And, fortunately, Europe's CAPE ratios are much more moderate.

So all of this combined with the fact that shady stuff can happen in the unregulated industry, I'm doing some re-balancing to slowly increase weight in my stocks. For a while, stocks have represented half of my peer lending portfolio, and I think during this year I will gradually turn that around.

What's currently in my peer lending portfolio

Here's what's still in my peer lending portfolio: Bondora, Bulkestate, Mintos, Viventor, Viainvest, Crowdestor, Estateguru, Crowdestate, October, GrupeerAgrikaab, PeerBerry, RoboCash, Sun Exchange, Swaper, TrineIuvo and the Finnish Lainaaja.

I might look to simplify my portfolio a bit, getting rid of platforms I have less love for.

And by the way, some of the passers by have felt necessary to point out that there's a lot of risk in my portfolio. Yes I know.
Some have wanted to point out that other platforms could be scams. Yes I know.

The contents of this blog is to an extent entertainment, and perhaps even a cautionary example. If you find any of the platforms interesting and you decide to invest in them yourself, you are free to do so. But do your own due diligence.

Recent and upcoming news

I'm looking forward to exiting my Agrikaab camel by end of March. If everything goes as planned, it will have returned roughly 34% in dividends. So far things look alright, but it can still go awry. There have been stories of investors not getting their money back from the goats and sheeps project a couple of years back when it failed.

I have been told by Agrikaab that the camels are cashflow positive, but the reason I'm exiting the camel is that I want to try out other projects on Agrikaab with a meaningful stake, but as it is very high risk, don't want to increase my principal too much on the platform. Also, some readers have made a point that they wait for me to sell the camel back to see if it goes through, so I'm going to do it.

Since my P2B loanbook got a lot thinner recently, I decided to look into October. It's soon 6 years old, registered in France and 50% of the loan  are financed by institutional investors. Their loan rates are low though, around 6-7%. But, they seem much less risky than let's say Crowdestor.

I've also started investing on Iuvo and Viventor. From the early onset, they would seem decent and similar to Mintos.  Iuvo has a weaker buyback guarantee, which could mean less risk. Viventor offers even 16% invoice financing loans with buyback guarantee, which is insane.

I've also opened an account on Estateguru and invested a small sum to see how that works. So far I'm impressed at the level of detail they share compared to other platforms.

I've written off Envestio as fraud, unlikely to get back any money from it. I'm going to learn from all this, become better at not losing money. We have decided to buy another apartment to rent. And, as said, recent events have made me question my p2p weight. So to finance that new rental apartment and to increase my stock portfolio, I'll gradually reduce my peer lending.

This effectively drastically reduces my "passive monthly income", which makes those monthly updates a little odd. So I think I won't do them as often.

I actually welcome the break. I would rather focus on other things for a change.

Let's see how this year turns out, shall we!

What is diversification and why is it most important for long term returns?

Nobody likes to lose money (Like I just very likely did on Kuetzal). I particularly dislike losing money. If you invest however, you're bound to lose money at some point.

It's inevitable. You will lose money. Accept it.

I'm trying my best to embrace loss, despite my utter dislike for it. To avoid loss at all costs means to avoid wins too.

January 2020 update: 4,775 € loss

Oh no.

I've been dreading to write this update.

If you haven't heard, Kuetzal platform has collapsed and most of the details point towards fraud. There are those who are convinced that most of the projects didn't exist in the first place, if any.

I honestly don't know what to make of all this, but I have now accepted that I've lost 6k €. With my current passive income, that's about four months. But I feel I deserve it. I was greedy. I let my fear of missing out cloud my judgement. I jumped on the bandwagon. I was the dumb money. 🤷‍♂️


Kuetzal is having a crisis and I'm pulling the plug

So much has happened with Kuetzal recently. People have requested me to write my own thoughts about the platform and perhaps now is the right time to do that.

Fast Invest review: concerns outweigh performance

Fast Invest Ltd is a peer lending platform from Lithuania that has over 30 000 active users per day. I've invested 10,000 € on Fast Invest and this is my unbiased review of my experiences.

There are lots to like, such as performance and predictability. But, people have also found some interesting things on Fast Invest. Read to learn more and what I eventually ended up doing!

December 2019 update: 1,686 € passive monthly income

Highlights from past month:
  • Passive income was 1,686 € 📈
  • ... and not much else 😀

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