Sunday, June 14, 2009

Organizing My Portfolio: Part I

Like many people, I have the securities portion of my vast wealth (haha) spread across several different accounts with different institutions. These include the following:
  • My current 401K
  • An as-of-yet-unrolled-over 401K
  • An IRA, SEP-IRA and a securities account at one institution
  • A just for fun online brokerage account
For those keeping count that is 6 accounts with 4 institutions.

Most financial planners or finance-types would probably be horrified by this list. I'm less concerned about all of the different accounts and more so about finding out what I own across my portfolio so I can analyze it as a whole. That's an informal goal for this year. My curiosity about my portfolio was piqued in October when it came crashing down by about 50%.

I did this manually in an Excel grid, tallying all of the positions in each account and then analyzing my overall portfolio by type. This is the graph I created based on that info:

These are my own categories which I am sure are slightly unorthodox. As for the balance or lack of balance in my portfolio, analyzing that is my next step.

After reading an article in the Wall Street Journal, I was excited to learn I could possibly get some help with this task. I'm currently trying out some of the interactive portfolio trackers discussed in the story and will post an update soon. I had previously searched for a tool to do this and hadn't come up with much. I used the Markewatch Portfolio Analyzer but could not for the life of me figure out where to find the "analyzer" part of the tool that the site claims gives you a portfolio asset allocation analysis.

While this probably seems like a basic thing to do for most personal finance gurus, for me it is the top of the pyramid. I've got the budgeting, saving, credit card, checking account part of the equation down. Now it's time to take my investing to the next level. I'll share aspects of all of these as I go.

1 comment:

  1. Have you tried the portfolio tools on Morningstar? You have to be a paid subscriber, but you can have a free 30 day trial. Alternately, T. Rowe Price's website has Morningstar's tools, registration is free.