Now that we put the first half of 2023 behind us, it’s time to review which one of my three investments has been doing the best so far this year.
Stocks in the form of ETFs, which have performed way better than anyone could have expected in this difficult environment, P2P lending with its high monthly cashflow or the most speculative part of my investments, crypto?
We’ll of course also cover any important events up to July 16th, 2023.
And no, I did not forget about my portfolio update for May! Due to several trips in June and early July I had to prioritize, which sadly meant that it only ended up on YouTube last month.
As a result, today’s post won’t just cover June, but my investment returns and anything important that happened in May as well.
Please don’t forget that none of this is investment advice, just my personal opinion based on my own experience as an investor.
Ok, let’s begin with stocks (in my case via low-cost ETFs), making up 60% of my investments.
The stock market continued performing way above expectations, in part due to inflation cooling off quickly in the US, the AI boom going on right now especially in the tech sector and earnings coming in better than expected – at least in the US, the largest player in the global stock market.
Now, what does this mean for the one ETF my wife and I buy on a monthly basis, the accumulating Vanguard FTSE All-World (ISIN: IE00BK5BQT80, VWCE)?
Well, it was up +3,9% in June, for a total of +11,6% in the first six months of 2023.
We’re actually up quite a bit more in USD terms, which recently lost some value against the euro (-4,6% since the start of the year).
And since about 60% of the stocks in our main ETF are held and traded in USD, that obviously lowers our performance in euros.
Still, these currency fluctuations are normal. Before you ask – no, it does not make sense to select hedged ETFs instead, which come with much higher fees!
As you can see in this example where I’m comparing the iShares Core MSCI World (TER: 0,2% p.a.) with the much more expensive Euro Hedged version (TER: 0,55% p.a.), over the long run you’re losing out on quite a bit of performance by hedging:
The normal version had an extra performance of 82 percentage points since September 2010 over the hedged ETF, even though the USD only gained 24% in value against the EUR over that time period. That’s a substantial difference in returns long-term, so it’s not worth it in my opinion.
Anyway, even with the strong performance we’ve seen so far, I’m bullish about the rest of the year as well when it comes to stocks (in my case ETFs).
Even though there’s of course always a chance we could see a temporary pullback in price. Still, that wouldn’t change our long-term investment strategy.
And in case you missed it, I recently published a post going over two exciting new features on my favorite low-cost broker (Interactive Brokers) and how they work:
With that, let’s move on to the second largest portion of my portfolio, my investments in P2P lending. I included my income from both May as well as June in this section.
- Income: 67,46€ (June) and 70,26€ (May)
- IRR: 10,29%
- Invested since: 27.09.2018
May was my best month on Mintos since April 2021 and June wasn’t far behind.
I met the Mintos team at the Finfellas conference in Riga in early June, where I found out that they’re working on adding ETF investments to the marketplace over the coming months.
After all, Mintos is licensed and regulated as an investment brokerage firm, so they’ve been working on this behind the scenes for quite a while now.
I actually gave them a bit of feedback on the prototype they showed me at the conference and I’ll make sure to test it properly and give you my honest opinion once it has been released.
- Sign up to Mintos via this link and invest 1.000€ or more before 31.08.2023, to get a €50 instant bonus and 1% cashback on your average investment in the first 90 days.
- Income: 63,95€ (June) and 41,67€ (May)
- IRR: 13,08%
- Invested since: 19.09.2022
June was my best month on Esketit so far.
One thing you should be aware of is that they’ve added the outside lending company Aksioma, which only pays 7% interest per year (instead of the usual 11-12%) to their diversified auto invest strategy on July 11th.
Since that’s the one that I was using, I was quite upset that I now needed to change my auto invest strategy.
After all, I’m on Esketit to invest into loans from the Creamfinance (now called Avafin) group and its founders, not some random lending company I know very little about, paying much lower interest rates.
When I stopped my diversified strategy on July 10th I actually ended up making a silly mistake:
I wanted to simply disable it, so that funds from loan repayments and interest go into two new strategies that only invest into loans from the Creamfinance group as well as from Jordan.
But, since my click on the toggle to disable the strategy wasn’t being saved (I have since realized you also need to click on the set new target button for that to happen, even if you’re not actually setting a new target), I ended up setting the strategy target to 0 instead, forgetting that it meant that the strategy would now sell all of my loans to other investors!
As soon as I realized it was already too late to change, all of my investments in loans (5.700€) had been cashed out within only a few seconds and I now needed to wait for new loans to fully invest my money again.
Oh well, mistakes happen! At least I was able to test out the cash out function personally, which worked way better than I expected.
Anyway, I have since set up the two new Esketit auto invest strategies, one for CreamFinance and one for Jordan loans and luckily it didn’t take much longer than a few days for me to be fully invested again:
- Get a 0,5% bonus on all of your investments on Esketit within the first 90 days via my link.
- Income: 49,52€ (June) and 53,30€ (May)
- IRR: 12,21%
- Invested since: 11.10.2019
I had my best month ever on Viainvest in May, with June not being far behind. I also enjoyed meeting the team in Riga at the Finfellas conference.
The platform recently launched auto invest strategies as well, but I see no reason to change my custom auto invest, which has been working very well for me so far.
- Get 1% cashback on your average daily investment balance on Viainvest within the first 90 days via my link
- Income: 45,96€ (June) and 48,80€ (May)
- IRR: 12,28%
- Invested since: 19.01.2021
Robocash ran smoothly as usual, I have zero complaints.
- Income: 36,35€ (June) and 45,46€ (May)
- IRR: 13,06%
- Invested since: 17.03.2022
Income Marketplace has also been running very well. As a result, I deposited an extra 1.120€ in June, raising my account balance over 5.000€.
I met the Income CEO Kimmo Rytkönen in Riga, who told me about some of their plans and got me excited about the platforms future. They’re currently working on adding new lending companies in the coming months.
- Get a 1% bonus on your average investment balance on Income after 30 days using this link.
- Income: 41,40€ (June) and 8,92€ (May)
- IRR: 13,00% (incl. 1% investment bonus)
- Invested since: 19.09.2022
Meanwhile, I had my best month by far on Lande, with over 41€ in interest payments. I’m actually planning on increasing my account balance here within the next few days.
I also had an interesting meeting with Nikita Goncars, the Lande CEO in their office in Riga. Our talk in addition to the platform’s statistics as well as my own results so far as an investor, has me feeling good about Lande’s future.
- Get a 1% bonus on all of your investments on Lande within the first 180 days via my link.
Withdrawal in Progress: Lendermarket, Iuvo, Crowdestor, Bondster
I’m still continuing my withdrawals from Lendermarket for the time being. It took the platform a total of 19 days to process my last withdrawal, which to me is a pretty clear sign that Creditstar isn’t the only one battling liquidity issues right now.
This brings us my total earnings from P2P lending in May and June:
P2P Lending Income May
P2P Lending Income June
While I actually earned a total of 328,59€ in interest from P2P lending in June, I also sold two loans at a substantial discount (-249,81€) on Crowdestor, which pushed my income down to 78,78€ for the month.
According to Portfolio Performance, the free tool I use to track my investments, that’s a monthly return of 0,20% which translates to an internal rate of return of 8,96% from P2P lending this year, down from 10,33% p.a. last month.
As for my cumulative returns so far from this asset class in 2023, I earned 4,33% on my money in the first 6 months of the year.
Bitcoin & Ethereum
Last but not least, let’s see how the highly speculative 10% of my portfolio performed, namely my investments in the two largest crypto assets, Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Blackrock, the largest asset manager in the world (you probably know them as iShares when it comes to ETFs) filed for a spot Bitcoin ETF in June. Understandably, that caused a bit of a market rally:
- Bitcoin: +10% in June, +82% year-to-date
- Ethereum: +2% in June, +58% year-to-date
I certainly can’t complain right now. Just keep in mind that these carry a ton of risk and it can go either way.
My Best Performing Investment in H1/2023
Ok, let’s recap and see where we stand after the first six months of 2023, taking into account my unqualified predictions:
- ETF: +11,63%, already above my expectations of 9% for the entire year
- P2P Lending: +4,33%, on track for 9% in returns I was expecting for 2023 as a whole
- Crypto: +82% (BTC) and +58% (ETH), still below my year-end targets (don’t forget, crypto crashed hard in 2022)
All in all, I have to say 2023 has gone way better so far than I could have anticipated when it comes to my investments.
Hopefully that doesn’t change over the next six months, but we’ll have to wait and see!
- My Investment Tools
A list containing all my investments in P2P Lending, the brokerage accounts I use to buy ETFs, my speculative investments in Bitcoin and my free bank accounts. It even includes the tools I use for blogging and YouTube.
- P2P Bonus Offers
A collection of all the best, currently available bonus and cashback offers in the P2P lending space. Regularly updated.
Disclaimer: Investing involves risks of losses. You should always do your own research before investing into anything. Also, some of the links are affiliate links, which help support me, the website & YouTube channel. I only link to services I use myself, none of them are sponsored.