Saul's portfolio update for April 2024

Saul’s Portfolio at the end of April 2024.
Sorry that I’m two days late but I wasn’t thinking about the end of the month because I was busy with medical stuff so this actually runs until Friday with the first two trade days of May included.

Here’s a table of the monthly year-to-date progress of my portfolio for 2024. I’ll present them as starting from 100% of my starting value and figure from there.

After the huge February gains, March was a calmer month, and now we had a smallish pullback in April. In addition, I made more changes in my portfolio this month but not a lot.

End of Dec 100.0%

End of Jan 101.7%

End of Feb 125.4

End of Mar 127.2

End of Apr 117.4

To put it in perspective, 117.4/127.2 equals 0.923, so it was a 7.7% drop in April.

Here’s what my positions looked like a month ago (end of March):

ELF 20.1%

Celsius 17.7%

Monday 16.2%

Axon 15.6%

Samsara 15.6%

Crowdstrike 5.5%

Nu Holdings 3.7%

Beam 0.7%

And here’s what they look like now, at the end of April:

Axon 18.7%

ELF 17.9%

Celsius 17.6%

Samsara 16.5%

Crowdstrike 7.1%

Monday 7.1%

Nvidia 5.6%

Nu Holdings 2.9%

You can see several changes.

First, I bought back a smallish position in Nvidia, even if I don’t understand all the techie terms, and decided to pay attention to results (as I normally do), instead of understanding its technology. Second, I got rid of my tiny 0.7% position in Beam, thinking what am I wasting my time and attention for. Monday has changed from a 16% position into a 7% position, largely because I trimmed it down. Why? Because it has grown revenue by about the same number of dollars each quarter for seven or eight quarters now, which is resulting in lower and lower percentage growth, even though their product introduction has been very interesting. I decided to be happy with a 7% position for now. Axon is a 3% larger position than it was a month ago, partly because I added to it, but mostly because of good stock price action. They seem very steady to me, and I’m happy to see them as the slightly largest position. Nu is slightly smaller than it was a month ago, mostly because I trimmed it a little largely because it’s a bank in Latin America after all. And I did add to my Crowdstrike position and it’s now 7.1%, up from 5.5% a month ago. And I did continue to take out small amounts of cash into my permanent non-investing position that I referred to as my permanent safety fund below.

I have kept a permanent safety fund out of the market that I could live off for several years if necessary, and I feel everyone who does not have a secure regular source of income should do the same. I have gradually added to it over the last sevaral years, moving some funds gradually from my investing pool to my out-of-the-market pool. Given our advanced ages (I’m in my late 80’s), my wife and I probably have enough to live for the rest of our lives with our out-of-the-market pool, with a little left over for our children. I add a little to our out-of-the-market pool almost every month.

I have learned long ago that sticking with great companies wins out in the end, and beats market timing, even though living through the 2021/2022 decline was very difficult.

Let me remind you first, that I have NO IDEA what our stocks will do next month. I’m terrible on predictions. But I know that the businesses of our companies will do just fine for the most part.

When I take a regular position in a stock, it’s always with the idea of holding it indefinitely, or as long as circumstances seem appropriate, and never with a price goal or with the idea of trying to make a few points and selling. I do, of course, eventually exit. Sometimes it’s after months, and sometimes after years, but I’m talking about what my intention is when I buy.

I do sometimes take a tiny position in a company to put it on my radar and get me to learn more about it. I’m not trying to trade it and make money on it, I’m just trying to decide if I want to keep it long term. If I later do decide that it’s not what I want, I sell it without hesitation, and I really don’t care whether I gain a dollar or lose one. I just sell out to put the money somewhere better. If I decide to keep it, I add to my position and build it into a regular position.

You should never try to just follow what I’m doing without making up your own mind about a stock . First of all, you may have a completely different financial picture than I have. Different age, different income, different assets, different debts, different expenses, different financial and family responsibilities, etc.

Besides, in these monthly summaries I’m giving you a static picture of where I am currently, but I may change my mind about a position during the month. In fact, I not infrequently do, and I make changes in the position. I usually don’t announce these changes until the end of the month, and if I’m busy or have some personal emergency I might not announce them even then. And besides, I sometimes make mistakes, even big ones! Don’t just follow me blindly! I’m an old guy and won’t be around forever. The key is to learn how to do this for yourself.

Since I began in 1989, my entire portfolio has grown enormously. If you are new to the board and want to find out how I did it, and how you can try to do it yourself, I’d suggest you read the Knowledgebase , which is a compilation of my “words of wisdom”, and definitely worth reading, (a couple of times), if you haven’t yet. It’s on the panel to your right.
I hope this has been helpful.