My Stock Portfolio May 2021 Update

Published: May 21, 2021 at 9:11 am

This is my monthly retirement stock portfolio update compared with an equivalent investment in a Nifty index fund. Before we begin, investors need to appreciate the context of these investments.

I started direct equity investing only after achieving a comfortable level of financial independence and ensuring my son’s future portfolio is in a good place. So this is largely an experimental portfolio. At the time of writing, its value is just 21% of my equity MF retirement portfolio and about 11% of my total retirement portfolio.

It is experimental in the sense I invest without the fear of performance. There is no experimentation or research in the stock selection strategy. That is often a waste of time and, therefore, a waste of true wealth.

My goal is to buy stocks with practically zero research. I continue to invest normally in mutual funds. Detail’s: How my retirement portfolio has performed in 2020: personal finance audit.

I have purchased mutual funds all these years each month regardless of market levels, and I shall strive to copy this uninteresting strategy for direct equity as well if I have the money that is. In April, I did not but managed to invest this month (May).


Time is not just money; Time is unquantifiable money. Time wasted in stock analysis or mutual fund analysis; the right time to invest etc. is an unquantifiable loss. So my goal is to buy a fund or stock within a minute.

There is zero-skill involved in any aspect of my portfolio. I compensate for the lack of knowledge with discipline. Randomness (aka luck) plays a huge role in the return numbers you see below. I have already discussed a monkey portfolio and how mine is one.

I got the confidence to invest in stocks after evaluating the performance of low volatility indices. I told myself I am not going to do any stock analysis or research. A quick check of company health, a brief review of volatility, and buy.  If I cannot buy a stock within a few minutes, I am wasting time and money (in that order).

The way I see it, the stock portfolio is part of my retirement portfolio basket as a dividend source. It could serve as an emergency fund as a last resort. Maybe I will find another use for It in future.

In FY 2020-21, the total dividend income from this portfolio is about 30% of my current monthly expenses. The next goal is to receive one month’s expenses as a total quarterly dividend. I do not consciously reinvest dividends. Younger people should. For me, it matters little, as long as the overall investment made each month keeps growing at a healthy pace.

This stock portfolio is part of my overall retirement portfolio. I am striving to build the ideal retirement portfolio. Also, see: How to build a second income source that will last a lifetime.

Elements of an ideal retirement portfolio
Elements of an ideal retirement portfolio

Caution: No part of this article should be treated as investment advice. I started investing in stock after my goal-based investing was in place.

Stock picking strategy

Cartoon depicting how readers analyse my stock portfolio more than I do!
Cartoon depicting how readers analyse my stock portfolio more than I do!
  1. Choose stocks with little or no evaluation or analysis.
  2. Choose low volatile stocks with sound financial health (low debt min requirement)
  3. Choose stocks that tend to trade close to their all-time highs (approx momentum indicator). See, for example, A list of stocks that have traded close to their “all-time high:
  4. Do not be afraid to pick expensive stocks – both in absolute price and valuation. Note: Value investing may sound intelligent and enticing, but it is essentially riskier. I neither have the age to take on such a risk nor the qualitative insights to pick stocks that the market has shunned but will be discovered sooner than later. To appreciate the risk associated with value investing and why it is more qualitative than quantitative, see this analysis: Is it time to exit ICICI Value Discovery & Quantum Long Term Equity?
  5. When in doubt, ask your wife when she is just about to fall asleep in the afternoon.
  6. Do not fear dividends (or dividend taxation).
    • What matters primarily is company health. Whether it is a dividend payer or not is incidental. That is, it makes no sense to say no to a company only because it pays huge dividends! Just as it makes no sense to sell a stock because it has increased dividend payout.
    • All stock investors over a period of 10 plus years will receive dividends whether they like it not. There is no choice, unlike mutual funds.
    • Dividends are not something “extra” in terms of returns/performance but do represent real profit. It can serve as a source of income for an older investor: How to build the ideal retirement portfolioYounger investors will never understand this, and that is fine.
  7. Peaceful sleep is the best form of realised gains: hence the importance to business health, low volatility, reasonable momentum (not all stocks in my portfolio will check all these boxes).
  8. This is the archive of previous portfolio updates.

Related videos: How to buy your first stock without breaking your head 

Retirement Stock Portfolio May 2021

Please note: Although investments started in 2014, about 68% of the total invested amount is from July 2020 to May 2021. So do not take the return nos seriously.

TotalWeight as of 20th May 2021
ASIANPAINT17.2%
HINDUNILVR14.2%
HDFCBANK13.1%
TCS13.1%
INFY11.6%
PIDILITIND11.0%
DABUR7.2%
COLPAL5.3%
ITC2.7%
WIPRO2.6%
MARICO2.1%
  • Dividend Return = Total Dividends divided by Total Investment
  • Capital Gain (CG) Returns = Total CG divided by Total Investment
  • Total Return = Dividend Return + CG Return.
  • CAGR = ( 1 + Total Return ) ^ ( 1 / Avg. Years) – 1  => Avg. year = 0.87 in this case.
  • All returns before tax.
  • The portfolio is compared with identical investments into UTI Nifty Next 50 Index Fund (direct plan!)
TotalCapital Gain (abs)DividendsTotal abs gain
HDFCBANK44.08%0.43%44.51%
ASIANPAINT34.88%0.27%35.15%
PIDILITIND24.56%0.15%24.71%
INFY23.47%0.87%24.34%
WIPRO20.01%0.13%20.15%
HINDUNILVR16.94%1.78%18.72%
MARICO16.77%1.50%18.27%
COLPAL16.10%3.33%19.44%
TCS15.01%0.60%15.61%
DABUR3.79%0.36%4.15%
ITC1.15%4.06%5.22%
Stock portfolio* (absolute return)21.16%1.04%22.20%
UTI Nifty index fund (absolute return)*15.11%
Stock portfolio CAGR25.82%
UTI Nifty Index fund CAGR
Stock portfolio XIRR (excl dividends)23.27%
UTI Nifty Index fund XIRR21.87%

* Total return and CGAR includes liquidated holdings (see monthly update archives for details)

Note: The dividends in the stock portfolio are not assumed to be reinvested. Such a calculation is significantly harder. If done, the stock portfolio return would obviously be a bit higher.

The beta of the stock portfolio (relative volatility compared to the market) is 0.44 – about 56% less volatile than the “market”. I have fun building this “monkey portfolio” with no effort and am going to continue. Please do your own research and invest.

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