Squirrel Quarterly Overview (SQO)

Last updated on Oct 2, 2016

If you’re new to our SQO / SSR

For those of you for whom this is your first SQO – Squirrel Quarterly Overview – welcome aboard and note the following:
A lot of Squirrels have had issues with passwords, so the SQO report is not password-protected. Handle with care.

The New SSR from Sep 2016

Updated on Oct 2, 2016

Those of you who are investing systematically, whether from your monthly income (SIPs) or from lump sums parked in liquid funds (STPs) would have seen our Squirrel Systematic transactions Report (SSR) when we met to discuss your portfolio. Until now that used to be created ‘by hand’ (see the note below on changes to the SQO from Jun 2015). As our Squirrel family has grown, doing this has become a LOT of manual work and we cordially detest that. Last year we had the services of our son to create the SQO for us. This year, it was up to yours truly to do the same with the SSR.  And we did. So, from this quarter onwards, if you are investing systematically, you will receive your SSR together with your SQO.

One important point about the SSR – it’s a record of what is scheduled to have happened via your systematic transactions. It’s not necessarily what has actually happened (that’s in your SQO). So, if you bounced a SIP instalment, for example, the SSR doesn’t reflect that (but the SQO does). It’s just a handy way of seeing what your systematic investing looks like and how long it has left to run.

Cosmetic (and back-end) changes to SQO from Jun 2015

Updated on July 1, 2015

Up until the Mar 2015 quarter we used to create the SQO reports ‘by hand’ using Numbers (the Apple answer to Excel). This allowed us a decent degree of customisation and the ability to store each Squirrel’s historical SQOs in a single spreadsheet. However, it did mean a LOT of manual work to prepare each Squirrel’s SQO. It would take us the better part of 10 days after the end of each quarter to complete this exercise (and it meant no exercise while we sat and slogged at our iMac).

As our practice has grown it’s no longer really feasible to do all this manually each quarter. So, we got ourselves an intern – our son, Aditya, who decided a few weeks back to major in Computer Science. Naturally, that meant we had to challenge this fresh set of hands and skills: Tackle this bottleneck! Using a friendly snake called Python, he has created a spiffy new program that consumes all the data we throw at it and regurgitates it out as a bunch of neatly formatted PDFs, i.e., our SQOs.

What took us 10 days, now takes about 10 seconds. Oh, the power of geekdom.

There are some trade-offs though:

  • Our SQO is now a standard format, so no additional non-standard info can be shoe-horned into it. We can always send you that separately though, if required.
  • Pagination is now standardised: the 1st page contains the summary, next comes the listing of your investments (across multiple pages, if necessary) and the last page contains the segmentation info and the colourful pies.
  • The font had to be massaged to fit in all the info programmatically so it may look a little different from what you’re used to. All the info is still there though.
  • Because of this font massage, the (l-o-ong) names of some schemes end up truncated (but still understandable). It looks a tad untidy, but… 10 seconds!
  • We no longer include the previous 3 quarters in the same PDF. This is not a big deal as we found that most Squirrels either ignored them or mistook them for continuation sheets. If you still need them, they will be there in your email archive. Or ask us and we’ll happily re-send them.

Segment analysis added to our Mar 2015 SQO

Updated on April 9, 2015

We’ve now added segment analysis to our SQO. These are 2 pie charts and a table that shows you how your debt and equity holdings are spread across various segments. For debt, segments are based on the period of maturity of the underlying investments – long term, short term, liquid, dynamic and so on. For equity, segments are based on the risk level – large cap, mid+small cap, infrastructure etc. These segments are based on the analysis provided by Value Research Online which has long been a leading analyst for mutual funds providing a wealth of historical research on performance and rankings for all mutual fund schemes.

This segment analysis will provide our savvier Squirrels with more info on how risk is spread across their portfolio. The less savvier Squirrels quickly become savvy.

Incremental growth – Fresh analysis added to our Mar 2014 SQO

Updated on April 5, 2014

This is an experimental feature and we’ve discussed it with some Squirrels. We’ll discuss it with all and if it seems to have value we’ll retain it. Or we won’t. [April 9, 2015 update: We’re retaining it. It’s useful.]

We’ve now added a simple way to show our Squirrels how their portfolios have grown over the year. Sure, we show the Current Value compared with the Invested Value, but that shows you how much your portfolio has grown by up to that date. How much has it grown over the period we’re reviewing? That’s incremental growth. (Naturally, this is not that relevant to Squirrels who have largely fixed income portfolios, so if you’re that kind of Squirrel, you won’t see this feature.)

There are two components to incremental growth: how much fresh money did you invest? and how much fresh appreciation (or depreciation) has happened?

As far as we know, no other investment advisor provides this kind of analysis (and, believe us, we’ve seen a lot of analysis reports).

Now that a lot of our Squirrels have between 1 and 2 years of investing history with us, we thought it’s the right time for this kind of analysis.

If you’re one of these Squirrels, you’ll see a new box at the foot of your report called the Annual Appreciation Matrix. (The acronym AAM is entirely coincidental; it could just as easily have been called the Average Appreciation Matrix, which is also AAM, so there. And besides, mango season will soon be upon us and squirrels love mangoes.)

A sample AAM looks like so:

SQO Notes

Here’s the explanation, column-wise:

  1. As on – it’s a date, duh. Referred to as “that date” below.
  2. Invested – this is the amount that has been invested by you originally as on that date. Two words of caution: if an investment has matured and has been re-invested, then this amount also shows up in this column. And, if an investment has been moved to our distributor code during the year, then again it shows up here. So, see the Fresh Investment column below.
  3. Market Value – this the market value of your investments as on that date.
  4. Fresh Investment – this is the incremental amount you’ve invested between the date above and the date in this row (a year). Now, the caution we referred to re the Investment column – any investment that matured during this period and was re-invested will also show up here. So don’t get too excited if you see a large figure here, it may not be “genuine fresh” investment. Nonetheless, it’s a relevant figure because if you’ve reinvested it, you haven’t spent it, so that’s very good. (Also, earlier investments that have been moved to our distributor code also show up here, but they really aren’t that “fresh” so add salt.) This one is mainly about you.
  5. Value Growth – this is how the market value grew between the date above and the date in this row, so this one is mainly about the market.
  6. 12-month Appreciation – in rupees and as a percentage. This is the important one (or two). It’s the difference between the Value Growth column and the Fresh Investment column, that is, how much your portfolio has grown during the year apart from the fresh investment you’ve made during the year. As a percentage, it’s this appreciation figure expressed as a percentage of the average of the starting & closing Invested figure for this year. Together, this shows you the “true” growth during the year. And there’s one row per year that you’ve been a Squirrel, so you can see a historical trend.

Significant caution: this is by definition a summary analysis, so if you’ve made significant movements in your portfolio during the year (e.g., lots of redemptions and/or reinvestments) this analysis is inevitably skewed – usually to show a lower return than actual. We should discuss this in detail when we meet.

Reminders to all

One, is that this report is better viewed on screen than printed – we’ve dropped pagination because some of you have such large portfolios (we like!) that fitting information onto a single A4 page is impossible but you can easily view it onscreen. And it discourages printing, which saves paper and trees and squirrels love trees.

Two, is that we’ve included previous Squirrel reports in the same file so you can view the progress of your portfolio. We retain up to 4 quarterly reports at a time so you have a perspective over a year. [June 2015 update: No longer included, but see the June 2015 update above.]

By way of analysis we’ve added in columns for maturity dates, portfolio appreciation and XIRR (as applicable). The latter will merit discussion, so let’s leave that for when we meet.

If there’s more analysis you’d like to see in future statements, drop us an email and we’ll do our best to incorporate your suggestions.

Important: If you’d like to discuss this report in more detail with us we’re happy to come across and meet you or do a telephone chat. Just let us know.

As always, please rely only on the official statements you receive from the fund houses themselves while making any decisions about your portfolio or providing information to any statutory or other authorities.

General Notes

The notes below apply to the portfolio reports that we share with you and are available here both for convenience as well as to save space in the report & email that we send you. Besides, nobody really reads that fine print, right?

  • The Earliest Transaction Date column represents the 1st transaction done through Squirrel and could be the date on which the broker code was changed to ours, rather than the actual transaction date
  • XIRR has been shown, where feasible, for those investments that have run for more than a year with Squirrel.
  • If your investment pre-dates your switch to Squirrel, the XIRR figure will not reflect the XIRR over the entire period of your holding.
  • The Annual Income column shows annual interest payouts for non-cumulative fixed income investments
  • Tax free Bonds Current Value represents the face value
  • Fixed Deposit Current Values reflect the approximate simple interest accrued to date for cumulative deposits
  • Fixed interest rates, where applicable, are mentioned in the Interest rate column.
  • Non-Squirrel holdings have been compiled from information provided by you, the investor. Information may not be current.
  • The mutual fund information has been compiled from distributor feeds provided by fund registrars.
  • You are urged to rely only on the official statements received from fund houses for any investment decisions or statutory reporting you may make.
  • NAV based on AMFI download available at http://portal.amfiindia.com/NAVReport.aspx?type=0
  • Share prices based on information available at http://www.nseindia.com/
  • BSE Sensex data compiled from http://www.bseindia.com/indices/IndexArchiveData.aspx
  • We continually strive to make this report more useful and informative as your holdings grow.
  • Please email us your feedback to info@beasquirrel.com