September 2015 Picks

September 2015 Picks

Take a deep breath, close your eyes, and just feel the disappointment and anxious jitters wash over you. Repeat until they’ve become just a strange abstract feeling, like a new pair of shoes. Then let them go, relax, and remember the plan.

This was a rough month for the market, with the S&P 500 losing some 10% of its value at one point, before regaining a fraction of that. But these things happen — it’s been an unusually long time since the last “correction” of this scale. As is typical of Plan 5, it’s more volatile than the market as a whole, and just as it often exaggerates the market’s gains, it will sometimes amplify its losses. That’s what happened this time around. Here are the Plan 5 Monthly results for August:

Plan 5 Monthly: August 2015 Results

Aug 3 Open Aug 31 Close % Change
Amazon.com (AMZN) 537.45 512.89 -4.57%
Criteo SA (CRTO) 53.93 39.21 -27.29%
Netflix (NFLX) 114.60 115.03 +0.38%
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International (VRX) 258.00 230.58 -10.63%
WisdomTree Investments (WETF) 25.00 18.75 -25%
Plan 5 Monthly: August 2015 -13.42%
S&P 500 2104.49 1972.18 -6.29%

Plan 5 Monthly was hit particularly hard, seeing the biggest loss in a single month since its inception, 13.42%, versus the S&P 500’s 6.29% loss. Four out of five picks lost value, with the worst being Criteo and WisdomTree Investements, which each lost at least a quarter of their value. Only one pick, Netflix, saw a gain, and it was very small.

Still, there are only two substitutions this month, with Post Holdings and Xoom replacing those two biggest losers, Criteo and WisdomTree. Here are the September Plan 5 Monthly picks:

Plan 5 Monthly: September 2015 Picks

Company Symbol
Amazon.com AMZN
Netflix NFLX
Post Holdings POST
Valeant Pharmaceuticals VRX
Xoom XOOM

If you’re following along with Plan 5 Monthly, you’ll want to rebalance your portfolio at this point. You can find a refresher on how to do that right here.

If instead you’re following Plan 5 Quarterly, it’s not time to make any trades this month, but let’s take a look at how last month’s new picks are doing. Here are the results so far:

Plan 5 Quarterly: August 2015 Progress Report

Aug 3 Open Aug 31 Close % Change
Amazon.com (AMZN) 537.45 512.89 -4.57%
Netflix (NFLX) 114.60 115.03 +0.38%
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International (VRX) 258.00 230.58 -10.63%
WisdomTree Investments (WETF) 25.00 18.75 -25%
Xoom (XOOM) 24.82 24.83 +0.04%
Plan 5 Quarterly: August 2015 -7.96%
S&P 500 2104.49 1972.18 -6.29%

Because Xoom had a much better month than Criteo, Plan 5 Quarterly didn’t fall as far as Plan 5 Monthly. Its 7.96% loss is only moderately worse than the market’s 6.29% loss.

Lastly, here’s a look at Plan 5’s overall progress from the beginning:


I’ll be back at the end of September with another update.

Thrive!

Mike Ferrier