H1 Performance 0%, -30%, depending on your point of view

Thought I would give a brief update on what I have been up to the last few months. Overall I am flat, simply looking at brokerage statements, if we assume my Russian illiquid holdings are worth 0 I am down about 30%. Actually looking at this a week later I am down c8%, things are so volatile it can easily go either way.

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Russia invasion of Ukraine – Worst investing day ever -c25-30% ytd

Just done my best estimates of my portfolio value today. It isn’t looking pretty, down 25%. My worst ever day by a country mile.

Firstly, it should be noted I am not a supporter of this invasion. I would prefer it if Russia hadn’t invaded. I think they have legitimate concerns regarding NATO membership. It isn’t purely a defensive alliance but a full takeover was not the way to get those concerns taken seriously. I hope both the Russian and Ukrainian people thrive and prosper. Ultimately I invest in stocks to make money and try to do so dispassionately and rationally. Some people find this cold / challenging / upsetting, particularly once lives are lost. I try to remove any moral grounds from anything I do in investing. I didn’t cause this crisis, where my money is has nothing to do with who/what I support. I’m just a guy making the best of the world I find myself in…

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Tharisa – mispriced following minority buy out, very low risk opportunity.

I believe yesterday’s RNS released by Tharisa. They are buying out BEE minorities stake in the South African Mine for $26.5m by issuing 13 903 743 new shares. I wrote them up here (when the Rhodium price was much higher). I think the share price isn’t reflecting the amount of value they have obtained from this transaction.

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2021 Performance / Portfolio Review a slightly disappointing +20.5%

On to my usual review of the year (last years here). We are slightly shy of the full year end but I recon I am up about 20.5%. This is in my usual 20-22% range. It is below that of the (not comparable) NASDAQ (at 27% (in USD) and behind the S&P500 – at 25.82% (in USD). The UK All share was 17.9% and the FTSE 100 was at 18.1%. There has been a decrease in market breadth which is traditionally a sign of a top. Index performance in the US is driven by tech and healthcare, sectors which I hold next to nothing in, so to *roughly* keep up given my idiosyncratic portfolio is actually a sign of strength. One can’t sensibly benchmark my portfolio against anything as it’s just so odd, but I need to so that I can determine whether I am wasting my time.

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H1 2021 Review / Portfolio +13.8%

Thought I would do a review of where the portfolio stands.

As at end June I am +13.8% for the year, roughly matching the FTSE AS at c12%. it has been far more volatile than is usual, pre-fed comments on tightening sooner than the market expected, I was up closer to 20%. The volatility is driven by the large exposure to natural resource co’s and volatility resulting from their underlying commodity feeding through to share prices, which are, in turn, even more volatile.

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Exiting Russian / Ukranian positions, possibility of invasion not priced in

I’ve decided to sell up on most of my Russian / Ukranian stocks.

HYDR, FXPO, SIBN, RSTI, GLTR.

I am holding on to FEES (Russian Electricity grid Yield 8.5%+, P/E <4 and P/B<0.3 (I can take the pain on this), and GAZP as 50% dividend payout news announced today implies *potentially* a very high yield.

I am increasingly concerned there will be an invasion/incursion in Ukraine. This build-up seems long/ sustained for a ‘training exercise’. If they go home without doing anything Putin will look weak.

I also note last year their western district held intensive training exercises as well.

He will be especially wary of talk of Ukraine joining Nato, in Russian terms this is equivalent to Canada joining the Warsaw pact – something that can’t be allowed to happen!

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Tharisa – ridiculously cheap, High Rhodium Price means a likely PE well under 4

In recent months I have been investing more in natural resource co’s. Focussing on Uranium (URNM, KAP, YCA (now sold for more URNM). I bought copper via COPM and CAML as well as gold/ silver via metals holdings and AAZ (free mines following the Azerbaijan/Armenia war) as well as TSG and a few others….

Now my portfolio is c48% natural resources with 10% gold/ silver metal. I bought Tharisa a few weeks ago to add to this replacing my holding in JLP, as I think this is better…

There has been disruption in production due to COVID , but the main reason I am in is (in the main) due to developed world money printing. I believe this will be inflationary so resources that can’t be printed are a good place to be. Think about it like this, if the stock of money increases (say) 25% then any fixed quantity in the economy should also increase by at least this. Of course, reality is not that simple as demand/ production increases / decreases. I believe this printing is not like that which occurred around 2010 as that was to recapitalise the banks so just sat on their balance sheets so wasn’t inflationary whereas this will get out into the ‘real’ economy.

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Blast from the Past – Renn Universal Growth – Finally Money Returned

Very brief post on this.

Back in December 2014 some of you may have invested in Renn Universal Growth.

It was a liquidating investment trust worth £2.95 with an offer price of £2.24 and £1.68 in liquid assets. Post on it is here.

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