So after writing the article called “Mutual Funds versus Stocks Why I Choose Stocks“, I wondered if my personal “regular account” gains from the past would trump my 401k gains. I was especially curious about as long of a record period as I could calculate. So ironically (or is it because I’m focused on this right now), I click on reports in my brokerage account, and low and behold, they have a calculation for the past 4 years. So since they have such an excellent feature, I decided to perform a quick and dirty Year End Investment Portfolio Analysis!
So let’s start with my regular brokerage accounts first! I have over 5 accounts (2 of which are my kids) and unfortunately I couldn’t eliminate my kid’s accounts. They almost certainly pulled my average down a bit since I haven’t done quite as well in their accounts as mine (I have no idea why, but most likely because I set them in stocks and ignore their account a lot of the time). Their accounts didn’t do horrible, but I’m sure it did pull my account average down a few percentage points.
It’s noteworthy to mention that if I was to include my ESPP money hack, I believe that my actually percentage would be up another 1/2 to 1 percent.
So here is my number for the past 4 years, 19.04% (annualized). Not bad huh, especially since I believe the number would actually be closer to 20%
Brokerage Account Return for the Past 4 Years
In my 401k, my return for this period was 11.6%, not horrible but less than the S&P 500’s return which was around 16% per year (or close to this number).
So I was pleased with my 19% (really more like 20%) number (and if you take out my kids account from the equation, the return would have been higher)… I think my Year End Investment Portfolio Analysis verifies that I’m doing okay investing in stocks versus mutual funds!
If I were to just let the account balances ride out with no new contributions to the principal to either my 401k or regular brokerage accounts, it would take a bit more than 10 years for my regular brokerage account balances to pass my 401k balance. So I was a little too optimistic on my regular brokerage account passing my 401k balance, but it’s still fun to have the my stocks (regular accounts) compete against my mutual funds (my 401k balance).
Here’s to a great new year!