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My 37 Stock $333k February Retirement Portfolio Consolidates With A New Massive Industrial Position

Trent Welsh profile picture
Trent Welsh


  • My former 45-stock portfolio gets a haircut down to 37 stocks as I de-diversify in favor of bigger and riskier bets with volatility on the rise.
  • Global Ship Lease is the new major position in my portfolio with earnings in the first week of March and upside potential all year long in my opinion.
  • A portfolio built for individual investors to outperform the majority of money managers in good and bad times through diversity and risk with the goal to be worth millions in retirement.

It is my firm belief that 80% of money managers can't outperform the S&P 500 index over time due primarily to the fees they charge their clients. Each and every individual person intent on having the happiest retirement possible could and should take charge of their retirement portfolios and invest in simple index/mutual funds and/or a balanced portfolio like the one I have set up to maximize returns over decades of performance. My ratios and distributions are based on my book, which can be found on Amazon, which was written with beginning investors and young people like high schoolers and college students in mind to outperform professional money managers over time. My retirement portfolio reached up over $350,000 for the first time in February before pullback's mainly in the last week of the month dropped it down to its current level.

During the month of January, my retirement portfolio had $2,100 in contributions added to it. In February, my spouse and I contributed $12,000 to our IRA portfolios for 2020 with the goal to do another $12,000 in IRA contributions for 2021 later on this year. Here is how my portfolio performed compared to the SPDR S&P 500 Trust (SPY) over January and February of 2021.

Fund (SPY) Welsh Welsh Minus Contributions
% Gain Jan 2021 -1.02% 2.85% 2.2%
% Gain Feb 2021 2.84% 2.59% -1.1%
YTD GAINS 1.73% 5.5% 1.05%

Regular contributions to your retirement portfolio help your portfolio to grow even on less than ideal months where you fail to outperform the S&P 500. Not every month will be a winner, but regular contributions can help make anyone's performance look good over time.

Here's how the SPY has tracked over the beginning of 2021. It continues to have strong starts at the beginning of the

This article was written by

Trent Welsh profile picture
B.S. Psychology University of Missouri-Columbia MBA University of Missouri-Columbia Full time investor looking to capitalize on market overreactions and looking for value where others see nothing but wreckage. Long term buys and short term trades to build wealth.Investing Better Than A Money Manager: The Rise Of Retail Investing - By Trent WelshI have an investing book with the title above on Amazon written for beginning retail investors looking to set up a self-directed portfolio with their IRA's, 401k's, or other retirement or trading accounts. It details how to pick and choose stocks amidst the different sectors and how to figure out how much in each sector an investor should have to help achieve diversification.Please take a look at it and let me know your thoughts. Thanks and Best of luck to all :).

Analyst’s Disclosure: I am/we are long AAPL, QCOM, XLNX, DELL, MSFT, ARWR, MDT, MDXG, LLY, PFE, DIS, T, WWE, GOOGL, GBTC, JPM, BLK, HSBC, AMZN, TSCO, MELI, PG, PEP, GIS, J, GSL, AXON, SPCE, GOLD, CLF, PBR, RDS.B, HAL, D, DUK, AMT. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Seeking Alpha's Disclosure: Past performance is no guarantee of future results. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. Any views or opinions expressed above may not reflect those of Seeking Alpha as a whole. Seeking Alpha is not a licensed securities dealer, broker or US investment adviser or investment bank. Our analysts are third party authors that include both professional investors and individual investors who may not be licensed or certified by any institute or regulatory body.

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Comments (88)

Trent Welsh profile picture
Sold good chunk of my $GSL for a small loss due to market volatility and drops in tech names etc. Bought some $AAPL, $AMZN, $AXON. Tiny starter position in $NEE (thanks @learning to be patient with mr mkt ), and smaller position in $TSLA now at under $600 a share. Best of luck. Still have a smaller position in $GSL but didn't get the earnings pop I was hoping for and big pullback in Tech means I want to make some moves now on stuff that has fallen significantly from recent tops.
@Trent Welsh Glad to hear you mostly got out of $GSL. As per my previous comment, the market will soon find out GSL won't benefit from rising shipping rates. Check out $DAC in the meantime - news on multi year, new charters will emerge soon.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@EdwardOC Nod.. Bye bye most of my $GSL. Unfortunately in my Industrials sector I already have Jacobs $J (infrastructure bill) and Virgin Galactic ($SPCE) both of which I would add to easily at this time for stocks I'd be happy to never sell again at least at this time. Not really looking to add names in the space as I also added to $AXON in the space earlier in the week as well. Too crowded.
Would like to see an update on your portfolio after today's 3/4 crunch.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@drjoanv I do bigger updates once a month as my retirement funds are spread out between IRA's, 401ks, and an HSA account etc. No reason to constantly update everything. Not hard to figure out big pullbacks in most of my tech along with some bio stocks. Fine by me as I'm adding key names like $AAPL and $AMZN. Quick look seems like I'm around $330k.. Maybe not as down as I was thinking after Friday's late rally especially after I repositioned.
thank you for an enjoyable read. tsco was not on my radar, but looks interesting for some dd. glty.
markedwardphoto profile picture
If your looking for a Beta return great. But, why not buy the index. If you are looking for more Alpha, why didn't you cut the number of names down and invest in a few mid-caps that have been running hot for the past year.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@markedwardphoto Index funds.. boooorrrinnngg.. following last years results... borrrrinnnngggg... I'm investing for two reasons.. retire with millions and have fun along the way :). I always try to look forward. Hope to improve with time but worth a shot :). Thanks for reading :).
You picked alot of turds...
Trent Welsh profile picture
@ShowMeDaMoney12345678910 Even a turd looks good on its wedding day. Mark my words. :). One day AT&T $T will be worth the investment. If I only picked gems I would already own half of Hawaii and would pay my kids $1000 an hour to write my articles. As it is, I hope to only own 1/10 of Hawaii after another 30 years of investing. I'm ok with that.
@Trent Welsh True! longterm I also like T.
Reel Ken profile picture
You start out by stating "....It is my firm belief that 80% of money managers can't outperform the S&P 500 index over time due primarily to the fees they charge their clients."

I want to point out that "firm beliefs" aren't "facts". There is no empirical data that indicates your "firm belief" to be based in fact. People once held a "firm belief" that the earth was flat !

In fact, it's very hard to make any determinate about money managers versus the S&P because the timing of inflows and outflows for money managers effects their returns. On the other hand, S&P returns are usually stated on the basis of all monies being invested as of January 1st with no withdrawals or additions.

Further complicating things, investors tend to pour money into managed funds at tops and pull them out at drops ... forcing money managers to buy/sell against their preferred methodologies. This further effecting returns for these funds.

As a result of these, and other factors, it is very hard to pin-point if they even underperform the S&P. ... all things being equal.

For even if a money manager invested all their funds in the S&P, their performance is likely to be variant (up or down) as a result of the cash flow timing issues.

But, what we do have some pretty good correlations is between money managers and DIY investors. Both being victimized by "emotional investing" and varying inflows/outflows And that data seems to indicate substantially better results for money managers than DIY.
@Reel Ken Excellent points. However, there is something to be said for the customization afforded by a self-directed portfolio and the avoidance of other investors' in/outflows effecting your investments.
Reel Ken profile picture


I'm a DIY investor, so I agree with you. My point was simply that to try and say pros underperform because of fees is just not provable.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@Reel Ken Causation is never provable. No one said its 100% true. However, correlation can be highly believable. Plenty of study's showing Money Managers aren't worth table salt at a Chuck E Cheese's. A 2 second search found CNBC says active fund managers trail S&P 500 for the 9th year in a row. www.cnbc.com/... No ones saying its Gospel, believe what you will :).
Stefan Redlich profile picture
Great portfolio update. Very well presented. You have a strategy, a plan and will do well I am sure :)
Trent Welsh profile picture
@Stefan Redlich Thanks for reading. Best of luck for your stocks as well :).
Chris Lau profile picture
Sell $PFE and $D.
That's 35 headaches instead of 37.
Your Bitcoin investment is a good diversification that paid off. Keep it up.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@Chris Lau Thanks for reading and the suggestions :). Have thought about getting rid of $D and focusing on DUK and maybe find something else. Might change my mind on $PFE if it continues to underperform like it has historically but willing to give it a shot.
Just here for your comments lol.. looks like you took some advice to trim down your number of holdings from last time
Trent Welsh profile picture
@Jeremyl007 Yep, also found a new stock I wanted to make a large bet on. I do this somewhat regularly. Consolidate, expand, rebalance etc. All part of the game for me. Hope I entertain you and best of luck on your bets :).
vooch profile picture
@Trent Welsh

way too many positions buddy
@vooch well better than 45 from last time.. I'll find time to post mine one day for people to critique
BTCC-U trades on the TSX and is a new Bitcoin ETF with a very small premium to Bitcoin unlike BTC. The huge premium to Bitcoin in BTC is dangerous. However, as you point out, you have doubled your money. In the long run, I believe an ETF closely tracking Bitcoin’s price is a better value.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@charles1222 the Canada fund just came out I think so not many have that one yet. Also, if you have been paying attention, the latest drop in Bitcoin prices actually reduced GBTC's "premium" to a negative one which was the perfect time to add. The premium grows and shrinks and does not remain constant.
@Trent Welsh So you only purchase when the premium goes negative?
Trent Welsh profile picture
@charles1222 Not in the past. Moving forward, means it's my largest individual stock, I would only buy at a discount until it was farther down the list of my largest individual stocks.
six-oh profile picture
Some free alpha for readers: when you are managing a small account, it is way more important to save money and contribute to your account than worry about "beating the market".
Trent Welsh profile picture
@six-oh That's why I start and will start my kids out with their first stocks and mutual funds with some of their own money when they start high school. Regular contributions over a long time horizon is huge.
six-oh profile picture
@Trent Welsh

I am not sure you understood my point. What I am saying is that when managing a 300k portfolio, it is much more important to build up capital than worry about "beating the market".

Once your portfolio is sizable, then "beating the market" becomes even less important and "risk-adjusted returns" become the focus.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@six-oh Lol, what's a sizable portfolio? You didn't give specifics. Tons and tons of retirees would love to have my portfolio in retirement right here and now. If you have more money than me in retirement right now you are beating many of your peers. Don't underestimate the little guy. I was interested in beating the market when I put in my first dollars into an individual stock as well as the first mutual funds I invested in. I will also be interested in beating the market when I have millions. I'll never settle for "risk-adjusted returns". Do you think warren buffet settles for "risk adjusted returns? Play your game and I'll play mine :).
It's crazy to have that many stock for the small amounts. That's what Charlie Munger called "The idea of excessive diversification is madness."
Trent Welsh profile picture
@DeepInValue Yes, but I find it a very fun madness as I love stocks so its all good :). Thanks for reading :). And that is quite a lot of money to a lot of regular people which I am hoping to help inspire. Not here to impress billion $ hedge funds :).
HardytheTrader profile picture
Thanks for sharing your portfolio. May I ask some questions?

First how did you calculate the sector weightings? Is there any historical evidence for these sector weightings to be ideal especially from risk/reward standpoint? Second what are your criterias for picking stocks? I see growth, value and momentum randomly mixed up. Maybe I am missing a point? Third do you backtest your criterias? What were the results?

Looking forward for some color on your strategy
Trent Welsh profile picture
@HardytheTrader My sector weightings change over time with what I feel is best for my portfolio at that time and is not based on historical performance as I always try to look forward and not behind. Its a random jumble of stocks because it is meant to be diversified across many circumstances with me trying to pick some of the best/better stocks in each instance.
@Trent Welsh, not counting $BTC, your #2 stock $GSL has vastly underperformed its peers in container shipping, as the management, IMO, was too eager or possibly forced to lock in multi year charter middle of last year when the rates were much lower than now. While the sector leader $DAC will see its old contracts expire and sign lucrative deals this year, $GSL won't be in situation, per your quote, to "benefit from rapidly rising shipping rates in the space". I would appreciate if you find otherwise. I'm long $DAC.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@EdwardOC $GSL has had 19 new charters since last July according to their January presentation so that's like 3 new charters a month or so. They are doing fine I think in getting new contracts at higher valuations and I think pricing continues to rise lifting all the boats in the sector.
You have 37 headaches. At your level you should be in index funds only.
@The Rutledge Group

Yeah; I've starting to believe Buffest is right about casual investors putting most of their money in index funds. I've been doing this for 15 years and while I had some nice gains along the way; the risks i took were gigantic compared to just an index fund.

I definitely wouldn't manage 37 holdings lol.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@The Rutledge Group Its not a headache when its fun. This is what I do for fun :). Index only sounds like the most boring thing ever. But of course, that's just my opinion.
@The Rutledge Group

You learn a lot more investing in individual stocks. If you are going to buy ETFs you might as well go one step further and just get a financial planner to make all your investing decisions.
Alex Pitti profile picture
You called apple a cornerstone, but only have a 2.9% weighting. I wouldn't say that's a cornerstone.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@Alex Pitti Yep. Apple is actually my next build probably right after I sell my $GSL. Apple is a bigger position than that when you take into account all my mutual funds many which are FANG orientated and own a lot of Apple. Apple down to my 6th largest individual holding is too low though so looking to build it up 50%-100% from current shares here later this month is the plan. One of the reasons I made room in the Info. Tech sector in my portfolio last month was to get ready for this build. I definitely noticed Apple falling down my investment ladder also and will remedy.
AI - Alternative Investing profile picture
@Trent Welsh just buy brk.b for ample aapl coverage
Trent Welsh profile picture
@learning to be patient with mr mkt Yea, one of my fondest wishes is to own a share of brk.a before Buffet heads off into the sunset. Fingers crossed.
Having AT&T instead of a stock like FB at current valuations in a retirement portofolio is just wrong in my opinion and I never think there's right or wrong in investing but this might be an exception. Why HAL instead of SLB? Genuine question. And no WMT?
Trent Welsh profile picture
@Sherif Marcos AT&T is a dividend stock and is supposed to be a hedge against all my growth stocks and mutual funds geared towards the FANG names. I want a lot of true diversity in case there is another tech crash and AT&T fits the bill. If they ever get their act together returns might be surprisingly good when you add it all together.

Chose HAL over SLB mainly because HAL is North American based instead of more international. Owned it for like 10 years so was awhile back when I picked it up and not a recent acquisition. Never felt the need to sell it means it's the leader here.
Say it ain't so Trent - you sell Sarepta while expressing enthusiasm over Bitcoin being your largest holding? I truly hate to say it but you've got those reversed. Bitcoin has only one way to move and it's back down to earth. The fall will be brutal. As for Sarepta, you've been a bull for years and you know their story - just truly stunned that you sold.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@slinghook I've made over like $15k on Sarepta and have loved it for years. It was a hard decision to move on. However, I hope to get back in but in instances like this I think it's dead money for most of the rest of 2021 to be frank. I'd much rather invest elsewhere and look at grabbing a stake again at the end of 2021 when I rebalance again. I love the results and drugs but I find it hard to find other companies with as much bad luck as Sarepta has had. I'm in again on the stock in late 2021 most likely. Sorry to disappoint but I have other fish to fry in the meantime.
Hi Trent - I love this article, thank you. Toward the beginning of the article, it said in the context of tracking the SPY so far for 2021 that it seems to start the months strong then sell off toward the end of each month. Did you mean to say ‘weeks’ maybe? If so, I’ve been noticing the same trend, last week being a good example of starting really strong Monday and Tuesday, then poof the rug getting pulled. And now today seems to be starting this week strong. Anyway, seems like a weekly mini-trend lately.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@Chasebmnt Behavior is always hard to track and analyze but definitely some volatile moves in the markets weekly and monthly which means lots of opportunity for those willing to pull the buy and sell buttons.
@Trent walsh: 1) what's your bitcoin cost basis? 2) "14. World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) is one of the few remaining live event media stocks growing globally, while always a potential takeover target from juggernauts like Disney." Disney is NOT going to buy WWE.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@SilverBandit I bought and sold bitcoin $GBTC a few times last year and made a few thousand dollars and decided in December of 2020 that I would buy some and not sell the rips anymore, but hopefully add to it over time. After todays action my average cost for 490 shares of $GBTC was ~$21.31 with today closing at $45.82. My $10,440.90 investment in December of 2020 has turned into $22,451.80 after todays close.

Disney's not looking for an acquisition anytime soon after swallowing FOX and WWE isn't looking for a buyer either. But maybe a few years from now you never know. Stranger things have happened.
@Trent Welsh That's wonderful. I made a 104k profit after I sold 6 bitcoins this year. I actually wish I would have sold 3 then kept the other 3. Oh, well. As for Disney, I just don't see the House of Mouse buying a company like WWE. I can see another entertainment conglomerate buying it though.
Trent Welsh profile picture
@SilverBandit I thought of buying bitcoin itself back when it was like $400 a coin. Got a wallet set up along with the amazingly long and complex key and couldn't pull the trigger as I couldn't bear for it to go crazy then lose the key. I'm more than happy to just own the stock without a wallet and huge passcode. Congrats on taking the plunge when I couldn't. Hope it continues to change your life :).
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