It’s been a few days since my wife set up her StashAway Singapore robo-advisor account. As I have mentioned previously, we went with a very aggressive General Investing portfolio. It has a 69% growth ETFs vs 31% protective ETFs split. These ETFs are listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), which is why any SGD funds that we transfer into the account has to be converted to USD before being used to purchase the ETFs.
I like the USD currency diversification since I don’t like the fact that most of our investment holdings continue to be in SGD. Anyway, it takes about 3 days for the SGD funds to be converted to USD and used to buy the ETFs according to the portfolio allocation percentages. It has a good mix of ETFs to the point where we consider the account to be a standalone portfolio on it’s own. Meaning we don’t have to integrate it with the rest of our assets and worry about how all of the allocations are changing.
We just have to keep transferring funds into the account to grow it with minimal monitoring. A good way to soak up our excess liquidity since we have a tendency to let our cash idle due to us not monitoring the markets sufficiently to identify buying opportunities. After the one-time funds transfer of S$100 into the account, we decided it was time to set up regular funds transfer as well. Specifically 4 x monthly transfer of S$100 each. Picking the four dates was just a case of spreading them out within a month. We went with 1st, 8th, 15th and 25th of every month, meaning the next transfer is 25 July 2017 and the ones after that are on 1 August 2017, 8 August 2017 and 15 August 2017 before repeating themselves.
We are likely to take a similar approach when I set up my Smartly Singapore robo-advisor account. A one-time funds transfer of S$100 followed by regular 2 x monthly transfer of S$100 each. We might go with 4th and 11th of every month, just to vary the dates a little. My monthly funds transfer is less than my wife since we plan to build her account up at a faster rate than mine. This means our monthly automatic investment amount will increase from S$1,900 to S$2,500 once everything is up and running. Which is suitable for a bull market environment we are in now. It should rise further in a bear market environment as we adjust the amount upward to take advantage of market dips and crashes.
Even though we have been together for a number of years, our philosophy is not to combine our finances until we have kids. We should pull our own weight and not rely on each other financially. This hasn’t changed after we got married. Bank accounts and investments remain separate. We are also responsible for managing our own careers, income and expenses. We rely on each other for emotional support but the above approach has ensured we grew up into independent and financially responsible adults. If we have kids, we might start to combine our finances but we are likely to be in a stronger financial position by then. This is why we put in a lot of effort to grow both our savings and investments separately but still ensure it’s a common strategy that works for the both of us.
Let’s have a look at the growth and protective NYSE-listed ETFs in my wife’s StashAway Singapore robe-advisor account:
- Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK)
- SPDR Bloomberg Barclays Convertible Securities ETF (CWB)
- iShares MSCI All Country Asia ex Japan ETF(AAXJ)
- Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLP)
- Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLY)
- iShares TIPS Bond ETF (TIP)
- iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT)
- SPDR Gold Shares (GLD)
I won’t reveal the percentage allocations of these ETFs but would say that the 69% growth vs 31% protective split results in a higher percentage of growth ETFs in my wife’s portfolio. After taking a quick look at the holdings of the ETFs, we like how little they are overlapping with our existing ETFs holdings. The rebalancing and re-optimisation features of the portfolio are useful in automatic management of the asset allocations without any manual interventions. This is critical given our long-term investment horizon.
I might include our robo-advisor portfolio values on the blog so you can monitor their performance. Not sure whether there’s an easy way to import the data into the blog. Maybe I will just cut out a relevant snippet of the account online and paste it as a picture. Or I will write in the end of month values and manually track the growth. Still undecided for now but should have something ready after the end of this month. Let me know what works better for you too as the reader.