2015 is now in the history books. As I was prepping for our annual New Year’s eve party, I heard CNBC in the background, “The S&P 500 was down 3/4 of a percent for the year, the worst year since 2008.” True, I suppose, but the tone is the opposite of how I discussed the year end with my wife. When we spoke about the market early last year, I looked at the returns we had from 2009 through 2014, a compound return of 17.3%/yr and cumulative growth of 160% over that time. The market’s P/E was relatively on the high side, and given the choice, I’d prefer to see a year with the index flat, but earning grow a bit to reduce the overall P/E a bit. I wanted flat, and got flat. The S&P total return, including dividends returned 1.3% for the year. Not great, but not a down year, and given the rates one sees in the bank, still better than CDs or money market. Price to earnings didn’t shrink as I hoped. From 20.02 on Jan 1, I see an estimated 21.54 for year end.
We ended the year on a bit of a sad note. My mother died after 15 years of multiple battles with cancer. When this happened, the day after Christmas, my inclination was to post a quick message on Facebook, but I found my account disabled due to my use of a pen name. While I do have a credit card with JoeTaxpayer as the printed name, Facebook wanted a number of different IDs including government issued. So, I am done with Facebook, or rather, they are done with me. If, and when I decide to ‘go public,’ it will take some time to re-engage with the near-1000 people who decided I was good enough to friend on FB. Meanwhile, I’m going through the sites I read regularly finding the ones that used FB sign-in, and trying to convert to a different method. Many are FB only, and I won’t be able to post at all.
Working on my 2016 resolutions, next.