Monday, January 02, 2006

China, Stocks, and the New Year

So, here are a couple of pictures from the China trip. I'll be uploading the entire collection on some online web album thing soon.

Yes, I tried Scorpions in China.

A beautiful shot of the Great Wall in a not-so-touristy area.

As far as stocks go... I did end up picking up the shares of American Eagle Outfitters (AEOS) at a price of 22.99. Hope to see it move in the upcoming year. It reports its December numbers in a few days.

Last year was a fine one for the stock portfolios. Here is the final scoreboard for 2005.

S&P 500: +3.00%
S&P 500 Total Return: +4.91%
Long-Term Portfolio: +6.92%
Trading Portfolio: +61.27%

Understand that the Trading Portfolio is a much smaller portfolio where I take on much larger risk for potentially large returns. The Trading Portfolio was greatly helped by a couple of lucky large moves in RF Micro Devices and eBay. One more thing to note is that the S&P 500 Total Return is what really should be benchmarked against since it includes the reinvestment of dividends.

The last day of 2005 sucked for me. I attended an overpriced party in San Francisco. The food wasn't all that good, the crowd was generally rude, and half of our party got a bit too drunk. It was not a fun night.

As for the new year, I think that I want to learn Mandarin. So, my resolution this year will be to try and get to a really basic conversational level in the language. Even if my language isn't quite proper, that'll be okay. I just want to know enough to be able to get by if there were no English speakers. Maybe that's not even possible in that short a time, but I'll give it my best shot.

Happy New Year to all of you.

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