I've recently decided I wanted to track my investments over time so that I could accurately determine really cool financial things like:
- My actual asset allocation
- My actual rate of return over time
I had a couple goals for doing this:
- If I know my CURRENT asset allocation, I can determine what steps I need to take (buy mutual fund X and sell mutual fund Y) in order to achieve my TARGET asset allocation. The importance of this can be found by googling The importance of asset allocation
- I'd like to see which mutual funds are ACTUALLY giving me the highest returns. This helps me provide a feedback loop to myself to determine
The challenges in doing this:
- In short, I have multiple investments. Between Roth IRA's, Rollover IRA's, 401k's, and individual stock purchases I've made, it could be a nightmare to maintain this if I didn't use a good application or spreadsheet.
- I dollar cost averaged some of my investments. That means some of my investments were buying $X (e.g. $200 per month) of a stock or mutual fund. I really didn't want to manually enter trades for the following example: I made monthly purchases over 18 months (18 transactions) for 3 different mutual funds ( 54 transactions) with a fixed price of purchase but a varying number of shares purchased. This is just one example, there are many transactions like this (I invest in my 401k every month too, I'm betting you do too?)
- I often reinvested dividends. Again, I really didn't want to manually enter the repurchase of dividends of some variable amount of money that bought X amount of stock every 3 months for so many different funds.
So, overall, the question is: how do I solve this complex challenges ensuring I dont enter tedious, error prone data, while saving myself the most time possible?
Note: I did find a program that I think does a great job of dealing with this situation, but I honestly would love other people's opinions on the matter to see if there are better solutions out there.
Another Note/Clarification - does anyone know how this program compares to Quicken?