I’ll admit, the March Nomad Income Report took a while to put together. Unlike the previous month, March was a very productive month for Nomadica. We completed the site map and content strategy, which led to the design and build of the site. We’ve added travel resource content, secured multiple vendors enabling us to offer some the best in sustainable travel gear, and added copy and categorization to over 100 products. The number of hours we both devoted to Nomadica has almost doubled since our February income report, so this post took a back seat.
Another reason for the delay in the March Nomad Income Report was an incredibly disappointing trade that made me want to procrastinate heavily. I’ll cover the actual trade, emotions, and thought process behind it in another post. In short, we had realized gains of $5,750 on March 29 and by March 30 we had losses of just over $1000. The causes were a combination of manual error, (I literally hit the wrong button), which was compounded when I didn’t set a stop-loss before taking a break that evening. I also had way too much of our trading account tied up in a single investment. Think of it like this: I opened a hospital, admitted only one patient (let’s say a gunshot wound), accidentally put arsenic instead of morphine into the drip, then got sleepy and let him bleed out on the table.
The good news is that I have a new checklist for every single trade, and I’ll be sharing that soon. The accounting on this report will not show this loss because of something called a “wash sale.” A wash sale is an accounting practice that requires traders to carry over losses or gains on a trade if they repurchase it within 30 days. Because I continued to trade the same stocks and commodities into April, my March losses were carried over. If you’re really curious, I’ve managed to clear those losses using the new checklist and we should have realized gains for both March and April. Happy days.
March Nomad Income Report 2016: Trading
We made $1,404.55 in realized gains from trading. As noted earlier, the accounting here is a little wonky because on April 1 our account reflected a little over $1000 in trading losses. Let’s talk about the trades. Shopify and Gold both performed well in March, gains of $1300 and $4400 respectively. Analysts increased their price targets on Shopify from $25 to $34 a share. We didn’t observe spikes in the price of the stock, but saw massive increases to the volume of shares being traded which is a bullish sign for Shopify. Gold continued to perform amid talks of further stimulus and/or less aggressive rate hikes by the Fed.
The trade that put us at a loss for the month was Crude Oil. In the last week of March, oil inventories reported a massive build. Generally, when product inventory goes up, price should go down. So at the time, I held a highly leveraged short position (betting the stock would go down) which was a good place to be when the market is glutted with oil. Unfortunately, I traded on the news and made a couple trading mistakes that resulted in a painful $6700 loss within an hour. To make things worse, had I held onto the short position we would have been up about $8300 for the month of March. I took the next couple of days off from trading to reflect, regroup, and ultimately build a trading plan that wouldn’t expose us to so much risk. Since then, we’ve managed to recoup March losses and are generating consistent returns.
March Nomad Income Report 2016: Miscellaneous Income
Blogging: As mentioned in our last income statement, we removed Adsense from our blog and are not focusing on monetizing the blog. We have a few affiliate links that returned a whopping $0.82.
Miscellaneous: $606.00 – We received a return on the deposit we made for home repairs back in South Africa. The new owners took on the project and returned our deposit even though they decided to go with a different contractor. Thanks Paul & Maria!
Last year we toyed around with the idea of adding some of our photos to a stock photography website. We listed 7 photos and stopped as the effort to maintain wasn’t worth it to us. We made $1.00 in March. Suffice it to say, we’re not investing time into the more popular forms of passive income.
Total Income: $2,011.37
March Nomad Income Report 2016: Expenditures
Business: $1,593.39 (see below)
Child Care: $145.00 (Part-time daycare continues to be key to balancing time to work on the business or writing with raising Spencer. While we posted about our challenges with this island, the daycare here is one of the major benefits that may just lure us back)
Entertainment: $15.25 (We took Spencer to mini-golf and arranged a fun little Easter Egg Hunt for him)
Groceries: $344.41 (About the same as last month. The fruit here is amazing, so we’re making smoothies every day.)
Health & Beauty: $17.20 (Hair clippers for the boys)
Restaurants: $542.80 ($130 more than the previous month. Sarah and I eat out for lunch at work, drink coffee all day, and explored the local restaurants a bit more this month. No surprise on the increase since our usual spot, The Flying Dutchman, is very reasonably priced)
Motorbike Rental & Gasoline: $99.21 (We fill up about once a week, each time costing about $4.00)
Utilities: $73.42 (Another month of blasting the AC to barely maintain 85 degrees F throughout the house)
Kindle Books: $67.28 (I’m really am amazed at how much Sarah can read, while still cranking out story after story for submissions to competitions and publications)
Miscellaneous: $71.56 (Bank fees & gifts for friends)
Total Expenses: $3,311.17
Net Income: -$1,299.80
In the month of March we invested $1,593.39 into the business. This includes a $1404 down payment on an inventory order, and $180 for samples of a new product, $9 for Xero accounting software. It will be really nice when we have the website up in May and start to see some return from the inventory investments.