February 2017 Update and Random Stuff

I have had a bit of writer’s block since my last post, so I thought I would update you on our financial progress.

Since our last update at the end of the year, our net worth has seen a very nice increase driven by a smoking hot market and our continued commitment to saving aggressively.  Total net worth increased $28,258 in the month of January.  Here’s a breakdown:

  • Tax Advantaged 401K and IRA accounts grew by a little more than $12K.  $2K was from Mr. Zero’s 401K contributions and the remaining $10K from investment growth!  Woo-Hoo!
  • Our taxable investment accounts grew by ~$42K.  $35K is a result of moving some of that pile-o-cash into the market and the another $7K from investment growth primarily driven by a rebound in our Facebook stock and the steady rise in our Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTI) holdings.
  • Home equity also increased as I moved $11K from cash to further pay down our mortgage.
  • After the moves of cash, we also gained an additional $8K of savings from my pay in January.

All and all a spectacular month!  I know we can’t expect it every month, but the $17K in investment growth is sure fun to watch pile up.  In the next 2 months I will receive two year-end bonuses on top of my normal base pay.  Unless the markets experience a correction, we should be on pace to reach 7 digits sometime in March!

Random Thoughts on January

I have to say, one of the most awesome things about living in Asia is that we get to celebrate the New Year twice!  As I wrote earlier, we spent the January 1st holiday in Thailand, wrapping up our sailing trip in Phang-Nga Bay.  Just 4 short weeks later, we were ringing in the Year of the Rooster!  We spent the holiday in an AirBnB in a small fishing village on the coast.  Five days of local food, surfing and general slovenliness was awesome.  I did have to deal with a few fires at work via phone, but conducting a conference call from an ocean facing balcony watching the breakers roll in with a cold beer in hand is sure as heck better than 5 days in the office!  🙂  Now that I have spent a full week back in the normal world (9 hr days in the office and 2 to 3 hours a night on conference calls), the urge to hurry up and FIRE is stronger than ever.

America has a new President.  I honestly don’t know where to start on this one.  Although the markets are loving the prospects of lower corporate tax and less regulation, President Trump’s first 2 weeks in office sure look like the train wreck that I hoped it wouldn’t be.  Why is it so difficult for America to produce politicians that have a brain, some minimal amount of decorum, likability, honesty and practicality?  Full disclosure, I voted both republicans and democrats in previous election cycles.  I used to think of myself as an independent, but it seems I am a dying breed.  I am disheartened at where my country is now.  To be clear, although I voted against him, I would love nothing more than Trump to be one the best presidents in history.  Unfortunately, based on his first two weeks in office, I am now lowering my expectations.  No new wars, no impeachments and no financial crises would far exceed my expectations.

Phang-Nga Bay Thailand – Oh yeah 🙂

We finalized arrangements for a return to Thailand and another sailing vacation in Phang-Nga Bay, Thailand in late March.   This time we will be solo (no instructor) and my recently retired mom will be joining us.   We are super excited to go back and reinforce all we learned on the first trip!  We plan to spend 8 nights on the boat visiting some of the best snorkeling spots, eating tasty Thai food and drinking cool Singha beer (see previous post… you only get one cold blood beer per day on a boat.  Keep yer dirty mits off me blood beer you lily-livered libtard snow flakes).

4 Comments on “February 2017 Update and Random Stuff”

  1. Awesome job Mr Zero! I have very similar thoughts about Trump as you. Heaven help us. Hopefully the republicans can push through tax reform at both the personal and corporate levels.

    Congrats on joining the two comma club. I’m lagging you by a half decade but am slowly but surely making progress on that dimension.

    Thanks again for your WordPress consultation. I tried simplifying my site to speed it up.
    Frugal Professor recently posted…Updated Tax CalculatorMy Profile

    1. Heaven help us indeed. It seems logical fact based arguments are no match for the ground swell of dissatisfaction Trump supporters have with the current state of government in America. Like I said in my post, I am an independent on most issues. I understand and respect that Americans will have a different vision for an ideal America. I just worry that both parties have moved to such extremes and drank so much kook-aid that they no longer have the capacity or patience to recognize the legitimate pitfalls of those extreme positions. Unfortunately my way of thinking makes me a “snowflake” to some and rich selfish a-hole to others.

      On a brighter note… thanks for the congratulations. We haven’t quite reached the 2 comma club, but we are nearly there! Mrs. Zero and I are plotting our celebration ala Mrs. Picky Pinchers style. :). You will be surprised how fast that half decade passes. Good luck with the website mods.

  2. Yeah, with some of the new things going down here in the U.S of A., I wish I lived in Asia right about now. Urf.

    But great to see that your net worth is climbing along nicely! I had two weeks off of work (paid!) during the holidays and I was actually depressed for a few weeks after returning to work. It’s so wonderful to have a taste of FIRE, but it’s disheartening to return to the “real world.”
    Mrs. Picky Pincher recently posted…What’s For Dinner?My Profile

    1. Hi Mrs. Picky Pincher! Thanks for the comment. Yes, the real world can really suck sometimes.

      I enjoy your blog and the concept of being a Picky Pincher. Mrs. Zero and I have discussed this concept on multiple occasions and I think it best describes our particular brand of frugality. Life is to be enjoyed! Spending on indulgent stuff isn’t in itself a bad thing. We just need to be thoughtful about those indulgences and partake in moderation.

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