I believe that performance can only truly be judged on a long term basis but the difficult question is what is long term? In my mind the minimum that can be considered long term is 5 years. I therefore decided not to have a separate section on performance on my website until 5 years had passed.
My personal source of investment capital was the sale of our house in Dublin in 2006 (pure luck to be able to sell at the peak of a bubble) and I was able to put together my portfolio in 2007. 2008 was therefore the first full calendar year from which I can measure my performance. It is therefore from the end of 2012 that I have 5 full calendar years to report.
I have not incurred the expense of proper performance measurement software and I have not paid an expert to audit my performance. I can therefore only say that any numbers I provide are an approximation based on my personal calculations using the records provided by my broker. The limitations of my calculations include:
No management fee charged
Dividends and interest only accounted for when received
Taxation of dividends based on Irish tax rules and with the added limitation caused by my broker not being able to reclaim some foreign withholding taxes that are officially reclaimable.
Capital Gains Tax (CGT) not included in the calculations as these are paid separately.
In other words any numbers provided are meant as a rough indication and that is why I do not intend going to even 1 decimal place.
It should also be remembered that I can invest in some very small companies (the smallest so far being €20m) and this would be difficult for larger investors.
I use the MSCI Developed World Index in Euros as my benchmark for comparison purposes.