Tuesday, 29 December 2020

Best Opportunity Missed in Mac20-May20: What The Hell Were In My Mind?

Finally, year 2020 comes to an end. 

Everyone in the world will remember it as a pandemic year. What have you learnt from this turbulent year?

To me, I'm grateful that so far I have not been negatively affected by this pandemic. My family and I are still in one piece and I still have my job.

Malaysia implemented its nationwide lockdown (MCO) on 18th Mac 2020. Surely it was a new experience for all Malaysians.

I still need to travel to work though, and I like the feeling of driving on roads without other vehicles.

At the same time, we had a scary stock market and oil price crash on top of the back door government change.

What have I done and what was in my mind at that time?

Of course no one can predict the fierce bear market in Mac20. However, I was already not that optimistic towards the stock market before Mac20 and decided to sell most of my stocks in Feb20.

I have never sold so many stocks at the same time.

Those stocks sold include Inari, which was my previous larger holding, Frontken, PPHB, Latitude and Adventa. Adventa was my largest investment.

So when the market crashed drastically in early Mac20, I was not worry at all because I have more than 50% cash on hands, even though I still hold some stocks. 

I was waiting for bottom fishing, and tried to fish as "bottom" as possible. I must make full use of my precious cash for maximum gain.

Ini kalilah!

I thought the bear market would last for at least 6-12 months. Even though there was a rebound in the end of Mac20 and Apr20, I thought it would form lower highs and continue to reach lower lows.

I thought the best time to go in was when there was a consolidation in the indices or share price, in which the price moves sideways for a period of time.

As we all know now, there's no lower lows or consolidation after Mac20, the market staged a sharp V-shape recovery instead.

In Apr20 and May20, I thought that quarterly financial results of companies to be announced in May/Jun won't be good, and the following quarter results announced in Jul/Aug would be disastrous.

Most investors would expect the same so I thought the stock market should stay low and might even drop further.

With this "theory" in mind, I decided to stay sideline until at least after August when all the quarterly results are out and all the shares are thrown.

In hindsight, this theory is just a crap. 

In the end, I did not buy any shares until the last 2 days of May20 when I spotted KPower & SCIB. At that time, almost all stocks have recovered 50-100% from their lows.

It's an once-in-every-10-years opportunity lost.

To make my frustration worse, all the stocks I sold in early 2020 have rebounded higher than the price I sold.

  • Sold Inari @ 1.56 in Feb20, rose to 2.75 in Nov20 (76%)
  • Sold Frontken @ 2.35 in Feb20, rose to 3.95 in Aug20 (68%)
  • Sold PPHB @ 0.88 in Feb20, rose to 1.25 in Dec20 (42%)
  • Sold Latitude @ 2.73 in Feb20, rose to 4.80 in Dec20 (76%)
  • Sold Adventa @ 0.65 in Apr20, rose to 5.00 in Aug20 (670%)
  • Sold Notion @ 0.70 in Jun20, rose to 2.30 in Aug20 (230%)
  • Sold Geshen @ 0.53 in Jul20, rose to 1.10 in Nov20 (108%)

If I'm out of the stock market for the whole year of 2020 with zero transaction just like in 2018, I think my stock portfolio will perform very well.

Anyway, I just couldn't regret I sold all those stocks. I actually breathed a sigh of relief that I did it in Feb20. I could have done it again if I could take a time machine to go back to that time.

My problem is I didn't buy in stages when the the market dropped because of the mentality to buy as low as possible and believing that the bear will stay for long.

The lightning fast recovery in stock market which was not in line with the real economy situation really caught me off guard.

From Mac20 to May20, all of a sudden I was not that active in stock market. I did not study companies and I only read little financial news.

I was like waiting for the dust to settle first before I restart my engine. That's part of the reasons I totally missed the gloves rally.

The consolation for me is that I went back into the stock market earlier than Aug20 and still manage to make good gain in year 2020.

While I didn't care too much about stock market from Mac20 to May20, what did I actually do? Well, it's K-dramas...


  1. U may miss the Mar-May'20 opportunity, but your return YTD is still very impressive, u catch up fast. So, need not be too hard on yourself.
    I was badly hit when pandemic hit bcos i almost had full-hand of stocks in Feb'20. My return was -40+% on 19th Mar'20. I did start to buy in end Mar'20 but since my remaining cash was not much, that didn't contribute much. I was only hoping for breakeven this year. Thankfully, i breakeven in Aug, and had good months in Nov & Dec, and my return now is ~30+% which is much better than my "hope". This is really a roller-coaster 2020 for me, and i am very very thankful with the 30+% return albeit it is still much lower than yours :)

  2. Year 2020 is going to past..how about let's focus on maximize the return on 2021 ;) I am quite optimistic on 2021 at least until end Mar'21.
    I think Electrical Vehicle (EV) and renewable energy are the trend for now till next year. The flat steel rally should also continue to next year due to many positive news on the anti-dumping of CRC policy lately and the rise of steel price. O&G stocks should also continue their run in next year in tandem with the rising crude oil price.

    I bought back JHM this week after realising its revenue in Q3 was actually the highest in record. JHM fit the trends of automotive recovery and 5G in next year. I am not certain if it sells its products to EV players. If yes, then it also fit the EV theme.

    1. Ya, because of the good return overall this year, I don't feel that bad by missing Mac to May period. I'm lucky to make a decision to go big on SCIB, however, it's mainly paper profit and I might still lose the gain. I think most stock market investors should have a decent year 2020.

      I also think that renewable energy might gain more attention in 2021. Tech stocks are so "overvalued" now but it seems to have more room to grow. I'd like to invest in stocks related to 5G, EV, automation, cloud & big data. I don't have too many ideas or knowledge on all these. We might have another MI, Penta, UWC or Greatech coming up I guess.

      According to analyst, JHM supplies parts for EV charging stations. It seems to be in an expansion mode and I'm actually quite hopeful that it can be the next UWC. It might take longer time though.

      You're good in writing. Why not starting your own blog to share your views :)

    2. I am not a blogger material. But, i can always make use of your blog to share my views, hope that can help to make your blog more interesting.

      Among the tech stocks, the earnings of Auto Test Equipment (ATE) stocks are not consistent because they depend on their customers' capex. Penta can still do okay, but others like Elsoft and MMSV didn't do as good during the pandemic. I also like 5G and cloud related stocks.
      Other groups of stock that did well are EMS company and company doing OEM assembly and turnkey assembly for their customers. VS, SKPRes and ATA IMS are EMS companies, UWC and JHM can be categorized into OEM/turnkey assembly companies. These groups of companies seem to have growth in 2021.

      I owned all the three EMS companies, i.e. VS, SKPRes and ATA IMS, during the pandemic. They have helped in my recovery but i sold them all a bit too early. I didn't expect their stock price can run that far.

    3. Thanks for contributing in this blog. Hopefully your input can help fellow readers and investors here :)