Reviewing my Investment Portfolio

Ask the Expert how often should I review my investment portfolio?

I’ve had an investment portfolio for several years which I go through with my adviser once a year.  Generally, most of my funds have grown a little every year but some have suffered the last couple of years, only just about maintaining their value.  Should I review my portfolio more often?

Carl responds:

Investments have indeed had a rocky ride at times over recent years, but most diverse portfolios have managed to see at least some growth. If investing for the long term, a few short-term bumps in the road are both to be expected and, to an extent, accepted as part of the process.

However, it is important that you review the content of your portfolio regularly to ensure that your planning is on track.  I would suggest that an annual review is the absolute minimum for most people.

One approach to consider is discretionary investment management for your portfolio.  This is a service whereby experienced investment managers adjust the content of your portfolio on a regular basis at their discretion, but within agreed parameters, to help maximise gains and mitigate any potential losses.

There are forms of discretionary management to suit most investors’ pockets.  One form is using model portfolios:  these are typically groups of assets that are managed collectively and reviewed regularly – usually monthly – then adjusted as needed.  Model portfolios are set up to match different investor risk profiles.  Some ranges will have a specific investment focus, such as ethical investing, where others will focus on other factors such as low charges.

Portfolio management can be an extra service provided by a third-party recommended by your adviser, or – as is the case with Smith & Pinching – provided as an integral part of their investment advice service.  Please make sure you understand the costs involved before committing to this service.

I suggest you talk to an independent financial adviser about the suitability of portfolio management for your investments.

Any opinions expressed in this article do not constitute advice.  The value of an investment and the income from it could go down as well as up.  The return at the end of the investment period is not guaranteed and you may get back less than you originally invested.