Tuesday, August 29, 2006

About Me

I think that it is fair to give some background about myself. I want to give readers an idea of where I am coming from. I am a 30-something engineer working in Silicon Valley (California). I started saving for my future shortly after finishing graduate school. My main focus then was getting the best savings rates from my bank. Even the concepts of 401(k) plans and mutual funds were something completely new to me. I did become seriously interested in investing a little less than 10 years ago. Like many people, I got caught up in the technology stock craze of the late 1990s. Working in the high-tech industry also fueled my interest in these stocks. I rode a few of these stocks down in the early 2000s. And, I would say that my portfolio hit bottom in 2002. Coincidentally, I was also subjected to downsizing not once, but twice, in the past five years. Any employee stock options that I had were essentially worthless at the time.

But, I have been resilient. Each time that I got knocked over, I have gotten right back up and redoubled my resolve to succeed. Since 2002, I have rebuilt my investment portfolio. Although I actually own fewer stocks nowadays, I am better diversified across industry groups. I feel that the economy is much better now, but I've learned not to get too overconfident, and to plan for the worst while hoping for the best.

On a personal level, I have been happily married for over five years. My wife and I don't have any children yet. Recently, I have noticed a prevalence of "under 30" personal finance blogs on the Internet. I suppose that I am no longer qualified to be in the under 30 crowd. Nevertheless, I hope that the under 30 bloggers would look to me for advice from someone who is only slightly older. Now I am starting a blog to share my experiences with others. On the other hand, I hope to also learn from those who have more experience than I do.


Sunday, August 27, 2006


Welcome to PFStock (DC's Personal Finance and Stock Investing Blog), a new personal finance and stock investing blog. It seems that financial blogs are roughly divided into three groups. These groups are personal finance, real estate, and investing blogs. I am interested in personal finance and investing, but not so much in real estate. I've decided to make my blog a combination of a personal finance and stock investing blog. Thus, I've decided to call my blog PFStock.

In the area of personal finance, I am interested in saving money, banking, credit cards, and basically getting the best deals that you can out of banks and credit card companies. In the area of investing, I am mostly concerned with stocks, but I am also interested in discussing retirement plans, mutual funds, ETFs, IPOs, brokerages, and general investment strategies.

I've spent some time now perusing other personal finance blogs. There certainly is a great variety of them. Currently, I think that I have a better idea of what I don't want in my blog than of what I do want in it. I do not intend my blog to become a diary of my daily financial transactions. I am skeptical that anyone would want to delve into the detailed minutiae of how I spent every last penny over the weekend. Although some personal finance blogs do, I do not intend to disclose my net worth or list out my entire investment portfolio here.

Also, I can't promise you that I will have something new everyday. In fact, I am skeptical of people who always have something new to say. This is the case with financial writers who are obligated to either report news, or otherwise fill up space when there isn't anything newsworthy to report. The financial markets simply don't work that way. I can go for months without making a single trade or altering my portfolio (buy-and-hold), and then later go through a period where I'll make several stock trades in a week. Besides that, I have a regular job to hold down, and might not be able to write something everyday.

So, as I embark upon creating my new blog, I look forward to sharing my experiences and ideas. My initials are DC, but you can call me pfstock.