Yes, I missed last month’s update, sorry. No, you can’t get a refund.

Last year, I switched this blog from Blogger to Wordpress, in order to experiment with wordpress hosting. As part of that, I paid for webhosting with Siteground. I had no issues with the quality of their service, but I wasn’t a fan when I received the reminder email to renew my service for the price of $143.40 per year! I had originally signed up for $47.40 per year, but I guess they do that annoying thing where they raise the price of their service after the first year and hope that people are too careless to notice or too lazy to change providers. As I am neither of these, I cancelled my service and converted my site into a statically generated site hosted (for free!) on Github Pages. If you are wondering why the site looks different, this is the reason. I’m pretty happy with its current design, but I might continue to tweak it when I have time.

In other news, there’s a virus going around (it seems the English media has settled on Coronavirus as its moniker, since I guess SARS-CoV-2 isn’t catchy enough). Here in Japan, it’s been in the public consciousness since January, with relatively little accompanying hysteria (facemasks have been in short supply, and there are occassional runs on staples such as toilet paper and rice), but the US media has only recently caught up and apparently the US is in complete pandemonium as the virus continues to spread unabated. At least, that’s my impression from the news that pops up in my feed.

And one would surmise the same based on recent stock market performance over the last couple of weeks. I haven’t changed my investing strategy in response to the market turmoil, but I am looking forward to buying more shares at discount once the dust settles. Yes, I am doing a little bit of market timing by waiting to purchase, but it is blatantly obvious that the markets are in a full-on panic (the late-February correction was the fastest ever, bond yields have dropped to all-time lows with no sign of slowing, the Fed did its first emergency rate cut since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis, etc.) and the virus’ spread will continue to accelerate. I expect things to continue to get worse in the near-to-medium future and I am heeding the warning to not catch a falling knife.

On a positive note, I got a fairly large tax refund from last year, so I’ll have that ready to invest once the time is right (hopefully).

Here’s my February expenses:

Category 02/20 Comments
Rent $917.26
Internet $16.83
Cell Phone $30.27
Natural Gas $19.51
Electricity $30.42
Water $35.15
Groceries $266.46
Transport $25.63
Health $155.44 Health insurance
Other $0.00
Necessary $1,496.98
Restaurants $170.68
Entertainment $9.42 Went to science museum in Fukuoka
Shopping $39.96
Travel/Parking $124.00 CC fees
Gifts/Donations $6.47
Software/Games $0.00
Business $0.00
Other $31.00 US driver’s license renewal
Discretionary $381.53 Not terrible, but I can do better
Total Expenses $1,878.51 Not terrible, but I can do better
Gross Income $4,592.31 Salary + interest + payment from freelance work I did last year
Taxes -$6,224.18 Tax refund!
Net Income $10,816.49 Extra high due to tax refund
Savings $8,937.98 Extra high due to tax refund
Savings Rate 82.63% Extra high due to tax refund
Net Worth $319,821.42 Down due to market downturn.

Projected time to FI (assuming 6% growth and 4% withdrawal rate): 7 years, 10 months.