If you started investing, you definitely want to keep track of your progress and performance. Here's an overview of what you can do to monitor your stock portfolio.
Use your brokerage account
The easiest way to keep track of your stock portfolio holdings might be to use your brokerage account directly.
However, some of the brokers provide good tools while others can often lack major features. I especially like Interactive Brokers, with their PortfolioAnalyst features that gives you a good overview, asset allocation charts, portfolio ESG score, etc... Others such as Degiro simply don't offer good performance tracking tools.
If you have multiple brokerage accounts, you still might need to use a dedicated portfolio tracker to aggregate these accounts and track your overall performance.
Build a DIY portfolio tracker with spreadsheets
If you want to build your own portfolio tracker, you might want to create a spreadsheet using either Excel or Google Spreadsheets. The advantage of using Google Spreadhseets, is that you can pull some data directly from Google Finance using formula, and your portfolio tracker will be updated in real time.
The best way to build your own portfolio tracker is to create two tabs: one will be your trading journal here you manually add a new line everytime your buy or sell a stock, and the other being your portfolio overview. This overview should get data from the other tab to reflect your current number of shares for each position as well as your average cost. You can then calculate your return for each line, and the total return of your portfolio.
Having a spreadsheet to keep track of your portfolio is perfect for small portfolios or if you hold ETFs, but if you want to become a better investor you will soon have some unanswered questions:
- Am I outperforming the S&P500?
- How do I keep track of dividends?
- Do I need to account currency fluctuations?
If some of those questions are important to you, you might want to try using a dedicated portfolio tracking software.
Use a dedicated portfolio tracking app
Using a dedicated portfolio tracker such as Beanvest is the best option to monitor your stock performance and avoid the manual hurdle of keeping it up to date.
Beanvest offers a free version to get you started and offers many features that are difficult to replicate in a spreadsheet.
You can easily import all your transactions at once from your brokerage account using a csv import or broker synchronizations, and will directly see an overview of your portfolio holdings. You will be able to see your allocations by currency, country, or industry.
Beanvest will also show you a chart of your portfolio performance vs any index such as the S&P500.
I plan to add a lot more features to help individual investors and family offices monitor their portfolio, so get on board now and sign up just below ;)