Luck isn’t a strategy

I did the following recently:

Profit off the table

We sold some money in an investment account that we have. With investment returns doing so well, we decided to take some profit off the table and pay down some of our mortgage. Some money was taken out in December and another amount in early January. It was done like this purely to avail of the the €1,270 exemption on gains in both 2021 and 2022.

The reason we did this was our bank wrote to us to remind us that our fixed term on our mortgage was up soon. Otherwise we wouldn’t have done anything.


My company year end is March. I make a pension top up each year before then. In 2020, I made the top up towards the end of February, just before Covid shut down the global markets. I made this years contribution at the end of January. Why? Because the money was sitting in my account and I just wanted to get rid of it. Markets have fallen -5.96% since. If I had waited, I could have bought it for cheaper.


We filled the tank of our home heating oil a few weeks ago. It was expensive but nothing compared to the price now after Russia invaded Ukraine. According to, I have saved 12% on my home heating oil bill by getting my oil a few weeks ago. Why did I top up the tank then and not now? We’d run out of oil. Simple as that.


Sometimes you benefit from timing, sometimes you get your timing wrong. It is nothing more than luck and luck should never be part of an investment strategy. Long term investing in quality companies is.


Steven Barrett

28 February 2022