Freetrade diary #1 – January

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Previous article – 6 cheaper food and drink alternatives to the ‘big name brands’

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Disclaimer – None of what I write constitutes as advice but merely serves as a record of what I have decided to invest in personally. You should always do your own research before investing in any financial product or vehicle.

Disclaimer 2 – I am not, nor do I purport to be, a super duper stock picking whizz kid. There will not be deep analysis in this post, it’s just merely a summary of my thoughts around my decision to buy the certain stocks that I have bought. 

Well, what a start to my monthly Freetrade diary: I didn’t really buy anything.

I’ve had the typical yearly financial bombshell where every bill comes out at once; mine happens to be January, plus a few additional extras (thank you car).

As a result, I’ve had little spare cash to throw into the account.

My Freetrade account is one I only contribute to after my monthly fund investments and LISA deposits, so it’s entirely dependent on if I’ve had an expensive month or not.

– I won’t be discussing specific details of my fund investments or savings as I want to retain a certain level of anonymity – 

As this was one of them, and it being my first ever instalment of my Freetrade diary (as promised in my 2020 plans for the blog), I thought I’d outline what I’ve invested in so far during the nearly 12 months I’ve had the account open…


I like to invest in well established companies and/or those with multiple revenue streams and/or recognised brands so have invested in the following:

Disney – Media networks (ABC, ESPN and now Disney+ etc.); parks and resorts; studio entertainment (Lucasfilm; Marvel Entertainment etc.); toys and consumer products; ownership of many widely recognised IPs.

The stock remained relatively stagnant from 2015 to early 2019 but shot up after speculation on their new Disney+ streaming service and the announcement of their full control of Hulu. Over 10 million signed up in the first day to Disney+ which could see them taking some market share off of the likes of Netflix, but this still remains to be seen; a vast number of these initial memberships came in the form of a free 12 months when customer’s purchased products through third parties; let’s see if Disney can offer more than just The Mandalorian to tempt people to stay when those contracts are up.


Unilever – Own many of the world’s most recognised household brands: Dove; Walls; Magnum; Cornetto; VO5; Vaseline; Colman’s; PG Tips; Pot Noodle to name a few.

Over a typical day, a third of the world uses a Unilever product and its footprint in emerging markets keeps it competitive with its rivals. However, growth in developed markets has been a little sluggish recently with underlying sales growth expected to be below target for the first half of this year. Despite this, I’m quite confident in the diversity of products and the long term prospects of Unilever.


Diageo – Another company that own huge names in the alcohol business: Guinness; Baileys; Captain Morgan; Smirnoff and Johnnie Walker etc. They also host a number of different distillery tours including the famous Guinness Storehouse in Dublin.

Uncertainty in global trade hasn’t been kind to Diageo of late and the slowing of alcohol consumption doesn’t bode well for future figures – although this isn’t my anecdotal experience. But again, they own a lot of reputable brand that I don’t see going anywhere anytime soon. I’ll be keeping a close eye though.


Renewables Infrastructure – This group are invested in a variety of projects in wind and solar assets across the U.K and Europe. They also hold a battery storage unit in Scotland. Promote sustainability and long term, steady growth.

This is an incredibly steady stock and one that scratches my environmentalist itch (he says with an investment in considerably unethical and non-environmentally friendly stocks above). They continue to develop and broaden their portfolio across the UK and Europe and contribute to energy production locally to myself which gives this a little more meaning. This is a hold and see for a long while for me.

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I’ve dabbled with a few other stocks, namely Sirius Minerals – this one was a FOMO investment, I understood the risks entirely and was happy to lose the lot. I sold out of this investment at about a 60% loss but this made up less than 1% of my overall (funds included).

I’ve made small amounts on stocks like Legal & General, Kier and Vodafone, but these were incredibly insignificant. I was mostly testing the water in the early days of me signing up to Freetrade.

I purchased a measly holding of Biffa with the remaining cash in my account, from a number of dividend payments, a few weeks ago. This has been a stock I’ve been watching for a while but wanted to get in while I waited for cash to start increasing my ownership.

I also have two free shares from kind readers of this blog currently pending, so these will hopefully be included in next months entry.

I’ll be going into a little more detail in the later instalments as to why I purchase/sell certain shares, but for now I just wanted to give a little overview.

Happy (and rational) investing everyone 🙂


2 thoughts on “Freetrade diary #1 – January

    1. I think I may be. I do quite like owning whole shares in everything though, it really helps with my minor OCD haha!
      I’ve been buying small amounts in new companies already this month so next months edition will have a little more substance 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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