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Looking back on almost five years with Covestor

By Robert Freedland

The Covestor Growth & Momentum portfolio (formerly known as Buy and Hold, Value) is my oldest investment model and actually was one of the original ten offered by Covestor to the public in 2009.

This coming April I shall have finished five years managing this model on the Covestor platform! I am always thankful to my friends at Covestor and to the fellow investors who believed in me enough to give me the opportunity to continue with this portfolio on this platform! Wishing you all a wonderful 2014!

Growth and Momentum finished up 2014 with a solid performance with a 37.8% gain exceeding the S&P 500 Index (SPX), which had a terrific year itself gaining more than 32%. In 2010-2012 this portfolio actually underperformed the S&P 500, so 2014 will once again be a challenge to exceed that index.

Since inception on April 15, 2009, this model has appreciated at an average annualized rate of 12.9%. Unless conditions deteriorate, I shall continue to keep this model at the maximum of 20 positions.

This model has a group of stocks in various industries with a common factor of decent earnings growth and fundamentals and showing strong price appreciation technicals. Thus the Growth and Momentum moniker.

The three strongest holdings in this model include FleetCor Technologies (FLT) which assists trucking companies among other things manage their expenses and credit cards, Ecolab (ECL), a distributor of cleaning supplies and equipment to hospitals and restaurants, and Heartland Payment Services (HPY), a specialist in handling bankcard payment processing between merchants and cardholders.

Since the end of 2013, I have already sold my shares in Prestige Brands (PBH) on purely technical weakness. I love the company and all of its many niche products but avoid stocks that lose money for me like the plague. With that sale, I added a new holding HCI Group (HCI) which is an insurance company offering products in Florida.

I look forward to the challenge of managing this portfolio into 2014 and beyond. I remain committed to identifying stocks with good financial results that hopefully exceed expectations and stocks that also have strong technical charts. Thank you all for your continued support and I shall look to continue to produce good results into the future.

DISCLAIMER: The investments discussed are held in client accounts as of December 31, 2013. These investments may or may not be currently held in client accounts. The reader should not assume that any investments identified were or will be profitable or that any investment recommendations or investment decisions we make in the future will be profitable. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Robert Freedland

Robert Freedland

Robert has over 40 years of investment experience and is a full-time optical surgeon. He uses his expertise in the

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