Happy New Year, everyone!
Before I share 2021’s year in review, I wanted to say thank you. To quote my friends Colin and Samir..
If no one reads the New York Times, there is no New York Times. A media company without an audience, is quite simply, not a media company.
In this way, the audience is the company and I would not be who I am, without you.
I cannot express how grateful I am that you all stuck around with me throughout 2021 — the year I doubled down on content.
Because of your support in 2021, I was able to quit my job and hire a full-time employee.
Because of your support in 2021, we’ve positioned ourselves to build a finance-focused media company that values transparency, consistency, and comprehensive in 2022.
It’s no surprise that a lot of people around the world are scared to face the numbers (their debt, savings, retirement portfolio, etc.) — I want to make sure everyone reading Rate of Return in 2022 is not just equipped but excited to face their numbers.
In 2022, you can expect more than just stock / investing ideas over here.
There are several ways to make money beyond just the stock market — whether that’s yield on your cryptocurrency, starting a small business / side hustle, or exceptional returns through Fundrise.
Fundrise is my favorite vehicle of exposure to real estate (beyond owning my own house). As a user for over 3 years now, Fundrise has allowed me to invest in properties throughout the United States without any management worries or even needing to visit the properties. Think of Fundrise as a new-age REIT meets robo-advising.
I continue to dollar cost averaging into my Fundrise portfolio, while also learning a lot from their email updates and educational resources.
Be sure to checkout my Fundrise End of Year Update video to learn more.
I want to expand on this theme throughout 2022 and will keep you posted on my journey. Consider signing up for Fundrise using this link.
I have a few ideas and a lot of guests teed up to help me tell this story — so keep rocking with me and let’s have some fun this year!
2021 Performance of Popular Indices & Cryptos:
S&P 500: +27%
Dow Jones Industrial Average: +19%
Inflation Wasn’t Transitory:
Throughout late-2020 and early-2021, the Fed claimed the red hot inflation pushing the Consumer Price Index higher was transitory — we now know this is not the case.
Inflation rose +6.8% year-over-year, the fastest year-over-year rise in nearly 40 years.
In response to the surging inflation, the Fed has announced they’ll decrease their asset purchasing in 2022 — while also increasing interest rates. While we can’t be certain if inflation remains heightened in 2022 — we are certain that it’s eating a hole in all of our pockets.
Retail Traders Assembled:
2020 was the year of the retail trader — 2021 was the year they did something about the system called “the stock market.”
In January, retail traders squeezed Melvin Capital out of a massive position in GameStop — causing the hedge fund to lose -41% of their investors’ capital. Retail traders also squeezed AMC’s stock price to astronomical highs — allowing the company to raise $2.2 billion in cash.
We also saw a slew of retail trader-focused startups raise money from investors — here are some of our favorites:
Electric Vehicle Stocks Soared:
Elon Musk’s Tesla ended 2021 up +50%, after returning an incredible +750% in 2020. Tesla’s 2020 and 2021 performance caused investors to sprint to other EV names — like Rivian Automotive and Lucid Motors.
Because of this excitement, Rivian Automotive became the first US company to attain a $100 billion market cap without a single dollar in revenue and Lucid Motors was briefly larger than Ford by market cap in November.
Most importantly, Tesla because the 5th company to join “The Trillion-Dollar Market Cap Club” in October.
Big Tech Got Bigger:
Despite other tech companies experiencing immense volatility throughout 2021 — Microsoft, Google, and Apple all showed resilience. Big Tech continued to report strong quarterly earnings results — causing the 3 of them to collectively add +$2.2 trillion in market value.
Consumer-facing tech companies were challenged in 2021 with Apple’s privacy-related changes to iOS 14.5 — specifically impacting advertising campaigns on the iPhone. However, this was a net positive for Google as companies quickly pivoted and increased their ad spend on Android devices instead.
NFT sales volume hit a record $23 billion in 2021.
Beyond the big headlines, NFT developments that caught my eye specifically in 2021 have to do with college athletes. This company partnered with Shopify to begin selling NFTs of popular college athletes from Michigan, Notre Dame, Virginia Tech, Miami, and Florida State University.
Yes, I still own my Poolsuite NFT.
We had a very interesting year.
Inflation kicked our ass, retail traders fought back, EVs became even more popular, Big Tech dominated, and NFTs were all the rage. I simply can’t include everything worth talking about — so if I missed something, please forgive me.
I’m looking forward to 2022 with you all by my side!
- Austin Hankwitz
Disclaimer: This is not financial advice or recommendation for any investment. The content is for informational purposes only, you should not construe any such information or other material as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.