Friday, April 24, 2015

TOP 7 STOCKS IN 20 STOCK PORTFOLIO

When I set out to rebuild my investment portfolio I invested in only dividend stocks and funds.  The funds were to produce monthly cash flow, the stocks were to produce monthly or quarterly dividends with the possibility of growth in share price.  That's pretty much the way it's worked out.  The funds I invested in haven't done much in the way of share price gains, but they do provide a steady stream of cash each month.  The individual stocks provide cash dividends either monthly or quarterly, but they have also produced some impressive gains.

The top 7 gaining stocks in my 20 stock portfolio are:

1.  UVE  Up over 340%.  (I actually sold enough shares of UVE to get back all my original cash investment and it is still the largest holding in my portfolio.)

2.  RRD  Up 75%.

3.  LLY  Up 61%.

4.  GE   Up 49%.

5.  HWBK Up 26%.

6.  NYCB  Up 25%.

7.  WFC  Up 13%.

The remaining 13 stocks and funds in my portfolio are either showing small gains or losses or breaking even.  But with these type of gains from over one third of my investments and 192 dividend payments a year, I'm pretty happy with the results of my investment plan so far.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

ENDED THE WEEK DOWN, BUT COLLECTED TWO DIVIDEND PAYMENTS!

Ended the week with a drop in total portfolio value, if only a moderate one.  But collected two dividend payments for the week from ROYT and CLNY.  Been busy reading annual reports from several of my holdings, really liked what I read from CLNY although I don't think I'll add any additional cash investments.  Am building my position through reinvested dividends though.  With interest rates about to go up, I'm waiting to see what happens to REITs.  

Double my stake in ROYT last month and with a moderate increase of their dividend was happy to see monthly payment go up.  Of course until there is a recovery in oil prices I'm not expecting too much from ROYT.  But I think in the long run I'll do quite well.

Enjoying my new job and my income has improved.  Have been picking up more hours, which I hope will leave me with more to invest.  Still holding on to cash until I see how everything plays out.  Got to redo the budget to fit the new payroll schedule, but it hasn't been much of a problem so far.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

RETIRE IN YOUR 30's, READ HOW ONE COUPLE DID AND HOW YOU CAN TOO!

Great article about a couple who retired as millionaires and now travel the world blogging about their experiences.

Retire in Your 30's

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

WILL THE FEDERAL RESERVE RAISE INTEREST RATES?

Perhaps a better question would be, when will the Fed raise interest rates?  My best guess, probably by this summer.  With that in mind, I've been considering some tweeks to my investment strategy to address the affects increased rates would have on my portfolio.  Interest rate sensitive stocks, such as utilities and REITs will take a hit as it becomes more expensive for them to do business.  Banks may do well since increased rates should boost credit card income for them.  

So I stand to take a hit from utilities and the one real estate trust in my current holdings, but it will be a small one.  However, since a raise in rates usually means at least a minor pull back in stock prices, I've decided to concentrate on building cash to prepare for such an event.  Just from my own observations, I've noticed the market tends to slow some during the summer months as people are busy with vacations and summer time activities.  With a normal slump and the added drag of increased interest rates, I'm thinking we'll see some buying opportunities this summer.  With extra cash on hand, it will be much easier to boost current positions by buying in at the lower prices.  Should I be wrong and the market does not experience any significant pull backs, I'm still adding to my current positions through reinvested dividends and I can still use the cash to pay off high interest debt or add more shares.  I don't expect to see any significant increase in interest income from the Fed raising rates, since any rate increase is likely to be small starting out.    

Thursday, April 9, 2015

TOTAL SHARES OWNED JUMP 11% IN MARCH!

Just reviewed my portfolio and am pleased to see the total number of shares owned jumped 11% in the month of March!  That's 11% more shares to boost monthly cash flow from dividends.  I'm pretty excited about this.  The increase in shares owned are due to reinvested dividends and additional cash investments from tax refund and a small check from SendEarnings.com.  While the dollar amount invested was not that much, it's the cash from the additional shares in the form of future dividends that gets me excited.  Put some money in and collect on it forever, what could be better than that.

I sometimes think about all the money I threw away over the years on way too many drinks in the bars, way too many cigarettes, way too many cars and expensive clothes that I could have done without.  Of course the saying is, "Live and Learn."  I did a lot of living and finally learned the difference between needs and wants.  If you concentrate on taking care of the things you really need and investing the rest of your income in cash producing assets, you can buy the things you want from the investment income instead of working yourself into the ground.

I've renewed my commitment to build my investment portfolio as rapidly as possible.  Then I'll have the dividend income to pay for the extra things I want without the guilt or stressing over money.  The new job will definitely help.  I'm getting more hours and it's a wonderful job with great coworkers.  It is also a job I'm proud of, as opposed to the last place I worked.  I was embarrassed to tell people I worked there.  Things are looking up for 2015!

Friday, April 3, 2015

MONTHLY DIVIDEND INCOME UP IN MARCH!

Dividend income from my investments rose in the month of March compared to February of this year.  However, March income for 2015 compared to 2014 was basically flat.  It had to happen sooner or later, I'd been seeing some fantastic increases each month for over a year now, I knew that wouldn't go on forever.  Biggest contributor to stall in monthly cash flow was the sale of part of my investment in CRF and CLM.  Although the stocks didn't perform well, they did produce a nice stream of monthly income.  That's why I decided to retain my remaining shares.  

Should see a boost in income this month from AOD and ROYT from additional cash investments in both stocks.  ROYT's dividend will be marginally higher as well.  Don't expect to make a lot off them until oil prices turn around.  But I think it will be a good long term investment.

Started off the month of April with 6 dividend payments to date!  This will be one of the slower months of the year for the number of payments received.  I'll only collect 9 more dividends for the remainder of the month.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

GE TO SPIN OFF REMAINDER OF FINANCE DIVISION TO SHAREHOLDERS LATER THIS YEAR

Just read the latest report from GE.  I didn't know until now that GE was spinning off their finance division in the form of IPO Synchrony Financial.  GE still owns 85% of Synchrony Financial (SYF) which it plans to spin off to shareholders later this year.  Could be a good thing.  I'm always happy to pick up a new stock through spin offs.  Just have to wait and see how it all plays out.  

Also read a prediction of a major collapse in the U.S. dollar.  With such a run up in the national debt under the Obama administration, I wouldn't be surprised to see this happen.  Hopefully it won't, but it would be a good idea to hedge against the possibility by putting some money in hard assets like real estate or gold.  Unfortunately that is not possible for me right now, but I will be looking in to opening a savings account in Canada.  Couldn't hurt...