Saturday, October 31, 2015


I know it's supposed to be tricks or treats, but the end of October has been good for my portfolio.  First, I pulled off a trick by doubling the total number of shares owned in my portfolio from the first of January to the end of October 2015.  Then, with the month ending on a weekend, I collected end of the month dividends on Friday and first of the month dividends today!  Couldn't have a better treat than that.

Collect 6 good sized dividends for the end of October, including my first dividend from recent purchase, DON!  For the beginning of November I collected 5 dividend payments which included increased payments from NCZ and PHK due to increased share purchases in both funds.

October, with it's 19 dividend payments, turned out to be the second highest month for dividends this year.  It also beat out October 2014, with over a 30% increase in monthly income!  The stock market ended down on Friday from the day before, but over all it wasn't a bad month.

I expect December to set the all time record in this new portfolio, with a total of 22 dividend payments for the month.  Not only is that the most dividends for any single month this year, but it will include special dividends from UVE and MAIN, if previous years are any indication.  They could always decide not to pay the special dividends this year, but I don't see that happening at this point.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015


I took advantage of one of the recent dips in stock prices to double my investment in PSEC.  By buying in at the lower price, I not only bought more shares than my original purchase, I also boosted the monthly dividend by a whopping 150%!  Warren Buffet has always said that your buy in price makes a big difference.  I've always known that was true, but it surprised me how much difference it can make.

The best part about the whole transaction is that I got in before the ex-dividend date, so I'll see the first boost in dividends in November.  November is also the month I collect the first dividend payment from MAIN, so it will be interesting to see what the new monthly income turns out to be.  Of course I could calculate the amount ahead of time, but I like being surprised.

Just read an article on Bing about CEO's retirement benefits.  The writer acted surprised that they stand to collect such extreme amounts during retirement.  I don't know why anyone would be surprised by that.  Almost every annual report I've gotten from every company I've ever invested in, there's some kind of vote on executive compensation (usually to increase it).  While they may not be so concerned about company performance or taking care of the shareholders, they certainly don't drop the ball when it comes to their own pay.  These are the same people who just can't figure out how to give hourly workers a raise.

Sunday, October 25, 2015


I thought it was time to update my top ten holdings list.  This does not constitute investment advise in any shape or form, simply for informational purposes.

 1.  AOD  Alpine Total Dynamic Dividend Fund.  Current price $8.04 with a dividend yield of 8.58%.  Pays monthly.

 2.  UVE  Universal Insurance Holdings.  Current price $36.32 with a dividend yield of 1.10%.  Pays quarterly.  (Because my original buy in price was much lower, the current yield on my original investment is 8.2%)

 3.  DON  WisdomTree Trust Mid Cap Dividend Fund.  Current price $82.75 with a yield of 1.74%.  Pays monthly.  (Showing a profit on DON in less than a month.)

 4.  NCZ  AllianzGI Convertible and Income Fund.  Current price $5.69 with a yield of 12.13%.  Pays monthly.  (Recently reduced dividend.)

 5.  PHK  Pimco High Income Fund.  Current price $8.33 with a dividend yield of 14.90%.  Pays monthly.  (Recently reduced dividend.)

 6.  LLY  Lilly (Eli) and Company.  Current price $78.51 with a dividend yield of 2.54%.

 7.  GE  General Electric Co.  Current price $29.51 with a yield of 5.12%.

 8.  MAIN  Main Street Capital Corp.  Current price of $30.05 with a yield of 6.39%.  (Showing a profit on MAIN in less than a month.)

 9.  NYCB  New York Community BanCorp.  Current price of $18.95 with a dividend yield of 5.28%.

10.  CRF  Cornerstone Total Return Fund.  Current price of $17.65 with a dividend yield of 22.1%.  (Like the dividend from CRF, but it's performance otherwise has not been good.)

My current yields on several of these stocks are much higher than the current yield, since, like UVE, I bought in at much lower prices.  The thing I found most interesting when compiling this list is that the original 4 stocks I bought when setting up this portfolio are all still in the top ten.  (UVE, GE, LLY and NYCB)  Of course I consider all 4 core holdings, but I haven't bought any extra shares since my initial investment in each of these stocks.  In fact I sold several shares of UVE and it's still No. 2 in the top 10.  Warren Buffet says a good investment is one that continues to grow earnings and increase in value without any additional cash investment.  These 4 stocks all qualify in that regard.

Saturday, October 24, 2015


Recently read an article about Starbucks not having any stores in Israel.  Is this true?  If it is true, why is that?  The same article stated that there are over 600 Starbucks in Muslim countries.  I would think it would be more difficult to maneuver the business environment in Muslim countries than in the nation of Israel, so I question why Starbucks isn't doing business there.  While I like their coffee, it may not be the type of business to catch on in Israel.  I remember reading a story several years back about KFC not doing well in Brazil because people in Brazil didn't like greasy finger foods.  Does anybody from Israel know the real story?


It's been a great week for gains in stock price gains for my portfolio!  MAIN, my most recent new addition is already in the black with a little more than a 3% gain.  DON continues to do well, up nearly 10% since my initial purchase.  Both are monthly dividend payers and will add nicely to monthly cash flows.  Put in an order to purchase additional shares of PSEC, which will triple my current holdings in the stock.  Not only will this move boost monthly income, but it will also reduce average price per share on PSEC.  They have a high payout ratio, but current income is sufficient to continue the monthly dividend at it's present 8 cents per share.  

Had a couple of dividend reductions recently on NCZ and PHK.  I'm kind of bummed about that, but they do pay monthly and I'm satisfied with the new payout amount, so I'll hold on to both of them for now.  May have to look at replacing them should the dividends continue to slide.

The recent run up in stock prices boosted my gains on UVE to over 500%!  While I'd normally be tempted to sell and collect the gains, my current dividend yield on the original price I paid for the stock is 8.2%, so I hesitate to part with a winning stock.  Not to mention that I pulled all my original cash invested, out of the stock, quite a while back and I'm essentially playing with the house's money here.  So even if the share price should slide some, the income from dividends is attractive since it's not tying up any money out of pocket.

With new positions I've taken out in the past year, I may have to adjust my 20 stock portfolio strategy to a 30 stock strategy, since I'm not really ready to part with any of my current holdings.  But I definitely have no plans to go over 30 investments, since it would make it much more difficult to keep track of performance.  I'll work all that out in my investment plan for 2016.  

Sunday, October 18, 2015


One easy way to free up more cash for investing is to save on regular monthly expenses.  Recently I've been looking for ways to save extra money on utilities.  One easy way I just discovered is plug in solar power.  What is plug in solar power?  It's just what it sounds like.  It's pretty much an out of the box solar system that you plug in to a wall socket in your home, like any other appliance.  However, with the plug in solar system you're producing energy to use in your home and slowing down the metered energy from your electric provider, so you're reducing your monthly utility bill.  

I found a really simple, easy to install system at  They have a 240 watt plug and play solar system for $799 which would provide substantial savings on your monthly electricity costs.  The system also qualifies for a 30% Federal tax credit, which can help defer the cost of purchase.  I'm thinking that the monthly savings and the tax credit would make purchasing the unit a great idea for reducing regular monthly expenses.  If you take the money you save each month and invest it in a dividend paying stock, you'll recoup the money to pay for the unit even faster. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


Completed purchase of a stake in Main Street Capital (MAIN) Tuesday.  MAIN is a monthly dividend payer with insider buying, increasing dividends and good future prospects.  Set to collect the first dividend payment in November, which will boost monthly dividend income by another 5%.  Still haven't seen the full impact of recent share purchases on monthly income.  Should have a better idea of average income per month by the end of December.  Of course by then it will have increased even more from re-invested dividends, but I'll have a pretty good idea of where I stand.

DON continues to do well, up nearly 5% from my original purchase price.  Anxiously awaiting first dividend from them around the end of this month!  UVE is on fire!  Up a whopping 493% over original cost!  Would like to find a few more of those type investments.  They don't come along often, but when you do pick one, it's fantastic!

Been looking at ways to cut personal expenses and reduce personal debt to boost net worth.  That's going to be a big part of my investment plan for 2016.  Would like to be debt free by the end of 2018.  Just have to work out a plan to get there.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015


Just read about a possible massive oil find in Israel's Golan Heights area!  Hasn't been confirmed as yet, but it's from what I read, things are looking good.  Would love to see the Israeli's strike oil and become energy independent, or at least less dependent on oil imports.  I'd be willing to invest in an Israeli oil company.  Have to keep a close eye on this for further news.

Sunday, October 4, 2015


Less than a week after purchasing a stake in DON, I've already earned my commission back and am ahead on the stock!  Makes me think I made the right decision on this one.  I'll be looking for similar investments in the months to come and will be adding to my stake in DON.

Anytime you invest in a stock and make a profit in less than a week, it's a pretty good sign that you've bought the right stock.  Over the years, I've managed to do this on several occasions and have never been disappointed for holding on to the investment.  

On a different note, attended a chili festival this weekend in the small town of Lupus Missouri.  It's located next to the Missouri river and has a population of 33.  They hosted a very nice festival with some good food and great music and there were probably well over a thousand people there.  I was told that they hold this festival every year to pay the city's expenses.  In one day, they earn enough money to cover city government expenses for the entire year.  It made me wonder, if this little town in the middle of nowhere can figure out how to raise the money to cover all there expenses in just one day per year, why can't the politicians in Washington?  I think the answer is, they're too busy politicking. 

Thursday, October 1, 2015


Kicked off the month of October with five dividend payments.  Have to say I'm a little bit disappointed, although not so surprised, to see NCZ and PHK cut their dividends.  I'll be monitoring both closely, but for the time being, I have no plans to sell.  Both carried high yields and high risk, but even with the dividend cut, they're still worth hanging on to for the monthly dividends.  That is, as long as there aren't any more cuts.  But I knew the risk going in and I'm still willing to hold for the dividends, but I'll be collecting them all in cash.

October is an 18 dividend month, so I should still do well.  Especially looking forward to collecting my first dividend from DON on the 31st.  I'm feeling really good about this investment.  Plan on adding more shares as soon as possible.  Also feeling pretty good about my investment in AOD, but I did notice something disturbing in their last semi-annual report that's making me question my decision there.  Just have to see how things pan out going forward. 

Picking up extra hours at work today and tomorrow, so I should have a little more cash to add to my investment fund or pay down debt.  I'm really planning on attacking my remaining debt for the rest of 2015 and all of 2016.  I don't really have much debt compared to the average U.S. citizen, but it's more than I want to carry.  So I'm going to be concentrating on paying off as much as I possibly can.  The savings from interest alone would allow me to boost my investments dramatically.