Follow the dividend investment decisions of a person who has no background in financial investment and wishes to take control of their financial future to retire from their full-time job at 60.

Blog is Public Again :) - 28 Nov 2016 20:29


5 months ago I turned my blog from being public to private. The decision to turn the blog private was because it met its original intent and the blog was no longer adding value to myself or the investing community.

I continued to use the blog platform as a personal notebook and it was not until I was out with a few friends having drinks that things would change. I mentioned an experiment that I will be conducting on a model portfolio. They were intrigued by the idea and asked why not share the findings and re-activate the blog.

So here we are for the world to see again. Ray, Mike, Jim, and Steve thanks for coaxing me back :) - Comments: 0

Book Review: The Art of Retirement - 22 Nov 2016 22:16

Tags: book_review


I have read quite a few financial books over the years but lately a lot of the books being published are mediocre or just plain trash. Some of this I blame on the easy route of self-publishing via Amazon and all of the self help books telling folks they can create additional income streams through publishing. But recently, I came across one book that I highly recommend for investors of any age.

When I saw "The Art of Retirement" written by Gary Williams who is a certified financial planner I had my doubts and assumed it would be nothing more than a sales pitch for his investment firm. However, I did read the inside cover which mentioned that all proceeds from the book would be donated to ALS research for finding a cure and it was this one charitable line that tugged at me to give a try.

For anyone with any investing knowledge this will not enlighten you to new investing styles, analysis, or theories. Its financial investing elements are simple and laid out for someone not familiar with investing but this is not what got me excited about the book. Instead it is the author's method of how to examine ones life and establishing goals to improving your life, creating a legacy, and inspiration for financial independence.

One of the most moving concepts he proposes is by asking yourself a simple question

"What if an artist was going to paint your life's story on the ceiling of your home? Now imagine a painter will paint a fresco of your life, what would it look like (besides the fact that when you go to sell it the new homeowners may find it creepy)? Did it capture all of your accomplishments? Your victories? Your agonies of defeat or loss? Imagine for a moment what your masterpiece of life would look like."

This one question quickly examines your life to help find what is missing and starts you down the road for developing a plan to get there which in turn will lead to a happy fulfilled life. While this book was targeted at retirement, this concept can be applied throughout ones lifetime that can help develop pre-retirement as well as retirement goals.

I wouldn't call this book life changing but it will help add clarity as to what you are saving for and to how leave a legacy to be proud of. - Comments: 0

Portfolio Experiment - 13 Nov 2016 13:17


There are so many new investment tools available to investors today that make it so much easier for the little guys like us. One of the tools I find useful is Motif Investing were you can create a basket of stocks with assigned percentage allocations and when you invest in the basket it will buy all of the shares in the basket for just a small transaction fee of $9.95.

Using Motif as a model, I have decided to start an experiment by creating a portfolio with a fictional $10,000 investment. We will track capital returns, pre-retirement income growth and post-retirement income growth. For pre-retirement growth, we will collect three months of dividend payments and then re-invest in an effort to keep our annual expenses under a cap of $40. For post retirement all dividends will be redistributed with no reinvestment.

To kick this off the initial purchase will be the prices at the business close of Friday 12/2/16 and progress will be updated weekly. Purchased securities and their allocation shall be per the table below

Experimental Portfolio

Compass Minerals CMP 4%
Wal-Mart WMT 4%
General Motors GM 4%
Cracker Barrel Restaurants CBRL 4%
P&G PG 4%
Archer Daniel Midland ADM 4%
Petmed Express PETS 4%
Travelers Insurance TRV 5%
Canadian Imperial Bank CM 5%
Johnson & Johnson JNJ 5%
Merck MRK 5%
3M MMM 5%
Emerson Electric EMR 5%
Omega Healthcare Invest OHI 5%
STAG Industrial STAG 5%
W.P. Carey WPC 5%
Apple AAPL 4%
AT & T T 5%
Microsoft MSFT 4%
Artesian Resources Corporation ARTNA 3%
PPL Corp PPL 3%
iShares iBoxx $ High Yield Corporate Bd HYG 2%
iShares iBoxx $ Invst Grade Crp Bond LQD 2%
iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond TLT 2%
iShares S&P US Pref Stock Idx PFF 2%

2016 Election Effect - Speculation & Surprise - 12 Nov 2016 12:56


On Monday, before the elections, much of the media had Hillary Clinton beating Donald Trump and most financial and fund managers had the same view and as such positioned stock investments based on a Clinton Presidency.

On Tuesday the day of elections or more precisely early on Wednesday around 2am in the morning it became clear that Trump was the new President elect. International markets responded negatively and sent U.S. futures cratering down past 5%. But as the morning moved closer the sentiment was quickly changing and futures were improving. At the opening bell the market took off into positive territory and would remain that way through to Friday with the Dow up just over 5% for the week.

Financial pundits and spin doctors were labeling it as the "Trump Rally" and were touting how beneficial Trump will be to business and U.S. markets. This was extremely laughable as these were the same people who just a week earlier were stating a Trump Presidency would be the worst thing for Wall Street. These folks will do anything to sound like they are always right and why it pays to tune out the noise from Wall Street and the media.

Personally I have no clue if Trump's Presidency will be beneficial or not and only time will tell. Regardless what happens in the future I will continue to evaluate and pick stocks based on Liquidity, Profitability, Credit Risk, Shareholder Value and Growth. - Comments: 0

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