Sunday, October 2, 2016

Dividend Income: September

Money, money, money, it's time to count the money! With the end of the month of September comes the chance to count the dividends that have been issued. That being said, September was an awesome month for historical dividend income! Let's count them up:

WFC - $8.36
LB - $4.80
WMT - $8
EMR - $7.60
STAG - $1.74
GME - $7.40
ARII - $6.80

Total: $44.70
Current 2016 Earnings: $216.16
Total 2015 Earnings: $62.25

I think that the most motivating thing about dividend growth investing is seeing the difference between the yearly earnings. So far in 2016, we have completely destroyed the earnings that were taken back in 2015. Because there is such a mental aspect to investing, it's so important to keep track monthly. One or two slips can make it seem like you're not gaining speed. If you feel like you're not gaining speed, you just get more and more discouraged. 

Thankfully, I'm good at keeping track of nearly everything in my life. Watching my investment income is no different than anything else in my daily life. Keep track and you will be rewarded. Let's just keep the train moving forward and on track. 

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Recent Buy: Target

I've added another new company to the growing portfolio of stocks in the Dividend Scythe! Reaping and reaping and reaping! I'm really happy with this new addition because I was raised in a "Target Household". By that I mean that my mother was and still is obsessed with Target or as we love to call it, "Tarjay".

I've had my eye on the stock for a very long time and it was about time that it made it's way in. What I really like about Target is that they are a progressive company that has shown a consistently impressive track record of paying dividends and simply operating at a surplus. Those are two of the most important things that can be had in a company when I'm looking for one to add to the books. If a company continues to bring in more business or make more money off of existing business while still staying in a positive light, that company is a great buy in my book.

Let's review the final purchase:

Purchased 15 shares @ 68.38/share
Total Purchase: $1,035.76
Total Additional Annual Dividend: $36
New Total Project Annual Dividends: $415.42

All and all, I'm very happy with this purchase. The price was as close to the 52 week low that it has gotten in a little while during times where I've had the chance to invest in it. It will help the Dividend Scythe reap that much more which will in turn propel the new acquisitions that much further. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

I'll Start Saving Tomorrow

It's a statement that I feel that a lot of us hear quite often from those in our company. I'll start saving tomorrow. It's easy to say, isn't it? And it sounds good! If only it were true.

What is the difference between us and them though? Why were some of us actually successful when we put our saving ahead of our over indulgences? It's a tough question to answer but I've been thinking about it a lot lately because in the recent past I have been approached by a much larger handful of people than normal that have asked me how I have been doing it.

For me, the answer is simple. Living at a deficit is what creates wealth. It's been proven time and time again by those who stay wealthy. The way that I myself create this deficit for my wife and I is that anytime we are about to buy something, I ask both of us,

"will we actually use this or will this be used once and then forgotten?"

One would think that it would be easy to overcome this statement. After all, you can justify just about anything if given enough time to think about something. The very act however seems to bring out a purpose for not buying. This is the purpose that I am forever grateful for. Where buying gives the purpose of gaining something new, the act of asking whether or not you should seems to give a greater outlook.

I ask myself again then, how am I any different than so many others who have asked for my help but ultimately failed to apply it? Is it a change of mindset brought on by the consumerism that has been bred in them their entire life? Or is it something different that I just can't seem to see? The fact of the matter is that it seems to work for me. Then why should it not work for others? 

I then pose this question to my readers; why is it that others find it so incredibly hard to live at a deficit? Do people internally just not want to retire? Are they running away from their mortality? Can they really not stop themselves from over indulging? Why do you think this is the case? 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Dividend Income: August

The best time of the month has finally come. It's time to compile all the dividends received and see just how much is sitting at the bottom of the passive income coin jar. Although this month was not the most extravagant that the blog has ever seen, it wasn't exactly dead either. Let's see what we brought in this month:

Dividend Income: August

STAG - STAG Industrial - $1.74
ABBV - Abbvie - $5.70
YUM - Yum Brands - $3.22

Total: $10.66
Total Dividends in 2016: $171.66
Total Dividends in 2015: $62.25
Increase YOY at Present: $109.41

Alright, so it's not the most that we've ever seen the Dividend Scythe pick up but it's still moving us forward on our way. Like I remind myself every month, it's the sum of the smaller parts that make up the great whole in the end. It's best not to lose sight of that.

That being said, I wanted to make sure to include the difference in this month's tally from the prior year to show just how far the portfolio has come from the year prior. This serves as a good indicator of whether or not we're heading in the right direction and I'm happy to say that it confirms good things. There is at this time a difference of $109.41 over the entire last year's passive income (and we've still got a few months to go!). Even though the $10.66 of income this month may seem small, it is a small piece of a much larger puzzle that is being put together.

Moving forward this month I really want to hone in on a good high yielding dividend stock. I know that there aren't many out there that have solid numbers but the portfolio has reached a point where it can take some chances to further fuel the ship into outer space. If you've got any ideas of where one might find this fuel, please leave your comment in the section below.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Recent Buy: Royal Caribbean

There comes a point in the history of a portfolio where it has to move past the safer bets and move on to picks that are outside of the normal channel or realm. We move to a point where bets are on and the market and humanity will guide our next move forward. That being the case, I’ve differed to the judgment of my grandparents.

I know this isn’t always the immediate gut reaction when it comes to investing but sometimes it’s a great move when you’re stuck on what to dip your portfolio into next. I have been feeling a bit jaded lately and that has spilled over into having very little to write about. This has also made it tough to think of companies to evaluate. That’s why I moved to the preference of a generation that is removed from my own to see from a different angle what I may not be seeing.

One could argue that I should have seen their answer coming but it was an immediate gut response from them that I should look at cruise lines. In the past I have hurried past these stocks as they seemed all to cyclical and as we are in an upswing, overpriced. Regardless, I paid them a look – Carnival, Royal, and Norwegian. All three stocks actually showed way more promise than I had initially thought. One clear winner however emerged from the pack. That winner was Royal Caribbean. Let me share why.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Dividend Income: July

It's the beginning of another month and that means that it's time to tally the dividend payments from the previous month. All in all, it was a great month. I find that pretty much any time there is a payment incoming from AT&T (T), I can expect a fairly decent payment. It definitely helps boost the confidence moving forward that the strategy of dividend investing is a good strategy.

Where it may still not seem like a whole lot at a total of $28.25 for a whole month of dividends, it actually is a big enough amount to do something with. Hell, for a good portion of my portfolio, the stock price per share is less than that. That means that this last month provided for me the opportunity to add even one more share (theoretically) to the portfolio. With one more share there comes one more payment of dividends that further propels the snow ball forward.

I also want to remind myself with another month past that it is important to not bench mark your portfolio based on other investor's portfolios. Even though this can sometimes be a great motivator for future success, it can also give an unfair view of things as investing in dividends can be a very skewed curve when graphed out. The more dividend payments coming in, the faster the trend line goes up so it does not accurately represent a slow and steady trend upwards but more an increasing stream that will eventually become a roaring river. I just have to keep my eye on the prize moving forward and have faith that the small stream of income I've built will eventually pick up more and more speed. Anyways, here is the breakdown for the month:

July Dividend Income

RAI - Reynolds American Inc. - $5.88
STAG - STAG Industrial - $1.74
GE - General Electric - $5.75
T - AT&T - $14.88

Total July Dividends: $28.25

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Recent Buy: Reynolds American Inc.

I talked about it and I wrote about it on my blog here just a few days ago. Just as a predicted, the price would be too good to pass up on Reynolds American Inc. That being the case, I had to pick up a few more shares for the Dividend Scythe portfolio. I was able to pick up a total of 17 more shares at $50.11/share which came to a total purchase price of $861.94.

This addition added a sizable amount of projected dividend income to the portfolio. At $1.68 per share in yield, this added a total of $28.56 to the projected annual dividend income. With this addition, the total projected annual dividend income moving forward is a solid $362.92. This should propel the portfolio much further as it will add further capital to future investments and further grow the snow ball.

This acquisition also helped me pass a major milestone. The portfolio is now officially over $10,000! It's taken a little while to get here but it's nice to see it finally hit five figures. I have my increased saving habits and better financial handling skills to thank for this milestone. Without them I would still very likely be in the four figure range and very likely still at the bottom or mid range at that!

I know this isn't a huge milestone compared to some who have been investing for a long time but for me this milestone is huge. It shows that I am capable of making the money add up. I look forward to the newer, bigger snow ball effect that will be seen in the future. Onward and upward is the way to go!