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Monthly Investing Recaps: April 2014

At the start of each month I detail all my buy/sell activity for each of my 3 individual stock portfolios: Loyal3, Roth IRA, and Taxable Brokerage accounts. It’s just one way I am chronicling my journey to financial independence here at Starting From Zero.

In addition to these 3 accounts, I also continued investing in my Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) again this month. Right now I’m contributing 4% of my base pay but may adjust this in the future. The majority of my investing will still be in my taxable and Roth accounts. The TSP is basically a 401k plan for federal employees including the military. It only offers index funds but does have probably the lowest expense ratios around, even lower than Vanguard. Right now I’m putting my contributions in the C Fund which mirrors the S&P 500 and the S Fund which is a small cap index fund. Since these deposits typically take a while to reach my account, I won’t be detailing those transactions here.

With my tax refunds hitting my account this month I was able to invest more than normal as I put all of my refund into stocks. Here is what I did in April.

Loyal3 Account

Buys

7.72 shares of Coca-Cola (KO) @ $38.86 per share.

1.6361 shares of Target (TGT) @ $61.12 per share.

8.3479 shares of Target (TGT) @ $59.89 per share.

Sells

None.

Quick Hits: After receiving my tax refund this month I put all of my normal monthly investing capital to work here increasing my stake in Target. I plan on continuing to dollar cost average into KO as long as it remains at or below $40 as I would like this dividend champion to be a core holding in my portfolio.

Roth IRA

Buys

7 shares of Visa (V) @ $199.30 per share.

22 shares of Aflac (AFL) @ $61.00 per share.

Sells

None.

Quick Hits: I received a combined federal/state tax refund of just over $2800 which I quickly put to work initiating two new positions for my portfolio. I detailed my buy list recently and ended up going with Visa and Aflac. With its low yield it is easy to look at V as only a growth stock and not consider it as a dividend growth stock. However, the global payments processor now has a 7 year history of raising their dividend since going public and with a low payout ratio and high earnings growth figures to be able to continue doing so at a high rate in the future. With the shares dipping below $200, off a 52 week high of $235, and trading at a reasonable 25x earnings I started a position.

Aflac is a dividend champion in the insurance industry with a 31 year history of annual dividend raises. Due to currency concerns regarding their large amount of business in Japan, AFL is trading at a very attractive P/E of 9.

Taxable Brokerage

Buys

None.

Sells

29 shares of Powershares Financial Preferred ETF (PGF) @ $17.81 per share.

Quick Hits: This was one of my first purchases when I started buying individual stocks/ETF’s last year. I was attracted by the fund’s high yield and monthly payouts and not exactly understanding how preferred shares work, started a position. While the monthly payout is nice for individuals needing income today, I’d rather have more growth so I sold all my shares this month at a little bit of a loss and reinvested that money in my Loyal3 account.

 

Full Disclosure: I am long AFL, KO, TGT, and V. This post is not intended to be a buy or sell recommendation on any stock or ETF mentioned and is designed for educational/entertainment purposes only. Only you are responsible for your investing and I always encourage you to conduct your own research prior to investing. Please see my disclaimer page for more information.

How was your April for investing? What do you think of my buys/sells for my portfolio? Share with a comment below and thank you for reading.

Updating My Potential Buy List: April 2014

Good morning fellow dividend growth investors and personal finance enthusiasts!

Today I’m reviewing some of the stocks on my potential buy list. I recently got my tax refund back so it’s time to go shopping for stocks. 🙂

I’ve broken the list down into two parts, stocks that I already own and would like to add more to, and stocks that would be new additions to my portfolio.

First off, the stocks I currently own and would consider adding to.

Coca-Cola (KO)-As long as KO trades at less than $40 a share, I plan on continuing to dollar cost average using my commission free Loyal3 account.

General Electric (GE)-With a P/E of 17.3 I think GE is trading at fair value and I’d like to add more to position in the stock. With an increased focus on returning to its industrial roots and reducing the size and spinning off portions of its financial arm the company looks to be returning to its former dividend growth blue chip status.

McDonald’s (MCD)-Although shares have popped a little since my last purchase, I’d like to add more on a pullback as I have just a small position. While MCD doesn’t have as much of a margin of safety in the share price as I’d normally like, with a very long-term investing horizon, I feel comfortable paying up a little for a quality stock as I detailed here.

Philip Morris (PM)-Even though the price has rebounded a bit since my last Buy List post, the international tobacco giant continues to trade well below its 52 week highs and currently yields 4.5% at today’s levels.

Target (TGT)-This stock continues to be punished after a weak roll-out in Canada and the data breach during the last holiday shopping season. Like KO, I plan on continuing to dollar cost average into this stock using Loyal3.

Now for stocks that would be new additions to  my portfolio.

Aflac (AFL)-The insurance dividend champion continues to trade at an attractive valuation with a current P/E of just 9.1. With its strong dividend growth rates AFL should make a great long-term holding and also give me some exposure to the financial sector since I recently sold my shares in Powershares Financial Preferred ETF (PGF).

General Mills (GIS)-Man, I so wish I had just bought this when I was starting out and it was trading in the low 40’s. I’m still waiting for a slight pull back before initiating a position as the diversified food company continues to trade at a premium to its historic P/E but with a long-term investing horizon I may consider adding it if it dips below $50.

Kinder Morgan Management (KMR)-I recently purchased KMI in my Roth IRA last month. Rather than adding more to this position I was thinking of adding Kinder Morgan Management. KMR provides a similar yield to Kinder Morgan Partners (KMP), the master limited partnership, and issues stock dividends so you don’t have to worry about dealing with a K-1 come tax time. Once you decide to sell your position, you are given a 1099 just like with regular dividend growth stocks. Since it is structured as an LLC C-Corp it can be held in a retirement account so I’m thinking of adding this to my Roth to shield those future capital gains.

Visa (V)-Wait, what? Isn’t Visa a growth stock, I thought you were a dividend growth investor? 😉 With its low yield (currently less than 1%), it’s easy to look at V as only a growth stock and forget that it now has a 7 year history of raising dividends and a very impressive dividend growth rate as well. It currently sports dividend growth rates of: 40.4% for 1 year, 38.3% for 3 year, and 45.9% for its 5 year average. With shares pulling back below $200 a share recently, off from a 52 week high of $235, Visa looks attractively valued at today’s levels for starting a long-term position.

Full Disclosure: I am long KO, GE, KMI, MCD, PM, TGT, and may initiate long positions in AFL, GIS, KMR, and V over the coming weeks. For a full list of all my holding please visit my portfolio page. As always don’t take anything I post here as a buy or sell recommendation and I highly encourage you to do your own research before investing.

What do you think of these stocks? Do you hold any of these in your portfolio or looking to add them? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

Monthly Dividend Income: March 2014

My favorite post to write each month. 🙂 This when I get to share all my dividend income from the previous month. These dividends are what I’ll eventually use to live off of when I become financially independent.

Here is March’s dividend income from my 3 stock investment accounts: Brokerage, Roth IRA, and Loyal3. I collect all dividends in my taxable brokerage account as cash and manually reinvest them along with new contributions each month either in the same account or into my Loyal3 account. All dividends are automatically reinvested in the Roth.

Dividends Received

Brokerage: $46.59

BP (BP): $9.69

Chevron (CVX): $5.00

International Business Machines (IBM): $8.55

Powershares Financial Preferred ETF (PGF): $2.63

Realty Income (O): $19.86

Target (TGT): $0.86

Roth IRA: $25.72

Chevron (CVX): $10.16-reinvested into .088 shares @ $114.42 per share.

Realty Income (O): $2.79-reinvested into .065 shares @ $42.41 per share.

Royal Dutch Shell Class B (RDSB): $12.60-reinvested into .177 shares of Royal Dutch Shell Class A (RDSA) @ $71.09 per share. This comes out to $12.58 so not all of it was reinvested as RDSB cannot be dripped back into its own shares, only the class A version. An almost equal amount of RDSA is purchased commission free if you choose to reinvest RDSB dividends. Not sure how they come up with the amount, both times I’ve received dividends from this stock its been within 2 cents, one way or the other. These fractional class A shares will also produce dividends which can be dripped into class A shares as well. Weird huh? 😉

Royal Dutch Shell Class A (RDSA): $0.17-reinvested into .002 shares @ $71.09 per share.

Loyal3: $0.36

Target (TGT): $0.36-used as part of purchase in McDonald’s (MCD). Loyal3 dividends are collected in a cash account and applied toward your next purchase automatically when you use a debit/credit card.

March Total: $72.67. March was officially “Big Oil” month for me with all of my oil majors-CVX, BP, and both RDS’s returning cash to shareholders. About a 10 buck increase overall from February which puts me at 171.12 for dividend income year to date which is 17.1% of my 2014 goal of $1000.

 

Full Disclosure: I am long CVX, IBM, TGT, O, BP, PGF, RDSB, RDSA, and MCD. This post is not intended to be a buy or sell recommendation on any stock mentioned and is designed for educational/entertainment purposes only. Only you are responsible for your investing and I always encourage you to conduct your own research prior to investing. Please see my disclaimer page.

How was your March for dividend income? Do you have any dividend income goals you are trying to reach this year?

Monthly Dividend Income: February 2014

Each month I plan on sharing all of my income received from dividends. These dividends are what I’ll eventually use to live off of when I become financially independent.

Here is February’s dividend income from my 3 stock investment accounts: Brokerage, Roth IRA, and Loyal3. I collect all dividends in my taxable brokerage account as cash and manually reinvest them along with new contributions each month either in the same account or into my Loyal3 account. All dividends are automatically reinvested into the same stocks in my Roth.

Dividends Received

Brokerage: $41.35

AT&T (T): $18.86

Realty Income (O): $19.86

Powershares Financial Preferred (PGF): $2.63

Roth IRA: $21.12

AT&T (T): $12.11-reinvested into .374 shares @ $32.37 per share.

Apple (AAPL): $6.23-reinvested into .011 shares @ 540.21 per share.

Realty Income (O): $2.78-reinvested into .066 shares @ $41.70 per share.

Loyal3: $0. No dividends yet as this is still a fairly new account that I just opened in January.

February Total: $62.47. This was a good month as I received dividends from AT&T, one of my larger holdings and I got a nice increase from Realty Income as I purchased more shares in January. This brings my 2014 year to date total at $98.45 or 9.8% of my goal of $1000 in dividend income for the year. Although 1000 seems like an unreachable goal based off of these first few months, I remain confident I’ll be able to reach it (or at least come very close 😉 ). My dividend income should start increasing in the coming months as I start getting dividends from all my new KO purchases and once I get back to investing half of my take home pay once I get all my apartment money saved up.

 

Full Disclosure: I am long T, O, PGF, and AAPL. This post is not intended to be a buy or sell recommendation on any stock mentioned and is designed for educational purposes only. Only you are responsible for your investing and I always encourage you to conduct your own research prior to investing. Good luck!

How was your February for dividend income? Do you have any dividend income goals you are trying to reach this year?