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  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number?: Part 2 [View article]
    What got me was getting up at 4 AM to shovel a foot of snow from around your car so you could get out and go to work. I'd go back into the house to shower and get dressed, come back out and saw that the damn snow plow came by and moved it all back in again.

    I'm not even going to mention the number of times you shoveled a space and someone else drove right into it and parked their car. People started leaving a piece of furniture in their spot so nobody would take it, and people would steal the furniture. I hate people. ... Ha!
    Jan 8, 2014. 06:48 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number?: Part 2 [View article]
    I hate paying taxes but if one is going to succeed, they are going to pay the man one way or the other, that's why I refer to it as a "success tax."

    I hate the fact that state tax refunds are taxed the following year by the federal guvmint. The Missus got her tax statement today. It's an over payment and the guvmint says if you are stupid enough to overpay, we are going to tax you. So, I refer state refund taxes as a "stupid tax."

    At one point I claimed 20 exemptions even though there were just two of us. I figured the guvmint wasn't going to get my money and I'd simply write them a check at the end of the year. They fined me for not having a certain percentage of my income withheld.

    I played with the numbers, and it took a few years to get it right, but now we aren't fined for not contributing enough, while at the same time not getting a refund. I still write a check at the end of the year. I haven't had a tax refund check in decades. I don't need a "stupid tax" but as much as I hate it, if I have to pay a tax, I don't mind paying a "success tax."
    Jan 8, 2014. 06:40 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number?: Part 2 [View article]
    I don't just look at the numbers, I look at what the company does for a living and I like RCI's diversity within the communication industry better than the other companies. I don't know much about technology, so I could be wrong about the company, but I still like the different sectors of communications that RCI offers that the others don't.
    Jan 8, 2014. 06:14 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number?: Part 2 [View article]
    When I started Project $3 Million, before it even got its name, I had an idea of how many companies I wanted in that portfolio. Initially it was 5. I decided that I would get those 5 companies by purchasing $1,000 in each of them. $1,000 represented a full position.

    Someone might want to put the full amount into one position and then $5,000 would represent a full position. They might add new companies $5,000 at a time, or take half-positions at $2,500 each.

    After getting up to the 5 companies I wanted, I then decided I would increase to 10 positions, all at $1,000 each.

    Once all of those positions were in place, I raised the "full position" number to $2,000 each and worked on those companies one at a time.

    Meanwhile, I was still adding more companies $1,000 at a time and those represented half-positions.

    Once every position was full at $2,000 the full-position number was raised to $3,000 each. Now the number is $4,000 each. The portfolio is up to 27 positions. Some are above full, some below. I try to keep them reasonably balanced, but if some of them want to run higher, let them run. Rather than trim or re-balance, I'll simply increase the size of the others.

    A full position will eventually rise to $5,000 each, but first I want to add a few more companies.
    Jan 8, 2014. 04:57 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It's Time To Exit Exxon And Chevron Stock [View article]
    Morningstar says XOM is fairly valued as well, well slightly above their $97 fair value price tag.

    I'd like to know about that simple model as well.

    I'm not selling my shares in XOM though, even while knowing that XOM doesn't usually sell at a premium. I'll continue to reinvest the dividends, so if the price does pull back, which it will do at some point, it's fine with me. I just hope the timing of it comes at dividend reinvestment time.
    Jan 8, 2014. 03:18 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number? [View article]
    You are probably right Dave. All of my transfers have been from a taxable account to a Roth.
    Jan 8, 2014. 08:51 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number? [View article]
    To be honest Aaron. I wouldn't own ED. There simply isn't enough dividend growth. Their 5 year compounded annual growth rate is just 1.08%.

    Here are a few examples of the 5 year CAGR's of companies I own.

    WEC ... 21.86%
    SRE ... 13.39%
    AVA ... 12.3%
    D ... 7.34%
    LNT ... 6.08%

    When you take this dividend growth, and then add the decent yields they were paying, these aren't even close to bond-like holdings other than you can pretty much depend on a dividend.
    Jan 8, 2014. 08:44 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Target The Best Dividend Champion To Buy Right Now [View article]
    I don't own TGT, thus I'm not trying to defend it.

    When I look at the estimated earnings shortfall for 2013, they've had worse before, while still raising the dividend, and rebounded.

    When a company takes on an expansion such as TGT has in Canada, that has to affect earnings in some way, I would think.

    TGT is still a high quality company, but one going through some trying times as they try to expand. When dealing with high quality companies, it has been my experience, that by the time the coast is clear signal is given, the price has already risen and then it's too overvalued to purchase.

    The time to buy high quality companies is during their darkest hours, but one needs to be a little conservative. Okay, more than a little.

    So far, as we look forward, earnings expectations are in the double digits at 11%.

    I want to own TGT. I don't need to own it now. I'm going to wait for the earnings announcement and then see what the analysts have to say about the future of TGT. I'm not talking about their buy, sell, or hold calls. I'm talking about their analysis with regard to TGT's outlook, including earnings estimates, valuations and risks. Then I'll try to balance that information and decide if I want to buy or hold off.
    Jan 7, 2014. 08:36 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Target The Best Dividend Champion To Buy Right Now [View article]
    Mike, there is strong price support for TGT around the $56.50 - $57.00 price point. That would put the yield around 3%.

    TGT is on my watchlist and if it will come down to between $58.00 to $58.50 give or take, I'll take a position. It'll be within range of what I think is the perfect number at that time, and most of the time people jump the gun before that perfect number is hit, including me. Think LMT.
    Jan 7, 2014. 08:10 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Perfect Portfolio: End Of Year Review [View article]
    Health is the key mica. We don't have the depth to compete without our best. Walcott is now out for the year. Bad news.
    Jan 7, 2014. 07:53 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number? [View article]
    sweeps, I sold the position and then moved the cash to the Roth. The guvmint wants their capital gains taxes. You can't move an asset into a Roth. You must sell first and then move the cash.

    I bought the position right away once it was in the Roth. Since I had a profit, I didn't have to worry about "wash" rules.

    I'll be doing the same thing this month with KRFT once the dividend is paid. I'll sell the position at a profit and then move the cash into the Roth of another portfolio I manage, and then repurchase KRFT immediately.

    I don't have any positions in any of the portfolios I manage that are showing losses where I could cash them in, write the loss off, and then repurchase later in a Roth, so no "wash" rules.
    Jan 7, 2014. 07:50 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Your (Dividend Growth) Number? [View article]
    sweeps, before you can get dividend growth, you've got to have a safe and reliable dividend.

    Utilities have a captured audience. You can't change companies. If you own a high quality utility, you've got a guaranteed paycheck. Secure the paycheck and then you can branch out into other sectors.

    Some of my utilities have performed like growth companies. I want more of D and SRE but look at their valuations! Sheesh.

    Like Mike says, your portfolio should work like a team. Not everyone can be a QB. Someone needs to block. Utilities are the offensive lineman of my portfolio. The unsung hero's who continue to block the market forces from hitting my dividend income stream.

    If you were to look back over the last 15-20 years at how some of the higher quality utilities have performed, you'd be surprised.

    Their greatest asset though is their reliability! Year after year after year.
    Jan 7, 2014. 07:32 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How Do You Know When You've Found 'Alpha'? [View article]
    @hawkeye ... It was in early 2009 I think where I was accumulating Realty Income - O. I thought it was one of the more financially sound REIT's in the business and I thought if anyone could ride out a real estate crash and survive, it would be them.

    Price kept going lower after purchasing and the knot in my stomach kept getting tighter.

    I found out the shorts were trying to drive O out of business, and price kept going lower. That's when my experience, after having gone through two other serious market corrections in the past, came to the forefront.

    I remembered that an asset is only as valuable as the amount on income it throws off. The more income it throws off, the more people will want it.

    Human behavior, as reliable as it is, at some point says it's worth the risk to take a stab at that income producing asset.

    I found over the years that the companies who were financially sound enough to withstand those types of economic and market conditions, were the ones with the best odds of overcoming those adversities, and that's what provided me with the courage to keep buying. It's why I insist on buying quality.
    Jan 7, 2014. 07:22 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How Do You Know When You've Found 'Alpha'? [View article]
    Robert, as you know I manage quite a few portfolio's for people. One of the portfolio's I manage is for my best friend's daughter. She has a Roth Ira.

    Her portfolio was the only portfolio where I didn't sell BP. Everyone else had their position in taxable accounts, so they got a little relief at tax time.

    Since Crystal is in her early 20's where time is her greatest asset, and she couldn't write off the loss, I decided to keep the position in her portfolio, and we actually added a little BP to bring the cost basis down. We have continued to reinvest the dividends.

    With the lower cost basis and reinvested dividends, the position is still in the red, but I'm feeling a lot better about it now as it is down just 2.06% as of the close today.

    I want to be clear about this. In my portfolio, I don't have room for a BP. I'm too close to the distribution phase to speculate, and I still consider BP a speculation play based on their lower credit ratings and the selling off of assets. Someone with time on their hands may end up doing okay with BP, and I don't see anything wrong with that.
    Jan 7, 2014. 07:07 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Realty Income May Be Old School, But The Dividends Are Really Cool [View article]
    Brad, it's nice to see that someone (you) understand that charts show the psychology of the market.

    F.A.S.T. Graphs helps me to determine valuations, price and volume charting helps me to determine behavior.

    What the chart heathens (heh, heh) don't understand is that charts don't predict where price is going, but it will provide a reasonable price range if you understand the stages of price movement.

    Charts, at specific price points, and every chart is different, present ranges of "high probability" set ups for buying or selling. The probability is so high that you know within a couple of days whether the normal behavior you expected shows up or not, and if not, you know to get out immediately if you are a trader.
    Jan 7, 2014. 06:49 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment