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Donald Johnson  

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  • Microsoft: Attractive Investment Despite Richer Valuation [View article]
    I like the analysis. It poses a number of interesting questions and hurdles for MSFT and speculators. Markets, companies and opportunities change, sometimes rapidly. I'm long the stock and if the market drops, I may buy more.
    Jun 24, 2015. 05:39 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Cisco Dividend Analysis Shows Overvaluation [View article]
    I like the attempt to anticipate the dividend growth rate, but I don't think the dividend growth rate has that big of an impact on the valuation. I'm one who looks at the dividend growth rate when I review my stocks and prospective buys, but I also look at fair value estimates, financial ratios, business fundamentals and a stock's momentum.
    Jun 23, 2015. 03:37 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Dividend Payout Ratio Is The Holy Grail Of Dividend Growth Investing [View article]
    I am looking for stocks that are likely to provide annual total return of 10% to 15% over the next three to five years, not including potential covered call income.

    So I go to the SeekingAlpha.com "Portfolio" tab, create and review watch lists that I obtain from Barron's, Morningstar.com, Valuentum.com, SeekingAlpha and portfolios of well known mutual funds and market gurus.

    After I create a watch list, I look at the companies profitability, momentum, performance, dividends and debt matrix, including payout ratios, 1, 3 and 5-year dividend growth rates, coverage, debt to equity, etc.

    I also take into consideration whether a stock looks over bought or over sold, whether it is facing new competition, new opportunities, etc.

    Eventually, I come up with stocks that look promising and are likely to provide good covered call income opportunities.
    Jun 23, 2015. 01:22 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Caterpillar to lay off more workers due to mining sector slump [View news story]
    Connecticut taxes GE for its world wide profits, not just those made in the state. Illinois could do the same and dare CAT to move out of state.
    Jun 23, 2015. 12:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Caterpillar to lay off more workers due to mining sector slump [View news story]
    International customers and the UAW as well as Illinois politics and corruption have cost too many Peorians their good jobs. Why CAT is building a new headquarters in down town Peoria is a huge mystery. It should move its headquarters to a business friendly state.
    Jun 23, 2015. 12:01 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Payments Wolves In Sheep's Clothing [View article]
    Of course. Just saying.
    Jun 22, 2015. 03:05 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Energy Transfer's Bold Offer To Williams [View article]
    ETP is so complex. Who can figure out what they're trying to do and what the real dividend yield is? I own a little bit of it. So I'll hang on for awhile.
    Jun 22, 2015. 03:04 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's Why I'm Buying Microsoft And Selling Apple [View article]
    Yes, WMX. It has only 92 cents in cash and equivalents. It needs to buy back some shares.
    Jun 22, 2015. 02:42 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's Why I'm Buying Microsoft And Selling Apple [View article]
    Not everyone lugs iPads and laptops around. Students, frequent travelers and commuters lug their stuff around. Lots of us are less mobile. When we travel, we pack our iPads and laptops in the car or brief case and go.
    Jun 22, 2015. 02:38 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's Why I'm Buying Microsoft And Selling Apple [View article]
    MSFT seldom builds a better boat. It just builds one that its established base will buy and settle for. I've never been a Microsoft fan as a consumer or business owner, but I prefer MSFT to AAPL at the moment.
    Jun 22, 2015. 02:35 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Here's Why I'm Buying Microsoft And Selling Apple [View article]
    If I want a bigger screen, I won't buy a clunky iPad. I'll buy an MacBook Air with a keyboard and the ability to run outside monitors as well as the software I'm used to and actually use.

    The 12" iPad will serve certain commercial markets fine, but it won't replace all laptops.
    Jun 22, 2015. 02:34 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investing In A Sleep Well At Night REIT Like Warren Buffett [View article]
    As is often the case, SA comments can be very educational. I sleep well at night (and sometimes during the day) because I understand the companies that I'm speculating on.

    I get REITs and MLPs, but I'm not comfortable with them anymore. So I'm a C-corp., U.S.-based stock and options guy. Do what you do well and let others do the same.
    Jun 22, 2015. 02:26 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Payments Wolves In Sheep's Clothing [View article]
    Interesting piece.

    Consumer research has shown that most shoppers look at two or three options before making a decision.

    The problem with today's Google and Bing is that when you search for a local vendor, you get Dex, Google and Bing directories, not the web sites you are searching for. I either go to a phone book or narrow my searches to get around the directories, which are just a nuisance as far as I'm concerned.

    If Visa, MA or AMEX try to offer coupons, I'm assuming they would give consumers opt out or, preferably, opt in options. I'd opt out and try to find a card issuer that respected my time and privacy. When you use a digital coupon, you become a hot prospect for every spammer who buys lists of people who use coupons emailed to them. That's not me.

    To investors, this is an important and interesting article because it offers ideas that haven't occurred to me before. I don't own AMZN or GOOGL, but I own MSFT, which owns Bing.

    The alternative search site that protects our privacy, of course, is duckduckgo.com.

    Amazon offers lots of "deals" for its stuff as well as for stuff sold by its advertisers. That has worked better for us than the other search sites.

    The question, of course, is will AAPL, MSFT, GOOGL and AMZN co-opt the credit cards companies by buying them or partnering with them? Or will they find new ways to better serve consumers and use their first move advantages to raise new barriers to entry?

    What are the barriers to entry for the credit card companies?
    Jun 22, 2015. 02:18 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investing In A Sleep Well At Night REIT Like Warren Buffett [View article]
    Buildings have life expectancies of about 40 years. Most are depreciated over 40 years. So you can't disregard depreciation on buildings or real estate improvements. As buildings age, maintenance costs rise. Sometimes they soar.

    Yes, you can get the information you need at tax time. But a speculator needs the information before buying in. And the information isn't there. You don't know what your tax bracket or taxes will be when you sell. You don't know how much clawback there will be. Therefore, you don't know what your real dividend will be.

    While I've been in a couple of MLPs, I've never been in REITs. And I don't think I will be.

    Thanks for the replies and help.
    Jun 22, 2015. 10:31 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investing In A Sleep Well At Night REIT Like Warren Buffett [View article]
    How do you calculate the economic, or real, dividend of a REIT or MLP? If part of the income tax on returned capital is deferred until the unit holder sells the holding, I don't see an easy way for an investor to figure out how a REIT or MLP dividend actually compares with the dividend of a C-corp.

    So it seems speculators who buy REITS and MLPs may not know what they are getting into unless they understand the tax implications of return of capital tax rules and, equally important, the cost of having a tax preparer prepare your taxes when you are invested in REITs and MLPs.

    From Investopedia.com:

    "Example - Unitholder Tax Calculation
    Jennifer decides to invest in an REIT that is currently trading at $20 per unit. The REIT has funds from operations of $2 per unit and distributes 90%, or $1.80, of this to the unitholders. However, $0.60 per unit of this dividend comes from depreciation and other expenses and is considered a nontaxable return of capital. Therefore, only $1.20 ($1.80 - $0.60) of this dividend comes from actual earnings.
    This amount will be taxable to Jennifer as ordinary income, with her cost basis reduced by $0.60 to $19.40 per unit. As stated previously, this reduction in basis will be taxed as either a long- or short-term gain/loss when the units are sold."

    Read more: http://bit.ly/1IYivdY
    Follow us: @Investopedia on Twitter
    Jun 21, 2015. 09:43 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
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