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John D. Thomason  

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  • BDCs Then and Now: One Investor's Real-World Experiences And Recommendations [View article]
    Thanks for your encouragement. Based upon market values of all stocks I own, BDC's represent about 6.5% of my portfolio. Following my rules, I am only going to allow myself to add incremental amounts to a few existing positions, if we see prices that are "too good to pass up" in a future decline.

    John D. Thomason
    Jan 9, 2012. 04:15 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pfizer: A Post-Mortem On Selling Covered Calls, And An Interesting Discovery [View article]
    Thanks for commenting. Yes, I do use cash-covered puts also. I explain my approach to options in detail on my blog/website. From the Home Page, select Approach, then select the last essay, Options. I have only one cash-covered put working right now, a January 2012 put on Conoco (COP) with a strike of $57.50. I should be able to log a profit on that one, but you never know! See my Instablog post from a couple of months ago on an El Paso (EP) covered call that had one week to go, & then it was announced that Kinder Morgan (KMP) was acquiring EP.

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 31, 2011. 08:12 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pfizer: A Post-Mortem On Selling Covered Calls, And An Interesting Discovery [View article]
    Thanks! My articles are more oriented towards my experiences that might be of interest (perhaps pointing out what NOT to do) than most of the other contributors. Like you, I continue to learn, sometimes the hard way!

    I responded to your question on the "You Are What Your Record Says You Are" article regarding data sources for the BAC 5 year low, if you haven't been back there. The low of $2.53 occurred intraday on 2/20/2009 according to the two data sources I used for that article.

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 30, 2011. 10:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dividend Stocks: 'You Are What Your Record Says You Are' [View article]
    Thanks for the encouraging words! I took my 5 year low from Think or Swim Charts, which gives the low and high for whatever period you are looking at (in this case 5 years). This was an intraday low on 2/20/2009. Although in some cases for the other stocks there were minor discrepancies between the lows taken from this chart and TD Ameritrades' regular website chart, which is where I took the dividend data from, in the case of BAC, they agreed, the low of $2.53 occurred on 2/20/2009, at least based on these two data sources.

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 30, 2011. 10:09 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pfizer: A Post-Mortem On Selling Covered Calls, And An Interesting Discovery [View article]
    Hi! Thanks for sharing your experiences with PFE. After buying back the December call, I waited a couple of days and sold another call against my PFE shares, June 2012 with a strike of $22.00. If PFE moves substantially above 22, I will let the shares go. If on expiration Friday, PFE is bouncing around close to $22, I'll buy back again. Just take what the market gives, be flexible, don't fight the tape.

    Good luck in 2012!

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 30, 2011. 02:03 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stocks Are 'Cheap' On A Number Of Bases [View article]
    I would like to see the author(s) respond to some of the comments on the article, maybe it would clarify things a bit.
    Dec 29, 2011. 12:17 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Stocks Are 'Cheap' On A Number Of Bases [View article]
    I may be confused (not a rare event), but when the article states:

    "The S&P 500 (S&P) P/E ratio is at 20.17 versus a mean/median of around 16, or more than 20% above historic middle data. This is an indication that the market is 'cheap' ".

    I would interpret these facts to mean that the market is 20% more expensive than the median, not "cheap". I've always held that "value" or "cheap" is when PE's are lower, not higher than the average. Just wondered if I'm the only one confused on this.

    Moving on from this issue, the article does a fine job of laying out a key issue for investors today, whether to hold a lot of cash waiting for the next downturn (which may be akin to military generals' always being prepared to "fight the last war"), or go "all in" (tempting since cash is earning zero these days).

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 29, 2011. 10:15 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Optimizing Value In The Pursuit Of Dividend Yield Income: REITs, MLPs And BDCs [View article]
    Good, thought-provoking article. I have owned AINV for a long time. While AINV did cut the payout during the financial crisis, they did not eliminate it. Comparing AINV to ACAS, which eliminated payouts entirely and has yet to restart, I have some admiration for AINV's management. The stock has certainly declined lately, the market recognizes the risk, apparently. My approach to risk management is to avoid having too much of my portfolio invested in any one stock, or even one sector, such as BDCs.
    Dec 28, 2011. 07:44 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dividend Stocks: 'You Are What Your Record Says You Are' [View article]
    Thanks. I have been reading your articles for a long time. I somehow missed your interview with "Mr. Market" back in October, but did so just now. That was great! Very entertaining, as well as making the point. I also just signed up for your newsletter. I will be looking forward to your "top 40" list when it comes out.

    Thanks again for your encouragement to this "newbie."

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 28, 2011. 07:14 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Dividend Stocks: 'You Are What Your Record Says You Are' [View article]
    Thanks much! I like your user name, it reflects what many of us are these days. I have more articles planned. If I use as material all the ill-advised moves I've made, I should have enough to keep me writing for quite a while!

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 27, 2011. 10:10 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Dividend Stocks: 'You Are What Your Record Says You Are' [View article]
    Thanks for your encouraging words. While I didn't spell it out, I hope that the take-aways from the article are self-evident: that stock prices can vary greatly over even a relatively short time-frame, providing opportunites; that given enough distress, companies' will reduce payouts, but it isn't necessarily the end of the world, each case must be evaluated individually; patience is usually rewarded, but not always; and more. I also believe that many if not most managements (especially BDCs) learned something in 2008 about exposure to the financial markets and debt - we will find out when the next crisis comes along. Thanks again for commenting.

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 27, 2011. 07:32 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Dividend Stocks: 'You Are What Your Record Says You Are' [View article]
    I agree that there is at least a chance BAC will eventually recover over the longer-term. I failed to take my own advice to sell when I should have, and I even added a small increment to my position recently when it dipped below $6.00. At this point there is nothing to be done but wait it out.

    As I hinted at in the article, I bought a "basket" of stocks in late 2008 and early 2009 when they were at ridiculously low levels, including the six "disappointing" stocks in the article. My thinking was, if even half of the "basket" survives, I'll be ahead, and if none survive, it probably means everything is done for anyway. Of course, I sold most of these great acquisitions when I had a double or a triple, opting for a quick gain instead of holding to enjoy a great yield on cost. Live & learn, that's what investing is all about. Survival depends upon developing and following a game plan that has multiple levels of risk management. Risk will always be present in investing - all we can do is recognize it and approach things accordingly.

    Thanks for sharing!

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 27, 2011. 02:13 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Pfizer: A Post-Mortem On Selling Covered Calls, And An Interesting Discovery [View article]
    Thanks. Every day I learn more about "what I didn't know that I didn't know". The article was inspired by one such moment Friday, as I was surprised to learn that the regular close on expiration Friday is not the last word on the potential for exercise and assignment. Probably only a surprise to the less sophisticated, like myself, but maybe worth pointing out to others who might not be aware of it.

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 19, 2011. 11:31 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pfizer: A Post-Mortem On Selling Covered Calls, And An Interesting Discovery [View article]
    Thanks much for your analysis. I knew my "back of the envelope" method was not 100% rigorous, but based on your input, I have a better comfort level that it is in the ball park. You bring up a good point that I meant to emphasize in the article, but missed. Cash flow from selling options. With both dividends and capital gains, an investor has to wait to get paid. When you sell an option, you get paid "up front". Not too many investments work that way.

    Thanks again for the info.

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 19, 2011. 06:41 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Special Considerations When Buying Foreign Dividend Stocks [View article]
    Hi! Thanks much for your kind words. I personally prefer to invest in individual stocks vs funds and ETFs, that way I'm in control and I'm not giving up anything to fees. But I agree that for many if not most individual investors, funds/ETFs probably are the way to go, especially in the case of foreign stocks.

    Thanks also for the data you provided.

    John D. Thomason
    Dec 17, 2011. 06:23 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
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