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Nicholas Ward

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  • The Seeking Alpha Experiment: Portfolio Introduction And 2013 Quarter 1 Review [View article]
    I am sorry that you feel this way. I do follow your portfolio concepts, I have learned quite a bit from them - I even mentioned within this article the benefits that I feel these sort of projects offer to readers. I am not sure why you are so demeaning towards my concept however, I can assure you that this does come from my actual experience (the phrase "woulda, coulda, shoulda" is commonly used, especially in the part of the country where I reside). For that matter, I believe the term anchor is also commonly used when referring to core positions. I can assure you that I did not plagiarize from your articles (I actually tried to back track to the original pieces you wrote to see which form you used but I couldn't find them, there were so many).

    I appreciate your comment and your concern but I don't believe that anyone has the right to monopolize a concept; I think investors can and will benefit from as many theoretical portfolio projects that contributors are willing maintain.
    Apr 12 09:05 PM | 28 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Seeking Alpha Experiment: Portfolio Introduction And 2013 Quarter 1 Review [View article]
    I just read your article linked. It is very well done. I think it's fair to say that my use of "coulda, woulda, shoulda" and yours are rather unrelated; you were writing of two highly speculative tech stocks and I was speaking generally about my current lack of $100,000 dollars and therefore my inability to initiate these theoretical positions.

    I also agree with you that we have not chosen similar positions. Your "Young and Restless" portfolio is written for someone in a similar situation to my own, being a young man just starting an investment portfolio; however, you and I possess drastically different investing philosophies. I am focused on value and you seem to be focused on speculative growth. I am in no position to say which strategy is right or wrong, I imagine each have their merits. I think it will be interesting to compare these two ideas over the long term; this might give investors answers to their own questions.

    Once again, I am sorry that you feel so strongly that my article is inappropriate.

    I await any response that might come from SA as well; this hostility and controversy is bothersome. I write articles here to attempt to help others, not to stir things up.

    Best wishes to you, Regarded Solutions.
    Apr 12 09:30 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Seeking Alpha Experiment: Portfolio Introduction And 2013 Quarter 1 Review [View article]
    I am glad to hear that; I hope that a decision brings resolution to this anxious situation.

    Congratulations on your brand, those numbers are quite astounding. I have just started my career writing financial articles and can only hope that one day I manage to engage and inspire so many readers.

    I will say that by writing this I had no intention of compromising your brand in any way. I am very happy to be a part of the community that exists on Seeking Alpha and hope that each piece I contribute is beneficial in some way. I can't say that I see a connection between me creating a theoretical portfolio and making it public and any potential disturbance to the brand you've obviously worked very hard to build. I did not mention any of your articles specifically (I had no plans to). I've read pieces similar to my own written by authors other than yourself outlining potential portfolios and explaining their thinking behind the picks. As I said before, I truly enjoy reading these sort of pieces and had a great time putting together one of my own.

    I plan on writing future pieces in regards to this experiment to the best of my ability. I hope that my writing does not insult you.

    I will apologize once again for your perturbation. I want to reiterate that I don't have plans to sabotage your brand in any way and I am sorry to hear that you believe it has already been compromised. I am not sure that I understand this, but to each is his own.

    Best of luck with Regarding Solutions, it sounds like you are well on your way to greatness.
    Apr 12 10:04 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • My High Dividend Yield Retirement Portfolio Delivers 8.8% Of Income For This Retiree [View article]
    I too worry that you may be over concentrated, although I admit that my opinion should hold zero weight if you are comfortable with your DD/decisions. I hold over 50 positions, which can be some work to monitor, but like billinsd said, allows for me to sleep well at night. Good luck and thanks for sharing your story. As someone whose basically learned to invest reading articles here on SA as well as on other sites, I think these personal narratives can serve other investors very well if we are willing to learn from others' mistakes.
    Jul 24 03:23 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why I Bought Walgreen On This 15% Alliance Boots Pullback [View article]
    BuyandHold, you're probably right - in a market wide sell off WAG will drop like the rest of the S&P. The problem is, I don't know when the big one is coming and its very possible that the stocks potential gains before the next major correction could off-set any loss in share price. I've worried about a major correction for several years now; however the market is up over 30%. I don't foresee a 30% drop in the stock market barring some sort of geopolitical catastrophe (I don't think the Russia/Ukraine situation will lead to this). Because of my inability to time the market and a potential major drop, I've decided to slowly accumulate high quality (mostly DGI type) stocks over time. I see a lot of merit if your strategy, but I think an investor risks losing out on a lot of potential gains by waiting and waiting for something that is never guaranteed. From reading your past comments I know that you've already accumulated a respectable portfolio and therefore, you're probably more willing to wait. I think for someone in the beginning of an accumulation phase, its more important to gain exposure to high quality companies with a history of increasing earnings and dividend payouts which are also predictably increasing moving forward. For me as a young investor, getting the compounding ball rolling is #1 priority - I look for value within the market, regardless of what the indexes say, sales exist, you just have to find them. Best wishes - always happy to see you commenting.
    Aug 7 10:35 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What I Bought Over The Last 4 Months, And Why I Bought It [View article]
    Congrats on your QCOM entry. As gatsby stated, I write from a first person perspective here on SA because I want readers to know and understand that the opinions being expressed are my own - they may take them or leave them for whatever they feel they're worth. I appreciate you both taking the time to comment.
    Jul 30 10:28 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Patience: The Key To Successful Investing [View article]
    disillusioned, I will attempt to respond to your lengthy comment bullet by bullet so that I don't miss anything.

    1 - You are right - when I initially began investing I did not have a well developed or thoughtful strategy. I was picking stocks emotionally and entirely too quickly, with hopes of quick/out sized profits. I was searching the market for apparent value by listening to what others had to say, instead of paying attention to fundamentals and a company's actual growth prospects. I would argue that this is a strategy, albeit a failed one.

    2 - I will have to agree that at some basic level, all investing is about greed. However, there is undoubtedly a spectrum in terms of the levels of greed that one may pursue. And, I believe that in moving from a short sighted and irrationally driven method of investing to a more grounded and seemingly reliable method has changed the level of greed that I was pursuing, and in turn, the level of volatility that I was exposing myself to.

    If I was being derogatory by using the term greed, I was doing so in regards to my self and the ignorance that I was employing. Pursuing a different level of greed, one that pursues larger financial gains in the short term rather than accepting smaller, though seemingly reliable growth (as I have done), could easily work well for another investor. I follow several contributors here who often speak of their astounding gains using options and shorts. These individuals are obviously very successful investors; however, I would argue that in collecting these significant gains they are putting their capital at a higher inherent risk that I am my own. To each is his own - I said in the beginning of the article that there are many ways to make profits in the market - it's all about figuring out which ways work best for you.

    3 - I should have made it more clear that by spending this "free cash flow" I meant that I would be re-investing the funds to help create a compounding situation. I don't necessarily hold onto the belief that direct re-investment is the way to go - but I do, at this stage in my life anyway, plan on putting all dividends collected back into my portfolio by adding shares that I deem to be undervalued of high-quality companies that fit into my strategy (which most likely means one who produces predictable earnings and pays a reliably increasing dividend).

    I agree that higher yield is not always better than lower yield. I invest in companies who increase their dividends consistently because this shows a steady earnings growth. I also pay attention to payout ratios and avoid those companies whose ratio is above my predetermined threshold. Here is a recent article that I wrote talking about the importance, or lack there of rather, of yield:

    4 - I am going to have to respectfully disagree with this point overall. I admit, that I have "drunk the cool-aid" in regards to DGI investing. I am not shameful about this.

    "Long- term compounding is created whenever you continue to hold a position, or reinvest its profits. It is not dependent on any strategy." - I would say that the selection of high quality stocks, buying them, and holding onto them is a strategy in itself.

    And, I sometimes hope to see the market drop (and yes, my portfolio's wealth in tandem) due to the fact that I am in an accumulation phase and I believe strongly that the companies that I am buying will in the long term appreciate greatly. Being that I hold onto this belief, it would obviously serve me better in the long-term to see and capitalize on opportunities to buy shares of these companies at discounted prices. The more shares (and therefore, dividends collected and reinvested) the merrier and with a budget, lower prices means more shares.

    "See item (XIV) in the list at that shows that there is no benefit from reinvesting dividends during interim downturns."

    First off, I will say that I am not interested in an investment in XIV, or any of the other volatility trackers. I can see the benefit of these investments but they simply don't mesh well with my own philosophy.

    Secondly, I am not sure how reinvesting, or for that matter, buying stocks into a downturn will be a bad thing for an investor who focuses on high quality companies. History has shown that these companies tend to bounce back and buying shares during a dip, even if you can't predict the bottom, essentially give the investor a margin of safety so long as the suspect that the stock will eventually regain its losses and continue its march higher.

    In conclusion I will say that this article is merely a snapshot of a much larger picture in regards to my investment strategy's growth and development. In other articles I have expanded on this idea - I would refrain from making large-scale judgments with only having seen one piece of the puzzle. I do appreciate your comment though - devil's advocates always inspire thought and thought inspires education. Education is why I read/write here; there is no use to having a closed mind when doing so could cost me money. I hope that I have responded to your concerns in an adequate fashion. Happy Memorial Day.
    May 27 01:08 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Not Hedge Whole Foods By Investing In A Whole Foods' Landlord? [View article]
    Brad, first off, let me say that I am honored to be quoted in your article and to be associated in some way to the great work you do. I follow your REIT pieces and once again, it seems as if you have a winner with this idea. I wouldn't have thought of the grocery store anchored shopping center as a possible hedge for a WFM investment but I like the stability and dividend that REG offers. This business model seems sound, creating an economic ecosystem of sorts for all parties involved in the symbiotic shopping center layout. It seems like REG is headed in the right direction with its recent disposition trend. I like your $46 price range with the 4% yield. I will be closely watching this stock and its current dip.

    One question though - and it may be an obvious one, I don't know as I haven't taken the time to completely understand REIT's fundamentally - but, I noticed that REG is a terribly negative 1 year EPS growth figure. My Scottrade account is showing it as -231.44%. Should I be concerned by this? Are REIT dividends (dividend growth) primarily driven by EPS? I know that with REIT's the importance hierarchy of financial metrics changes, is EPS not so important for a company like this? Am I missing something obvious (sorry if that's the case). Once again, great piece - it is an interesting read. Being a fan of dividends I know I need to develop a better understanding of this type of investment.

    "By investing in Whole Foods and Regency Centers, I like my odds and better yet, I think I can accomplish the goal that makes every investor happy - sleeping well at night!" - couldn't have said it better myself.
    May 27 01:31 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Could An iOS Exclusive iRadio Win The Summer Smartphone War For Apple? [View article]
    Wigit, thank you for your comment. I don't think anyone chooses a phone because of its radio capabilities but I do think consumers compare and buy products because of unique features. Free internet radio already has a lot of fanfare and if Apple could integrate this into their already well established stable of products I can imagine this swaying undecided patrons.
    Apr 4 04:23 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 2 Undervalued Dividend Stocks To Buy After Recent Pullbacks [View article]
    Samcool, thank you for your comment. I agree that there are quite a few "iApple haters" around. I think this is due mainly to their recent stock performance, not their product quality. Money talks and will easily change the opinions of many once long investors begin to profit off of Apple again. People get bored easily and have short memories; with these fundamentals, one big move by the company can quickly change the stock's tide.
    Mar 8 10:49 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why, Even At An All-Time High, Disney Is A Buy [View article]
    Buyandhold, thanks for the comment. You and I do share very similiar mindsets in regard to the types of companies we like to own, though we disagree on how to make the purchases - I guess only time will tell on this one. DIS is a great example of what you risk when waiting for a 20% pullback - the stock has not done this since 2011 and since then the stock's price has risen from $29 to $89. So, while trying to time the market you've missed out on very large gains (I don't see this stock heading back down to $29, ever). I respect your conservative philosophy but personally, I'm not very interested in trying to time the market. I will always have cash to deploy in the event of a major market downturn (I keep some money tucked away just in case) and I will have my dividends to re-invest throughout such a period as well. I think its important to have a disciplined strategy and to stick to it - but I also think its important to go with your gut - my gut tells me that Disney is a wonderful company to hold for the long run.
    Aug 15 11:10 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stress Free Portfolio: Q1 2014 Results [View article]
    Platinum, if I knew which company, Target or Wal-Mart, would out perform the other headed into the distant future, I would be invested solely in the winner. However, I think that it would be speculative to presume a winner as far as Alpha goes. Regardless of how much time I have or am willing to spend on research, I don't think it would be possible to pick a winner today. I own both Pepsi and Coke as well because of this as well. I'm not opposed to owning several quality companies within the same sector, especially if they both meet my dividend qualifications. This portfolio is more about a reliable passive income stream than it is about achieving alpha - my argument here would be that alpha will inevitably happen when owning high quality companies with predictable dividends and low betas.

    As far as time being spent better elsewhere, I assure you that when the time I spend monitoring my holdings is no longer enjoyable, I will make a change of plans. However, right now, I find joy in this process. Ultimately, life is about doing what you like. I could spend more time working or even starting a business, but right now my passion lies in my investments. I do my best to follow my passions (outside of my family, my others are writing, painting, and coaching), I think this is the best way to live a meaningful and fulfilled life.
    Apr 5 04:58 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dividend Growth Investing: Why I Don't Own Index Funds [View article]
    Cross, in short, I think that many DGI investors don't concern themselves as much with total return as other investors because of the nature of the classic dividend champions as far as earnings growth (which fuels dividend growth) and therefore, more than likely, stock price appreciation. In other words, over the long-haul, an above average overall return is expected because of the quality of the companies that we own.
    Apr 2 09:42 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The 25 Best Authors On Seeking Alpha [View instapost]
    Tim, great write up, I follow many of these authors already and those ones I don't, I will begin to now. I was pleasantly surprised with the fellow who rounded out your list in the 25 spot (let's be honest, you made my day). However, the exuberance was short lived when I realized that there was someone missing from the list that would have bumped me off: you. You've been a great asset for me as I begin my investing career and I'm sure that many others are thankful for your work. Once again, thanks for the list - I'm sure it will lead towards a wealth of information for me and your other followers.
    Mar 25 01:03 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Constructing A Monthly Income Portfolio [View article]
    Thanks for putting this together. I think it could serve a lot of income investors who rely on month income well, showing that its not necessary to simply buy some of the more risky, monthly payers - retirees can own classic DGI stocks (so long as the lower yield is sufficient for their budgets), live off the income on a month to month basis, and most importantly, watch their income stream increase.
    Aug 13 07:44 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment