Who I Am:
I'm a retired individual investor. I retired at the end of 2013 after a 35 year career as a professor and research scientist at a major research university. My professional life involved multiple international projects and collaborations, so I traveled extensively over those 35 years. I plan to continue doing so in my retirement.
My investing priorities are building and refining portfolios designed to provide income and capital growth: Income for my retirement needs, and capital growth for my estate. My investing philosophy tends toward the long-term, value side of the spectrum, but I'm not opposed to occasional flings on attractive, speculative opportunities.
My investing interests are tax-advantaged income from a range of sources, portfolio strategies, information- and bio-technology, and momentum-based strategic allocation.
Why I Write for Seeking Alpha:
I learned long ago that "writing is nature's way of letting you know how sloppy your thinking is." The line comes from a Guindon comic strip of many years ago, and could not be more true in my case. When I did research professionally, I learned that writing it up forces me to think about details I might otherwise overlook. It's how I spent my working career, so it comes more or less naturally to me. I consider it an essential part and parcel of doing any research. So, the writing I do here is as much for myself as for the reader.
As I started to contribute articles here, they grew out of research for my personal investment portfolios. They're based on things I've uncovered that are of interest to me and may be of interest to others of like mind. For many more-seasoned investors some of the things I write about are old-hat. My primary purposes in writing them are to help clarify my thinking and to get feedback from others who may have very different opinions. It's those thoughtful comments that make Seeking Alpha such an important resource. To that end, I try to actively engage myself in the comment streams in my articles, contributing what I can and learning from others.
As a research scientist I spent a career spanning four decades devoted to free exchange of information vetted by rigorous peer review. It's a concept I firmly believe in. I hope to bring that approach to my interactions and contributions on Seeking Alpha and welcome critical commentary on anything I may contribute here.
I encourage and welcome your comments. I try to respond to most insights, elaborations, and questions to the best of my ability. I especially encourage and appreciate thoughtful comments from those who disagree with me (although I tend to ignore obvious trolls and encourage others to do so as well). So, go ahead, start a conversation in the comment threads. It's one of the best things about Seeking Alpha.
My Investment Philosophies and Strategies:
I maintain two portfolios. My income portfolio is a taxable account. I try to keep it separate from the growth portfolio which is housed in a series of IRAs, traditional and Roth.
My income focus is on tax-advantaged income. In 2016 I face minimum required withdrawals from my tax-deferred accounts, so tax efficiency is an important consideration.With the need to take withdrawals I expect to shift my taxable accounts to more growth-focused (unrealized cap gains) investments. Making this shift while retaining income is my overarching priority for 2015. To that end, I expect to be generating more of my income from options as I gradually phase out my high-yield investments.
The IRAs I see as my estate and are focused on generational wealth building. That means the growth portfolios have a very long term horizon, well beyond what an investor of my age might be expected to maintain.
I am a believer in the precepts of MPT (Modern Portfolio Theory). I'm aware that MPT doesn't get a lot of respect by some of the DIY investors at Seeking Alpha. My readings in the field indicate to me that the research solidly supports the overall MPT approaches to investing. So, I am a believer in diversification. Not the sort of diversification that means I hold equity positions in every sector; the sort that means I hold positions in the full spectrum of asset classes with a watchful eye on correlations and a willingness to rebalance among asset classes, even when it goes against my gut feelings. By asset classes, I mean high level asset classes: Domestic and international equity, sovereign and corporate debt, emerging markets (equity and debt), real estate, commodities and so forth. I try to adapt that approach to both my income and growth investing.
Who Is Left Banker?
Ah yes, the name. When I first joined Seeking Alpha I had no intention of being anything but an occasional reader. I saw it as another research site. So, I just ported a name I've used on other sites. I spent some of the best times of my life living on the left bank of the Seine and am always thrilled to be back in La Belle Paris. It refers, too, to the left bank of the Gironde where some of my favorite wines are produced. When I'm feeling particularly flush, they're one of the splurges I'll treat myself to. So there is a major place in my heart for both common references for Left Banker.
Add that I also like it because I find several subtle word plays there; I'll leave it to you to decipher that comment.
I've chosen to remain anonymous. First, I have no professional role in finance and nothing to sell, so there is no advantage to be gained by "making a name for myself' here. Second, I value my privacy and have kept my internet presence as low-key as my professional life allowed. I certainly want to avoid any possibility of some internet connection trying to track me down. Odds against that happening are, of course, outrageously long, but why take them on at all?
I have no ties to the financial or security industries in any form. My interests are strictly personal. The banker part of the nym has absolutely no relationship to the profession of the same name.
Readers should be aware that I am an investing novice, some might say dilettante. I do not give advice; what I publish is much more in line with a research notebook. Anyone who finds anything of interest will necessarily want to do his or her complete research and due diligence. It would be foolish to rely on my conclusions without having done so.
I am an individual investor and the author of seven eBooks on dividend growth investing. I try to help self-directed individual investors profit from stock investing. I contribute articles and studies to both Seeking Alpha and Daily Trade Alert. I hold an undergraduate degree in physics from Holy Cross College and a JD from Georgetown University. My wife Sue and I live in beautiful Canandaigua, NY.
PRIMARY OBJECTIVE: ... Income Replacement!
Escape velocity is the speed that an object needs to be traveling to break free of the planet's gravitational pull and leave it without further propulsion.
This portfolio is looking for the point where the income being generated can allow the holder of this portfolio to escape the gravitational pull of the market and economic forces of worrying about share prices.
The objective is to generate enough income from assets that the only selling of shares will become an option, not a necessity to survive. Therefore, with enough income being generated, it minimizes the fear of meaningful market corrections as dividends are based on the number of shares owned, not the share price.
Darren owns ProActive Financial LLC where he provides Financial Planning and Analysis consulting services. Darren's education includes a Bachelors in Economics, an MBA, and a Certificate in Personal Financial Planning.
Ph.D. economics and Finance MBA finance
Globe Institute of Technology
Professor – Economics and Finance, Chair of Business Department
Colorado Technical University
Adjunct Professor – courses: Applied Managerial Finance (Graduate Level), Microeconomics, International Finance
European School Of Economics (New York Campus)
Adjunct Professor – Economics (Graduate Level) Courses taught: Microeconomics
Metropolitan College of New York
Adjunct Professor – Economics, Banking and Finance
Courses taught: History of Economic Thought, Macroeconomics, Money and Financial Institutions
World Gold Council
New York, NY
• Constructed econometric models relating to gold's role as a portfolio diversifier primarily aimed at institutional investors.
• Focused on models of the embedded optionality of gold in terms of its relation to other investment assets and economic fundamentals such as inflation and business conditions.
Founder and President, Internet Startup company with polling and investment advice websites.
Fundamental Portfolio Advisors, Inc.
Chief Portfolio Strategist – President
• At the predecessor company I started the New York Muni Fund, the first single state triple tax-free municipal bond fund.
• I took the fund from a one-employee start-up where I performed every function to a family of mutual funds which had five funds with total assets above $300 million and which did all of its distribution, accounting and transfer in-house.
• I wrote the initial prospectus and was responsible for managing the portfolios of what eventually grew to be a family of 5 mutual funds.
• Was chief economist for parent company’s brokerage affiliate.
• Involved on the buy-side in the development and monitoring of various structured municipal finance products. Worked with major issuers such as New York City and major investment banks such as Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs.
• Designed and submitted a U.S. Patent Application for a portfolio management system for mutual funds involving derivatives.
Note: In 1996 Fundamental Portfolio Advisors and myself were subject to civil litigation by the SEC which resulted in deregistration and a permanent bar from the securities industry.
A. Gary Shilling & Co.
Senior Economist – Vice President
Economic consulting, modeling and forecasting. Both macro and micro.
• Clients included: Emerson Electric, Bethlehem Steel, Castle & Cooke, Cooper Industries and the U.S. Department of Transportation.
• I was the author of the 1979 study commissioned by the U.S. Government Interstate Commerce Commission, which calculated the expected economic impact of trucking deregulation.
White, Weld & Co, Inc.
• White, Weld was the sixth largest investment banking and brokerage firm when Merrill Lynch bought it.
• Extensive work was done on the All-American Pipeline Proposal to tap the Alaskan Gas Reserves.
• The economics department of White, Weld formed A. Gary Shilling & Co. at the time of the Merrill Lynch merger.
American Stock Exchange
New York University
June 1978 Ph.D.
• Ph.D. dual field, economics and finance.
• Doctoral dissertation was in contingency claims (options) theory
June 1973 MBA with concentration in economics and finance
NYU Engineering School
June 1971 Bachelor of Science - Nuclear Engineering Tau Beta Pi
Analysis of the Embedded Inflation Optionality in Gold Prices. World Gold Council, 2000. New York, N.Y.
The Economic Impact of Trucking Deregulation. Interstate Commerce Commission, 1979, Washington D.C.
First of all, let me state that I am NOT a CPA, attorney, nor financial planner. I am just a relatively savvy stock investor who wants to help the general public find their way through some of the maze of stock investing.
I am 85 years young, although you might not think so from my accompanying newest picture. Yes, that is reallly me, age 84 and 11 months. I have been investing in stocks and bonds for about 60 of those years. It is now my main hobby. I invest mainly in high-yield stocks rated A- or lower down to B. I got stung a few years ago when Lehman Brothers, rated AAA, went down the tubes, costing me over $25,000, so decided to never again get involved with highly rated (over-rated) stocks that paid only small dividends. I prefer the high-yield stocks like BDCs, REITs, and MLPs from which I can get paid NOW, even though I actually expect to last another 20 years or so. I have developed my own stock investing system that I call MRHY (medium risk, high yield).
I took early retirement in 1987 from a job as manager of a Computer Systems and Programming department at a large life insurance company. I am the holder of a CDP (Certificate in Data Processing) from the Data Processing Management Association (DPMA). During my working years, I frequentlly worked closely with the company actuaries and accountants. I even took some actuarial classes to be able to work with the actuaries in their own language and skills. Those experiences, plus my computer skills and high IQ, have alllowed me to build my stock portfolio from less than $300,000 in 1987 to over $600,000 in 2007. I also have the benefits of ~95% long term retention of whatever I read or hear, which is very useful in stock market investing. I inherited $everal hundred thou$and in 2011, which I have invested in medium-risk, high-yield stocks (MRHY), so that my total stock portfolio is now well over $1.25 million.
The above Bio was posted a couple of years ago and has now (October, 2015) been updated. My stock holdings are now over $1.5 Million and my annual dividend income is now just
over $175,000. I also collect income from SSA, 3 annuities that my deceased wife and I started receiving when we retired, and a restaurant seating about 120 that I bought in November, 2014, for a total annual income of about $240,000.
Folks, if I can do it, you can too. All that it requires is a good brain with an understanding of the financial world, mathematics, and a little actuarial science, plus a high risk tolerance!
Bob is retired from a career in law enforcement including more than 20 years as an instructor of Investigative Interviewing. He is a Dividend Growth investor using dividend yield from low beta stocks for income and preservation of capital. Bob has self managed his portfolio since early in 2011. He hopes to encourage discussion among those already in retirement and receiving income from their portfolios.
My curent portfolio is available here: http://seekingalpha.com/article/3969664-difference-quarter-can-make-1st-quarter-portfolio-review?source=all_articles_title
I believe that everyone needs a portfolio business plan. Here's a copy of ours:: http://seekingalpha.com/article/2426965-our-retirement-portfolio-business-plan-legacy-edition-part-two
A list of Dividend Growth Safety Superstars for the past decade is available here: http://seekingalpha.com/article/2255863-a-review-of-the-dividend-safety-superstars http://seekingalpha.com/article/2266863-a-current-review-of-dividend-safety-superstars-part-two
First, the good stuff. Here's my portfolio ...
Consumer Discretionary: MCD, NKE, SBUX, TGT
Consumer Staples: COST, GIS, KHC, KO, MO, PEP, PG, PM, WBA
Energy: CVX, KMI, XOM
Health: ABBV, AMGN, GILD, JNJ, MCK
Industrial: BA, DE, EMR, LMT, MMM
REITs: HCN, NNN, O, OHI, VTR
Technology: AAPL, MSFT, QCOM
Telecom: BCE, T, TU, VZ
Utilities: AVA, D, SCG, SO, WEC
ALSO: small stakes in 23 additional companies held in the Dividend Growth 50 portfolio (http://seekingalpha.com/article/2764265-its-new-its-nifty-its-the-dividend-growth-50): ADP, AFL, BAX, BDX, BXLT, CAT, CL, CLX, COP, GE, GPC, HCP, HSY, IBM, KMB, MKC, NEE, SJM, UTX, V, WFC, WMT.
Now, a little about me:
I am a 50-something former sportswriter who was sent on a permanent vacation during the Great Recession. That sucked, but my story is not a sad one. Unlike many folks who lost their jobs, I am not in financial distress, I am not depressed and I am not bored.
My wife is a pediatric nurse with a bullet-proof job and decent benefits. So after supporting her and our two kids (now grown) for most of three decades, the least she can do is support my semi-retired keister!
Because of Roberta's job situation, because we have zero debt (not even mortgage debt), because we no longer have any dependents and because we have been pretty diligent savers over the years, we are comfortable (though nowhere near rich).
Although we hold some funds, bonds and cash, my investing philosophy leans heavily toward Dividend Growth Investing. By early next decade, we want to live entirely off of our income stream, Social Security and pension payments - and therefore will not have to spend down the principal one iota. To accomplish this, we invest mostly in blue-chip companies with long track records of growing dividends. As of mid-2016, we are well ahead of pace to reach our goal.
When not researching investments and writing for Seeking Alpha and other Web sites, I coach middle-school girls basketball at Metrolina Regional Scholars Academy, the top charter school in the Charlotte metro area; in March 2016, we won the first conference championship in school history! I also umpire youth baseball and referee youth basketball.
My wife and I dote on our 5-year-old pup, Simmie, and keep up on the doings of our now-grown kids, Katie and Ben. And we love to cheer on the basketball team of our alma mater, Marquette University, where we both majored in Journalism. Go Warriors! Also big fans of the Carolina Panthers.
I still occasionally post to the blog I initiated in 2007 -- lots of sports stuff, some politics, some personal junk -- at www.TheBaldestTruth.com.
I am an engineer from the first few years of Gen-X and began my interest in investing in my teens with a single share of stock (T) from my Bell System grandfather before the breakup. I am one of the fortunate few of my generation that will have access to a pension that will make up a good chunk of my retirement income.
Ever since my first "real" job, I have tried to save some, tithe some, and spend some with the goal of being able to have a portfolio large enough to pay for my retirement independent of the pension or government support. Most of my investments are in IRA, 403(b), and 401(k)--some of this money has limited choices, but some is available for individual stock purchases.
My DGI portfolio (PhoolsGold) contains a suite of stocks that fit with the beliefs I outline below. PhoolsGold is mostly settled and currently contains: AAPL, ABBV, AFL, APD, BAX, CLX, COP, CSCO, CSX, CVX, DE, ETN, GILD, GIS, INTC, JNJ, KMB, KO, KRFT, LMT, MCD, MMM, MO, MSFT, NWN, O, OHI, PG, QCOM, SBUX, T, TCAP, TGT, VZ, WEC, WFC
The Beliefs of PhoolsGold
- I believe in the power of DGI and maintaining a portfolio of companies
1) that will eventually provide me a growing income in retirement,
2) that are good companies I know, use, interact with, and understand,
3) do not require continual care and feeding.
- I believe in purchasing DG stocks on David Fish's CCC lists (i.e. corporations with a commitment to paying and increasing dividends) and utilizing Chuck Carnevale's F.A.S.T. graphs.
- I believe in having a portfolio of DG stocks that has a dividend yield on average >3.5%.
- I believe in buying new positions that have a greater than 2.5% DY.
- I believe in stocks with consistent >7.2% DG in 1-, 3-, 5-, and 10-year historic views (double in 10 years) and with positive slopes in the DG.
- I believe that some version of the Chowder Rule is a guiding force in my evaluations.
- I believe in stocks with forward estimates (5-yr EG >6%) suggesting that these dividends will continue to be raised consistently in the future.
- I believe in paying attention to my portfolio but not being too active.
- I believe in balancing the portfolio so that no one stock is more than twice the percentage of the portfolio than the "average" in PhoolsGold.
- I believe I am an investor not a trader. I believe that buying a company at a good price for the right reason and getting the DG machine rolling is just as important as trying to buy a company for the 'perfect' price.
- I believe in buying and reinvesting, but not in margins, options, shorts, puts, or calls.
- I believe in, when I can, choosing companies that are from regional areas important to me and that support their local communities.
- I believe in usually sticking to these rules. - I believe that this is my approach. I believe that it will NOT be your approach. I believe in the old adage "Listen to everyone, but don't listen to anyone."
- I believe in carefully considering all the excellent advice on SA, but believe even more that I have to decide for myself what is right for me.
- I believe that my goal is to make sure that this Phool and his money are never parted.
Dale Roberts is an Investment Funds Associate with Tangerine Investment Funds Limited, a subsidiary of Tangerine Bank wholly owned by Scotiabank. My articles are for information purposes only and do not constitute investment advice or an offer or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any securities. These articles are my personal opinion and are not those of Tangerine Bank or its subsidiaries. Remember past performance is not guaranteed and may not be repeated. Investment strategies are not suitable for everyone and you should always conduct your own research or speak to a financial advisor.
I'm a well-informed retail investor and post on SA in order to expose my thought process to critical examination and comment from readers. It makes me a better investor.
I'm particularly proud of bullish macro articles posted in 2009 and later, in which I presented ideas that encouraged me to invest very profitably in a rising market. I also did articles on individual stocks, many of which contained insights not available elsewhere. Finally, I wrote a number of thoughtful articles critical of financialism and the lack of ethics on Wall Street.
I do not post for compensation, as I am concerned that editorial policy encourages and pays a premium for articles that invite the reader to speculate on the short term movements of microcaps, penny stocks, and controversial issues. The best way for me to monetize my insights is to invest accordingly.
As a retail investor, I don't give investment advice. I write about what I'm investing in, and the thought process involved in decision making and stock selection. Hopefully some of what I write is of benefit to others, by sharing my experience as I interpret it and helping them improve their investment thinking and process.
Welcome to my author's site.
I hope you find my articles interesting and informative.
A man-with-a-plan, I am utilizing knowledge gained from my business degree 25+ years in the business world and a similar number of years of investing experience, to manage my investments.
I have created and maintain a stable and growing portfolio of individual US listed dividend growth stocks, over 30% of which are non-US based but headquartered in Canada, Great Briton, the Netherlands and Australia.
I believe that asset allocation is the primary decision an investor must make considering his objectives, time frame and risk tolerance. I am fully invested and 90% of that is in stock.
I believe that the small individual investor is often best served by low cost index funds. Stock picking, attempted market timing and frequent trading usually work to the disadvantage of the average small investor. However, you may define small as you like and nothing prevents any investor from emulating the market greats of our time such as Warren Buffett or Peter Lynch. Greater rewards can be obtained by buying and holding individual securities if one has background, the interest, the time and the disciplne to do so in an effective way.
There are many ways to make money in the stock and bond markets. My approach to is to take ownership positions in successful large cap companies and hold them a number of years. Dividend Growth Investing is a conservative approach which involves lower than average risks and higher than average rewards.
My writing experience began when I was a senior in high school. I was a local stringer for Maine's largest newspaper and covered school and amatuer sports. Concurrent with a successful career in the business world I wrote magazine articles, journal articles, short fiction, poetry and a devotional book.
A long time student of security markets I immensely enjoy the opportunity to write for Seeking Alpha, which is a very high quality well run organization with excellent editorial support. It is also possibly the best business forum on the internet and I am proud to be a part of it.
Most of my articles focus on several topics:
Income Portfolio Strategy
Canadian Banks and Telecoms
Best regards and good luck!
-- Bob J
Over forty five years of investing experience. Three Master's degrees. Retired, except for some rental real estate. Serve on three professional boards dealing with property management and regional symphony orchestras. Play in a super regional symphony orchestra and regional professional concert band. On SA to learn, have fun and tweak some egos..especially progressive dimwits.
Disciple of Harry Browne's portfolio system (income, permanent and speculative) with real estate and other income streams. It works.
Five Plus Investor is business owner and an avid follower of the stock market, managing seven different types of portfolios for family and friends. Five Plus Investor invests in multiple types of investments, with the goal of achieving relatively high dividend yield that has a reasonable margin of safety. She enjoys contributing to Seeking Alpha as she has time, with her core audience being new investors and retirees.
Husband, father of three, grandfather of three and long time investor. Bought my first stock at 16 years old, it was called Unishops and it went bankrupt. I kept on investing and now have a decent size portfolio. Best investing book I ever read was "The Future for Investors" by Jeremy Siegel. I believe in companies that pay dividends, have strong cash flow and have some type of moat.
Brad Thomas is a research analyst and he currently writes weekly for Forbes and Seeking Alpha where he maintains research on many publicly-listed REITs. In addition, Thomas is the Senior Analyst at iREIT Forbes and Editor of the Forbes Real Estate Investor, a monthly subscription-based newsletter.
Thomas has also been featured in Forbes Magazine, Kiplinger’s, US News & World Report, Money, NPR, Institutional Investor, GlobeStreet, and Fox Business. He was the #1 contributing analyst on Seeking Alpha in 2014 (as ranked by TipRanks) and he is currently writing a book on the legendary investor Donald Trump. In addition, Thomas is co-authoring a book (The Intelligent REIT Investor) that will e published in August 2016.
Thomas received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Economics from Presbyterian College where he played basketball. He resides in South Carolina with his wife and kids.
I write about dividend growth stocks on my website www.dividendgrowthinvestor.com.
I am mostly a buyer of high quality dividend stocks, with solid competitive advantages. My holding period is forever, as long as the dividend is at least maintained. I tend to concentrate my efforts on stocks which grow earnings and dividends, which provides outstanding total returns over time. I only focus my attention to stocks with sustainable dividend payments. I am also a firm believer in diversification accross sectors and geographic locations.
I have been focusing my attention particularly to companies that regularly increase dividends to their shareholders on my website. On my blog I share my thoughts on investing in dividend paying stocks that have consistently increased their payments over time and tips on growing my dividend income. I hope that my blog will serve as an inspiration for my readers and that it would change their financial lives for the better.
Visit my website, Dividend Growth Investor (http://www.dividendgrowthinvestor.com/)
Retired Financial Analyst with an investment plan derived from Charles D. Ellis' book "Winning The Loser's Game". My "Winning Formula" is to invest in a worldwide capitalization-weighted index ETF such as Ticker:VT, or a similarly weighted subgroup of ETF's from Vanguard (VTI,VEA,VWO) or Schwab (SCHB, SCHF, SCHE) to lower the weighted average fee. Then fund my retirement spending by withdrawing the percentage of the portfolio as required by the IRS Rule-72(t) for early retirees using the "Required Minimum Distribution Method" as explained here: https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/rr-02-62.pdf
On October 31st, 2014, I retired. Turned in the keys to the company car, gave them my computer and my account lists and joined the ranks of those who "slipped off into the sunset." I never thought in retirement that I would be this busy. It's fun. Time with the grandkids, time to perfect my cooking skills, and time to travel and check off the things on my bucket list. I should have done this a long time ago.
Retiree interested in stocks and financial instruments, especially dividend producing stocks. In the 20th century, I was an electrical engineer with Dominion Resources. I use a dividend growth investment style. Quick rules of thumb for complex questions, like fair value p/e using the Gordon model, price = growth and total liabilities/total assets ratio for leverage calculations provide a starting point for my investment decisions. As a retiree, preservation of capital is paramount.