George Spritzer, CFA is a registered investment advisor at Southland Investments and specializes in managing closed-end funds for individuals.
George uses the following investment strategies:1) Opportunistic Closed-end fund investing: Buy CEFs at larger than normal discounts to NAV and sell them when the discounts narrow. 2) Exploit special situations: tender offers, fund terminations, fund activism, rights offerings etc.
I am a former Investment and Commercial Banker with over 30 years experience in the field. I have been advising both individuals and institutional clients on high-yield investment strategies since 1991. As author of “High Dividend Opportunities”, a premium subscription service at Seeking Alpha, my objective is to bring investors the most profitable and newest high dividend ideas, with special focus on the Energy sector. The service includes an actively managed model Portfolio targeting an overall dividend yield of 6-9% in addition to long-term capital gains. My research aims to maximize returns by identifying undervalued securities in the High Yield space.
In addition to being a Certified Public Accountant CPA from the State of Arizona, I hold a BS Degree from Indiana University, Bloomington, and a Masters degree from Thunderbird School of Global Management (Arizona). I am also a Certified Mortgage Advisor CEMAP, a UK certification. My Research and Articles have been featured on Seeking Alpha, Investing.com, ETFdailynews, and on FXEmpire.
For more information on how to subscribe to “High Dividend Opportunities” and gain exclusive access to the portfolio, live alerts and market commentaries, check the post: Introduction to “High Dividend Opportunities” on my Instablog or just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org .
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.
Thomas has co-authored a book (The Intelligent REIT Investor) that is available on Amazon.
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 suspect that most dividend investors are conservative by nature. I am. I don't believe I have any special talent or gift for trading, a crystal ball, or any access to insider information. Consequently, I have little expectation of prospering by consistently buying low and selling high. In fact, prior to becoming a dividend investor, my trading history boasted the opposite, buying high and selling low. Tis sad but true, over those years, I'd given more to the market than I'd taken from it. However, that's yesterday's news, and of no real interest. Of importance is that I'm patient, analytical, organized, pretty good at math, and always looking for that angle, strategy, or edge to help guarantee my continued market success. My book, The Dividend Investor's Guide, details my history, education and growth as a dividend investor and the lessons I learned along the way. It details an effective and safe overall investing philosophy, along with a discussion of several proven trading strategies designed to enhance one's portfolio's income and dividend yield.
After 8/28/16, I will be writing no more than 4 Instablogs per year. Those blogs will be published in March, June, September and December.
Those blogs will concentrate on matters relating to portfolio positioning.
I will be posting substantive comments to my last published Instablog.
I have not used, nor will I even contemplate using SA's Instablog service as free advertising to sell a subscription service.
I have never received any compensation for the posts published at my blog website or here at SeekingAlpha. I am simply passing on what I have learned as an investor over 4+ decades free of charge. In all of my 2000+ posts since early October 2008, the primary purpose was to provide a framework for rational and fact based investment decision making that will hopefully reduce the number of errors made. That goal has been accomplished for the very few investors who have some interest in receiving it.
My most basic investment strategy is to focus on income generating securities and then to invest the cash flow into more of the same, creating a compounding impact over a long period of time. I will invest in securities throughout the capital structure on a worldwide basis. I am now and have always been a cautious total return investor (income + capital appreciation). A focus on income generation simply means that income generation through interest or dividend payments is an important part of my total return objective. I am no longer in an asset accumulation mode. Capital preservation is more important than capital appreciation. Income generation is only one aspect of an objective evaluation of potential rewards balanced against potential risks. After several decades of "turtle" investing, which sometimes requires me to pull my head back into the shell and to cease foraging in stock land (e.g. 1999), I am now admittedly absurdly diversified due largely to one of my risk management techniques that limits my monetary exposure to the securities of a single company. My monetary exposure is largely dictated by a balancing of potential risks and rewards taking into consideration income generation and potential for capital appreciation. As a risk control trading technique and in furtherance of my capital preservation emphasis, I will frequently use the natural volatility of a security to gradually build up a position, selling the highest cost shares on price spikes and buying back those shares when the purchase is lower than my average cost per share usually by more than 5%. The general idea is to lower my average cost per share over time with tax efficient share dispositions, thereby increasing my dividend yield for the remaining shares. I have also been a practitioner of dynamic or tactical asset allocation that will be driven by my big picture views, including my Vix Asset Allocation Model, as well as my opinions about the relative risks and opportunities of various asset classes. I was born in 1951, and started to invest in stocks when I was 16. I am not a financial advisor, but simply an individual investor who has been managing my own money for my adult life starting when I was a teenager. All of my brokerage accounts are cash accounts. I have never bought stock on margin. I have not added money to any of these accounts since 1984 and have used those accounts to fund my annual IRA contributions. I started my web site, Stocks & Politics, in October 2008 to do whatever I can to help individuals become better investors, which requires a lot of hard work and effort. After over 2000+ blogs, mostly long ones, I came to a realization that my time consuming and laborious efforts have been mostly futile and have been rewarded at best with faint praise. I will no longer be posting there. I would still emphasize that it is important for individuals to become as knowledgeable as possible before making any decision, with every individual taking full responsibility for their investment decisions and to prepare accordingly, which is what I try to do. The Twitter Generation will need IMO far greater investment skills than previous generations given what I now perceived about future U.S. economic conditions.
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. So -- a career as a researcher and an educator, which is what I hope to continue here. Virtually every good teacher I've ever known says some version of "I learn more from teaching than my students do." There's a lot of truth in that, enough that there's an underlying selfish motivation for my writing here as I continue to learn about investing.
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. One consequence is that I'm liable to disappear from the site for extended periods. How can you miss me if I don't go away?
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 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 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. 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.
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 especially encourage and appreciate thoughtful comments from those who disagree with me (although I will 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. The IRAs I see as my estate and are focused on generational wealth building. That means the growth portfolios have a long-term horizon, well beyond what an investor of my age might be expected to maintain.
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. Add that I also like it because I find several subtle word plays there; I'll leave it to you to decipher that comment.
Finally, I've chosen to remain anonymous, which I feel obligated to justify. 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?
Disclosures: 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.
Steven Bavaria writes about finance, economics and politics, drawing on his forty-five years experience in international banking, credit, investment, human resources/training, journalism and public service. Now retired from his "day job" on Wall Street, Bavaria lives mostly off his investments. His focus is largely on income-oriented stocks, bonds and mutual funds, as well as closed-end funds, ETFs and other IRA-suitable investments. His book "Too Greedy for Adam Smith: CEO Pay and the Demise of Capitalism" was just published and is available on Amazon and at independent retailers.
Bavaria began his career at the Bank of Boston, where he handled international credit workouts that included managing a fleet of ships, chasing a Vatican-owned bank in Switzerland, and leading the turnaround of troubled branches in Australia and Panama. He also ran the bank's human resources department, which is where he saw personally the beginnings of many of today's executive compensation excesses.
More recently he worked at Standard & Poor's, where he introduced ratings to the leveraged loan market. In between Bank of Boston and S&P he was Assoc. Commissioner of the Massachusetts Dept. of Mental Health, worked briefly for Citibank, and was a reporter for IDD Magazine. He also did a short stint at a smaller rating agency where he had to leave in a hurry after writing an article called "From Banker to Bookmaker" that was deemed a bit too candid in describing the conflicted role of major commercial and investment banks.
Bavaria graduated from Georgetown University and New England School of Law.
Data Center Knowledge - Contributor: writing about data centers REITs -- a new and growing asset class -- attempting to bridge the gap between technology & traditional REIT investors.
Researching and writing at the corner of Main St. & Wall St. where real estate often intersects with trends in: technology, ecommerce, office/industrial, healthcare, cloud computing, energy infrastructure & green initiatives.
Recently covered breaking news and actionable ideas REIT ideas for Benzinga "REIT Beat," now Contributor/Sr. REIT Expert. Select articles featured on Investopedia.com, Seeking Alpha, and published on Yahoo! Finance, Google, MSN, Finviz and many other financial portals. Recent Select Freelance contributor for Motley Fool, writing about REITs and real estate topics for the Financial Bureau.
I have over 25 years of experience as a: developer of institutional quality office and industrial facilities, general contractor, homebuilder, managing general partner for private limited partnerships, and have performed consulting and transactional real estate services for others, including entitlements for planned commercial/office/industrial developments.
Past job experience included: V.P. of Energy Services for a Florida based Mechanical Contracting company, which subsequently was acquired by EMCOR (NYSE: EME). Responsibilities included development and "financial engineering" of projects to reduce energy consumption and total cost of ownership solutions, partnered with the two major Florida electric utilities, and private companies, (including Enron Energy Services!).
Education: UCLA - BA Economics, including graduate coursework in Real Estate Finance.
Masters Degree from St. Thomas University - Miami, FL
Chief Investment Officer, Stanford Wealth Management. Retired senior exec of Charles Schwab. 36 years active and reserve military service -- 6 in special operations, 30 in the intelligence community. Geopolitical analyst.
Author -- investment book Bringing Home the Gold.
Editor -- The Investor’s Edge®. In the 16 years from inception through year-end 2015, the Investor’s Edge® Growth & Value Portfolio increased in value from $250,000 to $1,038,453. That same $250,000 invested in the S&P 500 rose to just $422,905. (Past results are no guarantee of future performance; maybe those 16 years were pure luck.)
Featured in Forbes, Barrons, The Wall Street Journal, Financial World, Wall Street Transcript, Global Investing, Welling on Wall Street, etc.
If you have a $500,000 portfolio ($250,000 for solely mutual funds & ETFs) you may contact me for a no-obligation "second opinion." email@example.com.
Simply Safe Dividends helps conservative dividend investors increase current income, make better investment decisions, and avoid risk. Brian Bollinger, CPA, runs Simply Safe Dividends and previously worked as an equity research analyst at a multibillion-dollar investment firm.
I'm a 65-year-old investor focused on dividends in a Retirement Income Portfolio. I'm not yet in the distribution phase of retirement.
I've been a member of the National Association of Investment Clubs (NAIC) since 1982, which now operates as BetterInvesting.org. For many years as a volunteer I helped lead workshops to teach tools developed by NAIC to educate investors about how to do basic fundamental stock analysis. I continue to have a strong interest in investor education.
NAIC's historic "four principles" have been very helpful to me:
1) invest regularly throughout your lifetime;
2) invest in growth companies;
3) reinvest earnings and profits;
4) diversify by industry and size.
Bill Bengen's "4% Rule" concept inspired me to set a goal to create a retirement income portfolio of individual dividend growth stocks as a way to tap only dividend income from the portfolio as long as possible rather than selling assets.
Helpful mentors and colleagues include:
- Charles Allmon, former columnist for Better Investing, taught me to look for growth stocks
- Ben Graham's The Intelligent Investor taught me the importance of intrinsic value
- Peter Lynch instilled confidence that the average citizen can win in the stock market
- Louis Rukeyser demonstrated how to ask probing questions about market conditions
- Brad Thomas introduced me to a host of real estate investment trusts
- Bob Wells' analytical discipline keeps me focused on dividend growth
- Lowell Miller's The Single Best Investment helped me focus on quality and safety
- David Van Knapp's holistic style of portfolio building helps me see the big picture
- David Fish and Factoids inspire me to keep digging for data
- Chowder reminds me that each buy is the purchase of a business
- BDC Buzz has helped me sift through business development companies
- Tom Konrad opened my mind to alternative energy investments
- George Fisher is a helpful "lookout" scanning the horizon for utility opportunities
- The Seeking Alpha community--both veterans and young contributors.
The author is a former hedge fund trader now working as an Independent Trader, Consultant and author of the Panick Value Research Report. The Panick Report is a newsletter and alert service focused on undervalued high yield preferred stock issues and some undervalued micro cap equities. Sign up in the Dividends section of the Seeking Alpha Marketplace to receive exclusive subscriber articles, daily sector updates, advance drafts of public articles and more. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. See also my Panick Value Research Report Facebook site for tips on upcoming articles.
Downtown Investment Advisory (DIA) is a Registered Investment Advisory firm based in New York that provides customized investment advisory services to individuals, charitable institutions and retirement plans. DIA currently has over $40 million under management. DIA specializes in creating custom fixed income portfolios with a core of individually selected bonds that we recommend be held to maturity. Other income assets, such as preferred stock and exchange traded debt, are also used to diversify an income portfolio. Depending on the needs and risk profile of clients, fixed income portfolios can target yields ranging from 3%-9% per annum.
DIA is licensed according to required securities regulations. DIA utilizes the services of both Charles Schwab and Interactive Brokers as a third party custodian. Clients of DIA will open and control an account at the third party custodian in their own name, and DIA nevers takes custody of client accounts.
DIA's investment manager, Salo Aizenberg, a graduate of Columbia Business School with an MBA in Finance, is a highly experienced finance and investment professional with 20 years of active investing in fixed income, equity, and alternative investments, having managed institutional portfolios exceeding $500 million.
Important disclaimer language for all articles published on Seeking Alpha, including premium Newsletter articles:
All articles published by DIA are intended as an information source for investors capable of making their own investment decisions. However, this information is not intended to be used as the sole basis of any investment decisions, nor should it be construed as advice designed to meet the investment needs of any particular investor. High Yield bonds are not suitable for many investors and by definition are not Investment Grade bonds and therefore carry a much higher level of risk. High Yield bonds are subject to various risks including interest rate risk, credit risk, and market risk which could result in the total loss of the investment. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. We encourage readers to consult with independent financial advisors with respect to any investment in any security mentioned. The information upon which all articles are based is obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but has not been independently verified. Therefore, DIA cannot guarantee its accuracy. Information regarding a company or security may be obsolete by the time it is published on Seeking Alpha and investors must therefore independently verify updated information regarding a company or investment. Any opinions or estimates constitute the author's best judgment as of the date of publication, and are subject to change without notice. Despite best efforts to provide quality investment information to our readers, DIA does not accept any liability or responsibility for any loss resulting from investment decisions based on information in any article. Note that DIA does not get paid or receive compensation of any kind by any company or any third party for discussing a particular company or investment in any article.
Doug K. Le Du is a preferred stock researcher, author of the book titled Preferred Stock Investing, syndicated writer and publisher of three monthly preferred stock newsletters.
Doug has been studying the preferred stock marketplace since 2002. In 2006 he published the first edition of Preferred Stock Investing which has been updated and re-published regularly since then.
Preferred Stock Investing teaches risk-averse investors how to screen, buy and sell the highest quality preferred stocks. The book lists all qualifying preferred stocks that have been issued since January 2001.
The ten selection criteria from Preferred Stock Investing filtered out the 57 preferred stocks from the big banks that would be claimed by the Global Credit Crisis and let pass the 13 issues from the big banks that were saved by acquisition. In 70 out of 70 cases, a 100% success rate for almost two years running, the preferred stock selection criteria found in Preferred Stock Investing protected preferred stock investors.
As a researcher, Doug researches the market price behavior of the highest quality preferred stocks and writes to you about trends and opportunities. His premium subscription service (described at www.PreferredStockInvesting.com) providers subscribers with email alerts of new preferred stock issues, access to his preferred stock catalogs and HotLists, a monthly newsletter just for premium subscribers and much more.
Doug's academic background is in economics and statistics. Doug retired from his position as Managing Director at one of the world's largest management consulting firms in 2002 to focus on preferred stock research. Doug does not sell preferred stocks nor is he a stock broker or financial adviser.