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  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    fidelity was easy-peasy, since all of my accounts are there (though they don't have to be).

    I went to this link:

    converted it online, which took 2 minutes. you get the same day closing price if you convert before 9PM EST. so no sweet taking advantage of an intra-day drop, unfortunately. I simply chose the number of shares i wanted to convert for my in-kind distribution, and voila.

    you can can also mail in a form, but that would take much longer.
    Dec 19, 2014. 01:34 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 2014 Watch-List [View instapost]
    I also know very little about the inner workings of technology companies, but the same goes for me regarding companies in the industry, utility, and energy sectors too.

    but strangely, i feel comfortable investing in technology companies (not the Facebooks and Netflixes of the world) like Apple, Google, Microsoft. And I wonder, is there any generational divide between younger investors and old--as far as comfort level is concerned with investing in technology companies?

    chowder--I think your son is a couple of years younger than me, would he feel comfortable investing in Apple?
    Dec 19, 2014. 12:55 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]

    Dec 16th might've seemed like a market high at the time, but it was actually complete and utter brilliance (though accidental as it may have been)!

    Dec 17th was a major accumulation day--the first in 14 months! that's when up volume on the NYSE is at least 9 times larger than down volume--and that's bullish! it means the market is going higher!! so even though on the face of it, it seems like uh oh, the market is at all time highs--it means the market is going higher. (i feel like I'm chowder speaking here).

    when were the last 2 major accumulation days you ask? Oct 2013 and Jan 2013! both the start of nice little bullish runs! It doesn't mean that the market can't or won't ever pull back, but it doesn't hurt to add little technical tools such as these to our fundamental analyses.

    you couldn't have predicted that the 17th would be a major accumulation day on the 16th (although you would have known where the 100 day moving averages and the 32.8 fibonacci retracement levels), but once you see it occur on the 17th, you would know to pull the trigger on any stocks you were waiting to buy.
    Dec 19, 2014. 12:39 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    Mike--Once my accountant told me there was no minimum amount required to convert a position from a Trad Ira to a Roth, I happily move just a little chunk over every couple of years.

    I had always intended to wait for a bear market to convert a big chunk of my Trad Ira, but then I realized that the fall in energy stocks pretty much qualified as a mini-bear! BP is my only energy position in my Trad IRA, so I converted part of it over. Now i'll only have to pay taxes on the depressed amount as of the day I converted it over ($37 and change).

    that's what i call turning lemons into lemonade!
    Dec 19, 2014. 12:18 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    david--fidelity tends to offer free trades and other goodies upon either opening an account with them or transferring in a new chunk of money.

    however, if i were you, I would definitely call them and ask. I'm almost 100% sure if you speak to someone, they'll throw some free trades your way. and if they won't give it to you, call back and talk to someone else. my rule of thumb is keep on trying til they give it to you.

    they're also great about extending the expiration dates and divvying up the free trades between accounts. (let's say 50 in your Trad IRA, 100 in your Roth, 50 in your taxable)

    I got 200 free trades 2 years ago which have now expired, and I fully intend on calling them next year and asking for more free trades. Why? to keep me as a loyal customer or I shall be very, very tempted to move my money elsewhere. :-)
    Dec 19, 2014. 11:56 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    Mike--Fidelity's Dripping is a little weird. when you alter the option (reinvest or deposit to core), the change doesn't show up right away. so what i do if i'm on the cusp of missing the date, I call fidelity. i think one time I missed the date to change online, but i called fidelity and they were able to change the drip option on their end so I didn't miss it. the reps have powers that we investors don't!
    Dec 19, 2014. 11:51 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    mikelavigne--as I said above, call them and ask. these expiration dates are not set in stone.
    Dec 19, 2014. 11:47 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    Mikelavigne---I was given 200 free trades when i transferred money over to Fidelity. they were supposed to expire within a year, but when I called them after a year to extend them, they gladly obliged and gave me another 6 months to use them up.

    moral of the story, call them to negotiate. if you don't reach someone who's generous, call them again.

    fidelity will also give free miles, etc. depending on the amount of money you transfer. here's a list of offers:

    i'm tempted to call fidelity and ask for more free stuff for all my posts recommending them, lol!
    Dec 19, 2014. 11:46 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    Let me chime in with a fist pump for Amgen too. It's seriously not "too late" to purchase--still slightly undervalued according to M*, and it just came out with a 30% dividend increase!
    Dec 19, 2014. 11:41 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]
    mike--have you considered converting as little as $1-2k a year to your Roth? Such a small amount may not bump you up to a higher tax bracket, and that way you can spread the tax pain over many years. I learned that lesson the hard way when I once converted $30k of a Trad IRA to a Roth in one year---even though I wasn't earning any income at the time, it still created a lot more taxes than I expected. So now I just convert a tiny bit each year.

    for example, I just took advantage of converting $2K of my BP position three days ago from my Trad IRA to a Roth. I chose that specific stock because it was down about 15% from my original purchase price. Thank God, it's going back up!
    Dec 19, 2014. 11:39 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • It's New! It's Nifty! It's The Dividend Growth 50! [View article]

    What a fabulous idea to conduct such an experiment, and truly generous of you to share it with the SA community. I really look forward to following it from quarter to quarter and year to year. I'm also really excited for you to now own many stocks which you have eyed for some time but never quite met the yield you wanted: BDX, QCOM, UTX, V, SBUX, etc. I have a feeling you won't regret these lower yielders over the long term.

    Will any of these purchases in this portfolio affect your purchases for your other portfolio? i.e. Now that you own UTX here, you won't duplicate buying it for your other portfolio? Or if a stock in this portfolio that you weren't interested in before (let's say WFC) exceeds your expectations, will you now potentially consider buying it for your real portfolio?
    Dec 19, 2014. 11:32 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Amgen Announces 30 Percent Increase In 2015 First Quarter Dividend [View article]
    long, very long AMGN.
    Dec 17, 2014. 06:35 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Boeing Is A Buy After Recent Dividend And Buyback Increases [View article]
    I've eyed BA time and again, but one of the main reasons I've stayed away is it's uber-cyclicality. In a bear market, this stock absolutely tanks. So any shareholder must have an ironclad stomach to withstand the price volatility.

    During each the last 4 recessions, it was one of the worst performers in the Dow:

    2008: Down 52%
    2001: Down 36%
    1990: Down 19%
    1980: Down 14%

    This is in no way a knock on the quality of the stock, simply a word of caution.
    Dec 17, 2014. 03:32 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • 2015 Healthcare Sector Predictions [View article]
    Leonard--are there any healthcare stocks or sub-industries where you have a negative view going forward?

    also, I'd be curious on your thoughts re. GSK (pipeline, dividend), BAX (and its spinoff), and ABBV.
    Dec 16, 2014. 06:02 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • McDonald's: Expect A Full Recovery In 2015 [View article]
    actually, my local california chipotle is 10.40 for a medium soda, barbacoa bowl/burrito and chips (lower for chicken and sofritas and higher for steak). vs 8.29 for for a mcdonalds customized burger with medium fries and soda.

    that's a $2.11 difference.

    in the branding business, it's all about perception. it doesn't matter if the reality is different. do customers perceive chipotle to be higher quality food than mcdonalds? yes. do customers perceive chipotle to be healthier? yes, even if it isn't. do customers perceive chipotle to be a more substantial, filling meal. yes.

    so mcdonald's is betting that millennials want to save $2.11 so badly that they will purchase what they perceive to be a less filling, lower quality, less healthy meal. that's a terrible value proposition.
    Dec 16, 2014. 05:57 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment