Largest holdings: JNJ, PEP, KO, T, CVX, XOM and PG. Very much an average Joe (Steve) who is now focused on retirement. I have worked in public safety in one form or another for the last 40 years. I was previously employed by a police agency in an administrative capacity. I retired in November 2014 after 22 years of employment with them. After floundering with investments for the last couple decades, I've finally found what seems to be a comfortable niche. In 2011, I began working my way into the world of dividend growth investing. I still have many things to learn but I think I have a basic grasp of the concept. I find myself astounded with the quantity and quality of the knowledge that is shared here on SA. Barely a day goes by that I don't learn something from those who so generously share their abilities and experience. I am grateful to them and hope that I can some day use my abilities to enlighten another reader or two.
My investment strategy is a hybrid of dividend-growth and capital appreciation. I’m in the process of building a reliable and growing income stream that will eventually replace our current earned income. If my dividend-growth investments are meeting quarterly and yearly goals, I consider long-term (and occasionally speculative) capital-appreciation opportunities.
My stock portfolio currently includes: CVX in Energy; EMR, ITW, LMT, MMM, NSC, RTN, UNP, and UTX in Industrials; DG, DIS, HAS, HD, JWN, LOW, MCD, SBUX, and TGT in Consumer Discretionary; CVS, GIS, KO, KHC, PEP, PG, and WBA in Consumer Staples; ABT, AMGN, BDX, ESRX, GILD, JNJ, MDT, and SYK in Health Care; MA, TROW, and V in Financials; AAPL, CSCO, IBM, MSFT, QCOM, and SWKS in Technology; T and VZ in Telecom; AVA, D, LNT, SO, WEC, and WTR in Utilities; and DLR, O, OHI, and VTR in Equity REITs.
I don't benchmark my dividend-growth holdings but do compare their performance against the quarterly and annual goals stated above. I do compare the performance of my capital-appreciation stocks against the performance of the S&P 500. In general, I'm an infrequent seller.
I have 10 kids and 28 grand kids with 3 great grand kids now.
I bought my first stock a good 70 years ago and have been trading dividend paying stocks and profiting from them for well over 50 years now. I sell when I think it is needed but I buy for the long term. I am somewhat of a bottom-fisher - I like to look for the deal on a company I want to own anyway.
I have traded commodities in the past, but I prefer to use ETFs for them instead of buying them now as they trade easier and make it easier to keep my two personal portfolios balanced overall.
In my Core Portfolio - I keep at 85% dividend paying stocks with a 7+ year record of RAISING them along with 15% Gold and Silver. I rarely sell these but spend time weekly on each one keeping up with the news and reports on them.
In my Speculation (or Exploration) Portfolio - I keep stocks that cut their dividend and were sold, but re-purchased them when they dropped to a point where they are attractive again. A trade sequence on these usually ends up with me having a zero-cost basis for the shares I kept and cash ahead also. I also keep stocks in this one that I know are trading in a channel so I buy low and collect dividends until they go back up to my target price and I - again - have a zero cost-basis and free stock when I sell. This is also where stocks that I have found attractive because of low value metrics and are trending up are kept for as long as I am in the trade. As Jesse Livermoore said "No stock is too low to sell or too high to buy." He made millions by following the trends and never lost money unless he went against his own disciplines. I try to keep that in mind with my trades.
I have had a wide range of jobs in my lifetime - Law Enforcement, Professional Gambler and Gold Prospector among them. I use my experience to help me figure out what comes next.