Time management is essential to monitoring a 47 position portfolio. My 1st comment concludes with "Rich-unck:xx hrs"; I uncheck from the article to avoid repetitive comments, nonsense, and (most) arguments. I extend another XX hrs when I respond to a question or comment...I also respond to all PMs.
BACKGROUND My journey as a self-directed investor (SDI) began in 1973, and resulted in financial independence at age 52, which also allowed me to retire from corporate life the following year (Feb 1995).
I have no special knowledge not attainable by others who also dedicate themselves to the study of the economy, market, and stocks...I could cease all portfolio management today, and place it with a professional manager; however, I enjoy the psychic and financial rewards. Alternatively, I could become a passive investor via mutual funds and/or index ETFs (those works too! ). With few exceptions, As a rule, Rich only discusses his IRA here--it is only a portion of his and Joyce’s investment assets.
INVESTMENT PHILOSOPHY If you ‘lived for today’ over the past 5 or 6 decades, you better invest in lottery tickets. The most probable path to a financially secure retirement is the product of an investment program (either active or passive) started when relatively young; living on less than all your after-tax income (saving means delayed gratification); and either self-directed or via professional management, adopting a sensible strategy suitable to age and comfort zone. There is wisdom in flexibility, diversification, and not being life-long wed to any strategy. It is appropriate to take greater risk for greater rewards (sensible growth stocks) when younger, as those are our lowest earnings years combined with our highest expense years--in the years between early investment and retirement, investments in solid growth companies can double 8 times or more.
There is time to adjust allocations to a more conservative strategy when closer to retirement. Never assume you have an information edge over the professionals. Time-in-the-market is your principle advantage. When/if you become interested in dividend stocks, never forget both price return and dividends compound, and price more so.
Financial independence is achieved when one has sufficient confidence his/her lifestyle will not change significantly, regardless of the potential depth or breadth of decline suffered by their portfolio--including a prolonged series of bear markets such as 1929-37. True, the recent 18-month bear market ending mid-2009, was deep--but also too brief to consider its lack of widespread dividend cuts to be as proof a portfolio of dividend-payers won't suffer income losses in a more prolonged decline (i.e., no portfolio is "dividend bulletproof").
The balance of this profile is lengthy, and likely not helpful to passive investors who simply go along for the ride, their portfolios bobbing up and down like flotsam in the ocean; their course always subject to the whims of winds, waves, and trends...THIS IS YOUR ONLY WARNING!
PORTFOLIO GOALS Now in my 70s, it’s no longer appropriate to engage in the growth strategies applied in wealth accumulation. As a more conservative investor, 100% of his portfolio consists of dividend-payers. 95% of positions have investment grade credit ratings (the lone exception is a REIT).This combination, along with having companies in 10 of the 11 S&P GICS sectors (none in Materials at this time) provide a measure of diversification. This IRA portfolio holds no bonds, though bonds and other investments are held elsewhere.
Maximizing total return and wealth preservation are mutually exclusive. A key observation: Having the capacity for risk is not the same as having the tolerance for it!
Rich’s objective is now a ‘smoother-ride’ that levels out the market’s peaks and valleys (limit losses, trim notable excess valuation). That smoother ride in an all-equity portfolio cannot be achieved without active management and continuous monitoring of positions--therefore TIME is an essential input to his portfolio management. Active management does not’ means frequent changes, as it is not unusual for a quarter or more to pass between a trimming or sale (nonetheless, when a company fundamentals change, or a mistake is made, corrective action is taken.)
STRATEGY SINCE 2008 Rich targets both legs of TOTAL RETURN (distributions + price change). His Growth & Income strategy often focuses on VALUE investing tactics applied to dividend-payers. Value investors seek out unpopular, companies most investors are avoiding (i.e., fundamentals have declined but credit rating is strong, BoD has implemented a rational recovery plan, and the dividend not in danger). Value investors seek to be paid to wait for other investors to recognize the stock’s value and assign it a greater share price. In any event, value stock or growth stock, Rich always seeks a ‘margin of safety’--no shares are bought at prices >FV, and his margin of safety is derived from dividends paid, price appreciation, and rising FV over time.
In all cases, value or growth, Rich selects well-established dividend-paying companies having a high-probability of growing earnings (growth of earnings is ESSENTIAL to growth of price and dividends). He tends to be flexible, forward looking, reactive to changing fundamentals, and willing to admit a mistake so action follows.
SDI is not easy, success is not assured, and in recent decades, advice from academics, and investment coaches, almost universally recommend index funds. Those NOT having the prerequisite time and interest are unlikely to develop the requisite skills for stock investing--thus the probability strongly suggests most newbies would be better served by indexing (Ben Graham wrote favorably of indexing). However, when done successfully, self-directed stock investing can offer rich psychic and financial rewards.
CORE PORTFOLIO Presently, +/-30 equities. Core holdings dominate at about 65% of total portfolio positions. Favored are traditional, large- and mid-cap, low-beta, best/near-best in class, institutional-owned, moaty, dividend-paying, value and growth stocks, having investment-grade debt ratings, and representing the consumer staples, healthcare, utilities, and telecom sectors.
OPPORTUNISTIC PORTFOLIO The remaining 15+ positions consist of equally well-known dividend-payers found among widely-owned cyclicals, such as financial, industrials, consumer discretionary, technology, real estate, and energy sectors are sensitive to the economy. In an expanding economy, cyclicals typically grow their earnings (and dividends) faster than do the typically slower-growing core companies. But because the reverse is also true, in a contracting economy, these positions are intended to be heavily trimmed to preserve gains as the economy peaks and shows evidence of decline. Some are susceptible to quite significant price declines when Mr. Market assumes their will suffer reduced earnings, and sometimes dividend-freezes/cuts, in anticipation of those events.
Rich is sometimes fully-invested, but unlike some, observes no such rule. Building a large cash cushion at the front-end of a correction/bear market (-20%) provides the dry powder required to both cushion the market's decline, and also creates the cash required to purchase excellent companies at below FV prices (without having to sell a position he wants to keep!).
TRIMMING POSITIONS When positions in either portfolio become significantly overvalued, they are trimmed by 5-10%, and the proceeds applied to fairly valued companies before the (almost always) temporary gift of over-valuation reverts to the price mean. If the position continues to advance, and absent other information, the position will be trimmed again. Added benefits to selective trimming include (1) serves as a more sensible method of rebalancing (as opposed to automatic--professionals do not use such a meat cleaver); (2) reduces the position's remaining Capital at Risk (which may suggest room for additional shares within an otherwise full position), and (3) provides the necessary dry powder to buy other shares at FV or below.
OTHER INTERESTS As we age, the importance of family grows. Rich has long volunteered in his community; over the years has served with distinction as member/chair of a number of advisory committees. Assisting others on SA is also a source of satisfaction and fulfillment.
Finally, having been blessed by years of excellent investment performance, Joyce and Rich have long been avid world travelers, and have visited over 60 countries over a span of 30 years (his SA avatar reflects the Taj Mahal in his sun glasses). They reside in Michigan--for 9 months of beauty, bliss, and family, and thoroughly enjoy wintering in equally beautiful Naples FL--for 3 months of sunny warmth and relaxation.
Life is good--it's been an unbelievably awesome ride!
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!
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I have retired from a 35 years career in the semiconductor industry. I now have the time to do the deep research necessary for successful investing.
I freely provide investment information for friends and family.
I am a member of MENSA, which means precisely nothing except I wake up in the middle of the night doing pointless math problems in my head:)
At Valuentum, we think the best opportunities arise from a complete understanding of all investing disciplines in order to identify the most attractive stocks at any given time. Valuentum therefore analyzes each stock across a wide spectrum of philosophies, from deep value through momentum investing. We think companies that are attractive from a number of investment perspectives--whether it be growth, value, momentum, etc.--have the greatest probability of capital appreciation and relative outperformance. The more investors that are interested in the stock for reasons based on their respective investment mandates, the more likely it will move higher.
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My name is Vivian Lewis. I was born to immigrant German Jewish refugee parents in New York, so I started out as a multilingual baby and won the American Association of Teachers of French prize for high school grads in my year. I went on to study European history, first at Harvard, where I was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and from which I graduated magna cum laude, and then at University of California, Berkeley where I got an master's degree. I married Paul Lewis, a financial journalist then with the Financial Times (of London), and moved to Brussels where I pursued my PhD at the University of London. When my money ran out, I went to work for McGraw-Hill World News Common Market Bureau and never looked back. Journalism turned out to be my forte, not academia. I then went to work for The Economist in Paris followed by The Sunday Times (London).
When we lived in Washington, I took a break from journalism and worked for the Joint Economic Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Then we returned to Europe, again living in Paris, where I was freelancing as an economic journalist. In this role I covered a half dozen countries in Europe.
We then moved back in the U.S. again, this time back to New York where my husband became U.N. Bureau Chief for The New York Times. I found it hard to get freelance work because my background was mainly European.
So in 1990 I started Global Investing, initially a print newsletter - now it's a blog. We started out covering the expanding market for American Depositary Receipts and Yankee bonds, adding open-end and later exchange-traded funds with an international bent later. Because there were so many ideas you could only buy directly on foreign markets, in 1996 I decided to start what later became Global Investing Pro, for institutional and high-net-worth investors, but it is now dormant.
My husband and I are grandparents to five.
Visit Global Investing at www.global-investing.com.
Mr. Boland is a part owner and founder at caperatio.com which is a finance related website focusing on the Cyclically Adjusted P/E Ratio. The website features a calculator that facilitates the calculation of the CAPE Ratio per individual stock (as explored by recent Nobel Laureate Robert Shiller). The website also provides a weekly newsletter to subscribers on the subject of the CAPE Ratio. This website and Mr. Boland’s work has been featured at a number of renowned investment/hedge-fund blogs and books in addition to news articles at Value Walk, Business Insider, Yahoo Finance, and Money Week. Most recently caperatio.com was discussed in the new book entitled "Global Value: How to Spot Bubbles, Avoid Market Crashes, and Earn Big Returns in the Stock Market."
Mr. Paul Boland has worked in the field of Taxation and Accounting for the last 6 years, both in a managerial capacity and as a junior accountant and holds the License of Enrolled Agent (EA) from the Secretary of the Treasury and the designation of Accredited Business Accountant (ABA) from the ACAT. Paul has been teaching courses on taxation at Gloucester County College since the Fall of 2011. Paul Boland holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the McKenna School at St. Vincent College, and a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) through the Rohrer College of Business at Rowan University.
Benjamin is the founder of ModernGraham.com, a website devoted to the study and modernization of the teachings of Benjamin Graham. Benjamin graduated cum laude with a J.D. and Certificate in Taxation from DePaul University College of Law, and a B.S. in Finance (Honors) from DePaul University College of Commerce.
Articles posted on Seeking Alpha are a sample of the articles posted on ModernGraham.com. Please visit the website for more ModernGraham content.
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/)
I am a market enthusiast and part-time trader. I started writing for Seeking Alpha in 2011, and it has been a tremendous opportunity and learning experience. I have been interested in the markets since elementary school, and hope to pursue a career in the investment management industry. I have been active in the markets for several years, and am primarily focused on long/short equities.
I hold a Bachelor of Science Degree from Lehigh University, where I double majored in Finance and Accounting, with a minor in History. My major track focused on Investments and Financial Analysis. While at Lehigh, I was the Head Portfolio Manager of the Investment Management Group, a student group that manages three portfolios, one long/short and two long only. I have had two internships, one a summer internship at a large bank, and another helping to manage the Lehigh University Endowment for nearly a year.
Disclaimer: Bill reminds investors to always due their own due diligence on any investment, and to consult their own financial adviser or representative when necessary. Any material provided is intended as general information only, and should not be considered or relied upon as a formal investment recommendation.
Ashraf Eassa is a technology specialist with The Motley Fool. He writes mostly about technology stocks, but is especially interested in anything related to chips -- the semiconductor kind, that is.
I spent eight years at Bank of America in New York (1978-86) covering Wall Street, then moved to Moody's Investors Service where I worked for 22 years, covering banks, sovereigns and corporates. I chaired the Credit Policy Committee for four years. I retired in 2007 as vice chairman.
PLEASE FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @christophermah3
My philosophy: I am a libertarian, a market monetarist, an admirer of Fisher, Friedman and Minsky. I believe in a strong safety net and strict regulation of the financial system. I support most of Dodd-Frank. I think that the world's #1 problem today is inadequate inflation and nominal growth. I believe that the Fed should have two mandates: financial stability, and a nominal output target. I follow Scott Sumner and the other market monetarists. I respect Krugman as a brilliant economist who happens to be a leftist.
In addition to publishing at Seeking Alpha, I have my own financial blog at http://capitalismandfredom.blogspot.com
John P. Reese is considered an expert in the systematic investing strategies of legendary investors, including Peter Lynch, Ben Graham, Warren Buffett and others. He has been active in the development of fundamentally-based quantitative models since the mid-90s. His research on Seeking Alpha will include stock ideas, strategy and value investing pieces, behavioral finance concepts, systematic and modeling methods as well as other long term investing concepts.
John is founder and CEO of Validea.com and also co-founder of Validea Capital Management, a asset management firm serving individuals and institutions. Validea Capital also runs an actively managed ETF that utilizes the fundamental stock selection models of investing legends.
John also sub-advises the National Bank Consensus American and International Equity Funds offered in the Canadian market. He holds two U.S. patents in the area of automated stock analysis and is considered an expert in the field of quantitative stock selection using the strategies of investing legends.
John is a columnist for TheStreet.com, Forbes.com and Canada's Globe & Mail and is co-author of “The Guru Investor: How to Beat the Market Using History’s Best Investment Strategies". He holds a master's of business administration from Harvard Business School and a degree in computer science from MIT.
A more complete biography can be found here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_P._Reese
I am a simple individual investor who believes that the playing field is level, but may require active management of one's holdings. I've devised a series of steps that constitute a highly defined covered option strategy that most anyone can follow and that I've described in Option to Profit (2011). Having retired from a career in Pediatric Dentistry, approximately 10 years ahead of schedule, after spending the previous 10 years working just 2 days each week, I now spend my time trading.
For almost 5 years I alerted others of trading opportunities in large cap positions through the Option to Profit subscription service, a premium subscription service that provided actionable Trading Alerts via text messaging or e-mail at my old site www.optiontoprofit.com.
As of January 2, 2017, the site and the name "option to Profit" are no longer mine. as I've again joined the dark side and taken the easy money. But I've returned to my blogging roots on January 2, 2017 by resurrecting the old TheAcsMan.com ad supported web site, open to all.
I hope you can make your stock portfolio improve the quality of your life. Whatever stage of life you are in, you can make your stocks improve that quality by putting them to work for you.
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.
Editor for The Biotech Forum (www.biotechforumsa.com), the #2 subscribed to Marketplace investment service offered through SeekingAlpha. Top 5% ranked analyst (TipRanks) 2013 through first half of 2015. Daily contributor for Real Money Pro. Hedge fund manager from 2008 to 2011. Previously technology executive at Fortune 100 firm for a decade. For Free weekly investment reports on small, attractive biotech stocks just register at www.bretjenseninvests.com
I spend most of my time reading through annual reports looking for a small-cap stock to feature in my monthly edition of "The Conservative Investor Digest." That is where you can find my best work, and that is where I focus my research. You can become a subscriber here: https://gumroad.com/l/HmqJx
I run the long-term investing website "The Conservative Income Investor" which can be found at: www.theconservativeincomeinvestor.com
Award-winning global investor who resigned from his job managing a set of funds with over US$2bn under management so he could take full advantage of the current financial market opportunities. Likes to fuse bottom-up insights with top-down macroeconomic thought. Looks at all sectors and, with a reasonable liquidity filter, all countries.
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.
Marty Rosa writes about a variety of financial topics and is a Seeking Alpha contributor and financial blogger. He has had a successful career in finance, including over 20 years in Wealth Management, working for some of the world's largest private banking institutions. Rosa received his initial training as a financial analyst at Bank of America and has studied investments, personal finance and retirement planning for over 30 years.
Marty specializes in preferred stocks, exchange-traded debt, high yield stocks and also has significant experience in hedge fund analysis. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology and an MBA (finance concentration) from Brigham Young University. He currently resides in Naperville, Illinois.
Rosa is currently developing a newsletter entitled "Get Higher Yields," the intent of which is to assist investors in creating more income in today's very low rate environment.
Dave Fish is Executive Editor for The Moneypaper and co-manager (since 1999) of the MP 63 Fund (Symbol: DRIPX), a fund that invests exclusively in companies that offer Direct Investment (or Dividend Reinvestment) Plans. He is also the author of the U.S. Dividend Champions spreadsheet (and PDF), which is updated at the end of each month...and lists companies that have increased their dividend payout for at least 25 consecutive years. (Separate tabs list "Contenders" that have increased their payouts for 10-24 years and "Challengers" that have increased their payouts for 5-9 years.) http://dripinvesting.org/Tools/Tools.asp
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:
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
Ms. Fiakas is an experienced investment professional with a diversified and successful track record as a research analyst and as an investment banker. Her career includes experience in all aspects of the equity capital markets with particular emphasis on emerging growth companies operating in technology, energy and conservation sectors.
Ms. Fiakas is Managing Member of Crystal Equity Research, LLC. Visit the Crystal Equity Research site: CrystalEquityResearch.com (http://www.crystalequityresearch.com/)
Value Digger holds MSc. in Electrical Engineering, speaks four languages and has lived in the U.S. for many years. Also, he is a full-time investor and a freelance writer with one of the highest Followers per Article (F/A) rates in Seeking Alpha. His F/A rate in Seeking Alpha is above 30.
After creating "Nathan's Bulletin" (a subscription-based investment guide for investors who can't afford a financial advisor), Value Digger launched a subscription-based Premium Service in Seeking Alpha entitled "A Fundamental Investor's Stock Club" which includes an unparalleled, actively-managed and high-return Portfolio of unknown and/or underfollowed stocks. Regularly updated and detailed lists in his Premium Posts PROVE these high returns. For reference, when Value Digger was managing money in the early 2000s, his Portfolio's annual ROI consistently exceeded 50%. His Premium Research is based on a comprehensive review of company-specific factors, macro conditions, competitors and the industry trends.
When it comes to his publicly-available picks and his free Seeking Alpha articles, Value Digger is ranked in the TOP-50 with a success rate of over 70%, an average return per recommendation of over 20% and a 5-star rating according to TipRanks.com, which is the highest category quality ranking used to evaluate financial experts. TipRanks.com is a comprehensive investing tool that allows private investors and day traders to see the measured performance of anyone who publicly provides financial advice. TipRanks.com collects data, evaluates and ranks 9,000 financial experts worldwide.
After almost 30 years of investing experience in the international markets (U.S., Canada, Australia, Europe), Value Digger has formulated a deep understanding of valuation analysis and his investment philosophy is firmly grounded in Ben Graham-style value-oriented opportunities that often have an assymetric risk/reward profile. On that front, he has created a unique proprietary database with thousands of publicly-traded companies per sector, which helps him spot the bargains and the bubbles before many investors find them.
Charles (Chuck) C. Carnevale is the creator of F.A.S.T. Graphs™. Chuck is also co-founder of an investment management firm. He has been working in the securities industry since 1970: he has been a partner with a private NYSE member firm, the President of a NASD firm, Vice President and Regional Marketing Director for a major AMEX listed company, and an Associate Vice President and Investment Consulting Services Coordinator for a major NYSE member firm. Prior to forming his own investment firm, he was a partner in a 30-year-old established registered investment advisory in Tampa, Florida. Chuck holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Finance from the University of Tampa. Chuck is a sought-after public speaker who is very passionate about spreading the critical message of prudence in money management. Chuck is a Veteran of the Vietnam War and was awarded both the Bronze Star and the Vietnam Honor Medal.