First, the good stuff. Here's my portfolio ...
Consumer Discretionary: MCD, NKE, SBUX, TGT
Consumer Staples: COST, GIS, KHC, KO, MO, PEP, PG, PM, RAI, 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, CAT, CL, CLX, COP, GE, GPC, HCP, HSY, IBM, KMB, MKC, NEE, SHPG, 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.
Michael Murphy grew up in Newark, Delaware, which a sign at the city limits proclaimed: “The Educatoinal Center of the State.” After graduating from the public schools he earned an A.B. cum laude from Harvard College and began working as a COBOL mainframe programmer on an IBM 1401 in the mid-1960s. Lured to California by the Summer of Love and better music than American Bandstand in nearby Philadelphia, he became a systems analyst and programmer for American Express, assigned to help integrate their newly-acquired San Francisco investment operations with the parent company's systems in New York. As that project ended early in 1970, a fortuitous opportunity to make a career change to Security Analyst opened up, and he leaped at the chance. His first recommendation was to sell Memorex at $172 at the very bottom of the 1969-1970 bear market. During the subsequent two-year market rally, Memorex went to $2 a share, thus convincing him that it is indeed a market of stocks rather than a stock market.
He earned his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation in 1975, the same year The Capital Group/American Funds acquired the American Express mutual fund group. He commuted to Capital in Los Angeles for over five years, getting on a first-name basis with many flight attendants. After the introduction of the IBM PC in April 1981, he left Capital to found the California Technology Stock Letter. In 1997 he also became the founding editor of Technology Investing, which acquired CTSL in 2003 and changed its name to New World Investor in 2007.
In the 1970s he invented and patented a stock value calculator, and in the 1980s he served as the CEO of two software companies. In 1997 he authored the business best-seller Every Investor's Guide to High-Tech Stocks and Mutual Funds, and he has a forthcoming book on investing in a hyperinflation. In addition to investing, his interests include a biodynamic, organic permaculture farm to raise rare-breed animals, heritage seed crops and children. For many years he held the Class I/E record for electric cars at the Bonneville Salt Flats, and in 2001 he narrowly missed the world record for electric hydroplanes. He expects to go back to Bonneville in 2019 to reclaim the electric car record with his then-16 year old daughter driving. You are all invited to watch or help out.