Look at the enormous improvement in the 2015 portfolio in the last few months.
2015 M* Dividend Machine Holdings as of February 19, 2016
2015 M* Dividend Machine Holdings as of December 2, 2016
My picks increased from a negative 8.28% to a positive 11.46%. The SPDR Dividend ETF (NYSEARCA:SDY) improved from a positive .41% to a positive 11.92%, and the Vanguard Dividend Appreciation ETF (NYSEARCA:VIG) rose from a positive .59% to a positive 8.03%.
What are we to make of these moves?
The individual stocks selected for inclusion in the 2015 portfolio number 19. Their individual performance is presented below.
SDY, a low cost ETF that I use as a benchmark, holds about 100 stocks. Clearly, this diversification allowed the fund to weather the difficult first quarter of 2015.
The problem with 2015 is that we all ended up buying high. This is always a nerve racking situation. The market does not go up in a straight line and maybe we could have waited and bought at a better price. Eventually, you have to invest when you have money and sometimes you just have to wait for your stocks to break out.
VIG, another low cost ETF that I use as a benchmark, made a nice move as well. Yet, this group of stocks concentrates more on stocks that increase their dividends and therefore, the influence of potential interest rate increases that compete with dividend growth stocks made VIG the poorest performer of the three.
Income investors should take heart in the fact that all three of these portfolios have done very well.
M* Money Madam
Disclosure Long: CAT, CMI, COP, CVX, EMR, LHO, MDP, MHLD, PAYX, SO