Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Portfolio Report December 2016

Ending a mixed year for my portfolio.  I sold some high-yield, but dividend cutting and poor performing stocks. I picked up my first monthly div payer, O. Unique for me this year also was that I put no fresh capital in. I only re-invested div earnings, and proceeds from closing positions.  I did put some money in a lending club account.
I expect 2017 to be light on fresh capital as well, as I pre-paid my investments a year ago, and I'm still on my monthly car payment. Overall I'm happy with that decision, I think I earned a higher return than what I've had to pay in interest on my car loan (0.9%).

Monday, December 19, 2016

Don't Pre-pay Your Mortgage

This past week the old discussion of the pro's and con's of paying of your mortgage early flared up again. While good points were made on both sides of the argument, I'm firmly of the opinion that it doesn't make sense to pay off your mortgage early while you can enjoy a low interest and tax write-offs.

Of course, as all things personal finance, it's personal. In my case, a 3.875% interest rate, and the ability to deduct interest from my income makes it a no-brainer to pay the minimum amount. If I had an extra $1000 each month I could put that in LendingClub or in Dividend Stocks and expect at least a 4% return, very conservatively. My returns are higher than that.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Sell: ARLP

In the aftermath of the election the market went all sorts of crazy. I sold my ARLP position when it jumped up several points. It was on my sell list for a while, given their Div Cuts, and uncertain future. The stock has been recovering, and while it may continue to climb for some time to come, this was a good point for me to sell. I used the proceeds and existing cash to invest in a position in O.

This makes a huge dent in my dividend income, as ARLP paid well. I'm selling mainly because I have additional overhead to complete forms for ARLP's special tax structure. This wipes out most of my income. Second, they qualified for a sale after cutting their dividend. I want stocks that can grow their div over time, even if slowly.  ARLP served me well -- while I took a loss on the stock, they paid me around $920 in dividends over the years. I knew they were a high paying div stock and I knew the risks involved. Again, this income helped me get my dividend machine going, and allowed me to get into other positions.

I waited until after their last div payout of the year, and got lucky with a coal industry bump after the election. I'm happy to get this off the books in 2016.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Portfolio Report November 2016

In November I finally sold ARLP and used the proceeds and dividend earnings toward buying O. This checks a long-standing goal of getting out of ARLP. O is my first monthly dividend payer, so my month-to-month and month-year-ago comparisons will be off for the coming 12 months.
My LendingClub experiment is going well. Every loan paid on time in November, and proceeds were automatically re-invested.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

HCP Spins Off QCP, cuts dividend

HCP spun off QCP on October 31. As a result, and as expected, HCP cut their dividend by 35%. This will have a real impact on my portfolio, as HCP is my largest position. Of course, with QCP being a brand new company, little is known about how they will handle dividends. For now I'm going to assume no dividend, and see when some data comes out. I'll hold on to the stock at least until they report a quarter on their own and provide some guidance on dividends.

Same thing for HCP. They will need to prove to me how they perform and handle dividends over the next quarter or two. There are other REITs like NHI or O that may be more attractive if HCP or QCP cannot deliver.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Portfolio Report October 2016

Several changes in October. HCP cut dividend after it spun off QCP. More on that later. Also, I put $2500 in a LendingClub account to experiment with a new mostly passive income stream. No other transactions for me.


  • Dividend Earned in October: $176.66
  • Dividend Expected in November: 668.41. Lower than August due to HCP cut, but still above November 2015.
  • Dividend Earned Trailing twelve months: 5,526.11
  • Dividend Expected Forward twelve months: 5,314.90.  A drop due to HCP cut, but excluding anything that QCP may produce.
  • LendingClub accrued interest: $24.40
  • LendingClub expected total payments November: $75.42

  • Thursday, November 3, 2016

    LendingClub Update November 2016

    Last month I put $2,500 into LendingClub.  I select automated investing with a mix that's just below 'safe, lower returns', going for 'still safe, better returns'.  I opted to split my money into 100 x $25 notes. These were picked up relatively quickly, and loans were issued usually within a week.  There's one note hanging, stuck in Review. I'm not sure what's going on there. According to LendingClub documentation the loan can sit in that status up to 30 days before it's either issued, or canceled. If canceled, my $25 will be released and automatically put towards another loan that matches my investment mix target.