Saturday, April 25, 2015

Retirement Accounts (Update) - April 2015


As our readers already know, our family has switched our focus towards diligently building our Dividend Stocks Portfolio and P2P Lending Accounts in an effort to building additional income streams for retirement so we don't have to solely rely on the typical retirement vehicles.

We will still continue to track are retirement accounts (pension, 457K, Roth IRAs) as they are still part of our retirement plan.  Plus, although they are mainly invested in mutual funds, we still need to keep an eye on them and re-balance them periodically.

EXISTING RETIREMENT ACCOUNTS (APRIL UPDATE):

 
Below is a quick update to show the current values of our retirement accounts as of April 1, 2015.  For a more comprehensive list of values (beginning January 2014) and details of these accounts, please visit the Retirement Accounts page on our blog.
 

As of April 1, 2015

PENSION
Cash Value of Pension$218,494
($2,329 increase from March update of $216,165)
 
457K
Total value of 457K: $122,304 
($185 decrease from March update of $122,489)
 
Roth IRAs
Total value of Roth IRA accounts: $56,633
($161 decrease from March update of $56,794)
 
Overall, the month of March was not very generous to our retirement account balances.  Although we saw an increase from our pension balance, the balance in our 457K and Roth IRAs both saw decreases. And since both my employer and I contributed towards my pension every paycheck, the gains are mainly from new contributions.  The $1,983 overall gain (from all three accounts) is certainly welcomed over a month with a net loss, but we would much rather have the  $8,388 gain we saw last month! :) As it stands, the total amount of our retirement accounts is currently valued at: $397,431 (slightly up from the $395,448 reported last month). 

We currently contribute to my 457K (up to my company's match - 3%) and also $200 each to a Roth IRA for both myself and my wife. Although we are not entirely happy with their growth, we still feel that the 457K and Roth IRAs should remain part of our retirement plan.  If for nothing more, the 457K and Roth IRAs will help supplement my pension. With some of the uncertainties around government pension these days, they could very well serve as back-up plans as well. 
 
Click below to view retirement accounts page 

RETIREMENT ACCOUNTS

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

RECENT BUY - (NYSE: WMT)

WE RECENTLY PURCHASED THE FOLLOWING

Services & Providers
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc (WMT)
Purchased 8 shares of WMT today (4/22/2015) at $77.75
Total Spent: $622.00
$14.40 added to annual dividends
 
A little about Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.:
Wal-Mart is the industry leader in discount retail by a wide margin. In fact, it is the world’s largest company by revenue (according to the Fortune Global 500 list in 2014). To put things into perspective, Wal-Mart generates more sales than Costco (COST), Target (TGT), Amazon (AMZN), Kroger (KR), and Whole Foods (WF)...Combined!  Wal-Mart is also the biggest private employer in the world with more than two million employees. It's shear size and scale has thus allowed it to pressure suppliers into the best possible deals.  
 
Wal-Mart positioning itself to take advantage of growing e-commerce demand.  In fact, Wal-Mart has seen some nice growth in digital sales during the last few quarters and is therefore shifted its recent capital spending to continue its growth in digital/e-commerce sales.  It is doing so through investments in its website, mobile platform, as well as people.
 
Wal-Mart is also spending capital to leverage its success and expand its market share at the expense of local grocery store chains through its neighborhood market stores.  In fact, the company is on track to open between 180 and 200 neighborhood market stores in the US in its full fiscal 2015. 

In addition to its neighborhood market stores, Wal-Mart is also experimenting with even smaller express stores (1/10 the size of a Wal-Mart super center).
 
 
Today's Purchase:
We've been eyeing Wal-Mart for a little while now and certainly happy that we picked up a few shares of WMT earlier in the morning for $77.75 (the stock actually ended up closing .68 cents higher at $78.43).  With today's purchase of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT), our family's dividend stocks portfolio now includes a total of 37 stocks/ETFs.

Our estimated forward dividends grew just a tad, adding another $15.68 to our yearly dividends which now stands at approximately $3,163/year.
 

Our family's dividend stocks portfolio may be found
by clicking on the link below:

We also maintain an extensive list of stock analysis
that can be access through the link below:

We also just started a list of Recent Buys by other bloggers
that can be access through the link below:
 



HERE IS A QUICK FACT SHEET FOR THE STOCK I JUST PURCHASED:
Services & Providers
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc (WMT)
P/E: 15.53
Payout Ratio: 38%
Dividend Yield: 2.499%
Dividend Growth rate (5yr AVG): 11.62%
41 consecutive years of dividend increases
Last Ex-dividend date: 2/6/2015
Next Ex-dividend date: approx. 5/6/2015
Have paid a dividend since: 1973 (42 years)
Pays a dividend 4 times a year.

Market Cap: 253 Billion
52-week high: $90.97
52-week low: $72.61

Purchased Price: $77.75

What are your thoughts about my recent purchase?

What are you buying?

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Stocks Added to Collection of Stock Analyses (Update) - Mid-Month (April 2015)

For those who are not yet familiar with my extensive collection of individual dividend stocks. The collection is currently comprised of 663 stock analyses (and still growing) with links to various stock analyses that I found throughout the dividend blog community.  
 
The collection was created in a Google Docs Spreadsheet so that I may continue to maintain and update the list periodically. My plan is to provide bi-monthly updates (one at mid month and another and the end of the month) to inform everyone of new stock analysis I have recently added to my collection.
 
The collection goes back two years.  Eventually, as the collection grows, I am planning to only keep stock analyses for a one year time period. You should also know that to help highlight the stock analyses that have recently been created during the last 2 months, I have provided NEW!! at the end of those analyses.

The following is a list of newly added stocks analysis that were prepared during the first half of the month of APRIL (2015):

      1. American States Water Company (AWR)
        • by The Arbor Investment Planner
      2. Ameriprise Financial, Inc (AMP)
        • by Dividend Growth Investor
      3. Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM)
        • by Dividend Developer
      4. Becton, Dickinson and Co (BDX)
        • by Passive Income Pursuit
      5. Becton, Dickinson and Co (BDX)
        • by Dividend Growth Investor
      6. CVS Health Corp (CVS)
        • by Pollies Dividend
      7. CVS Health Corp (CVS)
        • by Dividend Growth Stocks
      8. Expeditors International of Washington, Inc (EXPD)
        • by Dividend Developer
      9. Fastenal Co (FAST)
        • by Div4Son
      10. General Electric Company (GE)
        • by Dennis McCain
      11. Kimberly-Clark Corp (KMB)
        • by Dividend Growth Stocks
      12. Orchids Paper Products (TIS)
        • by Dennis McCain
      13. Parker Hannifin Corp (PH)
        • by Roadmap 2 Retire
      14. Philip Morris International, Inc (PM)
        • by Sure Dividend
      15. Philip Morris International, Inc (PM)
        • by Dividend Growth Investor
      16. Ross Stores, Inc (ROST)
        • By Passive Income Pursuit
      17. Sherwin Williams Co (SHW)
        • by Dividend Developer
      18. The Andersons (ANDE)
        • Dividend Developer
      19. T.Rowe Price Group Inc (TROW)
        • by Div4Son
      20. Unilever Plc (UL)
        • by Cazadividendos
      21. United Technologies Corp (UTX)
        • by Dividend Growth Stocks
      22. YUM! Brands, Inc
        • by Dividend Growth Stocks
Hope you like the new and improved updates
with links provided directly in this post!

Please feel free to leave me a message if you prepared a stock analysis during First Half of April 2015 that I did not include in my post.  I would be more than happy to add your stock analysis to both this post and our collection of stock analyses.  Please make sure to confirm that it is a dividend paying stock and that it is a individual stock analysis.

My goal is to make this collection become the centralized source where one begins their research on a particular dividend stock company or at the very least, a source to confirm if a company stock is worth buying. Whether your a beginner or a veteran, I want this list to become an invaluable reference tool for you all. Best part, unlike other subscription based sites, I plan to keep this completely free for everyone to enjoy and benefit from. Feel free to share with all of your friends and family! 

Click on Link Below

Complete Collection of Stock Analyses


Also don't forget to check out our:

NEW!! Collection of Recent Buys

 
 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Mortgage Balance (Udpate) - April 2015

If you have viewed our family's Net Worth Page, you probably already know that it does not include the equity in our home.  Although, we do realize that it is technically part of our overall net worth, we decided that since our home equity is not an asset that we can count on for income (unless we sell and buy something cheaper) we would exclude it from our net worth calculation.
 
For the purpose of this blog, we are more interested in documenting our loan balance rather than our home equity.  With that said, we will use the current Zillow value as our estimated home value and use it to figure out the percentage we owe on our home. For those interested, we will include the amount of our home equity, but know that we are less concerned with the equity since we have no plans to cash out or otherwise sell our home. Our main goal is to pay off our home on or before my retirement date. 
HOME VALUE:
According to Zillow, our home is currently worth: $779,828 (up $1,021 from our March post). It appears that home prices have steadily increased every month this year. I spoke to a local realtor this past weekend (at an open house in our community) and he said it's because there is not much inventory out there.  With many buyers trying to get into a home before interest rates rise, this has created somewhat of a warm/hot market in the Orange County home market. In fact, our next door neighbor just listed her house and it sold in less than a month with multiple offers with an asking price of $795K.  Her house is a slightly larger model than ours so I think that the Zillow Zestimate one our home is fairly accurate.

As nice as it is to see our home values rise, it really doesn't mean much to our family as we have no intentions to sell or otherwise move.  We are very lucky to be able to say that we love were we are and couldn't see ourselves living and/or raising our family any other place. :)
 
Mortgage Balance (March):
$329,914 (down from $331,670 in March)
Percentage Owed:
42.3% (down from 42.5% in February)
Home Equity:
$449,914 (up from $447,137 in February)

Even though we don't consider home equity as part of our net worth, since I am sort of a statistics nerd, I still like to look at the numbers and draw fancy comparisons. :) 

The truth is that as long as my mortgage balance continues to go down consistently each month, I am happy. Nevertheless, our journey is currently laid out where if all we do is make our exact mortgage payment each month, the mortgage will be paid off a few months after my planned retirement date.  

Mortgage Background:
For those that have not read the Preface on our home equity, we currently hold a 15-year fixed rate mortgage at the incredibly low rate of 2.875%.  My goal is to retire within 12 years and 4 months so we are setting out to pay off our mortgage on or before my retirement date. Right in line with my retirement goal, we have 13  years  - 1 months (157 months) left on our mortgage.  Nevertheless, I would like to have it paid off in another 10 years (or less). If we accomplish that, I plan to use the last few years to aggressively build our passive income to help supplement our retirement and defer tapping into the 457K as long as we can so it can continue to grow. 
 
Right now we are not putting any extra money towards the principal given our low 2.875% interest rate. We feel that we could make our money grow faster by investing it and while keeping the money more liquid. At a certain point, maybe in 8-10 years, we may consider using money from our investment accounts to wipe out the remaining mortgage balance.  Until then, we will continue to grow that money outside, rather than have it locked into our home.
  
Click on the link below to view our mortgage balance history:

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Net Worth (Update) - 1st Quarter 2015


Originally, I was only planning to provide annual Net Worth updates.  However, since I am now part of an active list of bloggers who provide their net worth on Rockstar Finance's page - The Ultimate List of Blogger Net Worth, I have decided to start providing quarterly updates.  Providing quarterly updates will allow us to keep our readers more updated with our overall progress towards Financial Independence. It will also allow us to stay accurate and current on the Rockstar Finance's Ultimate List of Blogger Net Worth. ;)
 
As of the end of March 2015 (1st Quarter), our family net worth is as follows:
 
Retirement Savings:                       $ 397,431
P2P Lending Accounts:                    $  18,448
Dividend Stock Accounts (DSA):      $  65,487
DSA - Surplus Cash:                       $    8,773
College Savings Accounts:               $  32,900
Cash and Savings:                          $115,307
 
GRAND TOTAL
$638,346
(Increase of $6,689 since 12/31/14)
 
Although we do not count it as part of our Net worth,
it is still nice to know that our Home Equity is:
$449,118*
(Increase of $7,929 since 12/31/14)

I'm not sure how others feel but I must admit that I look forward to doing our Net Worth reports. Thankfully, we have managed to continue to grow our net worth each and every quarter (although some quarters are clearly better than others).  

During this last quarter, we saw our net worth grow by another $6,689, from $631,657 at the end of December (4th quarter) of 2014 to $638,346 at the end of March (1st quarter) of 2015.  If you include our home equity, which some people choose to do, our net worth actually grew $14,618 from $1,072,846 to $1,087,464.  It's a pretty awesome figure when you include the home equity but the reality is we need our home for shelter and have no intention of selling it the home equity is locked into our home and is therefore hardly liquid.  I'll still continue to calculate and show the numbers but won't consider myself a true millionaire until I can accomplish that feat without my home equity.  :)

* NOTE: If you follow us, you know that we do not consider the home equity in our home as part of our net worth. Although others do consider home equity, and even cars, collections, etc. as part of their net worth, it is our opinion that since these items are not very liquid and the value of these items is highly dependent on what others are willing to pay for them (at the present time), we have decided not to consider these type of assets as part of our family's recognized net worth.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Collection of RECENT BUYS (Summary) - March 2015

Since I began investing in dividend stocks approximately a year and a half ago I've been keeping a personal log of what other dividend bloggers and dividend investors are buying.  Until now, I've just done it for my own personal knowledge and it has proven to be a great resource I use when I have no idea what I should buy. 

The collection essentially highlights the recent buys I have discovered throughout the dividend blog community. I always like to see what others are buying.  And with this collection, one can easily see all the buys in one centralized source.  In November of 2014, I started making my collection of Recent Buys available on my blog for everyone. I Hope everyone has found it to be a great resource!
 

In case you just want a quick summary of what everyone has been buying this past month, below is a chart that depicts just that! :) 
(The chart and table above only includes companies with more than 1 buy)

After a month where I only found 24 buys around the dividend blogging community, the month of March definitely saw a spike in activity.  In March, even though we probably missed a few buys while on our mini-vacation, we recorded a total of 62 buys this past month from fellow dividend bloggers.   

Out of a total of 62 buys found around the dividend blogging community, 9 companies were bought more than once.  It appears that oil and energy is still leading the way in terms of overall purchases but the 9 companies that were purchased more than once came from multiple sectors.  Phillip Morris International Inc (PM) lead the way with a total of 7 buys, followed by Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.B) with a total of 6 buys, and National Oilwell Varco (NOV) rounded up third place.  There was a 2-way tie for fourth (T and TROW) and a 4-way tie for fifth (XOM, COP, JNJ, and OHI). 
 
Our family made a total of 7 buys this past month. Of the 7 purchases, 5 were stocks in companies that made the list above (PM, RDS.B, NOV, JNJ, XOM).  I have to admit that I prefer to follow the masses when it comes to investing.  To me, it certainly helps validate the buy when you see others buying the same stock. When thinking independently, odds are generally higher for one person to be wrong than several individuals, right?
 
Don't forget to bookmark or add this page to your favorites!!


As with my collection of stock analyses, my goal is to make this collection also become a centralized source for everyone. It could become a place where one can get ideas on what to invest in next, to establish a desired stock purchase price, or simply to see what your favorite bloggers are buying.  Whatever your reason, my hope is that this collection proves to be a great reference tool and helps provide you that little extra advantage that you are looking for in order to succeed with your investing.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Dividend Stocks Portfolio (Update) - April 2015

Here is the recent update to our dividend stocks portfolio – April 2015.

SALES 

This past month, Target Corp (TGT) saw some decent gains. Since we bought Target last year when they were going through security issues and a failed Canadian launch, we purchased shares of Target in the mid $50s. Thankfully, we've seen a nice recovery in the stock price and therefore decided to cash out a little bit of the gains. 

On 3/9/2015, we sold 10 shares of Target Corp (TGT) for $78.33 and cashed out roughly $250 in profits.  The sale left us with 15 shares of TGT in our family's dividend stocks portfolio.  The sale, however, also means that we saw our annual dividends decrease by $20.80 

TOTAL VALUE OF ALL SALES: $783.29

OVERALL DECREASE TO ANNUAL DIVIDENDS: $20.80

 

PURCHASES

After having not a single buy transaction in February, the month of March ended up being a pretty active month for us.  We ended the month with a total of 7 buy transactions. 

So out of the 7 transactions this past month, 3 were companies we had already owned and were merely buying more shares to lower our overall cost basis. The remaining 4 transactions were new companies that we decided to add to our family's dividend stocks portfolio.  With our recent purchase of ExxonMobil Corp (XOM), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.B) and Phillip Morris (PM), our family dividend stocks portfolio now contains a total of 37 different companies/ETF that all pay us a dividend.
 
The following are the actual buys that we made during the month of March:

3/10/15
6 shares of XOM (Exxon Mobil Corp) at $84.31 ($505.86)
  • Estimated Annual Dividend Received: $16.56
3/11/15
8 shares of JNJ (Johnson & Johnson) at $99.00 ($792.00)
  • Estimated Annual Dividend Received: $22.40
3/13/15
30 shares of ESV (Ensco Plc) at $21.00 ($630.00)

  • Estimated Annual Dividend Received: $72.00
3/13/15
9 shares of RDS.B (Royal Dutch Shell) at $59.97 ($539.73)
  • Estimated Annual Dividend Received: $33.84
3/13/15
9 shares of NOV (National Oilwell Varco Inc) at $48.54 ($436.86)
  • Estimated Annual Dividend Received: $16.56
3/18/15
5 shares of OXY (Occidental Petroleum Corp) at $71.94 ($359.70)
  • Estimated Annual Dividend Received: $14.40
3/31/15
7 shares of PM (Phillip Morris Int'l, Inc) at $75.33 ($527.31)
  • Estimated Annual Dividend Received: $28.00
TOTAL SPENT ON NEW ACQUISITION: $3,791.46*
OVERALL INCREASE TO ANNUAL DIVIDENDS: $203.76

With the additional $203.76 dividends, offset by a loss of $20.80 in dividends from our sale of 10 shares of TGT stocks, our new estimated annual income is now $3,176 or and average of approximately $265/month.
  

TRADE COUNTER

A bit of good news is that with all the activity we had this past month, we did not pay a commission fee! We are blessed to have a PMA trading account with Wells Fargo Investments and therefore we receive 100 free trades a year!  To date, we still have a total of 46 trades left out of 100.  Our trade counter will reset on 9/15/2015. 
 

DIVIDENDS

In terms of dividends received from companies, March was our best month to date! During this past month,  our family received dividends from a total of 18 companies/ETFs!! The total dividends received from those 18 companies/ETFs was: $112.32.

For the month of March, we receive the following dividends:

WELLS FARGO INVESTMENT ACCOUNT:
3/2/15 - Dividend from ENB(Enbridge) Inc: $7.46
3/2/15 - Dividend from AFL (Aflac Inc): $13.65
3/3/15 - Dividend from TIS (Orchids Paper Products Co): $14.00
3/5/15 - Dividend from BSBR (Banco Santander Brasil): $1.86
3/10/15 - Dividend from TGT (Target Corp): $13.04

3/10/15 - Dividend from IBM (Int'l Business Machine Corp): $3.30

3/10/15 - Dividend from EXC(Exelon Corp): $18.58
3/10/15 - Dividend from EMR (Emerson Electric Co): $4.23
3/10/15 - Dividend from CVX (Chevron Corp): $5.35
3/10/15 - Dividend from IBM (Int'l Business Machine Corp): $3.30
3/11/15 - Dividend from BSBR (Banco Santander Brasil): $5.84
3/16/15 - Dividend from ORI (Old Republic Int'l Corp): $6.48
3/16/15 - Dividend from MCD (McDonalds Corp): $5.10
3/18/15 - Dividend from RIG (Transocean Ltd): $26.25
3/20/15 - Dividend from ESV (Ensco Plc): $8.25
3/27/15 - Dividend from NOV (National Oilwell Varco): $16.56
3/31/15 - Dividend from BPY (Brookfield Property Partners): $6.16
3/31/15 - Dividend from FTR (Frontier Communications Corp): $31.56
3/31/15 - Dividend from BBL (BHP Billiton Plc): $83.08

* BSBR paid us a dividend twice on 3/5 & 3/11.

EDWARD JONES INVESTMENT ACCOUNT:
*No dividend were received in December from EJ Account

OVERALL DIVIDENDS TOTAL THIS MONTH: $274.05*

* We currently receive our dividends as cash in all stock positions held.
 
 
In case you interested, our family's dividend stocks portfolio may be found by clicking on the link below: