Friday, February 27, 2015

February Review / March Preview 2015

Check-it-out Gremlin here.  Well this past month has seen a solid amount of activity.  One large purchase in my Roth, a little roll up in my Loyal3, and a noise complaint addressed to our condo. That last one shocks me; we are pretty quiet and I only yell at my FIFA 15 on Xbox or when the Capitals are getting shelled.  That stupid issue cost us $180 for a new thick area rug.  Other than that its been an uneventful month, which is a nice change of pace.


Last month I brought in a total of $62.47 in dividends ($23.77 taxable, $38.70 Roth).  This is an overall increase over last year ($57.14) by 9.33%.  The addition of AAPL and three dividend increases accounted for the majority of the growth.  The dividend increases were realized in my Kinder Morgan (KMI), AT&T (T), and Realty Income (O) holdings.  Most notably O gave a back to back raise coming off last month's, can't deny how awesome that is!

On top of those increases I added 12 shares of Chubb Corp. (CB) to my Roth account using a free trade.  In addition, I picked up 4 shares of Microsoft (MSFT) and 1 share of Coke (KO).  All in all, that should add approximately $32.50 to my annual haul.  Not too shabby.


"What's your prediction for the fight?"
"Yes, prediction."
"Pain." [death stare]
- Clubber Lang interview from Rocky III

Its tax season, which means ouch.  I owe every year, but it is preferable so that money can be put to use generating income throughout the year.  I finally have all the sheets needed to complete my annual taxes (thanks REITs...).  This also means that spending on stocks will take a hit.  In addition, I have some personal traveling happening, adding to the mess.

Outside of that, let's continue with the other bad news.  That is one of my larger holdings, Pengrowth Energy (PGH), is going to experience a dividend cut from $0.04 to $0.02 per share monthly in $CAN.  Ouch, there will be an entry specifically on this and my decision regarding that position.

This will make March likely be a quiet Loyal3 month with a few shares of whatever looks good being picked up (KO and MSFT looking the best).  Good news, one dividend increase is expected for Waste Management (WM).  Though it is not the biggest increase at 2.66%, it is still appreciated. 

Hope everyone else has a great, err better, March.
-Dividend Gremlin.
- Long all stocks mentioned.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Recent Buy, Feb. 2015

Investor Gremlin here.  Earlier this year ShareBuilder gave me a free portfolio credit, but the catch was I had to use it before the end of this month and it could only be applied in my Roth account.  I convinced them I did not need it and they gave me two regular trade credits.  So its time to put one to use!

My Roth account is where I wanted to do some damage; however it had a much lower amount of saved capital sitting in it, so my buy was either going to be small or I was going to have to wait.  So what happened was the cash in my taxable account was moved (in a roundabout way) to my Roth account so I could make this purchase.

As soon as the cash plan was hatched the next step was to check out what I was going to buy,  especially since there was no recent planning done (thinking my next big buy would not be for a little while).  Scanning both my watch lists and DGI blogs I settled upon a few ideas.  Next step was to filter those ideas down to a few that made sense.  My criteria included a P/E lower than 20, at least 5 years of dividend growth, a dividend yield of at least 1.5%, payout ratio, and a generally favorable outlook.

I came up with a few stocks I really liked, all of which are new positions.  American Express (AXP), Chubb Corp (CB), Aflac (AFL), Norfolk Southern (NSC), and Chevron (CVX).  As you can see the list is devoid of Canadian Banks, because I'd rather have them in my standard account and not lose any capitol to foreign taxes in a tax-deferred Roth setting.

I whittled out CVX because I already rely a lot on energy stocks, and at this time would like to continue diversification. All of the other stocks represent new sectors in my Roth.  However, I chose based upon where I perceived growth to come the most in the future and that is what I want in my Roth.

I purchased 12 shares of CB for a total of $1213.56 (101.13 / share).

CB gives me that growth and the sector that I have been wanting to add for a while now - Insurance.  The fundamentals are super solid, and so is their balance sheet.  I expect CB will present a solid opportunity for income growth for many years to come.  As it currently stands CB has: 1.98% yield, a 13.2 P/E Ratio, and a current payout ratio of 26%.  All numbers I like for long term growth!

In addition, I also added 1 share of KO in my Loyal3 account.  This joins the 4 shares of MSFT I have bought this month as well.

If I had more money lying around I'd have bought CVX, AXP, AFL, and NSC.  My portfolio will be updated to reflect this at the end of the month.  Let me know what you think of these moves!

- Dividend Gremlin

Monday, February 9, 2015

Side Job Ideas

All-Over-The-Place Gremlin here.  So one of my goals for the new year is to find a side hustle.  At least one of my friends agrees and would like to do it too, preferably together.  Both of us would like to have some extra cash for what we need; although our needs are definitely different.

So below I am going to discuss some of my potential options, not an end all list for sure.  It really is a general overview with some pros and cons.  Hopefully by the time this year is over I will establish something.  Preferably flexible and enjoyable.  Emphasis on enjoy.  Also probably not something crafty, because I suck at that stuff.

Odd Jobs:

This is a general category of temporary positions.  There is potential in finding one or multiple time gigs.  However, it is not always a straightforward process in finding them.  Their potential to make me a lot of cash is only okay, albeit that money is likely under the table.  Odd jobs are something I would like to avoid, if for no other reason than they are completely unreliable and unpredictable.


This actually has some promise.  A friend of mine is working to start his own bar, and once it is started I have already stated I want to work there.  Likely one night a week and one weekend night.  Now of course this is away off, because his bar is not even built yet and he is still getting funding.  Still, the idea is there and there are plenty of other places to work at doing similar stuff.  Pros and cons list is pretty long on both sides for this, but part of me wants to hold out for the new place or at least keep my options open.

Local Vineyard / Brewery Style Stuff:

I am sure you are wondering what I mean here, but there are a lot of vineyards near my home.  Well one of my friends wants me to work with him at one of the many local vineyards.  While that would be cool, most workers (in tasting houses) are actually volunteers, but not all.  Plus those establishments typically are an hour or more away from our houses.  Not ideal in my mind along with losing most of my weekend Saturdays and Sundays in summer.  So this option is not a good one.

However, with breweries there are many better and closer options.  Some pay for people to work there as bartenders / servers.  Specifically there is one 10 minutes away from my house.  Their beer is good, but you work on tips and would probably sacrifice most of my Saturdays or Sundays.  There are a few other local choices too.

In addition, some vineyards and breweries are looking for roaming salespeople to represent them at events or stores.  This actually has a ton of potential, and its easy money that one can make almost any day of the week for only a few hours.  This is a huge front runner for me right now.  Because its fun and flexible!

This Website:

It would be foolish of me to state I have not considered putting ads on here at this time.  I certainly have, but at the moment I have decided not to.  The main reason behind this is I just don't want to do it yet.  My goal is to get the site going a little while longer, then I might add them.  I want my drive to do this site to be separate from any drive to use it to make money.

True Moonlighting:

My job has given me access to several unique programs and capabilities.  It has occurred to me I could use this skill set outside of work; possibly as an independent contractor either for myself or for a company operating in a similar, but non-competing field.  There are some definite liability concerns here too.  However, this could a very valuable experience in terms of money and learning.  Still at this point I want to shelve the yea, because this kind of work is exactly what I want to do less of.

(Updated Section) Sports Reffing:

I should have put this up in the first edition of this.  I do it right now and can always do more of it in the future.  I could ref soccer and baseball easily.  I know all the rules and rules to some other sports, but this is a cruel job.  Refs take tons of heat, regardless of who is playing, and for not too much $.  On the other hand it is usually decent exercise.  I already do it a little, and will continue to do it to offset some sports stuff.


Well this post took and is longer than I wanted it to be.  I have a lot to think about here, but no matter what I do the goal is the same.

What are your thoughts on side jobs?

Monday, February 2, 2015

January Review / February Preview 2015

Stupid decisions Gremlin here to talk to you about last and next month.  Stupid decisions one is here because recently I got to do some work travel to the Lake Tahoe area, and clearly nothing good ever happens at the Blackjack table.  Oh, well no big deal, I survived.  Also, I will not be removing California or Nevada from my travel list because outside of one afternoon and night, I saw little other than a hotel conference room.  Not a true vacation, thought i did get to eat at an In'N'Out Burger for the first time ever, so that was cool.

Fun fact: I did not bet on the Superbowl at all.  Though, I was alright with the Patriots winning, mainly because I hate watching someone win back to back.


Last month I brought in a total of $70.04 in dividends ($51.38 taxable, $18.66 Roth).  This is actually down from last year ($80.48) when I possessed the high yield, but dangerous stock known as Windstream (WIN).  WIN accounted for a lot of money and is the sole reason that I am lower than last year by 12.9%.  However, I expected this and am glad to be done with that stock.  The strength of the US dollar also hurt my returns a little, with my Canadian stocks sending me a little less due to our relative strength.

On the positive side, I received one dividend increase in the form of General Electric (GE), and I expect two more next month for Kinder Morgan (KMI) and AT&T (T).  Realty Income (O) also gave me its usual small increase this month, representing a small increase for the first quarter.

All in all, not a bad way to start the year.  Things are mostly on track to where I want to be.  I added four new shares of Unilever (UL) via Loyal3.  I have almost rounded out that position, and I expect to do so soon, price permitting.


February should be a lot more interesting for me overall.  First, I have already started purchasing stock via Loyal3.  Oddly it was not UL, their price has run up just a little too much of late.  Rather, Microsoft (MSFT) was where the money has started getting placed.  MSFT has seen its price drop rather dramatically of late, and to be honest it baffles me.  MSFT is one of the stocks on my priority list too, so the slight change in course does not mean losing track of the end goal, but rather navigating a steadier path there.  McDonald's (MCD), Kellogg's (K), and Disney (DIS) have all been looking much better in price of late as well.  It is unlikely DIS will receive any attention until later this year, but the others might also get played in the game plan (this was expected for K, not MCD).

The big news of this short month is the reshuffling of my money between my taxable and Roth accounts to make a big buy ahead of schedule in the Roth.  This, coupled with my recent acquisition of 2 free trades from Sharebuilder should make this year much more interesting.  I have my eyes set on a few stocks and the trade should be coming soon.  In the running are Aflac (AFL), Chubb Crop (CB), Norfolk Southern (NSC), and Chevron (CVX).  My mind has wavered between them all for many reasons, in the long run they are all worth owning, but which one do I get right now?

As you can see, exciting times lay ahead.  Are you expecting anything good from the short month?

Long: GE, KMI, T, O, UL, MSFT, MCD, K, DIS
- Gremlin