Saturday, December 31, 2016

December 2016 Review / January 2017 Preview & End of Year Review

Happy New Year Gremlin here to talk about December and the end of this year.  December has meant presents and family, similar to what November holds plus the presents.  Personally it means winter is here to stay, and more importantly that January is here so I can wind down.  "The Season" always seems to come and go so fast.  Frantically acquiring gifts you hope people will like.  For me, I am simple - give me a nice backyard, some drinks, and anyone willing to play yard games.  But now that time is over, soon it will be back to the normal grind.  So let's enjoy 2016 while it lasts for the good it has brought and the silver linings we can find in the world everywhere else.


I was able to put $660 to work in three existing positions across my taxable and Roth accounts.  As much as I want to keep up this pace, it will be hard knowing how I plan to be saving extra cash for unrelated reasons. 

Last month I brought in a total of $262.32 in dividends ($83.10 taxable, $60.29 Roth, and $118.93 in my IRA).  This is an increase from last year ($101.34 total) by 158.58%.  My SEP IRA continues to make this comparison silly, but it will just have to be that way until the end of next year. Its yet another month over $200.

In terms of dividend increases, I realized five this month from McDonald's (MCD), Microsoft (MSFT), Union Pacific (UNP), VF Corp (VFC), and Emerson Electric (EMR).  Raises ranged from less than 1% to  over 10%. 

Next month I will realize one dividend increase from Realty Income (O), the usual minor increase.  For 2016, I have realized 36 dividend increases!  I know of a few next year already, but I have been less than diligent in editing my spreadsheet, so some will just be happy surprises.


The only debt that remains are extremely low interest auto loans.  Looking ahead, I will be saving a solid amount of cash.  This is related to the fact that my wife and I will look to get a house sometime in the next 2 years.  I want to go in with a decent down payment to make sure we get what we want.

I keep being lazy about putting up a beer review, perhaps I just have not had any that remarkable.  Side note, I will be starting a Trivia Night at my side job.  For me its fun, sure there is a little bit of cash out of it, but its more about the fun.

Next month should produce around $80 in dividends, which is a 5% YOY increase.  January has just never been a strong dividend month for me.  Also on an investing note, I am keeping a very diligent eye on commercial real estate markets.  Why?  Something seems off about it, similar in a way to 2007 with the residential market, though the bomb is probably a little smaller...

My portfolio page is currently up to date.


Wow, what a year.  A lot of good things occurred, as did of course many unfortunate things - but lets keep it positive.  On a personal note I upgraded my income, my wife has a less stressful job, we went on a great vacation, and I was still able to put a solid amount of cash into investments.  So let's look at how I did last year.

Last year I had hope I would achieve several goals.  So to reference them they are below.  With the results in RED.
  • $1100 in total dividends in 2016 (taxable and Roth).  Success, beat that number by $60.
  • $250 in Loyal3 dividends in 2016.  Success, more like $323, or 29% higher.
  • End the year with a forward-12 month dividend estimate of over $1200 (between taxable and Roth).  Success, currently sitting a few bucks over that. Way more with IRA...
  • Pay off my wife's student loan debt of $5,500 (ish).  Success, her loans are toast.
  • Get a raise at my current or another job.  Success, got a new job with a raise!  Then I got a strong side job!
  • Continue to exercise 5 times a week at a minimum, and ride my bike places when possible.  Failure.  Part of the failure was due to a bad ankle sprain in the fall.  Overall I am working out 4 to 5 times a week though.  Also biking has faded because my new employer pays me to commute with public transit, and they have no shower (I sweat a lot if I bike anywhere).
Overall that is a 5/6 success rate.  Next year, I plan to have fewer goals; so this section is easier to write and I can focus harder on those goals.


Well, on a personal note my biggest goal is to rectify that bottom goal.  Otherwise, right now my life has been on a good track and I want to keep that momentum.  So here are my goals for next year.

  • Break $2500 in total dividends.
  • Achieve forward dividends for taxable accounts of $1000.
  • Get back into shape, specifically workout 5 times a week.
  • Bike to as many local places as possible, do less driving (already half way there as I do not drive to work).
There are so many ways I can improve my situation, but little changes can make a huge difference.  Time to test out lifestyle and money saving changes!

Hope everyone has a great January and a Happy New Year!
- Dividend Gremlin
- Long all stock tickers mentioned


  1. Nice job in 2016. I especially like your raise and a less stressful job for your wife. Big wins there. Best of luck in 2017, your goals are great.

    1. IH,

      I like those too. Thanks for the comment!

      - Gremlin

  2. You beat all your 2016 goals in dividends investment. Nice job!
    Good luck in 2017. Your goals are solid. Will follow you along.

    1. MU,

      Thanks for following along, lets hope our hard work makes 2017 better yet.

      - Gremlin

  3. Nice income total for the month of December. Whatever fresh capital you can put to work makes a difference down the road. $6000 or $600 it all contributes to your dividend snowball. Thank God for Loyal3, Robinhood and the like that enable small purchases. Good luck in '17. I hope you hit your goals and enjoy biking a lot more :)

    1. DH,

      I agree, all the fresh capital helps that snowball. Loyal3 is great for sure. Thanks for the comment, always appreciated!

      - Gremlin