January 2016 Dividend Update

Two Purchases for January 2016 (Amgen and 3M)

During the month, I made another purchase of Amgen (AMGN).  It seemed to be a good time to buy and it starts me on the way to expanding the number of holdings in the healthcare sector.  I discuss my original September purchase in this article, and my January purchase was made for the same basic reasons, though at a slightly higher price.

On 01/11/16, I purchased AMGN at $144.50 and 2.77% yield.  AMGN was brought up to 2.79% NAV weight and 1.89% dividend weight.  I want to cap this stock’s allocation at about 3%, so I don’t have room to add much more.  Should the price drop significantly, I will consider one more purchase. Continue reading →


Dividend Evaluation Tool – Test Drive

As I venture further into dividend growth investing and read the thoughts of those more experienced than myself, I have been focusing more on company quality and dividend safety.

In early February of 2016, I read an article penned by David Van Knapp on the Daily Trade Alert website. I have followed Dave’s articles for some time, both on DTA and on Seeking Alpha. I enjoy the color coded and/or number weighted criteria lists that he often uses to help evaluate a dividend stock. Continue reading →

Dividend Progress – 2015 Year End

December 2015 Dividend Activity 

  • In December, I had zero activity.  No transactions or dividend changes.
  • Dividend income for the month increased by 49.4% compared to December of last year.  Most of the increase came from additional purchases during the year.  Total income for the month also hit a milestone that I have waited several years for.  Kind of a nice feeling.

Annual Progress – 2015

Continue reading →

November 2015 – Dividend Progress

Dividend Income Progress

  • American Electric Power (AEP) provided a 5.7% increase (ex-div 11/6).  Not really too bad for a utility stock.  I’ll take it.
  • Emerson Electric (EMR) provided a 1.1% increase (ex-div 11/3).  EMR is a bit of a troubled company at the moment.  Yup, it’s cyclical, but this is a pretty lousy increase.  This company is now “on the bench”.  Another increase like that and I will strongly consider selling.  It has an extremely dependable dividend history, and I think it’s fair to give it some time to turn around.   EMR seems inclined to keep their payout ratio below the 50-ish mark.  If earnings don’t improve, I suspect I won’t see much in the way of dividend increases.  That might take a couple years.  We shall see.
  • Microsoft (MSFT) bumped it up nicely by providing a 16.1% increase (ex-div 11/17)
  • McDonald’s (MCD) came through with a pretty subdued, but not horrible, increase of 4.7% (ex-div 11/27).  They’re trying to make some changes, so I’ll give them some time.
  • Add to Ventas (VTR):  On 11/09, I added to our Ventas holdings at just under $50 and a 5.84% current yield.  Ventas was taken from about 1% weight to just over 3%.  The blog entry on this purchase can be found here.

Continue reading →

November Purchase – Ventas (VTR)

Stock Add for November (Ventas – VTR)

On 11/09, I significantly increased our holdings in Ventas (VTR).  Prior to purchase, Ventas represented about 1% NAV weight.  It now represents just over 3%.  Shares were purchased in 3 different retirement accounts at just under $50/share, providing a yield of 5.84%.  It’s current allocation weight is about where I want it to be.    Continue reading →

September 2015 Update

A single purchase for September

During September I made a small purchase of Amgen (AMGN).  It seemed to be a good time to buy and it starts me on the way to expanding the number of holdings in the healthcare sector.  I discuss my purchase in this article.

Year over year dividend comparison for September 2015

  • Dividend income for September was 66.4% above last year’s monthly total (and a record month)
  • On a YTD basis through September, dividend income was 40.8% above last year.

Continue reading →

September Stock Purchase – Amgen

In Search of Dividend Growth

The dividend stocks in my accounts and the accounts of Mrs. Gravy are almost exclusively slower dividend growers.  They are either the stalwarts like JNJ, or higher yield/slow growers like T, SO and REIT stocks.  In general, I don’t see many increases at or above 10%.  My plan is to find a few holdings that are potentially better at pumping up the income growth, just for a little balance.  If I can invest where capital gains might come along with the dividends, so much the better.  That old total return thing, you know.   Continue reading →

August 2015 – Purchases & Income Progress

Tiny Bites of The Pie

I had little to report for July, so I didn’t.  Progress is slowing.  Our portfolio is getting knocked down hard from its peak.  No doubt, it’s a bit disheartening.  Still, the income rolls in… and that’s what it’s really about. It’s difficult for me to get excited about buying much of anything so I’m slowing it down some.  I did however complete rather small purchases on two stocks that that should help improve dividend growth in the future. Continue reading →

June 2015 Update

All Is Quiet in Gravyville

I wish I had some exciting new purchases to write about, but I’ve got nothing.  I haven’t made a purchase since mid-May.  I may be experiencing a crisis of confidence in myself, or it may be that I’ve become uncomfortable with valuations.  Perhaps a little of both.  The overriding concern for me Continue reading →

May 2015 Update

Moving Forward – Slowly

By this time in the year, I had hoped that our portfolio’s dividend growth would have progressed further than it has.  I continue making progress in the area of forward dividend income, though it feels as if I’m walking up a sand dune.  I must admit that I struggle to find additional investments that I am comfortable with.  For May, I made a single add and received 4 small to moderate dividend increases.  Not all bad, but I will continue with my efforts to improve.  I’ve been keeping my eye on utilities and REIT stocks as of late.  As a group, these stocks are being pressured by fears of a rate hike. Continue reading →