February has been another crazy month. Lots of steam in still in the engine room and engine refuses to give up. I continue to buy in this market and looking for values that are still there to be found. I’m finally done with the move to Merrill Edge from Robinhood and so far the move has been great.
Overall experience has been great and went on a buying spree at the end of February. Some of my other purchases were covered on the Mid-Feb update.
QCOM (added 12 shares @ $56.715 for a total of 19 shares) -3.74% yield
UPS (added 6 shares @ $105.41 for a total of 7 shares) – 3.15% yield
KO (added 8 shares @ $41.699 for a total of 41 shares) – 3.55% yield
HRL (added 10 shares @ $34.79 for a total of 24 shares) – 1.95% yield
DIS (added 2 shares @ $109.64 for a total of 3 shares) – 1.42% yield
VFC (added 12 shares @ $52.89 for a total of 21 shares) – 3.14% yield
XOM (added 10 shares @ 81.06 for a total of 12 shares) – 3.70% yield
TGT (added 33 shares @ 57.95 for a total of 60 shares) – 4.14% yield
New capital for this month was $3,299.45, not as high as I hope to save/invest because I had some unexpected bills that came up. Its still higher then my average monthly new capital contributions for 2016 by $162.37, thats a success in my book so far. Thats 2 months down, 10 more to go and plenty of time to recover and achieve the 2017 goals. New capital for the year is at $10,220.58.
I’m finally starting to have data for 2016 which I can compare to see the growth that is happening across my portfolio. February 2016, I clocked in $12.70 in dividend income, in 2017, that number jumped to $105.52. More than 7x in growth. My goal is to live off this portfolio in the future so I’m racing as fast as I can to continue to put in growths in the charts.
This was a good month for increases, lots of my holdings increased the dividends bringing in $13.87 in new dividend income for the year 🙂 My portfolio average dividend growth is 8.30%.
Bring on March, we are ready for you.
The portfolio ending balance for February is $55,098.60
I been a loyal user of Robinhood since I got my invite in March 2015 and slowly I have been adding funds to the account. At first I was chasing yields with the mREITS and BDCs and a little bit of swing trading. It was a lot of work and most of these strategies only work in the short term, not in the long term growth that I was looking for.
Dividend Growth Investing
I found out about the power of Financial Independence and Dividend Growth Investing in the beginning of 2016 and have slowly been building my portfolio. I was reading all what the other bloggers were buying, and had in their portfolio. I took all the stocks they owned and weighted and had a starter portfolio.
Now that I had a list of all the stocks, I needed a way to organize all the stocks and saw that everyone was using Spreadsheets to keep track. I needed to find a easier way to organize the data since I was not buying huge lots of stocks and was dollar cost averaging and buying at the most 1-2 shares at a time.
I started doing research on what was available and found out that someone had figured out Robinhood’s API and since I am a developer my self, this is exactly the light I needed and when my internal FI Stocks Tracker was born.
FI STOCKS TOOL
I love charts and to visualize data so I built a couple of scripts to start downloading everything that was on the Robinhood API into MySQL to later on start charting later, keeping track of dividend growth etc.
When you start visualizing all the data, it comes alive and you get a better picture.
Robinhood API does not have all the info that I needed such as a history of dividend payments, if they were qualified or non-qualified, frequency of payments, etc. Luckily, there are tons of sites/places that provide this sort of stock data such as Yahoo! Finance and Nasdaq.
the migration to merrill edge
This is a difficult one, since Merrill Edge does not have a “nice” API to work with. I needed to find a solution to continue downloading the data nightly locally to further analyze and generate beautiful graphs.
Most banks and brokerages have an OFX Server to automate the download of the data into Quicken/Money.
I found resources online that pointed to that server, did some test runs and everything that I needed was inside the export file. Challenge number 2 was to process the individual items and make sure they go to the right place.
Was I happy with Robinhood? Yes, I was as it gave me a starting point to start on this journey, but I was increasing growing concern with the non-existent support and over 2 weeks to get a response.
When the portfolio passed the $50,000, I started the search for another broker that would continue to let me purchase small batches of stocks and Merrill Edge fit the bill, 30 free trades a month if you have over $50,000 in assets with them.
The whole process took a little over a week and half to move. So far it has been a pleasant experience.
January is behind us and on to February, market seems to be cooling off a bit. Even with the cool off, I am still adding new capital and continuing to buy companies that fit my criteria for future income growth.
Started the month off by buying several companies that went into to correction mode, I certainly don’t mind.
ADP (added 3 shares at $95.74, total 4 shares now) Div Yield: 2.39% (last increase in December for 7.55%)
VZ (added 2 shares at $48.42, total 5 shares now) Div Yield: 4.76% (last increase in October for 2.21%)
I have been slow in the purchasing side as I’m the process of doing an ACAT transfer of my brokerage account at Robinhood to Merrill Edge. Part of the move is that portfolio has crossed the $50,000 mark and will qualify for free trades at Merrill Edge under the platinum Rewards.
Don’t get me wrong, I like Robinhood, but the limitation of just an app is really starting to drag along with the inability to reach support for a reasonable amount of time have set off the my limits. I will still have an account at RH so I can utilize some of the functions from their Unofficial API which other brokerages don’t provide.
Account transfer should be completed in the next 3-5 business days and I can’t wait, I have been adding a little bit of cash to the freshly started account so it will be ready when the transfer completes.
Well, January 2017 is finally on the books, this is the second update in January which highlights the buys that were not covered on the mid-month update and all the new contributions.
The stock market is proving resilient to all the bad news, its good and bad news and regardless, I’ll continue to add and buy while others decided to stay on the sidelines. The best money is the money that works for you. Keep Calm and Carry on.
TGT (added 17 shares @ $66 for a total of 27 shares), yielding 3.6%
WBA (added 5 shares @ $84 for a total of 6 shares), yielding 1.8%
LOW (added 3 shares @ $71.35 for a total of 10 shares), yielding 1.96%
GILD (added 8 shares @ $71.60 for a total of 10 shares), yielding 2.63%
MO (added 5 shares @ $69.77 for a total of 21 shares), yielding 3.51%
VFC (added 3 shares @ $51.58 for a total of 9 shares), yielding 3.26%
CSCO (added 8 shares @ $30.20 for a total of 42 shares), yielding 3.47%
On my goals post, I highlighted how in 2016, I averaged $3,137.08 in new capital and 2017, the goal would be to be able to add new working capital to speed up the process. Well, I’m $6,921.13 which came in from side gigs, rental income profit, selling trade lines and savings from earned income, well over my stated goal and I hope to be able to maintain it throughout the year.
January 2016, I received a total of $5.47 in dividends and this year, since discovering the power of dividend investing in the Summer of 2016, I have been very aggressively adding new capital to speed up this second income stream which is starting to pay off. January dividends are clocking in at $52.98, over 10 times last January.
A few holdings that are part of my portfolio announced increases, this is great news as the same shares are earning much more money without me lifting a finger.
SPGI – increased 13.89%
CINF – increased 4.17%
D – increased 7.86%
KMB – increased 5.43%
O – increased 3.95%
ED – increased 2.99%
OHI – increased 1.64%
EPD – increased 1.23%
January kept going up and I thought that there was nothing that could bring the value down for January, but it looks like the forces of gravity are far greater than any Trump Bump and the last few days have been very volatile.
The portfolio briefly touched $50,043.15 on January 25th and is back down to $49,568.14 to finish the month. Still great growth with new capital that was deployed.
The portfolio finished 2016 with a value of $41,953.73. This means that in the first month of the new year, the portfolio size increased ~17% which is great news if I can maintain this throughout the remaining of the year.
Forward dividends are $1482.70, for 2015, total dividends received was $366.01. An impressive change. Goal is to be $3,000+ for total dividends received.