Sunday, February 27, 2011

Weekend Reading - First Post


Many of the quality investing blogs I try and follow throughout the week all post a "Weekend Reading List" that highlight all of the best articles others have written in the past seven days.  I plan to follow their example, and will be posting my own weekend roll-up of articles that I think will bring the most value to you as a fellow investor.

This first list will be short (want to get it posted before I head to church), but in future weeks expect it to be a bit longer.

1) Dividend Monk - an excellent article on "9 Steps to Build and Manage a Dividend Portfolio"

2) The Dividend Pig - an article on one of my favorite companies at the moment - "A Bad Year for Abbott, A Great Time for Investors"

3) DividendsValue - "23 Stocks With A Vision of Higher Dividends"

Those three articles will definitely help us continue to learn and grow our knowledge of investing.

That's all for this week.  Thanks for reading,


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Five More Dividend Picks for 2011


For the past two weeks I highlighted some quality dividend ideas for 2011: Abbott Laboratories (ABT), Midstream Magellan Partners (MMP), Lowe’s (LOW), Southern Company (SO), and AT&T (T). This week I will examine briefly five more ideas for 2011, rounding out the list to 10 solid dividend companies that are worth considering this year.

Waste Management (WM)
Waste Management is the nation's largest provider of collection, transfer, recycling, disposal, and waste-to-energy services serving nearly 20 million customers.  Why I like it as a dividend pick this year - 1) It just had another dividend increase of 8% on Dec. 16th, making it the 7th consecutive year of increasing its quarterly payout to its shareholders; 2) Americans are not going to settle for not having their trash picked up, and WM is a solid company to satsify this unending need.

Kimberly Clark (KMB)
Kimberly-Clark is one of the top companies in the global health and hygiene category selling bathroom tissues, diapers, feminine products, and paper towels. Some of its most popular brands include Kleenex, Scott, Huggies, Pull-Ups, and Kotex.  Why I like it as a dividend pick year - Easy: 38 years of dividend increases +  a solid company + 4.29% yield. 2) Look at the brands listed above. When your product - ie 'tissue' is known in homes across America as your brand, ie 'Kleenex', your company is not going anywhere for awhile.

Walmart (WMT)
Wal-Mart is the largest retailer in the world with over $400 Billion in annual revenue. Everyone knows and has heard of this company. Enough said.  Why I like it as a dividend pick this year - 1) It's unmatched scale, competitive advantage, and wide economic moat...not to mention it's current price of $52 is much lower than its fair value price, which is closer to say, $64.

McDonald’s (MCD)
McDonalds has 32,700 locations in 117 countries. Like Walmart, McDonalds is huge, to put it plainly.  Compare Mcdonald's TTM of sales (in millions) at $23,834 to YUM brands at $11,343.  Why I like it as a dividend pick this year - 1) 33 straight years of dividend increases. 2) Five Year Div Growth - 28.8%. Finally, as if you needed any more convincing, (and not that it should be used solely to make your decision), but according to 25 out of 25 analysists from Walstreet expect it to outperform the market this year.

Johnson and Johnson (JNJ)
Johnson & Johnson stands alone as the world's largest and most diverse health-care company. The company comprises three divisions: pharmaceutical, medical devices and diagnostics, and consumer.   Why I like it as a dividend pick this year - It's stock price is cheap right now.  Forward P/E of 11.7.  That's all I'll say for now. JNJ is a buy.

Of the 10 companies mentioned above, I currently own four in my income portfolio (See a complete list of my holdings here). This year I hope to add three more companies.  The securities mentioned above are all on my watchlist of potential buys.  I plan to initiate new positions once I have performed my diligence and as my allocation allows.

That completes the list of ten great dividend ideas for 2011.  I will go further into depth on each company throughout the year, but now you have a starting point to get you thinking.  What are your thoughts?

Here's to our pursuit,

Dividend Partisan

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Accumulating Wealth: Part 1


This is the first article in my 'Accumulating Wealth' Series. In this article I will reveal The Only Two Ways to Increase Your Wealth.

When you think about the idea of increasing your wealth, and the struggle that so many of us go through day in and day out trying to 'make it', trying to save, trying to invest, and eventually trying to retire, all of these pursuits are essentially our attempt at one thing: increasing our wealth. Increasing our wealth to a point where we can live comfortably for the rest of our lives.

Now, to do that - to successfully 'increase your wealth' - it really boils down to a simple, straightforward formula. In fact, at the lowest common denominator, after everything is removed and you are left with what we in the military call the "Bottom Line Up Front," there are only two ways to do it:

Increase your income, or decrease your expenses.

That's it. It essentially is that simple. Increase your income, or decrease your expenses.

I hope you are not disappointed because you were expecting some profound revelation that no one has heard of or written about before. However, despite its simplicity, so many of us never are actually able to accomplish this. That's why I feel it is relevant to talk about, and will be spending the rest of this series highlighting how one can achieve this.

Now, decreasing your expenses, I believe, is easier to attack than increasing your income so for this first post I will begin by discussing this particular aspect of the principle.

The first step in decreasing your expenses is to understand where exactly your income is going each month. Without a clear picture of the flow of your $s, you will have a difficult time formulating your plan to decrease them. Understanding where your income is going starts by having a budget. A budget, essentially is nothing more than your way of tracking the various places you are spending your money, and then setting limits for each category. Some common categories for your budget are: your mortgage or your rent, car payment, groceries, gas, cellphone bill, utilities, entertainment, etc. "How to Budget your Money" is a great starting article to get you thinking, and "Planning a Family or Personal Budget" has an example excel Budget Spreadsheet to help you actually begin your personal budgeting process. The internet is full of information on budgeting. Take advantage of it!

Decrease your expenses.  Three words that may sound easy, but to truly be successful takes a disciplined approach, a thought out plan, and continued monitoring.  In the end, however, your efforts will be worth your time, and you'll soon be reaping the benefits of increased wealth!

That's all for now.  More to follow on the other side of this principle (increasing your income) in the next post,


Monday, February 21, 2011

Blogroll Added


I recently added a Blogroll Tab to the site.  It highlights some high-quality blogs and investing sites that I visit on a regular basis to perform research and gather information.

Send me an email if you would like to be added.  

Continue to perform your due diligence and rely on quality information before making your investment decisions!  If it were easy, everyone would do it.


Sunday, February 20, 2011

1,000 Pageviews


I just wanted to take a second and thank all of you for visiting my site.  We just passed 1,000 pageviews, of which I am very excited about.

The site has been in operation for only about one month, and will now continue to be updated on a regular basis.  I plan to add at a minimum of two new dividend-investing articles a week.  I also will do my best to respond to your comments, and am always looking for ways to improve both the site and my abilities as a dividend investor.

Together we can grow the seeds that will one day lead to financial independence.  Thanks for reading,


Friday, February 18, 2011

Three More Dividend Plays for 2011


Last week I highlighted two great dividend plays for 2011, Abbott Laboratories (ABT) and Midstream Magellan Partners (MMP). This week I will look briefly at three more high quality, dividend-paying companies.

Lowe's (LOW): Lowe's is the second-largest home-improvement retailer in the world and operates about 1,700 stores throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The company's stores offer products and services for home decorating, maintenance, repair, and remodeling. Lowe's targets retail do-it-yourself and do-it-for-me customers, as well as commercial business clients. It is currently trading at $26.12 a share and has a forward PE ratio of 15.8 making it attractively valued at the moment. Phillip Davidson of American Century Equity Income (TWEIX), states Lowe's is "buying back stock and has started much more aggressive dividend payout strategies. In fact, Lowe's recently increased its dividend by more than 20%." Current yield of 1.7%.

Southern Company (SO): Southern generates and distributes electricity to more than 4.4 million customers in the Southeast. It owns four electric utilities in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi and has more than 42,000 megawatts of generating capacity. It currently has a forward P/E of 13.9 with a yield of 4.81%. SO was recently upgraded from NEUTRAL to BUY at BofA/Merill. SO currently makes up 6.74% of my portfolio. If the price drops to $35, I would consider adding to my position.

AT&T (T): AT&T is the dominant local phone company in 22 states, serving about 48 million local phone lines and 16 million high-speed Internet users. The firm also provides phone and data services, such as Web hosting and data transport, to businesses nationwide, notably large corporations. AT&T owns 100% of AT&T Mobility, the second-largest U.S. wireless carrier with 90 million customers. Richard Dalhberg and Scott Davis of Columbia Dividend Income (LBSAX) believe "there's another step to the wireless story. There's more data use ahead. And AT&T has one of the best networks in the US." With a yield of 6.04%, you don't need much capital appreciation.

Lowe's and AT&T are currently on my watchlist of stocks and will most likely be added to my portfolio this year.  See a complete list of my holdings here

Full disclosure: Long ABT, SO.  

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

New Series: 'Accumulating Wealth'


Many of us are interested in accumulating wealth, what that means, and how to actually accomplish it. Yet despite our interest, very few of us are actually successful in doing so.  In fact, according to an article on entitled, "Will You Ever Be Able To Retire?" it notes,

"Surveys repeatedly have found that many Americans have woefully underfunded their personal retirement savings and remain largely clueless about how much more they will need to support themselves once they stop working."

As a result, I have decided to start a new series entitled: Accumulating Wealth.

I will post a new article each Wednesday under the series' title.  First post will be next Wednesday, 23 February.  In each article I will share my thoughts with you about Accumulating Wealth, and as always I am interested in hearing yours.

Now, given that this site's focus, and my personal passion, is Dividends, and our Mission is the development of a Five-Star Portfolio achieved through Disciplined Dividend Investing, the articles will also highlight a Dividend Stock or idea to help you accumulate wealth.

That's all for now.  Here's to our pursuit!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Two Dividend Investing Ideas for 2011


The S&P 500 Index has gained around 20% annually for the past two years.  That being said, many stocks no longer appear undervalued as they did back in the end of 2008 and beginning of 2009.  As a result, many are wondering where to invest now.

Here are a few options I am currently considering:

1) Abbott Laboratories (ABT): One of the reasons Abbott is a great buy right now, despite its attractive stock price, is two 'macro' ideas: First, Abbott is able to pass along its price increases to its customers without hurting its sales.   Abbott sustains its growth through making and selling a wide array of pharmaceuticals and medical devices, and has a decent drug pipeline; all reasons to believe Abbott can sustain its growth throughout the long term.  Second, Abbott, similar to Johnson and Johnson (JNJ), is a strong company with strong brands and unique products.  As a $74 billion health care conglomerate, Abbott has created a wide economic moat, and currently pays a healthy dividend of 3.86%

2) Magellan Midstream Partners LP (MMP): Magellan is a master limited partnership, and as a result, is an income-producing giant.  As one of the nations biggest pipelines for refined petroleum, it also can benefit from inflation through an increased demand for fuel as the economy recovers.  Furthermore, Magellan's inflation-indexed tariff business model provides opportunities for cash-flow despite a sluggish economy.  Finally, MMP boasts a large dividend of 5.31%.

Both Abbott and Magellan Midstream Partners are two solid companies worth considering this year.  As always, perform your due diligence before making an investment!

What are your thoughts on ABT and MMP?

Finally, I will continue to provide a new post each weekend.  Over the month of February I will continue look at some great dividend plays for 2011, and will highlight a few new companies each week.  Thanks for reading.

Full disclosure: Long ABT, JNJ.  See a complete list of my holdings under my 'Portfolio' Tab

Saturday, February 5, 2011

2011 Goals


Listed below are my Dividend Portfolio's goals for 2011:

1) Annualized Dividend Income - $2000.

     - My 2010 dividend income was $512.  Therefore to achieve my goal, I will need to earn an additional $1488; either through additional share purchases or through dividend increases.  I hope to achieve this goal through the following monthly investment additions:
    Jan-May: $1500
    Jun-Dec: $2000

2) Four new stocks purchased.

      - I currently own 11 stocks.  Therefore to achieve my goal, I will need to purchase 4 new companies.  Upon writing this, I have already made one new purchase, Cincinnati Financial Corporation (CINF).  This new purchase now represents 5.4% of my portfolio and 5.6% of income.

Those are my two 'overview' goals for 2011.  Here's to a great year!