Freedom Portfolio Dividend Income February 2021

February passive income shows compounding at work. All for no effort today.

Great income without lifting a finger. Don’t get me wrong, I’m exerting effort while hiking the Appalachian Trail but I’m not doing a thing for the great income this month. “Getting paid to hike” as one friend put it. Here are the Freedom Portfolio dividends and reinvestment details for February:

O (Realty Income) $60.82

ABBV (Abbvie Inc) $584.67

OKE (ONEOK Inc) $3,345.16

T (AT&T Inc) $1,054.89

Total for February         $5,045.54 WOW! I love it

Income growth is the goal. Goals are being met one compound period at a time. Comparing this month to the same month last quarter we can see the magic of compounding at work. $173.62 growth. That’s another $43 a month to spend or reinvest. Since my expenses are covered, I’ll let it ride. That’s another $694.48 annual income just from these four holdings in one month of Quarterly dividends. All for no effort. That’s freedom.

Without change in any component except reinvestment of last Quarter’s dividend and stock price, OKE’s income grew $93.16. That’s a trend of $100 per quarter growth that hopefully will continue throughout the life of this company.

Recent earnings and news have me very excited to hold this cash machine well into old age. The only downside to holding OKE for me is the stock price growth of over 63% since last Quarter. A great problem to have but it does decrease reinvestment growth. But its still yielding greater than 8%!

ONEOK being such a large part of the Freedom Portfolio, I need to think about when I would consider rebalancing, if ever. A large stock price gain may make it attractive to halve my position into another great holding or two. Time will tell.

ABBVIE has a 20% return since last Quarter and recent earnings, new product approvals and overall great business outlook make this a great yielding (4.78%) growth stock without the volatility of the NASDAQ.

AT&T is still my favorite position. Everyone continues to underprice this Stalwart of the health of our national infrastructure. Coupled with what I see as a very competitive position in media, I wish I had more capital to throw at it. The price weakness makes this my best long-term compounding holding.

As for Realty Income, it pays the cell phone bill each month just like clockwork and adds another .82 cents. Reliable as hell with growth that will continue to chip away at monthly expenses even with inflation.

Great month, great trend. I’m happy and confident the Freedom Portfolio’s income will continue to grow and fund my lifestyle of freedom and adventure.

How did you do this month?

Are your goals being met? Do you have goals?

If not, make some now. Make them reasonable, make them attainable but set some goal to provide the positive feedback necessary to motivate you.

Thanks for reading

Freedom Portfolio Income January 2021

January dividends are in. $2,464.24 total. Another great month!

January dividends are in and it’s another great month! Hopefully now that the election is over (no comment) and with the New Year we can all settle down, focus on our finances, and enjoy the journey to financial independence.

On to the dividends:

O (Realty Income)    $60.57

MO (Altria)   $969.99

PM (Philip Morris)  $742.58

IRM (Iron Mountain) $691.10

Total: $2,464.24

As you can see, I like the tobacco stocks. Great income and I am confident it will continue for a long time.

Iron Mountain is one of my favorites. I was a customer for a long time, so I understand their business well. That understanding is important to make such a large bet. I believe even with the recent trend towards Cloud Computing, Iron Mountain will remain viable. Too many companies will still need data centers and a lot are going to want to remain independent of the big guys.

These dividends are reinvesting so stay tuned as we watch them grow and grow until I need them at least 5 years from now.

How did you do this month?

What are your income goals and how are you building a portfolio to reach them?

What macro-economic factors are you looking at as it pertains to your holdings?

Thanks for reading!

How I let Diversification Suffer for a Stronger Portfolio

Diversification isn’t always the goal. Successful investing is. Read how I let one holding represent 25% of the Freedom Portfolio.

I believe in and have told others to diversify, diversify, diversity their portfolios. I understand the need for multiple holdings, multiple industries and even (maybe) multiple countries for my positions.

I now find myself in a position of what I call strength in my portfolio in that I am highly confident it will meet my financial goals and continue my enjoyment of life with Financial Independence. That strength and confidence comes from VIOLATING the principal of diversification.

Warren Buffet is famously quoted as saying, “Diversification is protection against ignorance. It makes little sense if you know what you are doing.” I am not saying I am an expert, but I do think I’ve spent enough time analyzing my holdings, their industries and the markets that I’m comfortable with ONEOK, Inc. (OKE) representing 25.37% of the Freedom Portfolio.

I bought my first position in OKE in April of 2016 as a new position when I bought 342 shares at $28.92 for a $9,890.64 investment. I thought of a position back then as a $10k holding. I figured getting into each position at $10k would be guard rails insuring diversification.

What happened? I watched ONEOK as an equity position increase in price from that initial $28.92 per share to a high of $74.87 in December of 2019. A 250% return on a dividend investment in three years. Awesome!

During that 3 years OKE also returned $2,568.74 in dividends. For holding it just 3 years and a quarter, OKE returned a quarter of my investment in income. Income I reinvested each quarter compounding my returns.

Fast forward to this year, OKE crashed just like the rest of the market and hit a low of $21.81 per share. A horrible event if I had sold. Instead, I took a hard look at the company again, read a lot from the community and decided to invest more. This time I was going in hard and invested $69,971.56 for another 2,564 shares at $27.29. Was I crazy? I just threw everything I knew about diversification out the window.  I also thought I was making a critical move for my family’s wealth building future.

In June of this year, I invested another chunk and bought another 315 shares at $31.58 for a total of $9,947.70. I just could not resist the 12-14% percent yield on a company I was willing to buy at a 5% yield. Talk about cheap. This fit all my criteria for what I consider a core holding.

Altogether, I have $89,809.90 invested in OKE right now representing 3,577.7094 shares including 356.709 from reinvesting dividends. OKE is currently trading at ~$38-42 range per share giving me a total position around $143k for a 62% total return in just 4 and a half years. ON A DIVIDEND INVESTMENT!

Folks, that is winning.

Looking forward, I see no real issues with OKE continuing to meet their dividend. Each Quarter I will see almost another 100 shares through reinvestment or $3,500 per quarter moving forward in dividend income. I will keep reinvesting for the next five years until I start drawing the income from the Freedom Portfolio.

If OKE reaches a price that would push the yield down to a more normal 3-6% range, I would probably find other stocks to reinvest the dividends into but for now I’ll stick with the 10% yield. If some information comes up that would change my mind about OKE’s prospects in their business or they cut their dividend I’d probably consider rebalancing but for now I have the confidence OKE will continue to be a very large part of my life in Financial Independence.

What are your thoughts on diversification?

Do you think you would ever let a single holding represent a Quarter of your portfolio?

Got a similar story of a home run you’ve hit?

Did the downturn in the Spring help or hurt you in the long run?

Thanks for reading.

Freedom Portfolio Income December 2020

Check out the dividend income in the Freedom Portfolio for December.

Wow what a year 2020 has been. Pandemic, economic doom, stock market drop of over 30% and I retired. Not all bad and proof that if you are financially prepared even life’s tough times can be easier.

This month is my low month for dividend income on a quarterly basis but still a fantastic month for cash incoming. All dividends are still reinvesting (except for RDS.b because of their dividend cut). My general rule is to sell any position cutting their dividend but RDS.b should bounce back nicely and it still had a good yield after the cut. Its good to have investing rules but even better to be flexible when you have put in the research.

On to the dividends:

RDS.b (Royal Dutch Shell) $333.00

EMR (Emerson Electric) $104.59

JNJ (Johnson and Johnson) $102.23

CVX (Chevron) $317.59

O (Realty Income) $60.22

ADM (Archer Daniels Midland) $110.35

LMT (Lockheed Martin) $39.72

SO (Southern Company) $260.42

CHCT (Community Health Trust) $20.02

DOW (DOW Inc.) $266.93

XOM (Exxon Mobil) $232.07

Total for December $1,847.18

What a great month. I love seeing this cash come in each month especially when I am confident in all of my holdings to continue paying their dividends and raising them over the long term.

How did you do this month?

What are your income goals and how are you building a portfolio to reach them?

Thanks for reading!

Projecting Dividend Income

Watch how I plan to grow my portfolio from $40k in income to $80k in income over 5 years. All passively.

You want to know what real freedom is? For me, it is watching my income grow while I do absolutely nothing while the businesses I own earn money and reward shareholders. The rest of freedom is pursuing a life of adventure, enjoying family or doing nothing at all. All things I sacrificed early in my career to earn enough to save enough to be retired at 55.

If your serious about living off passive dividend income in retirement, at some point before you retire you should have sat down and taken a hard look at your holdings. That hard look includes deep diving into a:

  1. Reasonable understanding of where the company’s revenue is made
  2. Where profits come from
  3. How capital spending leads to growth
  4. How much free cash flow is really available for shareholders
  5. The dividend’s coverage ratio and what that means

Once you have done that, regularly keeping an eye on what the investing community says about the stock will make more sense. If you just read analysis or pundits, you have no basis to agree or disagree with whether you should take a position or keep holding a stock.

If you’re not willing to put in the work, stick with index funds.

When you have done the work and you think you know your portfolio the next question is will the dividend income meet my future needs. To do this with any chance of success in reaching the crossover point, where your income exceeds your expenses, you must make some guess as to where you believe the income will be at points in the future.

Otherwise, you could find yourself welcoming shoppers at WalMart when you planned on being at the beach. Not a place I hope to find myself in.

Projecting that income is not an exact science. It requires variables that do not remain static over a period. You must make some assumption on stock prices, dividend growth rates and even whether you think the company can safely pay the dividend in the future. 

To keep it simple, let us look at generic numbers over a single year with a $1000 investment. Assume 100 shares of XYZ at $10 per share with a current 5% dividend yield reinvested each quarter. We want to know how much that 5% means in real dollars for the year.

In the 1st quarter, we get 12.5 cents per share for our 100 shares for a total dividend of $12.50. Those shares are reinvested at a price per share of $10.10 reflecting a 1% gain in stock price for the quarter. We now have 1.24 new shares.

In the 2nd quarter, we get 12.5 cents per share for our 101.24 shares for a total dividend of $12.655. An increase in income of 10.5 cents. Those shares are reinvested at a price per share of $10.10 for  a flat quarter. We now have 1.25 new shares.

In the 3rd quarter, we get 12.5 cents per share for our 102.49 shares for a total dividend of $12.81. An increase in income of 15.5 cents. Those shares are reinvested at a price per share of $9.9 reflecting a 1.98% loss for the quarter in market price per share. We now have 1.294 new shares.

In the 4th quarter, we get 12.5 cents per share for our 103.784 for a total dividend of $12.97. An increase in income of 16 cents. Those shares are reinvested at a price per share of $10.12 reflecting ~1% gain for the quarter. We now have 1.28 new shares.

So for the year, we project $50.94 in total dividends. 94 cents of increased income and total new shares of 105.064.

This scenario included no increase in dividend. Every position I hold has at least an annual increase of 2% with some increasing their dividend by over 10% per year. I ignore dividend growth when I project income because it isn’t guaranteed, and I like a natural conservative variable to give myself a crossover cushion. For some real numbers, because no one is counting on retiring with just $1000 of investments if the same scenario is applied.

At $10,000 invested you would have $509.40 in annual income.

At $100,000 invested you would have $5,094.00 in annual income. The first $100k is the hardest but with that income it starts growing faster and fasters.

At $500,000 invested you would have $25,470 in annual income. That is starting to cover some serious expenses.

At the mythical $1,000,000 invested you would have $50,940 in income. Probably not enough for most people to retire at a lifestyle but lifestyle is your choice.

My personal projections for the freedom portfolio in 2021 are to generate $40,436.70 in dividend income. 100% of that without any new Capital and without me lifting one finger in anything resembling work. Just the way I like my income, free of effort.

In the next 5 years while the portfolio sits and reinvests, and dividends are increased I conservatively project the Freedom Portfolio to throw off over $80,000.00 in annual income. $80k without working and even when I am asleep.

Stick around and watch how that works out for me. Maybe we can all learn something.

How do you project your income?

Thanks for reading!

Whats with the Appalachian Trail references?

If you’ve read every word I’ve written, not that much yet, you’ve seen vague reference to the Appalachian Trail. Why? My personal obsession is backpacking. Specifically backpacking along the Appalachian Trail. I have been hiking the AT since I was about 9 in boy scouts. I’ve kept it up no matter where I was in my career and now that I’m retired, I’ve really gone crazy. I have hiked over 900 miles in 2020 and in February of 2021 I plan to begin a thru-hike of the entire length of the AT. 2,200 miles from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Mt Katahdin in Maine.

In addition to hearing about how I manage my retirement income you will get bored to death with periodic updates on my hiking endeavors. Join along. Maybe it will inspire you to save more to achieve financial independence faster so you can have the freedom to indulge your obsession.

Thanks for reading

Deep dive into the Freedom Portfolio

My Freedom Portfolio is an IRA made up of the rollover balances from my last two employers’ 401k plans. Since I just retired March 1st, I had a particularly good opportunity to buy in near the bottom of the Spring decline in the markets by rolling over my last 401k in early April. That has solidified my personal projections guiding my retirement income.

I purposely chose my IRA to make public because I feel most people have or will experience a similar scenario nearing and in retirement. Transactions inside this portfolio have no tax consequences so some decisions are easier.

The current market value (fluctuates daily with the market) is $547,040.36. There are 17 equity positions in well known, successful businesses. The current yield based on 2020 projected (mostly actual) dividend income is 5.1%. That 5.1% represents over $28 thousand dollars in dividend income I will receive by the end of this year.

All this income was and will continue to be re-invested for the next 5 years at a minimum. I will start tapping into it when I turn 60. By that time I anticipate the income to grow way more than double its current amount. Stick around and watch it grow in real time as I blog about it each month.

Here are current positions along with market values and projected current year dividend income:

Position                                                         Mkt Value          Annual Dividend 2020

T (AT&T Inc)                                                  $59,013.25         $3,467.38

ABBV (Abbie Inc)                                          $47,219.02         $1,536.24

MO (Altria Group Inc.)                                $45,138.41         $2,104.61

ADM (Archer Daniels Midland)                 $15,169.74         $435.03

CVX (Chevron Corp)                                    $22,125.10         $1,086.61

CHCT (Community Healthcare Trust)       $2,158.89           $78.40

DOW (Dow Inc)                                            $20,287.03         $612.14

EMR (Emerson Electric Co.)                       $15,719.78         $408.60

XOM (Exxon Mobile Corp)                         $10,653.70         $915.46

IRM (Iron Mountain Inc REIT)                   $30,660.74         $1,241.96

JNJ (Johnson & Johnson)                           $14,994.54         $398.17

LMT (Lockheed Martin Corp)                    $6,055.60           $158.87

OKE (Oneok Inc)                                          $134,056.77       $9,553.30

PM (Philip Morris Intl)                                $48,311.07         $2,109.06

O (Realty Income Corp REIT)                     $15,641.39         $703.83

RDS.B (Royal Dutch Shell)                          $34,650.00         $1,514.56

SO (Southern Co.)                                       $25,179.41         $1,013.50

Total                                                              $547,034.44       $28,109.17             

Looking at the Freedom portfolio one quickly notices that 24.5% is represented by one holding OKE (Oneok Inc). I did not intend to overweight this much in one company and may need to think about rebalancing in the future but right now I am confident in this investment. I have huge capital gains on it, I have huge dividend yields and I feel the dividend is safe, so I am letting it ride into retirement.

The other serious weighting is by industry. The freedom portfolio has $201,485.57 in Oil and Gas representing 38.5% of the total.

I spend a lot of time on this portfolio, following the businesses, listening to the community and right now I am comfortable with these decisions. This portfolio is a key to my retirement, and I like it.

Of course, all these numbers fluctuate daily as the market churns with volatility. A patient investor can look past a 30% market drop like we had earlier in the year and watch their investments rise as it recovers. Whether that takes one year or many years, as long as the dividend is paid, I’m happy. My job is to assess the business as events occur as best I can. Not rocket science but does take some diligence that pays off with multi-generational financial independence.

That is all for now. Ill do one of these deep dives once a Quarter or so. Future ones will allow some comparisons by Quarter etc. They will also give readers a good sense of managing a real portfolio and hopefully motivate you to your own dividend success.

Thanks for reading.

Freedom Portfolio Income November 2020

What a great month! Since two of my largest holdings, OKE and T, pay out this second month of the Quarter is always my best. With recent price appreciation future reinvestments will go down but the buy in yields are awesome. I’ll cover details of specific holdings in future posts but for now here is what incoming cash flow the freedom portfolio had this month:

ABBV (Abbvie Inc.)          $524.49

O (Realty Income Corp REIT)       60.00

OKE (ONEOK Inc.)           $3,252.00 (wow)

T (AT&T Inc)       $1,035.42

Total for November:       $4,871.92

All these stocks have seen great capital (price) appreciation with the past couple weeks’ market volatility. Feels good but not necessarily conducive to high reinvestment rates over the next couple years. I am more interested in the growing income stream than stock prices going up.

How did you do this month?

What are your income goals and how are you building a portfolio to meet them?

Thanks for reading

Freedom Portfolio Income October 2020

Probably my favorite time of the month is when I get to look back and total the dividends I’ve received. Solid income with more diversification than a paycheck. Here is what happened this past month:

Realty Income (O) $59.77

Altria (MO) $950.09

Philip Morris (PM) $731.55

Iron Mountain (IRM) $675.68

Total for October: $2,417.09

Not a bad month at all. Everything was automatically re-invested for a long-term compounding effect. I’d compare to the same period last year, but I had a large roll-over this year upon retirement. In interest of keeping my trends clean, I’m starting fresh with this portfolio’s data.

This portfolio is doing very well and is projected to generate an increasing income stream well into the future. I’ve got five years at a minimum before I need to tap into the income stream and even then it will continue to grow with dividend increases and some level of reinvestment.

I’ll save projections for other posts. Hope your income stream is growing and you are on your way to financial independence and freedom.

And so it begins…

I’m retired! Yay! Cue the horns, balloons and confetti.

Welcome. Did you know Financial Independence (FI) is freedom? I am going to begin this story explaining how I have come to understand this truth. Along the way, I’ll throw in details about how I retired at 55 and how I plan to fund my retirement.

I’m warning in advance this site will have a lean toward dividends as the primary leg of the retirement income stool. Gonna state right up front this isn’t about safe withdrawal rates (swr) out of a depleting portfolio. This is about investing in income generating businesses and living off of that income stream along with the other legs and glue that bind a real family’s retirement plan.

I’m glad your here. This is my first blog so be kind as I learn. Thank you.