• Wow! What a week! (again!). This week I officially bought The Dividend Monk (you can read the full story here). I started to work on this acquisition in January, I’m very happy the deal is closed can I can move forward. I have set monthly income goals for my websites in order to be able to leave next year around America. After three months, my results are in line with my projections. I hope this purchase will increase my passive income and confirm that I will be financially free in 2016.

    In the meantime, I’m still working 2 evenings per week + 1 full day on my blogs (this is why I can do so much lately!). I intend to keep up with this pace until I leave. Therefore, I have about 14 months of hard work in front of me. During those hard days of work, I always take a few minutes to read articles across the web.

     

    What to read for the weekend:

    Boomer & Echo talks about the very first account you should open when you start saving: your kid’s account! I’m the first one to be late on this topic (I opened my RESP account for my kids when I had my third one only!), but over the past three years, I’ve put closed to 10K (9.9K to be exact) and I have another $1,000 for my godson (I want to make sure my kids’ cousin go to school too!).

    Dividend Growth Investors explains why stock charts are misleading. Here’s my favorite quote from this article: “It won’t matter whether Johnson & Johnson is selling at a 52 week high, or 52 week low.” I never thought stock price mattered when it comes down to buying the right stock.

    Dividend Ladder covers Chubb Corporation (CB). I know it’s a dividend aristocrats but sales growth are close to… nothing over 10 years. I’m not convinced it’s the best investment at the moment. But that’s my 2 cents.

    Dividend Mantra brings the topic of ethic while investing. There is definitely a large spectrum to ethic for anything and investing is no different. It’s pretty obvious when you talk about cigarette makers but is it the same thing with Coca-Cola and MikeyD selling junk food? Or what about Wal-Mart paying their employees minimal wages? I don’t know where the line stops. I guess it stops when you can sleep at night with your choices!

    Dividend Earner brings an interesting strategy on the table for Canadian Investors; why not buying Canadian dividend stocks in US to receive US money?  It’s a great way to protect your money from the US dollar, never thought of that!

    Bert from Dividend Diplomats analyses Archer-Daniels Midland (ADM). For those who don’t know, ADM process oilseeds, corn, wheat and cocoa and manufacture different kind of vegetable oil. Good valuation, payout ratio under control and an growing dividend. Not to mention they are in a good industry.

    Dividend Hawk talks about Kraft being bought by the same group as Heinz (Huh& Ketchup on my Kraft Dinner??).  I’ve looked at Kraft a while back ago and didn’t find it interesting from a dividend investors perspective, I’ve must have missed something!

    Passive Income Pursuit continues his series about plans for financial independence. I’m part of his 11% who will reach financial independence in the next 1-5 years…. But that’s because I’ll sell everything I own!

     

    A Special Mention To….

    Daniel Norris! He’s a multimillionaire baseball player who lives in a VW camper! His story is truly amazing and inspiring. It’s all about non-confirmity and living by your own rules. I’m now saying everybody should live in a camper, but everybody should live the way they want and enjoy life 100% regardless of people’s judgement.

     

    This will be a busy weekend! My daughter has her fantasy skating show and my son is playing 2 soccer games!

    I hope you will enjoy your weekend!

     

    Mike

    8 Comments   |   Read more >
  • We have already arrived at Day #6 of our 6 Days to Dividend Growth Investing Series. For the final day, I would like to suggest a few tips for when you will have more than a few stocks to manage. These are among the best tricks I’ve learned over my 10 years + in the investing world.

     

    #1 Don’t fall for high yield stocks – Go for strong dividend growth

    High dividend yield stocks are usually paying great distributions for a reason; because the market fears they will stop. At best, the company will continue paying its dividend but you won’t see any growth from neither the payout nor the stock value. Go for companies that will supply you with both types of growth instead.

    Don’t limit your thinking to today’s dividend yield and think about the future as well. I’ve made several plays so far with low dividend yield stocks that have paid lots more than any 7-8% dividend yield stocks (APPL, DIS, GS.TO for example).

    If you are not convinced, you can always check my case against high dividend yield stocks.

     

    #2 Don’t fall in love with a stock – Fall in love with your investing strategy

    There are few companies that you will hold during your investing life that are just flawless. You will love their products, love their growth and love their dividend. However, at one point, it’s important to write down the reasons why you bought them and make sure they keep in step with them.

    Falling in love with a stock will blind you from poor results; you may excuse missed earnings projections and forget about a bad year while the market is up. These events should actually become a good reason to go back to the company’s fundamentals and focus on the real reasons why you bought it.

     

    #3 Don’t sell because you made profit – Sell because you have a reason to

    I’m sure you have heard about investors who have a “special rule” for selling. If the stock makes +15, +20 or +25%, they sell. If you talk with these investors, they will tell you they most likely make up their rules very often and sell the stock, rinse & repeat. If you keep talking with them, you will also realize they have left tons of money on the table.

    There are no esoteric rules in the investing universe that will bring a stock down after going up by X%. Therefore, you are simply hurting your portfolio if you sell a winner while it continues to go up. I never look at how much a stock makes in my portfolio to determine if I should sell it or not.

    Sometimes, I sell stocks and they are up by 40%, sometimes I sell them when they show a loss and sometimes, I keep them even if they are +100%. The secret is to have solid investing rules you can rely on and use them to sell your stocks.

     

    #4 Don’t think you can beat the house – Invest wisely

    I’ve seen many investors throughout years think they could (read should!) make up for their past losses with their next play. Investing is not a casino where you can play until you win. There are no “win or lose” scenarios and this is not a game. Investing is a process where you can put the money to work for you. A casino doesn’t work that way. This is why you play at a casino and you invest on the stock market. Never gamble your money, you will lose it.

     

    #5 Diversify

    During your life as an investor, you will see that, sometimes, a specific sector seems unbeatable. The economic environment sets the base for high growth for a small group of companies. It doesn’t mean you should buy all of them. In the early 2000s, Canadian banks and oil sand companies were in two highly promising sectors. We saw the same phenomenon with techno stocks right before Y2K. Investing in too many stocks within the same sector can result in fabulous returns if you are right but will eventually finish with brutal drops once the party is over.

    This has happened in every successful sector at one point or another.

     

    #6 Learn to let go

    For the same reason you should learn to keep a winner, you should also learn to sell a loser. While I’m very proud of my investing returns so far, it doesn’t mean I never lost money on a trade. In fact, I’ve suffered from several stocks losing 50% (RIM, VNP, PDN just to name a few). But I had to let them go and concentrate on the winning plays.

    A bad investment is a bad investment. Then again, there are no esoteric rules guaranteeing that a losing stock will come back from the dead and in order to sell it once it got its value back. This is not going to happen in most cases. If a stock keeps going down, there must be several reasons. Once you find them, you can determine if it is worth keeping it or not. But the historical stock price is not a valid reason.

     

    #7 Never overestimate your results

    I think this advice is probably the most important right now. If you are a young investor who started his portfolio over the past couple of years, you will definitely think it’s easy to invest. I started my investing journey in 2003 and made the same mistake. During my first three years of trading, all I was doing was making more money trade after trade. What I didn’t know is that a monkey would have done the same thing!

    My mistake was to start thinking I couldn’t be wrong. This is when I deviated from my investing process and eventually experienced my first loss on the market.

     

    I hope this series helped you improve your investing skills or to start out on the right foot. If you have any questions, please comment below!

     

    Cheers,

     

    Mike

     

    Related articles:

    Day #1 What is your purpose to invest

    Day #2 Why dividend growth investing

    Day #3 What is the Best Dividend Growth Stock?

    Day #4 How to Proceed with Your First Trades

    Day #5 Tools of the Trades – Dividend Investing Resources

    Day#6 Portfolio Management Tips

     

    Disclaimer; I hold shares of AAPL, DIS and GS.TO

    5 Comments   |   Read more >
  • Today’s article is part 5 of my 6 Days to Dividend Growth Investing series. I have concentrated all investing websites on this page. I have done this in the past, but this is the most up-to-date list. I read/use each investing resource listed below. Please make sure to add yours in the comment section!

     

    Top 10 Dividend Blogs

    I love reading investing blogs because they feed me on a daily basis with high quality information on stocks, the market or even about a great way of living. I’m lucky enough to have found like-minded individuals who share my passion for investing. Here is my favorite dividend investing blogs:

     

    #1 Dividend Growth Investor

    One of the first dividend blogs I started reading and probably among the oldest dividend blogs (besides this one! Hahaha). What I really like about DGI is that he has a very solid investing philosophy and doesn’t trade lightly. His decisions are based on sound reasoning.

    #2 Sure Dividend

    Ben and I share several things in common starting with our investing style and dividend growth investing process. This is probably the blogger that has the most investing similarities with me. I like his clean design and also appreciate that he is offering a paid service like me as a sideline ;-).

    #3 Dividend Diplomats

    These two kids (Lanny & Bert) are amazing. What surprises me the most is how much they sacrifice to save and invest their money to reach financial independence. I’ll never reach their level of savings and they are a source of inspiration.

    #4 Dividend Mantra

    Jason is probably the most dedicated dividend blogger around. Just a quick look at the number of comments (and replies by him) on this blog, it will convince you. Jason also shows a very impressive saving ability. He completely transformed his life over the past few years and will definitely reach financial independence before 40.

    #5 Dividend Monk

    Matt used to be the author of the Dividend Monk; a very serious analytical dividend blog. His readers appreciate his well-detailed analysis. I must tell you; I bought the Dividend Monk last month. But I intend to keep-up with his writing style. Therefore, there is a big difference between this blog and mine even though it’s now the same author. The more analytical investor will appreciate this special touch. More on that later as we are still in the process of transferring!

    #6 DivHut

    He might not even know it, but Keith and I share lots of things in common too. His interest for travelling made him visit 34 different countries so far. My list is limited to 12, but I’ll add 8 more in 2016-2017. He is also an internet entrepreneur (and I’m an internet entrepreneur wannabe!).

    #7 My Dividend Growth

    I appreciate Ryan’s writing style and uncommon path in life. He dropped out of college, moved to Los Angeles and finally got into the TV show production world at the age of 28. His saving rate is amazing (is it just me who’s not saving 50% of his income?) and I also like his writing style.

    #8 Dividend Engineering *Canadian*

    Did you know that many DIY investors are engineers ? This probably comes from their passion for details and mathematical mindset. Frank bring rigor with a strong background and analyses several dividend stocks both US and Canadian.

    #9 Dividend Earner *Canadian*

    Eric is another engineer who’s passionate for dividend stocks. He’s one of the strongest Canadian dividend investors I know. His secret? Like myself, he follows a strong investing process to manage his portfolio. I like the fact he publishes lots of Canadian content and his has a very good free newsletter too.

    #10 Div Grow

    I’m not sure if he’s Canadian or not. His domain name leads me to think so, but his dividend holdings are all US. What I like about FerdiS is the fact that he is not only publishing his holdings but also his returns. It is one thing to invest, but it’s another to post your results!

     

    Top 8 Free Investing Sites

    Investing blogs are fun to read and follow, but serious investors must also find more “serious” information from other sources. This is why I use the following free sites for my stock research. I don’t use more than 8 sites, that’s enough for me!

    #1 Seeking Alpha

    Seeking Alpha is definitely my first stop for reading articles in the morning. Each time I want to learn more about a company, I hit SA and look for the ticker. Since SA publishes articles across the web, verifying the source is very important. However, it is pretty rare they post a poor article!

    #2 Ycharts

    I actually use a paid membership at Ycharts, but they offer a free service as well (with less data). I take all my data from this site and use their graphs as they are clean and easy to understand.

    #3 Motley Fool

    Similar to Seeking Alpha, I like reading their articles before I dig deeper into a particular stock. They are sometimes a bit salesy but everybody has to make a living (I do the same thing too from time to time anyways).

    #4 DRIP investing

    Not the best looking site, but probably the most amazing dividend website as a source of information. Everything is there from stock lists to excel spreadsheets to help you calculate.

    #5 Fin Viz

    If you are unwilling to pay for complete data from a website such as Ycharts, FinViz is probably your best bet to use a good and FREE stock screener. I started my investing research with this screener a while ago before moving to paid services.

    #6 Google Finance

    I’ve built my portfolio in Google Finance to get the results and rapid return at the glance of an eye. It’s a great source of info when you are looking for news on a specific stock.

    #7 Bloomberg

    As a complement to Google Finance, I use the Bloomberg App on my phone and iPad.

    #8 Reuters

    I like Reuters for company descriptions and the fact that they post news and results compared to analysts’ estimates. Their information is easy to find and use.

     

    Top 5 Paid Resources

    Ahhhh.. paid resources. Why would you pay when there is so much free information on the internet? Right? Well, I’m the first guy to pay in order to save time and gain productivity. This is why I paid, and I think this is why people should pay too!

    #1 Ycharts

    I use the professional plan. I need it to manage my portfolio, write on my dividend sites AND run my paid service. This is my favorite source of data.

    #2 Dividend Stocks Rock

    This is my own investing service. I provide a bi-weekly investing newsletter, 14 real-time managed portfolios, 8 weekly updated stock lists and news alerts.

    #3 Dividend Monk Dividend Investing Toolkit

    If you are a more analytical investor, you will truly enjoy the Dividend Monk Toolkit. That’s a 200+ page to guide you through dividend investing with excel spreadsheets to support your own stock analysis.

    #4 Sure Dividend Newsletter

    Ben’s investing newsletter is just great work. Very similar to what I offer, but the point of this article is to promote investing resources, not just mine! Hahaha!

     

    As you can see, this is not an exhaustive list, I’m pretty sure you have your own resources. Now I think it’s your time to share with me! I’m looking forward to discover your favorite investing sites!

     

    Related articles:

    Day#1 What is your purpose to invest

    Day#2 Why dividend growth investing

    Day#3 What is the Best Dividend Growth Stock?

    Day#4 How to Proceed with Your First Trades

    Day #5 Tools of the Trades – Dividend Investing Resources

    Day#6 Portfolio Management Tips

    13 Comments   |   Read more >
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