|Picture and cake by Animated Cupcakes at Flickr|
Please take a piece of this beautiful cake. Some of you might recognize a logo in that. This is not a coincidence. Looking back, Target (TGT) has been my best holding, by far.
Before we get into that, let's see what the relative new blog has brought me, in the past 12 months.
31 posts were published, roughly 3 per month.
These posts were complemented by 160 comments! That's much more than I would have anticipated. Thank you all very much for the participation. It's much appreciated. The blog has been visited 11.476 times. Wow!
The vast majority of visitors is an American. Not uncommon for an English blog about US Dividend Aristocrats I would say.
I couldn't thank all of you personally, but I do like to mention Dividend Yield, because of his continued support through Twitter, as well as Captain Dividend for adding me to the blogroll of his very succesful blog.
This adventure started by purchasing 4 major Dividend Aristocrats for a total of $6.666.
After these purchases I added money to my brokerage account on a monthly basis. This resulted in a portfolio, which has 10 holdings, with a cost basis of $13.214. Today, the value of this portfolio is at $13.844. This is a 4.76% increase. Dividends are excluded from this.
Should we add the $264.80 net dividends received (June 2014 to June 2015), the total return is a decent 6.77%.
|Snapshot of portfolio at 6/25/15|
Overall, I'm very pleased with the results. The price fluctuation don't worry me at all. It might provide me with a chance to average down in the future.
Main reason for starting this adventure is because of disappointing interest rates banks give us nowadays. Most major banks in The Netherlands decreased the interest rate to approxiamately 0.9%. At least for the last 12 months, this DGI strategy has paid me 7.5 times as much!
Even if we would ignore growth, just the dividends paid me more than the bank would have paid me in interest. Isn't that amazing?
Focus on growth
To start the snowball effect as soon as possible, I tried to buy some high yielding, blue chip stocks. Most high yielding companies, don't have very strong growth numbers. This is indicated by the table below. From this point forward I will shift my focus to growth. Of course, yield remains important as well, but I feel like my average growth should be a double digit number.
Getting into p2p lending
I'm exploring the posibilities to get into p2p lending. This should be a nice addition to the passive income stream. At this point, I'm not sure if I would have enough funds to do this efficiently, because I don't want to cut the amount I put in my brokerage account each months. The snowball has to grow!
After all this good news, I'd like to share some concerns as well.
Euro vs Dollar
First, there is this Euro vs Dollar issue.
|Amount of dollars we'd get for €1|
June 25, 2014: €1 = $1.36
June 24, 2015: €1 = $1.11
That's a 19% decline and despite the recent upswing, I don't think all troubles are over.
As with price fluctuation I think I shouldn't worry too much about this and let Mr. Market do his job. If you look at it from an optimistic view you could say it's good I'm invested in US companies instead of EU companies with this strong dollar, right? What are your thoughts on this?
Multiple broker accounts to decrease risk?
Next, theres some concern about my broker. I'm with the cheapest broker in The Netherlands. It has been operational for about 3 years now. The fees are really low. Probably around $1 for a $1000 purchase. Explaining their entire earnings model would be something we could discuss in a seperate post, but for now I'm starting to feel a little bit anxious adding more than the current $15k to the account.
Do you trust your broker with all your (investing) money?
English not primary language
Although I do want to write more than 31 posts during this next year, it takes a lot of effort to write posts like these. And even then, I'm pretty sure these posts are full with textual errors. Please ignore them or write me a message to correct me, especially if you see multiple occurrences of the same error. I won't be offended.
Hopefully you all keep joining me on my journey to FI! :-)
Thanks for reading this wall of text.