Since our last dividend portfolio update the markets have continued their roller coaster ride. I won’t go into my opinion on the current state of our government as I aired my frustrations in our last blog. You can find my take here if you’re curious or want a recap.
While there isn’t anything we can do about the economy, there are things we can do to set ourselves up for long term success. Now is not the time to panic and sell your positions as that will only turn paper losses into realized losses. It can be hard to stomach this type of volatility, but having been through this several times before we know things will turn around eventually. So while we wait for the pendulum to swing back the other way we can take advantage of this opportunity to dollar cost average current positions and/or add new positions at a nice discount.
The great part about investing today is that you don’t need a lot of money to get started or to slowly build a portfolio. Since we retired we have been averaging about $200 per month in contributions to our dividend portfolio. It’s not a huge amount, but it adds up and even though the markets are down our positions continue to grow as we contribute and reinvest our dividends. Sticking to the plan regardless of the market conditions helps us to dollar cost average our positions and most importantly add forward income that will set us up nicely for the eventual rebound.
The dividends also act as a hedge against inflation and a cushion in a down market. Our dividend portfolio is only down about 3.5% for the year. That looks pretty nice when we compare it to our overall portfolio which was down more than 19% or to the S&P 500 which was down 21% YTD as of the end of June. Not too shabby and it’s nice to have a bright spot in the portfolio to focus on!
Here is where our dividend portfolio currently stands:
|Symbol||# Of Shares|
In our previous update I mentioned we were considering adding another ETF holding as a way to get some exposure to companies that are just too far out of our price range for individual stock purchases. We did that with the addition of SCHD who’s top holdings include LMT, AVGO, AMGN, HD, PEP and TXN. These are great dividend stocks that are out of reach for us so we will use the ETF build a position and get some exposure to these great companies. We also added another monthly paying ETF in JEPI which acts much like QYLD except it uses the S&P 500 as a benchmark.
Since our last update we added shares to the following positions: ABR(3), FRT(1), JEPI(4), QYLD(2) and SCHD(1)
We have also reinvested dividends totaling $92.02 via DRIP for ABR, BKH, DOW, FRT, IBM, IRM, JEPI, JNJ, K, KHC, KMB, KO, MAIN, MMM, MO, MPW, O, QYLD, SO, SPTN, VTRS, WEBR and XOM.
Year to date we have reinvested $280.27 in dividends back into our portfolio which currently sits at about $11,050 and has a yield on cost of 4.74%. While the value of our portfolio has remained mostly flat since our last update our YOC increased .17% which is a pretty significant move upwards.
With the addition of new shares and the reinvestment of all dividends received our portfolio will now provide forward annual dividends of $530 or $44 per month. This is an increase of $46 or just under $4 per month from our last update. This is really good progress for the amount of funds we have been able to invest and it’s exciting to see that we surpassed the $500 mark for our annual dividends!
Going forward we really want to build up the SCHD position so we might focus on adding shares there first when we get funds. Sometimes that’s easier said than done when there are bargains to be had throughout our portfolio and funds are limited. It almost makes me want to get a job!
Even though building this portfolio has been slow it’s still a lot of fun and we are very happy with the progress we have made. We have actually come a long way in just over a year and we know it’s only a matter of time until the portfolio starts generating more income than we contribute. It just takes time, patience and consistency.
Thank you for reading our blog! Happy investing!
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