Investment Goals for 2017 Check In… and Goals for 2018

2017 Investment Goals

At the beginning of 2017 – which was also the launch of Tallinvesting.com – I formulated five investment goals for the year.

  1. Contribute $30,000 to the portfolio
  2. Achieve forward dividend income of $3,500 by the end of 2017
  3. Receive $3,000 dividend income throughout 2017
  4. Keep forward dividend income as a % of my Portfolio  at >3.5%
  5. Keep trading cost < 150 

With 2017 in the books, let’s check back how I did on these goals.

With regards to Goal #1 I was pretty skepticalestimating that contributing $30,000 to my Portfolio would be a stretch. Turns out my fear wasn’t warranted as I managed to add $43,446 in capital in 2017. Goal achieved! 

Goal #2 was about getting my 12 month projected forward dividend income to $3,500 at the 31st of December. As can be seen in the graphic below, my forward dividend income at the end of 2017 was $3,960 annually (or $330 per month).  Again, Goal achieved! 

Goal #3 was about the dividends I planned to receive between Jan 1st and December 31st of 2017. While the target was $3,000 (see blue line below) – I ended the year with $3,173 in received dividends (green line).

As you can see in the chart, September was the month I crossed the line and started to beat the target. Not surprising since I almost received $400 in dividends that month. Goal achieved! 

With goal #4 I track my forward dividend income (goal #2) as a percentage of my portfolio contributions – ie my yield on cost (YOC).  In buying stocks I try to maintain a balance between high yielders (such as most REITS) and low yielders with above average dividend growth rates (stock like SBUX, DAL). Overall my goal is to obtain a minimum of 3.5% YOC.

At the end of 2017 my forward dividend income stood at 3.86% as a percentage of my portfolio contributions (chart below). Goal achievedand we are four for four here!

Finally, goal #5 is about keeping my trading cost low. As I do not my consider myself a trader but an investor, my ideal holding period for a stock is forever. By definition this allows me to keep my trading cost modest.

But while my goal was to keep my trading cost below $150 for the year, my actual trading fees came to $197. Goal not achieved!

Final score: four out of five 2017 investment goals achieved!

2018 Investment Goals

Turning towards the new year, I strive to achieve the following five updated investment goals:

  1. Contribute $25,000 to the portfolio
  2. Achieve forward dividend income of $6,000 by the end of 2018
  3. Receive $5,000 dividend income throughout 2018
  4. Keep forward dividend income as a % of my Portfolio  at >3.5%
  5. Keep trading cost < 100 

Goals #1, #2 and #3 are more modest in comparison to 2017.

I expect to be able to allocate significantly less capital to my portfolio this year.  However, with dividend raises continuing to kick in – the power of dividend growth investing – goals #1 and #2 should be attainable.

Goal #4 should also be doable if I continue to buy a mix of high-yielders and low-yielders (but with high dividend growth).

Reduced buying activity ensures that I meet my trading cost goal (#5) for 2018, as I failed miserably here for 2017.

What do you think about these goals? Did you make your 2017 goals and what are yours for 2018? Leave a comment/reply to share your thoughts!

Investment Goals for 2017: H1 Report

At the beginning of the year I formulated my five investment goals for 2017. Now that the first two quarters are behind us, it is time to check in on these goals and see how I am progressing.

My five goals for the year were:

  1. Contribute $30,000 to the portfolio
  2. Achieve forward dividend income of $3,500 by the end of 2017
  3. Receive $3,000 dividend income throughout 2017
  4. Keep forward dividend income as a % of my Portfolio at >3.5%
  5. Keep trading cost < $150 

In this half year report I will check in on these 5 goals and see whether I hit the 50% mark (yet).

Goal #1  – contributing $30,000 to my portfolio in 2017 – means that every quarter I need to invest at least $7,500. Simple math dictates that by now I should have invested $15,000 in order to be on track for this goal.

I am happy to report that I actually beat my numbers. In the first half of 2017 I contributed a total of $20,922 to my portfolio. If I can keep this up this would mean an addition of more than $40,000 for the entire year.

How did I deploy this new capital? I started the year by buying 17 additional shares of Starbucks, followed by a new position of 25 shares in Delta Airlines. I closed the month of January off by buying 18 shares of Amgen.

In February I made two buys – both adding to existing positions. I bought 34 shares of Qualcomm.  Later in that month I decided to double my position in Magna – buying an additional 25 shares.

March saw just one buy. I added 15 shares of Accenture to the portfolio for a total of $1,815.

In April I upped my game again with three purchases: I bought 25 shares of Delta Airlines (DAL) for a total of $1,124,  I invested $1,497 in International Paper Co. (IP), and  bought 15 shares of CVS for a total of $1,170.

In May I bought 20 shares of Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) for a total of $1,583 and later in the month added 15 shares of The Travelers Companies (TRV) for a total of $1,850. 

June – the last month of the first half year – I bought 43 shares of AT&T (T) for a total of $1,668. 

Goal #2 is about getting my 12 month projected forward dividend income to $3,500 by the end of the year.

At the last day of 2016 my projected forward dividend income was $2,395.  It now has increased to $3,075 by the end of this first half year.

This means that in H1 my 12 month projected forward income grew by $680 (see red line in the chart below).

To get from $2,395 at the end of 2016 to $3,500 at the end of 2017 I need a total increase of $1,105.

 Since $680*2 = $1,360 I am doing well so far – and am well underway to hit this goal for the entire year.

Goal #3 is about the dividends I will receive between Jan 1st and December 31st of this year. My goal here is $3,000 for 2017. As of June 30 my projection is to receive ~ $2,964 in dividends in calendar year 2017 (the green line below against my target in blue).

Given that I am so close to this goal I am confident I will achieve it within the next month or so. Receiving $3,000 in dividends in 2017 might even have been (way) too conservative!

Through goal #4 I track my forward dividend income (goal #2) as a percentage of my original investments – i.e. my yield on cost (YOC).

In buying stocks I try to maintain a balance between high yielders (such as most REITS) and low yielders with above average dividend growth rates (stock like SBUX, DAL). Overall my goal is to obtain a minimum of 3.5% YOC.

My current YOC is 3.83% – meaning that I am not only on track for this goal but also that my portfolio has some more room for low yielders with above average dividend growth rates.

Finally, goal #5 is about keeping my trading cost low. As I do not my consider myself a trader but an investor, my ideal holding period for a stock is forever. By definition this allows me to keep my trading cost modest – buy once, (almost) never sell and simply start collecting the dividend.

I actually got some unexpected help in achieving this goal – at the beginning of the year my broker Fidelity cut it’s trading fees from $7.95 to $4.95. 

My total trading cost for the first half of this year came to $84.30

This number means I am above my target ($84.30 * 2 comes to $168.60) and I need to lower my trading cost going forward if I want to stay under the $150 target for the year.

Being 4 for 5 at the half year mark is a great position to be in. Keep at it for the remainder of 2017!

What do you think about these goals? How did you do in this first half of 2017? Leave a comment/reply to share your thoughts!