Well, the time has come to update the Freedom Fund once again as we start another month. The Freedom Fund is my portfolio, and I think it’s aptly named. My portfolio is my way to freedom; freedom from a job I don’t desire to purchase goods I don’t need to impress neighbors I don’t care about. This journey is all about freedom and flexibility. One day the dividend income this portfolio generates will fully replace my day job’s income and my time will be completely my own. What could you possibly want to own more than your time?
I feel extremely fortunate and thankful that I’m able to post these updates every single month which shows the power of monthly contributions to investments because of the high savings rate I maintain. It shows how a relatively large sum of money can be built through the power of time, patience and perseverance.
It’s important to keep in mind that while updating the overall value of my portfolio is important for historical reference and for purposes of keeping track of total return, my main focus is on the rising dividend income stream the Fund provides.
April was another fantastic month for the Fund, albeit rather dull and boring. Which is exactly how I like it. I did very little during the month, with most of my time spent tracking dividend increases from a handful of the myriad of companies I own a piece of; April was fun indeed if you like receiving more money! Of course, I also received another fantastic month of dividend income, which I’ll be going over in the coming days. The snowball is definitely rolling downhill faster these days.
Other than that, there was just one transaction during the previous month. I added to my small position in American Realty Capital Properties Inc. (ARCP) late in the month, which was a rather small purchase for me since my capital is currently a bit constrained. I’m very excited to now own a slightly larger piece of the world’s largest net lease real estate investment trust, at what I consider a rather attractive price point. With a P/AFFO ratio of 15.44 and a yield of 7.53%, this should serve as a strong value investment and provide bountiful monthly dividend income for years to come.
The current market value of the Fund stands at $160,634.85. This is an increase of 2.84% over last month’s published value of $156,195.12. I’m rather happy with this kind of performance, and the broader stock market’s continued advancement no doubt helped. However, the value investor in me does worry when you see the charts pointing north month after month. But all I can do is continue to allocate fresh capital as intelligently as I possibly can, while I combine it with reinvested dividend income along the way.
Looking forward, I still see some selective opportunities which I hope to review very soon. Specifically, I still see some pockets of value in certain blue chip tech companies and a few companies in finance, including insurance and banking. In addition, while the U.S. stock market has been on a tear, this isn’t necessarily the case around the rest of the world.
I’m currently invested in 46 companies. This is unchanged since last month, since my only stock purchase was an addition to an existing position. As I continue to near 50 positions, I remain selective about taking on new investments.
These updates are mainly designed to show the increase or decrease in the value of the underlying equities I’m invested in, but the main purpose of investing in dividend growth stocks is for the rising stream of dividends over time. So with that said I don’t put too much emphasis on these monthly updates on the value of my portfolio. I think it is a good idea, however, to keep track of the rising (or falling) value of one’s securities and be aware of where they are in terms of the marketplace and whether or not certain stocks are attractively priced. It proves to be a useful exercise, for me at least, to update the values monthly. It gives me fresh perspective on which equities are performing well and which aren’t, and from there I can make educated decisions (based on further due diligence) on which stocks I’d like to add fresh capital to (while considering portfolio weight as well).
Full Disclosure: Long ARCP
How was April for you? Is your portfolio reaching new heights?
Thanks for reading.
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