I’m going to leaving fairly early on Friday for a four-hour trip to Omena, Michigan, where my oldest sister is hosting her 30th birthday party. Obviously, I’m very excited to be able to participate in events like this easily now that I live back in Michigan. Since I’ve been back home I’ve been spending a lot of time with family, and it’s been really nice.
Since I am going to be gone for the weekend, and there’s no Wi-Fi in the rental beach house, I’m posting this article a little early. And that’s because I wanted to leave you guys with a little reading material while I’m gone for the next few days. I should be back to it sometime Sunday afternoon.
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I’ve got a few articles on the docket for next week, and I’m greatly looking forward to publishing them over the coming week. As always, thank you readers for all of your support! I couldn’t do it without you.
Below, you’ll find a short list of articles I’ve recently read and enjoyed. I hope you do as well!
Margin of Safety in Financial Independence
Dividend Growth Investor discussed how he’s building a margin of safety in his financial independence plan by diversifying his portfolio between a large number of individual businesses, investing in a wide number of sectors, focusing on high-quality businesses that not only raise dividends but should continue doing so for the foreseeable future, and also diversifying brokerages. He lacks a lot of fixed income exposure, as do I. However, that can change once bonds become more attractive.
Why Apple’s Overseas Tax Probe Is a Black Eye on U.S. Lawmakers
This article by TheStreet discussed how our government must come to some kind of solution that allows for some of the trillions of dollars that U.S. corporations are holding overseas to come home, face lighter taxes, and help our domestic economy. I’ve read a lot of solutions to this issue, ranging from corporate tax overhaul to a one-time tax holiday, but it seems our lawmakers can never get on the same page. What a shame.
The Perfect Dividend Stock
D4L recently fantasized about his idea of a perfect dividend stock, only to come back down to reality as no such thing exists. However, he did list a number of great stocks that have different characteristics of current yield and dividend growth.
Learning From Our Mistakes: How To Kill Zombies
Work To Not Work posted an article on how you need to keep your brain active to avoid “brain drain” and become one of the zombies. I personally started to feel like a zombie at my last job near the end, where days just seemed to blend into one another as everyday tasks took over my life. Certainly, my job involved a lot of unique challenges as every car repair was a bit different. But the basics of the job, once learned, never really change, and it’s easy to become a zombie at that point.
Thanks to a reader by the name of Lila, I just found this blog. The Minimalists focus on, well, minimalism. And this post was a succinct reminder on why live with less: We have more room for what really matters.
I just spent $400k Into an Overvalued Market!
Asset-Grinder just invested six figures into the market! I only hope I can one day be in a similar position where I have the opportunity to move this type of capital around. I certainly can’t fault him one bit. He compares other asset classes (Hint: Where else do you go with your cash?) and spent a while formulating his plan and purchases. I also feel no reservation investing in these all-time market highs right now.
May 2014 Dividend Income Update
My Own Advisor is on pace to earn $8,400 in dividend income this year, which is just fantastic. He’s been at this for a while, and you can see how steady progress yields literal and figurative dividends over time. His snowball is definitely moving along now!
Keira Knightley Reveals Shocking Salary
Not the usual type of article I link to, but I was really impressed by this. Keira Knightley, a well-known and very wealthy actress, only pays herself $50,000 a year citing a cheaper lifestyle as more fun and more approachable to other people in her life. You don’t hear of this kind of stuff around Hollywood types, so this was really interesting. Perhaps living below your means is becoming vogue?
Weekly Purchases – 06/03/14 + 06/10/14
All About Interest shows us where his investment capital has been going, and it looks like he’s been busy buying up shares in high-quality businesses. Nothing like staying consistent and sticking to a plan.
Income Update – May 2014
Passive Income Pursuit shares how his budget went for the month of May, and he killed it yet again. Over $6,000 in savings is a result of an above-average income and the ability to live below those means. Fantastic stuff!
The Only Rules You Need To Know
James put together an eclectic and interesting list of rules he likes to follow in life that help him succeed and focus on what brings him the most value. I especially liked the 1,000 hour rule. I agree that the difference of mastery between spending 1,000 hours of practicing a craft and 10,000 hours is much less than between 0 hours and 1,000 hours.
3 Ways To Build An Armadillo-Armored Portfolio of Blue-Chip Dividend Stocks
Tim shared a few different criteria he would recommend following if you’re looking for the most defensive portfolio of blue chip dividend stocks you can possibly create. Can’t say I disagree with his logic, although I have stepped outside these bounds by investing in banks and companies with much shorter dividend growth streaks. Good stuff, though.
Revamping Our Early Retirement Backup Plan
Retire by 40 shares his backup plan in case his online income dries up and his wife were to lose her job. I like his backup locations, including Florida and Thailand. I left a comment discussing some of the benefits of living in Florida, and all of the sudden started questioning why I left. Just kidding, but Florida does have a lot to offer. Although, there are too many older people living there for my tastes. I felt like the older population was sucking the youth out of me while I lived there!
The Dividend Screener
Dividend & Whisky did some fantastic work for all of us dividend growth investors by putting together a nice stock screener based on David Fish’s CCC list. Really great stuff here. I ran a screen using some basic criteria on valuation, yield, and growth I like to look for, and sure enough the two ideas I’m already looking at – Baxter International Inc. (BAX) and Southside Bancshares, Inc. (SBSI) – showed up. I feel reassured.
The HOW and WHY of our Desired Portfolio
Income Surfer discusses his dream asset allocation and the thought process behind it. I agree with him on many points, including the attractiveness of index funds for the majority of investors out there, as well as his reasons behind a 0% allocation to bonds.
Now on Facebook…and Other Ways to Follow
Finally, Retire Before Dad is now on Facebook. He also has a number of other ways to follow and keep in touch, so give him a shout. I’m also on Facebook, as well as Twitter, RSS, and email.
Full Disclosure: Long BAX and SBSI.
Thanks for reading.
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