Investments Trade Log

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Post by AnotherAustinite »

Most of my portfolio is in dividend stocks but I have a few trades in stocks that are in long-term uptrends. I accidentally sold CMG on the panic lows the other day @$299 only to see it climb to $310 the same day. I had been thinking about exiting this position so I put an order in over the weekend, but for some reason I thought I had canceled it before putting it in.
I could have sworn I never even completed the order because one thing I thought I had learned is never trade on a Monday (or Tuesday after a holiday weekend) morning. Also, never sell in a panic. @Jacob I'm surprised you put your stops in with your broker.
I chalk this up to not sticking to my plan (25% trailing stop on anything that is not a "core" holding). Chipotle had plenty of downside before I needed to worry about exiting.
I replaced this position with a new position in COP. This one I plan to hold for the dividends.
There is a short list of stocks I would consider buying if I wanted more exposure:



All of these are Dividend Aristocrats," I believe. You can punch in those symbols on and see how they are rated in terms of consecutive years dividends paid, yield, payout ratio, etc.
I have TEF. I might have to unload it as it is looking pretty negative. Although I bought it as a dividend/core holding, I am wondering if the dividend is covered. Why does the chart look so ugly?
I have some dry powder but I am thinking my equity exposure is already high enough. I'm looking at buying some foreign currencies and, when bonds pull back, adding to a laddered bond fund. It's "risk-off" right now so bonds yields are once again ridiculously low.

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Post by pooablo »

I am pretty boring when it comes to investing.
I use a mixture of ETFs and Index Funds in my TD Waterhouse account. Commission fees are $9.99 a trade for ETFs.
I have the following asset allocation in my portfolio:
Canadian Large Cap 10%

Major Canadian Bank 10%

Canadian REITS 10%

Canadian Short-Term Bonds 10%

Canadian Real Return Bonds 10%

US Junk Bonds 10%

International Developed Markets 10%

International ex-US Small Cap 5%

Emerging Markets 10%

US Large Cap 10%

US Small Cap 5%
Due to the fact that I use an investment strategy called Value Averaging (, I keep cash as a separate component from my stock portfolio.
The basic premise of value averaging is to first plot a value path based on your expected savings rate, return rate, target portfolio value, and time period.
Once you plot the value path, you re-balance your portfolio against the value path by selling into cash or buying into the portfolio on set intervals -- I do my re-balancing on a quarterly basis.
For example, say you have plotted your value path like this for the next three years.
2011: $100

2012: $200

2013: $300
If your stock portfolio were valued at $50 at the end of 2011, you would buy $50 into your portfolio.
If the following year your portfolio were valued at $250 at the end of 2012, you would sell $50 of your portfolio.
The value averaging strategy tends to result in a lower purchase cost than dollar cost averaging and works well in volatile markets. It keeps cash as an asset separate from the overall portfolio and forces you to buy low and sell high.
In addition, value averaging includes a selling strategy which a dollar cost averaging strategy does not.
I have been quite happy with this method so far. It's low stress, doesn't take a lot of time, and is easy to follow.

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Post by Dragline »

@pooablo That sounds pretty sound. How long have you been doing it and what has your experience been like?

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Post by DividendGuy »

I recently purchased 42 shares of AFL at $34.74 a share.

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Post by pooablo »

@Dragline -- The value path has worked pretty well for me. Unfortunately, I have only been really keeping track of the strategy since January 2010. I balance my portfolio at the end of January, April, July, and October.
Here is a brief summary of my actual portfolio value versus my target path (in brackets) over the past two years.
January 2010: 107,191 vs. (105,000); sold $2,000 into cash.

April 2010: 115,830 vs. (111,014); sold $4,000 into cash.

July 2010: 118,253 vs. (117,152); sold $1,000 into cash.

October 2010: 127,016 vs. (123,414); bought $4,000 into the port.

January 2011: 127,657 vs. (129,803); bought $2,000 into the port.

April 2011: 135,667 vs. (136,322); bought $1,000 into the port.

July 2011*: 120,890 vs. (129,500); bought $9,000 into the port.

October 2011: ?????? vs. (135,600); we'll see what happens!
*I had to re-adjust my value path in July 2011 because I decided to sell a portion of my portfolio to invest in a limited partnership involved with a commercial property.
Overall, the strategy kept me disciplined in 2010 by forcing me to sell down in the April, July, and October 2010 bull run and to buy less in January 2011 and April 2011 which protected me against the drops in the market over the past few months! :)
With the drop in markets during July, the strategy forced me to buy more into the portfolio. I suspect that with the markets still down, I will need to buy more of my portfolio again at the end of October 2011.
However, July used up a big chunk of my cash so I may not be able to top up my portfolio in October to hit the $135,600. I am setting aside about $360 cash per bi-weekly paycheque and should have about $5,000 of cash for the next re-balancing period.
If that is not enough, I may tap into my $15K emergency cash fund to top up the amount to reach my target.
Normally when things get volatile I limit my "buy-in" to $7M so that I don't use up my cash too quickly! The $9M buy-in for July was an exception because I was re-adjusting my value path.
Sorry for the long post! I hope this gives you a better idea about the strategy.

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Post by Tyler@DebtReckoning »


Interesting to hear your thoughts on lot size, something I've struggled with myself over the last few months since beginning my dividend stock portfolio. Early on, I bought in much larger lots (~$5k), but now I'm thinking I could have been more diversified had I bought in smaller lots and averaged down in a couple positions.
Is there a particular formula you apply based on the commission you're paying?

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Post by NYC ERE »

...and then I'd close my NFLX short for a 33% gain, and stay long FXF (Swiss Franc).

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Post by MySavingStyle »

I bought 100 shares of T last week. I think it was a good buy.
A month or so ago, I bought WEN, and it's only went down. Not sure how long it will take to get back to my original purchase price. I am a long term investor, so I am willing to hang on for a few years.

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Post by Senior Investor »

I long tome ago stopped investing in single stocks. Any negative quarterly report surprises can kill you with 30-40% one day pullbacks. And the best stock selection can go wrong when the timing isn't perfect and you started just at the beginning of a general market correction.
I invested in the last decade with great success in s simple strategy. It looks at he first moment conservative but it has a really great return booster which was successfull even in the decades bear markets: Invest 80% in long term bond ETFs when long term interest rates fall and change into short term bond ETFs when long term interest rates start longer term uptrends (other than bonds bond ETFs have very little transaction cost at online discount brokers). Invest 10% in SPDR S&P 500 ETF medium term in-the-money calls and hedge them by selling similar calls at the beginning of each market correction and bear market. The strategy uses the 15x leverage not to speculate but to reduce risk. Each $1000 call investment participates in 80% of the capital gain of $15,000 ETF share. The hedging protects the long investment against losses. In 2010 the sold calls compensated most of 4 SPY price corrections of 6,1%, 13,7%, 6,7% and 3,8%, in total 30,3%. You can learn the know-how of the strategy in a tutorial priced only $24. Visit the free website

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Post by annadragon »

It seems the stock market is having another sale... I'm still new (read: groping in the dark) to investing but here is what I have on my watch list and I'm considering pulling the trigger on one or two of them:


Anyone else considering these or similar?

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Post by JohnnyH »

I think the stock market is in a vulnerable position. 10.5 on the DJ was violated, next resistance 9550.
I think cash is king right now, a good time to wait... I wanted to buy more gold at these levels, but I think even commodities will drift down.

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Post by NYC ERE »

another hypothetical trade: buy AAPL today before the iPhone 5 announcement. they're trading at *only* 15:1.

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Post by m741 »

It certainly feels like there are more bearish clouds on the horizon. The question is: has the market priced them in? I think only partially.
Tomorrow I'm probably going to look to beta hedge part of my portfolio and hold onto the solid dividend standbys. Lowering emerging market exposure, too.

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Post by DividendGuy »

I recently sold my 64 shares of HGIC after the buyout offer from Nationwide. I sold all 64 for $58.73 a share, a tidy profit.
I then:
Purchased 25 shares of PM for $62.50 per share.
Purchased 20 shares of COP for $61.53 per share.
Purchased 32 shares of AFL for $33.85 per share.
This was not the end for me this month. I receive a large commission check tomorrow and will have around $3k to play with. I'm waiting for the next pullback.

George the original one
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Post by George the original one »

Bought AGNC at 26.88.

George the original one
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Post by George the original one »

Dividend growth stocks that bubbled to the top of my list this week: LMT, AHGP, COP, & GE.
These are noteworthy because they're at the upper end of the dividend growth and, apart from AHGP, usually not available at the current yields.

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Post by DividendGuy »

@George the original one
LMT is interesting. Any thoughts on it trading at 7.6x book value? It also has some unfunded pension issues. Great yield with the recent increase though, and I like defense stocks right now. They're all pretty beaten up. I'm currently not only looking at LMT in this sector but also RTN, HRS and GD.
I'm also looking at: T, MDT and PEP. I'm strongly considering purchasing a half lot of T and one defense stock this week. A reader of my blog has pointed me in the direction of HRS. Looks promising from a valuation standpoint, but I have to look a little further into their business.

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Post by AnotherAustinite »

Nibbled on some emerging markets (VWO) this week, initiating a position to fulfill my target 5% allocation. That fund was 30% off the high for the year when I bought at about $36. This feels a little uncomfortable since the dollar has been rallying, but the risk-on stuff are heavily oversold and will do the best in a rally.
I bought some Vanguard bond ETF's (BSV, BLV, BIV) because I know I need some exposure to complete my asset allocation. My timing was probably pretty poor as they lost some ground this week. But I look at those as hedges for my equity exposure anyways.
Sold ED to book a 8% gain (incl. reinvested div's) and replaced it with a smaller position in VPU to get some broader diversification in utilities.
Trying to be at least somewhat of a contrarian...

George the original one
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Post by George the original one »

@DividendGuy - S&P says that LMT will have less pension liability going forward. Not sure why.
What I like about LMT is that they have a low payout ratio for their dividend, so they can continue to provide increases for the next couple of years while adjusting their business model.
Right now, the landscape for future profit is flat to slightly declining. If a Republican president is elected next, their fortunes could easily rise. Same would be true if Republicans get majority in both Senate and House.

I'm not sure what to think about T at the moment. I got out of it at the start of August when their proposed merger ran afoul of the government. Payout ratio is higher than many investors are comfortable with, but they've got a bunch of smart financial guys who manage to keep the dividend increases coming while walking the line of a high payout ratio.
MDT has had fantastic dividend growth, but can they keep it up? I don't know.
PEP cruises along and is a good deal at this price, but it's not in the league of some others. It's what I buy in my IRAs because of the stability.

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Post by jennypenny »

Sold everything is the spec fund yesterday. I did well on all but one, and one was a wash after estimated taxes. I'm a little frustrated by the lack of direction, so I pulled back to make sure I don't make any bad decisions when I'm not on my game. And my 401K (60% of assets) is still wrapped up in stocks and bonds so it's not like I'm in an all-cash position.
Sigh...I have to roll over an old pension soon and all I want to do is put it under the mattress.

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