Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Dividend Income With M1 Finance Tops $50

 In January 2020 I opened a brokerage account with M1 Finance.

M1 Finance Account Graph

I opened it with just $100 on January 17, 2020. Today on March 31, 2021 the account is worth just over $2,700 and since opening I have received $50 in dividends. That is some nice growth from the one cent of my first dividend at the beginning of February 2020.

You can see in the graph above the way my account has grown in just fifteen months. It was of course helped by the huge market sell off in March 2020, during which I continued to buy in more and more stock, investing about $10 per week every Monday together with occasional cash windfalls, such as proceeds from my sales and referals. I also began investing $15 per week in September 2020 continuing through until today.


The Portfolio Set-up.


My portfolio was set-up with 100 stocks and ETF's (Exchanged Traded Funds) you can see them in detail at My Dividend Portfolio.


It comprises of a large body of 30 favorite stocks, plus smaller portfolios of stocks such as railroad and last mile delivery stocks, defense contractors and Real Estate Investment Trusts.


 Ninety seven of my stocks pay a dividend right now. Boeing (BA) has a suspended dividend. Amazon (AMZN) and Google (GOOG) are pure growth plays included because M1 allows the purchase of fractional shares, the only way I can afford to buy these two great but highly priced stocks.

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Fund a brokerage account with $100 or a Roth IRA with $500

When that cash hits your new account you will receive an extra $30 free from M1. I will also receive a small payment as a thank you from M1 Finance at no cost to you.

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My Current Investing Strategy.


I have developed a regular investment strategy  with this account.

1. Invest $15 per week on Monday.  This goes to my cash deposit float.

2. If the Cash float is $25 or more, I let M1 buy stocks according to my pre-set levels. If less than $25 I buy individual stocks as new dividends come in down to a cash balance of $10 on the Friday.

3. As $15 will be added on Monday morning I let the $10 sit in my cash float over the weekend.

5.Rinse and repeat, buying any new individual stocks as I like when new dividends come in.

I hope that you might try investing with M1 Finance. It is a wonderful tool in my investing tool kit. I am sure it will help you on the road to gaining passive income.

 Remember my account grew from zero to over $2700 in just over fourteen months, investing $60 or less per month.  If I can do that so can you. Now I will be adding over $50 per year in passive dividend income. This will only grow in the future.

Try M1, I am sure it will work for you as you build wealth for your future.

Friday, February 5, 2021

How to turn $9 into $100 in One Year

 How do  you turn just $9 into $100 in just one year? Then repeat over and over again for year on year growth?

Turn $9 into $100 in one year

My technique for growing my investments by hundreds of dollars per month using only passive income is to set a minimum dividend payment level at $9.00 per month or $25 per quarter.  

For example take a monthly dividend paying stock such as Realty Income (Ticker O) purchase the stock in a large enough quantity to pay  about $9.00 per month. In one year this stock will pay more than $108. If you use a drip to increase your stock levels you will be returning more than $108 in twelve months.

At current dividend rates of 23 cents per share per month you need just 35 shares to pay over $9 each month.

Notice I own Realty Income stock in my long term hold portfolio.

Use this technique with several stocks and you quickly see returns of several hundred dollars per month. 

With stocks which pay dividends on a quarterly basis, you need to think in $25 increments to pay $100 per year. This can be expensive as the compounding of dripped dividends is slower, but you can use those dollars provided from monthly income paying stocks to build a cash flow to more expensive stocks.

In a few months you can quickly grow a cash flow stream that can buy new stocks for growth and more cash flow, use to pay bills and everyday expenses or grow your retirement fund by setting your army of dollar bills to work for your more efficiently.

Try this technique, I promise you it works. I have used it for over thirty years and I see returns of 13% per year year after year.

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Thursday, November 5, 2020

Election Day Plus Two: What Am I Buying And Selling?

 On November 5th, 2020. We are at Presidential Election Day plus two. Things are settling down. I think I know the way things could go. Democratic House, Republican Senate and a toss up for the Presidency.

A sketch drawing of a bulls head. colored red white and blue

Well maybe the image to the right will give you a clue. Yeah. I am a boring bull. Whoever wins the final presidential vote, things won't change much. President Trump, look at the last four years. Former Vice President Biden, look back at the last four years and imagine less tweets,

The truth form me, in my opinion, is that politicians create noise in the markets. Good for futures traders and day trading pundits. But for me. I look for more value and long term buys.

What am I selling these days. Nothing.

Encyclopaedia of Covered Calls (amazon affiliate)In my M1 account I have been buying, Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT), Amazon (AMZN), Next Era Energy (NEE)  and McDonalds (MCD) 

I added to my Apple at the $108 mark. I was just too tempted and we have seen a little bounce from last week. I think the major part of the post sales sell off is gone. I also wanted to get in before the ex dividend date came into play as Apple and Microsoft both pay a dividend in the next couple of weeks.

Amazon was just too attractive at under $3,000.   Next Era Energy is attractive as an alternative energy play. They have done well in the past few years, if the Democratic push on green energy grows it can do well. Even if the deniers of global warming win the skirmishes Next Era Energy is well place just as a utility with a growing population in its main region of the South East UU.S.

In my ROTH IRA. I am buying stock in QYLD. QYLD being a exchange traded fund which sells covered calls in the NASDAQ 100. I began buying it several months ago. It does well in times of fluctuating markets. Its a play for the next few months. There will be lots of volatility as the new presidency begins. Even if  you look forward to less Twitter action, new presidential brooms cause a little uncertainty in their first few months.

I am also investing in the financial sector exchange traded fund *XLF) Banks have been hit this year and the stock is below my $25.00 average cost. Time to add some more I think while I can. As the economy opens up toward the end of 2021, I think, Banks will come back to life, with XLF I don't have the worry of picking the right banks. I just have a lot of banks and insurance plays.

In general I am playing long term defensive, I believe. This post is not investment advice. I am only setting out my own personal strategy. You should look on this only as entertainment, or someones crazy ravings.  My plan is only taking into account my circumstances, you should talk to a qualified investment advisor before making any investments for yourself.

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Friday, October 30, 2020

Stock Market Falling: Has Some Masked Bandit Stole My Cash?

 The end of October 2020 is here. Some of you may be feeling a little low. As though a masked bandit has run away with your cash.

William in Guide dogs for the blind face mask and red baseball cap

But don't feel too bad. If you like me have been investing for years, you are not that badly hit by the last few days sell off.

If you began investing about one year ago, then you might just have broke even for the year. Or you may have a small loss if you went with only Dow components in your portfolio.

If you invested on March 23rd. Well you are probably happy.

Don't fixate on where your portfolio was in September. Even I am down about $6,000 in my whole portfolio.   Even with that loss my total portfolio is 23.4% above its low back on March 23rd. I am up 18.75% annualized over the past two years. That is going back to when my E*Trade account was moved over from Share Builder.

As is often said, it is all relative. I can look back one month to where my portfolios were at an all time high, and feel the pain or look back two years or seven months and see where I have come from the low days.

The Simple Path to wealth book amazon affiliate linkWhat do you think all the investment sales people do. Yes they pick weeks like this and at the appropriate time even today will appear on a growth chart and they will say.

"If you bought on October 30th 2020. You would have gained xxx%"  No they won't mention the highs of September, and we investors will all say "Wow! Why didn't invest then? I would be so much richer!"

I have been there and done that. So many, many times. It's not funny. But I just plod on. Putting in spare cash here and there. Re-investing my dividends.

Speaking of which. Today sees me with a nice dividend payout of about $50. Since it is all DRIP I will be getting some stocks at a nice sale price. See falls in the market can be good. When the market falls I can get more shares. 


That is why I like dividend investing.

A little word on Apple stock:

 I know  Much is being said about the reasons why Apple stock is falling after the results were published yesterday. 

Take the fall in price with a huge pinch of salt.  Apple Always falls on results.

I have invested in Apple since 2006, and I still own quite a few shares. I have only know three times in 14 years where Apple results have seen the stock rises immediately. Two of those were stock split announcements. Apple pundits always find a reason, low iPhone sales, no future notes on sales of X product, uncertainty.


The thing is Apple makes good products, people want good products and people buy Apple products. Plus Apple now has intangible businesses, cloud storage, Apple TV, and Music as well as the App store.


If Apple goes below $100, it could, it has in the past. I will buy, even in its current $100- $115 range it is tempting.


I hope you all have a fun Halloween. Those of you in the U.K. celebrating Bonfire Night on November 5th. Have a great evening.


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Monday, October 26, 2020

How to Set Your Child on the Road to Becoming a Millionaire

/Piggy bankp>

 It may seem to be a near impossibility,  setting up your child so they can become a millionaire. Many of you will scoff and snort.

Even a child who grows up to work tables in a restaurant or diner can learn the skills that will make themselves into a millionaire one day.

To begin with your child will have a great advantage on their side. They have time.

Time allows for compounding. An initial investment with a return of just 5% will double every 14.4 years.  To estimate the doubling time for any amount take the number 72 and divide it by the percentage interest rate.. This is the rule of 72. It is not perfect but gives a good ballpark estimation.

Cash, bank notes, savings

So $100 at 5% takes 14.4 years to double to $200, then doubles again in another 14.4 years, which doubles again  in the same period.  So after about 43 years our $100 invested at 5% would equal  $400.

Of course you don't just invest the $100 and leave it. You add to it over and over again. At a rate of just $10 per week you would be adding an extra $520 per year. Each of those $10 would double in 14.4 years too.

As you add more dollars they in turn generate pennies of interest which in their turn add up to dollars generating more pennies and dollars.

Teaching your child early about compound interest is possibly the greatest way to give them the tools to become a millionaire.

Teach your child about money as a tool.

Give them pocket money, pay them for doing chores around the home. Even consider adding extra to the pocket money that they save in lieu of interest.  Allow them to spend their pocket money if they wish, but teach them that when the money is spent it is gone. Don't buy something that they wanted and were saving for if they spend all of their pocket money on something else.

Encourage responsible spending. Allow them to learn to divide pocket money into spending on what they want, what they need and savings.

ATM Money boxSupport them in opening bank or credit union savings accounts. Accounts that pay a reasonable amount of interest on small balances. Let them see their money grow as the interest mounts.

Teach your child to invest. Help them buy a stock in a company they like. Even a small fractional position in a stock like McDonalds will pay a dividend and grow over time. Or maybe buy a share of stock for them at a birthday or holidays like Christmas.

You will give them the knowledge and experience they need to save and invest as they enter the workplace they will be kitted out for a life in the real world. They will know that money is an asset to be used wisely. Spent on what you need, saved for things that you want and invested to increase your monetary wealth.

Thank you.

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Saturday, October 24, 2020

My Latest Strategy Investing On M1 Finance

 In January 2020 I opened a brokerage account with M1 Finance. I chose the account in part for its fractional shares, I wanted to buy some Amazon and Google (Alphabet) and as that costs thousands of dollars for just one share of either the fractional share seemed the only option.

William Elliott and his black Lab guide dog Leif

A couple of months after I opened the account M1 made some changes to their purchasing policy, they increased their minimum purchase price increasing the minimum from one cent to $1. This meant that my account did not grow quite as quickly.

My aim initially with an investment is to generate cash flow. M1 doesn't work for traders, but should work for cash flow investors.

Recently I have increased my deposits into the account to $13 per week. Also dividends from several sources have started to come in fairly regularly. I am earning about 50 cents per week in dividends.

In July I began to buy a new share everytime I received a dividend. Taking one dollar from my cash reserve and the full value of any dividend received and using this to buy a high value dividend paying stock.

Some weeks in September I was able to reinvest several dollars per week as many stocks pay dividends in that month. In October I am making just one or two purchases per week, but this allows some cash to build and make larger purchases of stocks across the portfolio keeping everything balanced.

When I began in January I received just 1 cent in dividends. Today I am expecting to receive just over $9 between now and January, my first anniversary of opening the account.

I plan on using this strategy until my monthly dividend payments grow to over $13 per month, in effect adding an extra weeks cash input. When this happens I will just allow the portfolio to grow at its own pace with M1 making the investment decisions for me. That may take another two or three years but dividend investing is all about slow and steady.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Hedging My Portfolio or A Bull On the Rampage?

 There are lots of things that tell me to think of hedging my portfolio.

Statue of a bronze bull on Wall Street

Death, viruses, lock downs and business collapses. Damn this year has been tough and you have to say not over yet.

Back in March, one of my portfolios lost over forty percent of it's value. My ROTH IRA luckily a little more defensive lost only eight percent. Thank goodness for those Utillities which bolstered a down facing couple of months.

I do love to buy though.  As well as reinvesting dividends in most of my companies I like to invest a couple of hundred dollars of "new money" each month. By the beginning of August I was generally fluctuating around my break even point for the year. 

Now, in October despite buying a couple of Apple stocks at their high point just before the four for one split I am now up twenty0nine percent in that big loser portfolio I mentioned earlier. My ROTH IRA is now up  seven percent on the year, up about fifteen percent from the low of March 23rd.

My ROTH IRA is pretty low volatile.

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 That brings me to my pet peeve for the year. The Youtube investors who vlog about finance and talk about Invesco S&P High Dividend Low Volatility stock (SPHD)  Ok before Mach it was trading in the high $40's and fell to below $30.  I own the stock too. I lost in the fall. But overall it did not lose as much as it could have and since April it has increased in value to the low $30's and has paid its dividend every month too.

So the Youtubers constantly go on about how the stock is not rising quickly. Er. People! It is doing what it says in the description. It is "LOW VOLATILITY" meaning it should not rise or fall quickly. Exactly what it is doing. It did not fall by a lot nor is it recovering quickly.

Read the F*****g description people, know what you are investing in.

I guess they are getting grief from those people who follow them blindly and bought SPHD back in the days of $40 per share and a nice tasty monthly yield. Though the monthly yield is still good it is tough to stomach the loses in the stocks value and a slow recovery. That's what you get with low volatility. Like my ROTH IRA no big gains, but no big losses either, slow and boring when it needs to be.

I am still a bull though.

Maybe not a raging bull. I am dabbling adding to positions that I already hold. A share here and there. I have put some cash into  covered call etf's. QYLD, and QYLG both buy and sell in the NASDAQ market. QYLG looks to save 50% of it's stock for growth of the portfolio too. I also bought stock in XYLD and XYLG which use the same strategies to invest in the S&P 500. Along with those I added a few RYLD which sells covered calls of Russel 2000 index stock as supplied by Vanguard.

I think 2021 will be pretty volatile. The virus will make it's moves and people will react and over react as usual. But I believe that things will get better before the turn of the year into 2022.

I cannot see a better place to be than in the stock market right now.  Hopefully some of my dividends should start to recover. We will definitely see global markets rise. Things will be better by Christmas. 

Where have we heard that before? 

Ah. Yes but I mean Christmas 2021. For certain, it's a promise. For what that's worth.

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