Portfolio Update: March 2015
That’s a wrap on March, and with that comes my latest portfolio update. My portfolio is my ticket to financial independence; the more money I can save and contribute today the faster I’ll get there. I love my line of work as a producer and editor in the volatile entertainment industry, but changes can happen swiftly and job security isn’t common. This is why I’m saving as much of my income as possible every month and investing in high quality businesses that raise their dividends each year. If I ever have trouble finding a new gig or just need a break, this growing stream of dividend payouts will reduce my stress and help pay my daily expenses.
I’d like to thank the market for providing long term investors with decent opportunities over the month as the S&P 500 index dropped almost 2% from February. While day traders love to see prices going up for quick and unpredictable profits, dividend growth investors like myself prefer it when stock prices fall hard so we can scoop up even more growing dividends for less money. I was able to add more capital to my portfolio than I anticipated in March when I bought more shares of Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS), AT&T and initiated a small position in Coca-Cola (KO).
I’m well ahead of my 2015 Portfolio Contributions goal of $25,000, but remain cautious due to the uncertain nature of my job situation. My fiancée and I have been saving a lot of money lately and have already paid for half of our upcoming wedding costs, and our honeymoon budget is inching closer to completion every week. We’ve decided to visit Greece in October for both of our first trip abroad, including Athens and the islands of Santorini, Mykonos and Naxos. We hope to explore remote areas of those islands and are looking forward to seeing artifacts that are over 4,000 years old. The trip won’t slow my new investments down too much, because I’m committed to contributing at least $2,083.33 each month during the year to hit that $25,000 goal. I was able to invest $3,267.15 in March to bring the yearly contribution total to $7,832.30 so far.
My portfolio’s value decreased by just over a thousand dollars not factoring in new investments this month, but that’s a good thing because my latest contributions and dividend reinvestment’s went a lot further with the lower stock prices. My portfolio is still small enough where new money added usually outweighs any market movements, and its value has steadily risen each month since I started making consistent investments at the end of 2013. The end of March stayed true to that tradition as the overall value of my portfolio stood at $52,941.01, an increase of 4.35% or $2,206.90 compared to last month’s $50,734.11. Year over year that value has risen 274.12% from just $14,150.98. This graph documents the steady climb upward.
I’m firm in my belief that lower market prices mean much better deals for dividend growth investors, and that’s why I don’t see too much importance in these portfolio value comparisons. However, I do find it useful to view which of my holdings are down in price overall which is why I track those gains and losses on my portfolio spreadsheet. I deem that the fundamentals of all the businesses I hold are safe and sound and under-performing stock prices give me an easy and obvious idea of where I might want to add more money. Other important data I track is the diversity and weight among all the different investment sectors. Last month I complained about my lack of exposure to the consumer goods and services sectors; by adding a good amount to those areas in March, I’m feeling a bit better. Here was my portfolio snapshot at the end of March 2015:
How was your March? Are you diversified?