Another month is in the books and 2019 continues to fly by at a record pace. Baseball season is winding down and football season is starting up again. Plus, we are approaching fall, which is my wife’s favorite season. It’ll be even more special now that we can celebrate it with our daughter for the first time. August was another crazy month for the market. There were wild swings, buying opportunities, and naturally, the market climbed towards the end. But during that time, dividend income provided us a consistent dividend income stream. Lanny kicked off the party on this website by posting insane results (Read about his $800+ dividend income month). So now it is my turn. Let’s dive into my August Dividend Income summary.
august dividend income summary
This July, my wife and I received $587.15 in dividend income. That is a 55.7% increase compared to last July’s total of $377.07. The following chart details the individual dividends received:
Here are some highlights and comments about the table above:
- Let’s start off with the biggest change from last year. National Grid. This company accounted for the majority of my increase compared to last year. Honestly though, I forgot that I purchased shares in the utility last year. NGG pays a semi-annual dividend and one of the dividends is larger than the other. Let’s just say the August dividend was the larger of the two paid in 2019, and it shows.
- The other two “new” dividends compared to last year were CVS and ABBV. I added positions to each company in the third and fourth quarter of 2018, respectively. I’ve been receiving dividends from them for a while though.
- Additions to T during the last 12 months are paying some dividends. For a while, we were adding close to two shares each quarter via drip. The amount has reduced; however, as the company’s stock price has rebounded.
- I think a goal of mine in the coming months will be to expand my portfolio’s banking holdings. I have some great bank names; however, as I mentioned in my last watch list, there are plenty of names trading at a discount that offer strong asset quality and dividend growth.
- Outside of those few items, it was a relatively boring month. We benefited from Dividend Reivestment and Dividend Increases (See the Real Impact Dividend Increases have on Lanny’s Portfolio each quarter). I wish I had more to report for you, but the second month of the quarter is pretty low key for us!
Portfolio News & Updates
In this section, I show the additional dividend income received due to dividend increases and stock purchases (individual, 401k contributions), during the month. After a “Dry spell” of purchases over the last few months, I am excited to show the additional forward dividend income as a result of some purchases finally! Let’s start there. The following table shows the additional dividend income as a result of stock purchases and 401(k) contributions)
I wrote an article earlier in the month summarizing my purchase activity. During a flash sale, I added shares of MMM and XOM to our portfolio. There wasn’t a ton of capital added; however, I was very excited at the opportunity to add to my stake in 3M. 3M is one of my “Always Buy” stocks due to their dividend history, diversification, and dominance in their industry. So when there is a chance to buy, I can’t help myself. I will look to continue building if the opportunity arises. The largest dividend income added came from the additional purchase of XOM. The company continues to have a high yield (~5%) and a strong dividend history. I’ll continue to add if it makes sense.
I’ll tell you what though. It felt AMAZING to be back in the stock purchasing game once again. Adding an additional $168.78 in forward dividend income is exciting. The next table will show the impact that dividend increases had on our portfolio during the month.
While the impact was not as large as the last table, receiving three dividend increases in one month is nothing to sneeze at. i summarize expected dividend increases each month on our website. So these dividend increases weren’t exactly a surprise. If anything, the biggest surprise was the lower than anticipated dividend increase from ITW. I expected it to decrease from the mammoth increase in 2018. But I was expecting a little more in 2019. I guess overall though, I can’t complain, because this added another $14.24 to my dividend income.
Overall, purchases and dividend increases added $183.02 in dividend income to my forward totals. Not a bad 31 days in the month if you ask me!
So what does this month tell me? I have made some great progress, but there is still a lot of progress to go. I’m finally starting to wake up and make sure that I am constantly staying hungry on my journey towards financial freedom. It hasn’t been easy over the last several months, I’m not going to lie. But sometimes, it takes a kick in the butt, reviewing your results, and an amazing best friend to help you get back on track.
My call to action is different this month than last month. I always say let’s make Every Dollar Count. But instead, this month, it will be much more simple. Let’s save some freaking money everyone. And let’s share the savings on Twitter, Facebook, in conversations with friends. Honestly, let’s share it with everyone. That’s how you stoke the hunger internally, and externally, to pursue financial freedom. And who knows, maybe you will inspire someone else to open up a spreadsheet, start a budget, and find new ways to save.
Lanny just published a guide with 5 EASY ways to save $500 today. I’ll be working through each of the five methods myself as well. Because even though I monitor my finances closely, it never hurts to go through the exercise to see if you can save even more. Then, those savings will find their way right into our investment portfolio and fuel future dividends. The name of the game right there.
What are you going to do to improve your finances in September? Did you have a strong month in terms of dividend income? What stocks were the largest catalysts for growth for you? Are you looking to buy in the coming weeks?