Wow. What a month it has been. My busy season came to a roaring close, there were an insane number of March Madness upsets, and my personal favorite, baseball season is back! One of my favorite activities each month is sitting down with a nice beverage and aggregating my final dividend results for the month. I tally the results throughout the month, but there is something exciting about finalizing my totals and seeing the final amount of dividend income received and calculating my year over year growth rate. Since this is March, aka the final month of the quarter, this is a very fun activity! Let’s see how I performed this month. Here is my March dividend income summary.
march dividend income summary
This month, I received $891.56 in dividend income, a 22.75% increase compared to March 2017. There was a lot going on this month, so here is a table summarizing the individual dividends received during the month.
Here are some of the highlights from March:
- The star of the show in the third month of the quarter are obviously mutual funds. I had some pretty high expectations for large dividend increases given the crazy announcements during the month. However, the results were surprisingly mixed. VINIX announced a lower dividend compared to March 2017 while the other funds announced a slightly higher payout. It definitely threw me for a loop, but hey, I guess I was due for a surprise eventually.
- Luckily, the results of our 401k maximization strategy are really starting to show. The dividend I received from VINIX doubled compared to last year while my wife’s mutual fund distributions increased as well. However, this isn’t as large as it could have been and I’ll explain the recent SNAFU that has resulted in minimal 401k contributions during the last few months. Luckily, it has been re-mediated.
- This was the first month I received the full monthly dividend from Realty Income after my three purchases in January/February. Man was it sweet to receive nearly $20 this month from the Monthly Dividend Paying Company. This is going to be great to receive each month.
- Compared to last year, I received a new dividend from Kroger, which I purchased after the company’s price took a nose dive in 2017. My dividend was rather small though, so I would ideally like to see this amount increase one of these days.
- Lastly, it was nice to receive the increased dividends from companies such as Aflac, Chevron, ADM, and ED, all of which announced surprised/large increases in the first two months of the year.
March portfolio news and dividend increases
- The last few months, I have discussed the major changes in my portfolio that have impacted my forward dividend income. This boils down to two types of portfolio changes: dividend increases and purchases/401(k) contributions. I’ve enjoyed summarizing the major happenings in each monthly article so thought I would do so once again.
First, the dividend increases. January and February provided me, Lanny, and a ton of you with incredible dividend increases. Well, in March, this slowed down as very few companies I owned increased their dividend this month. In fact, the only holding I owned that increased their dividend was Realty Income. Despite the fact that I added a ton to my position at the beginning of 2018, the tiny $.0005/share increase in their monthly dividend income didn’t really move the needle in my forward income. But hey, I’m never going to complain about receiving additional income each month regardless of the dollar amount!
Luckily, I was able to add a nice chunk of forward dividend income through transactions this year. After sitting on the sideline for almost a month, I decided to join Lanny and we both purchased shares of Dominion Energy this month. I wasn’t messing around with my purchase this year and as a result, the purchase added $133.60 to my forward dividend income.
This was my only individual purchase; however, I was able to add some dividend income via 401(k) contributions as well. Earlier in the year, I mentioned that my wife and I are going to maximize our 401(k) contributions during the year. That plan has been going very well for me as you can see in the chart above. Each month I have been able to add between $25-$30 in forward dividend income based on these maximized contributions.
But things have not gone as well for my wife. When she switched jobs in February, we had to wait several weeks for her plan to become active. This was due to a clerical error on her employer’s part due to the fact she used to work for the employer 5+ years ago and returned with this new position. There were some issues with Fidelity and for some reason, her account was not re-activated upon hire. These issues were lingering for a while, but unfortunately, due to my busy season and the crazy work hours, I was not able to call and get her plan activated. The good news is that we were able to sort this all out and she is able to contribute again. I cannot wait to see her account grow quickly, because her regular contributions are going to be rather larger in order for her to maximize her contributions in 2018! It should be a lot of fun to watch.
I don’t even know where time has gone during the first quarter of 2018. But taking a step back and reflecting on everything that has gone on in my personal life and my investing portfolio, it is truly crazy to see how much things have grown. Despite the decrease in market value experienced as the market finally pulled back, I have seen my monthly dividend income and forward dividend income continue to grow. Adding $168 from purchases and contributions should provide a nice jolt to my second quarter results! All in all, posting another double digit percent increase compared to last year was an exciting way to end March and it has me very pumped/excited to begin counting the dividends received in April. Hopefully we can all continue to take care of business in 2018! Now, let’s continue to side hustle whenever we can and do whatever we can to make every single dollar count. Let’s keep on pushing everyone!