Saturday, October 26, 2013

Which Country Is Most Like Warren Buffett?

The finances of the governments of various countries are similar to the finances of individuals.  Some individuals and countries run things well; some run things poorly.  Then there are the superstars of investing, like Warren Buffett.  These individuals amass and maintain great wealth.

So are there any superstar countries when it comes to finance?  Is there a country that seems to follow The Warren Buffett Way?  While all analogies break down at some point, there does seem to be one country that fits the description.  That country is Norway.

The Norwegian government established a sovereign wealth fund in 1990, funded by taxes and exploration licenses from the petroleum sector of the Norwegian economy.  Over time, this fund has grown into an enormous financial powerhouse.  You can read more about the fund on their official website.

Note the following Buffett-like characteristics of the fund:
  • The fund is currently worth $810 billion!
  • It's now the largest sovereign wealth fund in the world.
  • The population of Norway is approximately 5 million.  Thus, the fund is worth more than $137,000 per person.
  • The fund takes a buy-and-hold approach, and has been patient through market downturns.
  • The government has resisted raiding the fund, even after it grew very large.
  • Unlike many large pension and endowment funds, the fund eschews unconventional and illiquid investments.
  • 99% of the assets of the fund are invested in publicly traded stocks and bonds.
  • The market footprint of the fund is huge.  It holds more than 1% of the entire global equity market, and almost 2% of the European equity market.
  • The fund stresses transparency in holdings and accounting.

In conclusion, I would also note that a similar management and investment style has produced similar long term results for Norway and Warren Buffett.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Historical Dividend Yield Charts

I've put together some 5-year charts of the dividend yields for seven of the companies in the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA).  If you've never seen these charts before, it's worth taking a look.

The most dramatic thing you'll notice is just how high the dividend yields were at the market lows in 2009.  For people who are currently hunting for 2.5% and 3% entry yields, it's interesting to see how cheap things really were four or five years ago.

Consider the following entry yields available in 2009:
  • MMM: almost 5%
  • T: over 7%
  • JNJ: almost 4%
  • PG: over 3.5%
  • KO: over 4%
  • MSFT: over 3% (similar to today)
  • CVX: over 4.5%
None of these stocks cut their dividends during the 2008-2009 downturn.  In fact, on a declared basis, some of the yields were even higher than the charts show, as declared dividend increases had not yet been fully included in the trailing twelve months (TTM) stats that the charts display.

Have a nice weekend.

MMM Dividend Yield (TTM) Chart
T Dividend Yield (TTM) Chart
JNJ Dividend Yield (TTM) Chart
PG Dividend Yield (TTM) Chart
MSFT Dividend Yield (TTM) Chart
KO Dividend Yield (TTM) Chart
CVX Dividend Yield (TTM) Chart

Sunday, October 6, 2013

List of Blogger Stock Portfolios

I've been maintaining a list of bloggers who publish their investment portfolios as a static page.  The list has about 100 blogs at this point, and I would like to share it.  Clicking each link below will take you directly to the portfolio for that blog.

  1. $25,000 Dividends
  2. A Frugal Family's Journey
  3. A Journey To Riches
  4. All About Interest
  5. Alpha Target
  6. American Dividend Dream
  7. Anha Investing
  8. Asset-Grinder
  9. Average Dividend Yield
  10. Bid Ask Dividends
  11. Brave New Life
  12. Brick By Brick Investing
  13. Captain Dividend
  14. Chasing Gains
  15. Compounding Income
  16. David's Financial Freedom Journey
  17. Dear Dividend
  18. Death To The Full-Time Job
  19. Dining On Dividends
  20. DivGro
  21. DivHut
  22. Divi Me Up
  23. Divid/Elephant
  24. Dividend Developer
  25. Dividend Digger
  26. Dividend Diplomats
  27. Dividend Dream
  28. Dividend Dreamer
  29. Dividend Driven
  30. Dividend Empire
  31. Dividend Epiphany
  32. Dividend for Starters
  33. Dividend Gamer
  34. Dividend Growth Investing & Retirement
  35. Dividend Growth Journey
  36. Dividend Growth Stocks
  37. Dividend Hawk
  38. Dividend Hustler
  39. Dividend Income Stocks
  40. Dividend Ladder
  41. Dividend Legion
  42. Dividend Life
  43. Dividend Mantra
  44. Dividend Mom
  45. Dividend Mongrel
  46. Dividend Monk
  47. Dividend Noob
  48. Dividend Odyssey
  49. Dividend Prodigy
  50. Dividend Road
  51. Dividend Tactics
  52. Dividend Venture
  53. Dividend Vet
  54. Dividend & Whiskey
  55. Dividend Wisp
  56. Dividendasaur
  57. Dividenden-Sammler
  58. Dividends For Dummies
  59. Dutch Dividend
  60. Dutch Dividend Investor
  61. Exponential Dividends
  62. FabSavings
  63. Finance Journey
  64. Financial Freedom
  65. Financial Freedom to the Divorced People
  66. Financial Independence UK
  67. Financially Free By Forty
  68. Frankly Frugal Finance
  69. Freedom Thirty Five
  70. Frugality to Financial Freedom
  71. Gremlin's House Party
  72. Happy, Healthy and Wealthy Girl
  73. Happy Money Bags
  74. Hello Suckers
  75. Indian Value and Contrarian Investor 
  76. Invest Like Grandpa
  77. Investing Idiot
  78. Investing Pursuits
  79. Live Off My Dividends
  80. Living At Home
  81. Long Term Mindset
  82. Million Dollar Donkey
  83. My Contrarian Adventure
  84. My Dividend Growth
  85. My Dividend Pipeline
  86. My Financial Independence Journey
  87. My Real Stock Trades
  88. No More Waffles
  89. Ocean Portfolio
  90. Passive Income Mavericks
  91. Passive Income Pursuit
  92. Pollie's Dividend
  93. Pulling Ourselves Up Financially
  94. Quit Your Day Job 101
  95. Reddy Set Go
  96. Retire Before Dad
  97. Retired At 50
  98. Roadmap2Retire
  99. Save Invest Give
  100. Special Agent Dividend
  101. Starting From Zero
  102. Tawcan
  103. The Dividend Cave
  104. The Dividend Drive
  105. The Dividend Girl
  106. The Dividend Guy
  107. The Dividend Way
  108. The Financial Unicorn
  109. The Investment Road to Freedom
  110. The Passive Income Earner
  111. The Stock Stooge
  112. The Stoic Investor
  113. Two Investing
  114. Write Your Own Reality
  115. Young Dividends
  116. Zero to Zeros

If you have any additions to the list, please leave a comment.  Please note that I'm only looking for portfolios of real money, not model portfolios or virtual portfolios.  Also, as a practical matter, I'm looking for blogs that publish their portfolio as a static page.  This means portfolio updates can be found on one page and not simply scattered among dozens of ongoing posts.  Use of Google Docs is nice, but I realize there are many ways of maintaining this information.