Get Rich - Stay Rich - Investing for Monthly Income

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How to Make Monthly Income in a Sideway Moving Market

Expectations for the third quarter earnings were dismal, with forecasts for a decline in profits from a year ago.  But a recent flurry of high-profile reports has investors scowling at the weak revenue numbers, adding to worries about the state of the U.S. economy and the outlook for corporate America.

IBM, General Electric and Microsoft fell short of revenue expectations, creating a sour mood early in the third-quarter reporting period.  This has led to a market that is moving nowhere too soon.  For the last month (Sept 24 – Oct 19), the benchmark S&P 500 Index is only up 0.4% while the PowerShares S&P 500 BuyWrite Portfolio (PBP) is down 0.95%.

Where can income investors go for monthly income in a sideway moving market?

One option is to look at a covered call strategy for monthly income.  A covered call strategy provides income from the premium received when a call option is sold against 100 shares of a stock.  In general, a covered call makes money when the stock price goes nowhere (like today’s market), when the stock price increases and provides downside protection when a stock slightly declines in price.

Subscribers to the Monthly Income Plan had exceptional returns from the monthly covered call trades.  We enter 4 monthly covered call trades on September 24 2012 for trades to expire on October 19 2012.  This is a total of 26 calendar days for these covered call trades.

The results included:

a 6.75% monthly return on the United Rentals, Inc. NYSE: URI covered call;

6.57% on the USG Corporation NYSE: USG covered call;

5.09% on the Royal Caribbean Cruises NYSE:RCL covered call;

and a 5.4% return on the SanDisk Corporation NASDAQ: SNDK covered call.

This is an average return of 5.95% in one month on these 4 covered call trades.  For comparison purposes, this is an annualized return of 83.6%.

These trades significantly beat the S&P 500 and PBP Buy-Write for the last month.  For income investors, they made $595 for every $10,000 invested in these 4 combined covered call trades.

Click here to subscribe to the Monthly Income Plan to get new covered call trades each month for only $19.95 per month.

 

ETF Winners and Losers

Last year was generally a period of strong growth for the biggest ETFs in the industry; of the 23 largest exchange-traded products, only three saw net outflows in 2011: GLD, the iShares Emerging Markets Index Fund (EEM), and the iShares Russell 2000 Index Fund (IWM). Four ETFs saw more than $5 billion in new cash in 2011, including SPY, the Vanguard MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (VWO), the iShares MSCI EAFE Index Fund (EFA), and the Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF (BND).

Other ETFs experiencing noteworthy inflows in 2011 highlight some trends among investors during the last year. Vanguard’s Dividend Appreciation ETF (VIG) took in about $4.1 billion, representing almost 90% of assets in the fund at the end of 2010. Dividend-focused products have been in high demand in recent months, as investors seek out tools to boost the current return on their portfolio and scale back risk as well. The Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (MOO) saw inflows of about $3.7 billion in last year, more than the $2.6 billion in AUM at the end of 2010. Many investors have embraced “indirect” exposure to commodities through the stocks of companies engaged in the extraction and production of raw materials-including many of the ETFs in the Commodity Producers Equities ETFdb Category.

Two head-to-head battles of popular ETFs saw big swings in 2011. The two ETFs linked to the MSCI Emerging Markets Index-iShares’ EEM and Vanguard’s VWO-experienced wildly different fates last year; VWO took in about $7.8 billion in inflows, while EEM saw outflows of almost $6.8 billion. Another iShares ETF, the COMEX Gold Trust (IAU) was on the winning end of its battle with a more established and more expensive competitor. IAU, which holds gold bullion, took in about $2.7 billion in new cash. The Gold SPDR (GLD), which also offers physically-backed exposure to gold-saw outflows on the year of more than $300 million. IAU charges just 0.25%, while GLD has an expense ratio of 0.40%.

Monthly Dividend Stocks Beating the S&P 500

Comparison of monthly dividend stocks and ETFs to the S&P 500

Click to enlarge

While dividend income is the hot item these days as the yield on fixed income investments is lower than income investors are seeking.  However, you do not want to give up some total return just to lock in a dividend.  The yield on the S&P 500 is only 2% and the price return has been 1% over the last year.  This creates a total return of 3% on the S&P 500. You should use this as the baseline for your income investments.  You can easily find monthly dividend stocks and ETFs that can beat the S&P 500 to make you even more money than just the monthly dividend.

Here are three monthly dividend stocks that have beaten the S&P 500 over the past year: (1) CRT, (2) MAIN and (3) UTG. The chart above shows the stock price returns compared to the S&P 500 over the past year.

Cross Timber Royalty Trust (CRT) is currently trading at $46.50. It has a 1-year price return of 24.05% compared to 1% for the S&P 500. CRT has a current dividend yield of 6.43% paid as a monthly dividend. CRT has a total return (1-year price return and dividend yield) of 30.48%. This is 8 times more profitable than the S&P 500. This is clear evidence that monthly dividend stocks can provide significant income investment returns beating the S&P 500.

CRT Company Profile: Cross Timbers Royalty Trust (Trust) is an express trust. The Trust is a widely held fixed investment trust (WHFIT). The Company entered into Cross Timbers Royalty Trust Indenture between predecessors of XTO Energy Inc. (XTO Energy), as grantors, and NCNB Texas National Bank, as trustee. As of December 31, 2010, Bank of America, N.A. is the trustee of the trust. Approximately 20 of the underlying royalty interests in the San Juan Basin burden working interests in properties operated by XTO Energy. XTO Energy also operates the Penwell Unit, which is the properties underlying the Texas 75% net profits interests and ExxonMobil operates the Hewitt Unit, which is the properties underlying the Oklahoma 75% net profits interests. Other than these properties, XTO Energy and ExxonMobil do not operate or control any of the underlying properties or related working interests.

Main Street Capital (MAIN) is currently trading at $17.50. MAIN has a 1-year price return of 13.77% compared to 1% for the S&P 500. MAIN has a current dividend yield of 8.64% paid as a monthly dividend. MAIN has a total return (1-year price return and dividend yield) of 22.41%. This is 7.5 times more profitable than the S&P 500. Again, this is another monthly dividend stock significantly beating the S&P 500.

MAIN Company Profile: Main Street Capital Corporation (MSCC) is a principal investment firm focused on providing customized financing solutions to lower middle-market companies with annual revenues between $10 million and $100 million. The Company was formed for the purpose of acquiring 100% of the equity interests of Main Street Mezzanine Fund, LP (MSMF) and its general partner, Main Street Mezzanine Management, LLC (MSMF GP); acquiring 100% of the equity interests of Main Street Capital Partners, LLC (the Investment Manager); raising capital in an initial public offering (IPO), which was completed in October 2007, and thereafter operating as an internally managed business development company (BDC). MSMF is licensed as a Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) by the United States Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Investment Manager acts as MSMF’s manager and investment adviser. The Company invests primarily in secured debt instruments, equity investments, warrants and other securities.

Reaves Utility Income Fund (UTG) is currently trading at $25.08. UTG has a 1-year price return of 14.09% compared to 1% for the S&P 500. UTG has a current dividend yield of 6.0% paid as a monthly dividend. UTG has a total return (1-year price return and dividend yield) of 20.09%. This is 6.7 times more profitable than the S&P 500. Again, this is another monthly dividend stock significantly beating the S&P 500.

UTG Company Profile: Reaves Utility Income Fund (the Fund) is a non-diversified closed-end investment Company. The Find’s investment objective is to provide a high level of after-tax income and total return consisting primarily of tax-advantaged dividend income and capital appreciation. The Fund may invest a portion of its assets in foreign securities. In the event that the Fund executes a foreign security transaction, the Fund will enter into a forward foreign currency contract to settle the foreign security transaction. It focuses to invest at least 80% of its total assets in dividend-paying common and preferred stocks and debt instruments of companies within the utility industry. The remaining 20% of its assets may be invested in other securities, including stocks, money market instruments and debt instruments, as well as certain derivative instruments in the utility industry or other industries.

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