March 2014 Dividends/ Option Income

March was a great month for dividends with 12 of my companies paying out.

In March I received a total of $258.07. This is a 149% increase from the $103.64 I made in 2013. I made $59.46 in 2012 and $22.57 in 2011. This is the exact kind of trend I love seeing. While some of the increase was from companies raising their dividends, the huge majority of the gains at this point in my investing life is made from contributions of capital to buy more shares of stock. All the dividends are being reinvested back into the companies they came from.

I also recently added a new category of option income. From here on out I’ll be documenting the monthly gains/losses that I experienced from selling option premium.

First the dividends:

Symbol Dividend Amount Shares Bought @ Price
AFL $21.84 0.3369 64.84
AVA $47.29 1.5719 30.0843
BMS $13.59 0.3433 39.59
BP $28.85 0.5923 48.71
CVX $25.62 0.2222 115.29
HRS $20.58 0.2791 73.7281
IBM $11.40 0.0609 187.1294
JNJ $19.94 0.2139 93.217
MCD $24.70 0.2526 97.7834
TGT $13.42 0.2185 61.4166
V $6.02 0.0268 224.584
WFC $24.82 0.5318 46.673

Total dividends for March 2014: $258.07

Option Income for March 2014:

Symbol Profit/Loss (including commissions) Return-on-Investment
AMZN Bull Vertical Put Spread -$230.89
C Bull Vertical Put Spread $21.93 29.2%

Total option income for March 2014: -$208.96

I lost money on options this month due to the poor performance of my Amazon vertical put spread. Once I have enough money to sell some cash-secured puts I’ll try my hand at a slightly different strategy. I’ll write more about this later.

Update (5/18/2014): Starting off, a lot of what I’ll be doing will be a learning process. Rather than take the loss on the Amazon put spread, what I should have done instead is either close it ahead of time or try to roll it to a later month and/or lower strike for a scratch or maybe even a small credit. Overall, it was a relatively big loss (at least when compared to the income I took in from dividends), but nothing that I couldn’t handle. In the future I’ll have to manage these a bit better.

Full disclosure: Long AFL, AVA, BMS, BP, CVX, HRS, IBM, JNJ, MCD, TGT, V, WFC

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