2017 Top Investment Picks – Q1 Update

At the beginning of the year, I put together a list of top picks from the investment community and track them on this website. This is just meant to be a fun exercise to see how the picks do. As part of the process, I intend do provide quarterly updates on the picks to see how they are doing. This is the update after Q1.

Note that you can track the progress anytime by going to the Stock Picks page.

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Top Investment Picks for 2017

As the new year rolls out, I decided that it would be a fun experiment to run and collect top investment picks for 2017. I reached out to the community of bloggers that I regularly interact with and asked them to participate in this collection. I performed the same exercise and the post garnered a lot of attention from the dividend investing community and readers in general. I recently posted the results on how the overall picks did over the course of the year in 2016. There are still some great picks from the 2016 top picks, and I invite you to check them for ideas. Anyway, back to the 2017 list…

The rules were simple: Pick one investment (either a stock or a fund or a commodity or any other form of investment), and present a short & quick investment reason behind the pick. Most bloggers I reached out to were happy to comply and shared their pick.

Top Investment Picks for 2017

Before I present the picks, I would like to remind the readers that these are simply picks based on current outlook and each investor should perform due diligence before investing in any of the companies mentioned. Also, the investors I reached out to are long term investors, so I discourage readers to trade in and out of these investments based on the data presented here simply because it is their top pick at the moment. It is very hard to predict what the stock/market will do over the course of one year, let alone a quarter or two.

Without further ado, here are the top picks from the blogging community for 2017. Some of the investors are not necessarily bloggers, and are some folks I regularly interact with via social media and other forums — in which case, I have linked to their public profile. The ‘DGF’ referred to next to some of the names refers to Dividend Growth Forum.

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Results: 2016 Top Investment Picks

As we ring out the year 2016, its time to look back and evaluate some of our investment picks/decisions. At the end of 2015, I reached out to the investing community and asked them to pick one investment security as their top pick for the year 2016. Plenty of the said bloggers responded and I was happy to compile the list and track them over the year.  The original post from Jan 2016 can be found here — it is interesting to see what everyone was thinking back then and how the picks played out over the year.

Again, I would like to remind readers that this was meant to simply be a fun exercise and should not be considered investment advise. Please do your own research before investing in any securities.

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Why Gold?

Gold — It is the oldest form of currency, universally accepted by the human species across the world in different cultures and different eras of civilization. This shiny metal has always been attractive by one and all for a variety of reasons. But we are in interesting times….and while we get more educated and complicate our monetary system, the more people tend to forget what gold even is. Is it a currency? A commodity? Or as some claim, is it a pet rock (Hint: No)? In this article, I visit and present a few reason to own gold.

Money vs Currency

Over the past few months, I have been spending a lot of time reading and learning about gold and its place in human history and our current monetary system. Our present state has become overly complicated where central bankers control every little aspect of our lives through the currency. The fiat currency is only a piece of paper, a promise from the government that the value you hold in your hand is worth something. We can argue all day long about which paper is stronger than other forms of paper from around the world, but the point is just that — its a piece of paper that is worth something today but may not be worth the same tomorrow. In fact, that is the hope — that it is worth less tomorrow.

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Where to Get Good Dividend Investment Ideas

This is a guest contribution from Ben Reynolds.  Ben runs Sure Dividend, which is dedicated to finding high quality dividend growth stocks suitable for long-term investing using The 8 Rules of Dividend Investing.

The historical average price-to-earnings ratio for the S&P 500 is 15.6.  The S&P 500’s current price-to-earnings ratio is 24.2.  From a historical perspective, the market is very clearly overvalued.

It’s important to remember that the stock market is made up of individual stocks.  Not every member of the S&P 500 has a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.2.  Some are much higher, others much lower.

It is still possible to find great businesses trading at fair or better prices in today’s market.  This article takes a look at several different tools and lists to do just that.

Dividend Idea Generator #1:  Other Dividend Investors Portfolios

Many dividend bloggers share their own portfolios for others to view.  You can see Sabeel’s portfolio here (of Roadmap 2 Retire).  Sabeel’s portfolio is loaded with both high yield and high quality dividend growth stocks.

An example is Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM).  Archer-Daniels-Midland currently has a dividend yield of 2.9% and price-to-earnings ratio of 16.1.  The company’s forward price-to-earnings ratio is even lower at 14.3.

Archer-Daniels-Midland is a has paid increasing dividends for 41 consecutive.  The company is also the largest farm procucts company in North America by a wide margin with its $24.8 billion market cap.  For comparison, its next largest competitor Bunge (BG) has a market cap of $8.2 billion.

You can read more about Sabeel’s purchase of Archer-Daniels-Midland here.

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