In December 2010, I created a screen/hypothetical portfolio called the “High Yield Dividend Champion Portfolio.” The screen is tracked publicly as a continuous hypothetical portfolio with a starting balance of $100,000 on Scott’s Investments (see the right hand column for a link to the spreadsheet).
Like many of the screens, strategies, and portfolios I track and prefer, the High Yield Dividend Champion Portfolio uses a small number of historically relevant ideas to create a simple, yet powerful investment plan. As I previously detailed, “Some studies have shown that the, highest yielding, low payout stocks perform better over time than stocks with higher payouts and lower yields.”
The High Yield Dividend Champion Portfolio attempts to capture the best high yield, low payout stocks with a history of raising dividends. There are numerous ways to gauge the “best” high yield/low payout stocks. The screening process for this portfolio starts with the “Dividend Champions” as compiled by DRIP Investing. The list is comprised of stocks that have increased their dividend payout for at least 25 consecutive years.
I am excited to announce some changes to the High Yield Dividend Champion ranking system going forward. The changes are not due to poor performance – the strategy returned over 40% in the past two years:
We still begin with the Dividend Champion list. The list is first sorted by yield and the lowest 50% yielding stocks are eliminated.
The remaining stocks are then assigned a rank based on their yield (the higher the yield the higher the rank), payout ratio (the lower the payout ratio the higher the rank), 3 year dividend growth rate, and 5/10 year Dividend Acceleration/Deceleration (5-year average increase divided by 10-year average increase). The objective of the new ranking system is to capture stocks with accelerating dividend growth while still focusing on high yield and low payout ratios. The screen produces many of the same names as the original system but may help reduce turnover going forward. With the old ranking system, some stocks frequently fluctuated on the margin as qualifiers and non-qualifiers, increasing turnover.
The top 10 stocks based on the new ranking system make the portfolio. Stocks will be sold at the re-balance date (generally around the 5th of the month) when they drop out of the top 15 (to limit turnover) and are replaced with the next highest rated stock.
After running the new ranking system there is turnover in three positions for this month. Eagle Financial Services (EFSI) was sold for a gain over 25%, McDonalds (MCD) for a gain over 2%, and Mercury General (MCY) for a loss over 4.5% . Individual security returns exclude commissions.
The top 15 stocks based on the new ranking methodology are below and displayed in order of their ranking:
|Name||Symbol||Trend||Yield||Payout||5 10 A/D*||3-yr DGR %|
|Universal Health Realty Trust||UHT||Here||4.9||40.46||0.54||1.10|
|WGL Holdings Inc.||WGL||Here||4.08||59.04||1.347||2.90|
|Genuine Parts Co.||GPC||Here||3.11||49.75||1.17||6.80|
|American States Water||AWR||Here||2.96||53.58||1.528||7.90|
|California Water Service||CWT||Here||3.43||57.8||1.407||2.20|
|Community Trust Banc.||CTBI||Here||3.84||44.06||0.41||1.20|
|Air Products & Chem.||APD||Here||3.05||55.05||0.937||11.80|
|Tompkins Financial Corp.||TMP||Here||3.83||60.08||0.843||5.70|
|1st Source Corp.||SRCE||Here||3.08||34.52||0.46||3.80|
|Altria Group Inc.||MO||Here||5.6||91.67||1.251||8.70|
|‘*A/D=Acceleration/Deceleration (5-year average increase divided by 10-year average increase)|
All returns exclude commissions and taxes and are hypothetical. Real results will differ