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Weekly Portfolio Summary

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New year and it's time to get going on new weekly updates and a new batch of quarterly earnings reports.  Now that I've got the past year's review behind me, now it's time to start listening to fourth quarter and 2017 yearly earnings results.  We start on Tuesday when Citigroup announces their fourth quarter results.  Today, JP Morgan and Wells Fargo both reported.  There were significant tax losses and the trading divisions suffered because of low volatility.  There were also a fair amount of one-time charges,  which were expected to take advantage of tax loss benefits and other similar related events.  In general, the report was good for an institutional bank. NIM was higher and the forward outlook was postie, and with it, the bank stocks took off.  The markets will be closed on Monday for Martin Luther King Day, so Citi will be the next big bank report and I expect that we'll get another similar report and stock price results.  More specific to Citigroup, itself…

Year In Review: 2017 Trades

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Notes:
Stock Ratings: 1 = buy at current stock prices, 2 = buy on a 5-10% dip in stock price, 3 = sell on a 5-10% increase in stock price, 4 = sell at current stock prices to raise cash.  Ratings are based upon 12-18 month outlook on stock direction and not necessarily related to moves I make due to financial positioning.

The purpose of this discussion and review is to analyze the trades I made in 2017 - what went bad, what went well, and what's still undecided.  Hopefully we'll be able to glean some lessons from the experiences I've had and use those to become better in 2018 - so let's dig in.  Below are all of the trades I made in the year.  I'm going to try to break things down stock by stock, not trade by trade, but I'll do my best to keep all of this straight.

2017 was a year of low volatility.  Throughout the entire year the market never pulled back more than 5%, though many individual stocks certainly did.  I did find myself getting overly worried at times …

Year In Review: 2017 Portfolio Performance

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As 2017 wraps up, I want to take a brief moment to review my performance on the year and then talk about what I'm looking for in 2018. While my intent is to keep things short, it's important that I set a common base.  First, all gain/loss percentages discussed are based upon either feedback from my portfolio tracking software or by pulling up tickers on the Morningstar web site's performance tabs for YTD or 2017 numbers on performance.  Numbers I state have the chance of being off a few percentage points compared to reality.  I will be doing various comparisons of my stocks against the performance of the S&P 500, excluding dividends.  Additionally, I'll be comparing the performance against the sectors which the stocks are a part of.  To do this, I'm using Spider (SPDR) ETF index funds, as these ETFs are known to track extremely close to each of their respective sectors.  These sector performances likely include the benefit of dividend yields whereas my stock pe…

Weekly Portfolio Summary

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Once again, I've been failing to keep up on my portfolio.  We're now entering into the end of the year and this will likely be the last summary I put out as we head into the Holiday season and I prepare my end of year documents that I've been doing.  Despite my inability to keep up with documenting things along the way, I have been staying on my stock research for the most part.  I did miss listening to an earnings call or two, but those that I missed were great quarters and need less attention, for the most part.  I do recognize I need to change these behaviors if I'm to keep doing this, though, as the homework and documentation is important to having a successful portfolio.

I would like to take a little time to note some key events that has happened since last I reported out.  First has been jobs reports.  We've had multiple positive jobs results or better than expected results despite things like the hurricanes and California fires impacting them.  Despite the jo…

Trade: Citigroup (C)

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Today I decided trim a small portion off of my Citigroup position in order to build up some cash reserves as well as take advantage of the sudden and dramatic price moves we've recently seen.  This sale is a matter of both discipline and fear.  The stock has moved about 8% in the last week on news that a Tax Bill has been formed and approved in the senate.  The bill is exceptionally favorable for businesses and high income earniners and therefore you're seeing quite the surge in the banks.  At the same time, you're also seeing a rotation out of technology - particularly the semiconductors.  This move doesn't feel normal or natural - despite the fact that Citigroup is cheaper than its peers and I was feeling I was taking on too much risk of a downturn.  Combine that with the size of the position in the portfolio (approximately 15.6% of my portfolio), I felt it was time to protect some gains to rebalance my portfolio some and have some cash for the next downturn.


I want t…

Earnings Analysis: Cedar Fair (FUN)

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Back on November 2, Cedar Fair announced the results of their third quarter fiscal 2017 earnings results.  Results were a little mixed as they missed on the top line slightly, but provided a nice beat against earnings expectations.  EBITDA guidance confirmed what was already expected last quarter, with the company decidedly unable to meet its $500M target a year early.  Despite this, the board decided to increase its annual distribution (remember, this is an MLP, not a regular stock with a dividend) by 4%.  That sets the payout at $3.56, or approximately 5.27% as of today's price.  

Revenues came in at $652.69M compared to estimates of $652.97M, which were revised down during the quarter.  Despite this, earnings beat expectations of $3.24 by eighteen cents, showing strong cost and expense discipline.  Despite management's desire to avoid using it as an excuse, weather clearly was a factor prior, considering how Hurricane Harvey rolled through the Midwest and East coast when it …

Earnings Analysis: Honeywell (HON)

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On Friday, Honeywell announced third quarter results for fiscal 2017.  After preannouncing results last week there's not a lot of new information here, so my analysis will likely be fairly brief.  Headlines will say that the company met expectations, but that's only after the new expectations were set with the preannounced results.  The company delivered earnings of $1.75, which were at the high end of their guidance in July.  Sales came in at $10.1B with organic growth of 5%, led in part by aerospace.  It was back at the beginning of the year that everyone was panicking as to whether the company would be able to get any organic growth.  Free cash flow growth was excellent at 18%, providing plenty of funding for the spinoffs that were just announced.  

Fourth quarter projections continue this growth as the company expects to have 4% - 6% organic revenue growth resulting in earnings in the range of $1.79 - $1.84.  To put things simply, the spinoffs are going to allow Honeywell t…