Goals for 2016

It is that time of the year where I need to come up with the goals for this year. The goals are really a key factor to make sure that I am making consistent progress. As I mentioned in my December 2015 goals update, even though I didn’t achieve one of my several goals, I am happy that I have made considerable progress compared to where I was at the end of 2014.

Recap of Goals for 2015

  • Invest at least $35,000
    • Invested $26,969.30 in 2015
    • Failed
  • Receive at least $2,500 in dividends
    • I have received $2,822.72 in 2015
    • Achieved
  • Achieve at least $3,200 in projected annual dividends
    • Currently have projected annual dividends of $3,275.85 at end of December
    • Achieved
  • DO NOT have a portfolio of more than 45 stocks/ETFs
    • Currently hold 44 stocks/ETFs through end of December
    • Achieved

Based on the 2015 results and projecting what I can do for this year, these are my goals for 2016.

Goals for 2016

  • Invest at least $25,000
    • I did not achieve the investing goal of $35,000 in 2015 and the reasons were outlined in the goals update.
    • The goal for 2016 represents a more reasonable number that is closer to what I can do consistently. Here is how I arrived at the numbers.
    • I plan to continue my weekly Sharebuilder purchases of at least $300. So this amounts to about $15,000.
    • I will be adding about $10,000 towards 2015 IRA contributions. This includes the spousal IRA as well for my spouse. Typically I contribute to my IRA after the calendar year (during tax time) to determine whether it is worth to do a Traditional IRA or do a Roth.
    • I do not plan to invest anything in my other taxable account as of now.
    • So adding these all together gave about $25,000. If I do end up beating this goal by a huge margin, it is well and good.
  • Receive at least $3,675 in dividends
    • My projected annual dividends at the end of 2015 stood at $3,275.85. Looking back to the growth from 2014 to 2015, the total dividends received in 2015 was about $600 higher than the projected dividends at the end of 2014. So by the same calculations, I am looking to receive at least $3,675 in dividends this year. This means that I have to receive close to $400 in additional dividends coming from 2016 investments and/or dividend increases.
    • This is a conservative and less than last year’s increase due to the fact that I am expecting some dividend cuts in my portfolio due to the market weakness in the oil/energy sector. I have lot of stocks in this sector (COP, PSX, BP, CVX, NOV, KMI, XOM and BBL). These 8 stocks constitute over 24% of my annual dividends even though they are only about 12% of my portfolio right now. So any dividend cuts in this sector will have a considerable dent in my total dividends.
  • Achieve at least $4,000 in projected annual dividends
    • $25,000 in new investments at an average yield of 2.5% gives about $625 in new dividends. Coupled that with projected dividends of $3,275.85 at the end of 2015 and future dividend increases, I ended up with a goal of $4,000 in future projected annual dividends by the end of 2016.
    • Again, looking back at the numbers at the end of 2014 and 2015, I was able to increase my projected annual dividends by about $1,000 in 2015 from about $2,235 to $3,275. But again, due to possible dividend cuts, I am projecting only an increase of little over $700 in projected annual dividends for 2016.
  • DO NOT have a portfolio of more than 45 stocks/ETFs
    • Currently hold 44 stocks/ETFs through end of 2015. Most of the increases were due to stock splits and spin-offs like that of HPQ/HPE and BAX/BXLT, BBL/SOUHY. EMR also has a spin-off planned in the near future.
    • I am also thinking of selling some of the stocks with smaller positions to consolidate them. Let’s see.
  • Maintain this blog and keep it updated regularly
    • I want to have this goal for obvious reasons 🙂

The goals page will be updated soon to reflect the 2016 goals.

6 thoughts on “Goals for 2016

  1. Great set of goals for 2016. I did he same a you with my dividend income goal. I kept the increase low for 2016 because of potential dividend cuts in the energy sector. I bought a bunch of energy in 2015. Best of luck with your 2016 goals.

  2. Congrats on knocking out most of your goals! I estimate my financial targets similarly to you; I base them more on what I think I can achieve rather than a stretch goal. How confident are you of the $600 increase for the 2016 actual dividend? I tend to be conservative on that too since purchases later in the year contribute less to the yearly total unless you’re able to pull ahead more of your purchases towards the beginning of the year.

    It’s all good though and reminds me that I need to calculate my targets.
    Best wishes,

    • Compared to 2015’s projected dividends at the end of 2014, I was able to receive $600 more in actual dividends in 2015. I am hoping to do the same this year as well, but of course if is going to be difficult due to potential dividend cuts. I will have to invest little aggressively early in the year to take in those extra dividends. Let’s see.
      Thanks for your wishes

  3. Thanks for sharing your 2016 goals! I love reading these posts, as they inspire me to work even harder at my own goals. Best of luck in achieving your 2016 goals…

    Personally, I prefer to set somewhat challenging goals that I think won’t be easy to achieve. That helps me to remain focused and to work harder at achieving the goals. If I miss any goal, it wouldn’t be for a lack of trying.

    • Thanks FerdiS. You are right that the goals have to be a bit challenging. But at the same time, they have to achievable.
      I do review my goals once a month and if it looks like I am going to hit my goals ahead of time, I revise them upwards as needed – like I did twice in 2014.
      I am hoping I am able to do the same in 2016 as well.
      Thanks for your thoughts.

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