Big news: An all-new Simply Safe Dividends available today!

Have you ever wanted to receive email alerts when your holdings change their dividends, see a company's dividend yield history, track mutual funds in your portfolio, export your portfolio to a spreadsheet, or have table headers lock at the top of your screen?   We've spent the last 18 months building, testing, and improving an all-new version of Simply Safe Dividends that makes all of those things possible and much more. Today you can begin using it!   But first, this is not an upsell announcement or anything like that. Upgrading to the new site is completely free, and there is no obligation to switch. We will continue maintaining the original site you've been using in case you do not [...]

June 18th, 2018|

Thoughts on PPL’s Recent Underperformance

Regulated utilities are often a core component of a conservative income portfolio thanks to their predictable earnings, generous dividends, and defensive profile. However, PPL (PPL) has been anything but defensive lately.   The stock has lost 26% over the past year, including dividends. While rising interest rates have weighed on the performance high-yielding, slow-growing companies, the broader utilities sector (XLU) is down just 5% during this time. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 Index (SPY) has returned 16%, outperforming PPL by an astounding 42%.   Simply put, PPL has continued to be a big disappointment.   The one thing PPL has going for it is that management has maintained and even increased its dividend during this period. When combined with its plunging [...]

June 16th, 2018|

Stanley Black & Decker (SWK)

Stanley Black & Decker (SWK) was founded in 1843 and has grown into a diversified global provider of power and hand tools, engineered fastening products, and commercial security and monitoring systems.   The company sells over 500,000 products including power drills, saws, toolboxes, wrenches, fasteners, measuring tools, compressors, nail guns, outdoor power equipment, sanders, lamps, mowers, vacuums, workbenches, polishers, grinders, cordless tools, air tools, and more.   Some of the company’s biggest brands are Stanley, DeWalt, Black+Decker, Porter Cable, Bostitch, Irwin, Lenox, and Craftsman.   Stanley Black & Decker’s largest end markets in 2017 were focused on residential repair (25% of sales), new residential construction (18%), new commercial construction (17%), and industrial and electronic applications (14%). However, the company's products [...]

June 16th, 2018|

Brown-Forman (BF_B)

Brown-Forman (BF.B) was founded in 1870 in Louisville, Kentucky. The company was started by George Garvin Brown, a pharmaceutical salesman, and his accountant friend George Forman, with $5,500 in savings and debt.   Brown-Forman has since grown to become one of the world’s dominant spirits and liquor producers, marketing numerous premium alcohol products in over 165 countries. In fact, it is the largest U.S.-based spirits company with a global presence. The Jack Daniel's family of whiskeys is the company's most valuable asset (60% of sales) and has been growing around 10% per year. However, smaller and new brands such as el Jimador tequila, Finlandia Vodka, Harruda tequila, and Woodford Reserve sport even faster growth rates and are the key drivers [...]

June 16th, 2018|

Pentair (PNR)

Founded in 1966 in London (with roots going back to 1859), Pentair (PNR) is one of the world’s leading liquid pump, valve, and control system manufacturers with operations in over 30 countries. On May 1, 2018, the company completed the spin-off of its electrical business from its water business (which made up 57% of sales in 2017).   The new electric-focused company is called nVent (NVT), while Pentair continues trading as a pure play water and fluid products company. The firm builds filters, pumps, valves, controllers, and actuators for moving, purifying, controlling, and storing water and other fluids for commercial, industrial and residential purposes.   Pentair sells its products to agriculture, food service, and food & beverage industries, as well [...]

June 16th, 2018|

Nordson (NDSN)

Nordson (NDSN) was founded in 1954 and manufactures products used to dispense, apply, and control adhesives, coatings, polymers, sealants, biomaterials, and other fluids, to test and inspect for quality, and to treat and cure surfaces. Approximately 47% of Nordson’s revenue is recurring in the form of parts and consumables (tips, connectors, cartridges, valves, tubing, etc.), creating a highly stable source of revenue and cash flow. The remainder of the business consists of standard product sales and engineered systems used for dispensing.   The company serves virtually every end market including packaging, nonwovens, electronics, medical, appliances, energy, transportation, construction, and general product assembly. Source: Nordson Investor Presentation By geography, Nordson derived 33% of its 2017 revenue from the U.S., 29% from [...]

June 16th, 2018|

PPG Industries (PPG)

PPG Industries (PPG) was founded in 1883. Today the company is a leading supplier of paints, coatings, and specialty materials to customers in construction, industrial, marine, automotive, refinishing, packaging, and aerospace markets. Coatings provide protection, performance, and decoration for a wide range of products, improving their durability and marketability.   Approximately 60% of PPG’s sales are special-purpose coatings (aerospace, automotive OEM, general industrial, packaging, marine, etc.) with the remaining 40% related to architectural applications. Source: PPG Investor Presentation By geography, 43% of PPG's 2017 sales were generated in North America, 30% in Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA), and 27% in Asia Pacific and Latin America. In total, PPG has a presence in more than 70 countries.   After selling [...]

June 16th, 2018|

Air Products and Chemicals (APD)

Founded in 1940, Air Products and Chemicals (APD) is one of the world’s largest providers of atmospheric gases (oxygen, nitrogen, argon, and rare gases), as well as process and specialty gases (hydrogen, helium, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, syngas). The company sells to over 170,000 clients operating in more than 30 industries around the world. To produce and supply its gases to customers, Air Products' employees operate over 750 manufacturing facilities, a fleet of delivery trucks, and 1,800 miles of industrial gas pipelines.   Air Products is one of those classic, boring industrial giants providing essential elements like liquid oxygen, nitrogen, argon, hydrogen, helium, carbon dioxide, and carbon monoxide to companies that use them in the manufacturing of: metals, glass, chemical [...]

June 16th, 2018|

A.O. Smith (AOS)

A.O. Smith (AOS) was founded in 1874 and manufactures residential and commercial gas and electric water heaters, boilers, and water treatment products that are sold in over 60 countries around the world.   The company's water heaters are sold to residences, restaurants, hotels, office buildings, laundromats, car washes, and other small businesses. It also produces residential and commercial boilers for use in space heating applications for hospitals, schools, hotels, and other large commercial buildings. And its water treatment products, including filtration bottles, water softeners, and water filtrations, are used in residences, restaurants, hotels, and offices.   A.O. Smith also produces food and beverage filtration products, expansion tanks, commercial solar water heating systems, swimming pool and spa heaters, solar units, and [...]

June 16th, 2018|

Sherwin-Williams (SHW)

Sherwin-Williams (SHW) was founded in 1866 and is the world's largest paint and coatings company, selling its products to professional, industrial, commercial, and retail customers in over 120 countries. The firm's well known brands include Sherwin-Williams, Valspar, Dutch Boy, HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams, Krylon, Minwax, Cabot, and Thompson’s Water Seal.   Sherwin-Williams primarily serves the needs of architectural and industrial painting contractors and do-it-yourself homeowners through a network of more than 4,600 company-operated retail stores, but it also sells some industrial coatings, automotive finishes, and protective and marine coatings.   The company operates through three business segments: Americas Group (61% of 2017 sales): operates the exclusive outlets for Sherwin-Williams branded paints, stains, supplies, equipment and floor covering in the U.S., [...]

June 16th, 2018|