Sunday, April 29

Week 356 - Defensive Companies in “The 2 and 8 Club” (Extended Version)

Situation: You don’t want to lose money but you’re starting to. That comes with having your savings in an overbought stock market. It’s time for a cautionary warning light to click on in your head. That would mean moving some money into cash equivalents and making sure that at least a third of your stock portfolio is in defensive stocks, i.e., utility, healthcare, consumer staples, and telecommunication services companies. And, review the stocks you’re dollar-averaging into. Be comfortable with the prospect of building up your share-count in those stocks throughout a market crash. 

Mission: Run our Standard Spreadsheet on defensive companies in “The 2 and 8 Club” (Extended Version).

Execution: see Table.

Administration: If their dividend growth rates continue to fall, Coca-Cola (KO) and Pfizer (PFE) will no longer be members of “The 2 and 8 Club.” Conversely, Hormel Foods (HRL at Line 13 in the Table) recently raised its dividend and now has a yield that is well above the yield for the S&P 500 Index. That means it will soon be included in the US version of the FTSE High Dividend Yield Index. HRL already meets the other requirements for membership in “The 2 and 8 Club.” So, it will become a member upon being listed in that Index. The ETF for that Index is VYM (the Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF at Line 18 in the Table).

Bottom Line: There aren’t a lot of great defensive stocks, but the 8 included in “The 2 and 8 Club” are worth your close attention. Why? Because a set of trade policies are being promulgated by several countries that restrict the cross-border flow of goods and services. If those policies blossom into a tit-for-tat Trade War, Robert Shiller (Nobel Prize winning economist) thinks a recession would be triggered: “It’s just chaos,” he said on CNBC. “It will slow down development in the future if people think that this kind of thing is likely.” 

Risk Rating: 5 (where 10-Yr US Treasury Notes = 1, S&P 500 Index = 5, gold bullion = 10)

Full Disclosure: I dollar-average into NextEra Energy (NEE) and PepsiCo (PEP), and also own shares of Coca-Cola (KO) and Hormel Foods (HRL).

"The 2 and 8 Club" (CR) 2017 Invest Tune All rights reserved.

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