The best way to classify my portfolio for 2021 was a year of recovery and unexpected dividend growth. This wasn’t limited to just my portfolio as every fellow dividend growth blogger reported larger than expected dividend growth. It was amazing how many companies increased their dividends at a rate much greater than we anticipated or restored their dividend payouts. And it wasn’t just dividends that grew, my portfolio over at Fidelity grew 25.8%. My Fidelity account performed much better than my M1 finance account but still under performed the S&P 500 and SCHD but on par with VYM.
I knew coming into 2021 it was going to be a decent year as I freed up cash in 2020 and went on a stock buying tear from June to October. In 2020 I made $35,836 and predicted 2021 to come in circa $40K and with dividend raises maybe $42K. Actual dividend raises were coming in well above forecasts and the only stock that disappointed me last year was UPS with its paltry 1% raise. When all was said and done, I received a total of $44,821.11, a 25% increase from 2020!
For 2022 I expect my growth rate to be more muted and to be closer to my targeted 12.5% growth rate. Unlike 2020, I did not add a lot of new capital outside of my weekly M1 Finance & Roth IRA contributions so 2022 will be reliant on dividend reinvestment and raises. The best news I received last year was that with the massive growth in income it shorted my FI date by an entire year and I am now down to just 5 years & 10 months to FI.
My 12 month forward annual dividend is a little hard to forecast as I need to adjust for some companies that will be cutting their dividend payout in 2022 (I’m talking about you AT&T). Adjusting for the cut I’m currently sitting at $45.8K. Using this figure I updated my comparison to median household income in the U.S and the results improved quite a bit from 2020 as I now meet at least 80% of median household income in 18 states (+13 states). Too bad that I live in one of those expensive red states lol.
Now that 2021 is behind us we can focus on 2022. Not sure what I will be buying going into 2022 but it should be interesting where the economy goes considering inflation, rising interest rates, supply chain woes and tight labor markets. One thing I am confident in predicting is that not just myself but all the DG community we are opportunistic and will jump into a stock the moment a value buy presents itself.