When I put together my Special Report: “5 Safe Dividend Stocks Paying 6% or More,” one key requirement was that the company showed a long track record of raising dividends every year and the clear potential to continue to raise dividends every year. That formula could turn a 6% annual dividend yield now into 8% or 9% or even more over the next ten years. A safe almost guaranteed 10% yield at the end of 10 years strikes me as a very attractive prospect, especially given how tough I think the financial markets are going to be over the next five years or more. (For more on that outlook see my recently revised Special Report: “Your Best Investment Strategy for the Next Five Years.”) But I realized, looking at all the high-yield stocks that didn’t make the cut for that report that the requirement for a high-probability trend of higher dividends each year for the next 10 years, that this requirement left a lot of stocks paying very attractive high dividends now on the cutting room floor. Stocks paying 8% or more got left off the list because I didn’t see a commitment at the company to continued dividend increases every year or enough growth in free cash flow to make it possible for a company to raise or maintain its dividend through the ups and downs of the business cycle. These stocks paying 8% or more were very safe bets to continue paying that yield for the next year or two. But 10 years? Too much uncertainty. Which doesn’t mean you shouldn’t own some of these stocks now. An 8% or better yield for a couple of years is a very attractive prospect given how uncertain the economy and the stock market are right now. And an investor has a very simple remedy if a company looks like it can’t or isn’t committed to sustaining that yield. Sell the stock. So with all that in mind, I’ve put together a list of five “outlier” dividend stocks paying 8% or more at a time when the SPDR S&P 500 Trust ETF (SPY) has a yield of just 1.6%.
Today I posted my two-hundred-and-fifth YouTube video. This week’s Trend of the Week: U.S. Oil Production is Not Rising as Expected. Oil prices have averaged $100 per barrel over 2022–a figure that would normally lead oil companies to expand production and capital spending, but it hasn’t this time. According to the Energy Information Administration, U.S. oil production is only up about 3% from December 2021. Projections had the U.S. at 12 million barrels a day by the end of this year, but we’re currently only at 9.77 million barrels a day. Why is the production not going up? Oil shale fields deplete faster than traditional fields and we may have reached peak production in some of these oil shale basins. The best properties may have been exhausted and we’re now seeing companies move to their more inferior properties. The drilling and fracking may be happening at a steady pace, but we’re not getting as much out of the wells and properties currently being drilled. Companies that had a stock of drilled, but uncompleted have now worked through those “spare” wells and don’t have the motivation to drill new ones as Wall Street and investors would prefer high dividends instead of capital spent on a commodity that has an unclear future. The two oil companies I would look at are Pioneer Natural Resources Company (NYSE: PXD) and ConocoPhillips (COP) because of their mix of resources.
Today I posted my one-hundred-ninety-sixth YouTube video: Trend of the Week Seasonal Trends in Energy. This week’s Trend of the Week: Seasonal Trends in Energy. There’s a predictable pattern in oil and natural gas prices. In late fall, October to November, you can expect a deep dive to begin and carry on through the winter, with a sharp rise in March and early spring. You can see this trend looking at previous years in the United States Oil Fund (NYSEARCA: USO) and the United States Natural Gas Fund, LP (NYSEARCA: UNG). Right now, we’re heading into that dip in energy prices but you should not sell – in fact, you should be adding to these positions. This seasonal fall in energy prices will allow you to get ahead of the spring bounce. Europe’s energy supply is enough to get through the upcoming winter but, in March, as they look toward next year’s supply, they’ll need to start rebuilding inventories in a market strained by the war in Ukraine, cuts in production, and a hostile OPEC. Stateside, the US Energy Information Administration is projecting record production from the Permian Basin of Texas and Oklahoma, as well as record production of natural gas this year. Even though we’re not seeing a whole lot of capital expenditure, they’re uncapping wells and pumping them harder. Look at USO and UNG as ETF oil and natural gas buys For individual stocks I’d look at Pioneer Natural Resources (NYSE: PXD), ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP), and EQUINOR (NYSE: EQNR)–all of which I own in portfolios and have no intention of selling anytime soon.
Earnings. Earnings. And more earnings. From the big bellwether technology stocks: Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Meta Platforms, and Alphabet. Wall Street has already slashed earnings forecast for these stocks so there’s a good chance these companies will report earnings that surpass expectations even if only by a few pennies. By and large, though, these reports will show either an absolute drop from the September quarter of 2021 or, at best, a slowing of revenue and earnings growth. Key to the market’s reaction will be what these companies say about expectations for the next quarter or two. Will they emphasize what are already clear slowdowns in PC and smartphone sales? Will they speak to the elephant in the room–the U.S/China trade war? Will they say that a strong dollar plus inflation is cutting into sales outside the United States and U.S. sales to domestic customers who are showing signs of “price fatigue”?
I’ve seen several comments on the site asking this question. I assume we’re talking about oil stocks in the short- and medium-term. In the long term, I think it’s clear that you should be thinking about selling these out of your portfolio at a profit (of course) whenever you can. Demand for oil will fall in the long-term–defining long-term as 5 years or more–or we can all count on figuring out how to survive 120-degree (Fahrenheit) heat. Today, August 5, is a good synopsis of what’s going on with oil and oil stocks in the short- and medium-term.
Oil falls on surprise build in U.S. inventories in spite of a shockingly small increase in production from OPEC+
As of 2 p.m. New York time today, August 3, U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude was down 3.30% to $91.30 a barrel. International benchmark Brent fell 3.07% to $97.45 a barrel.
The drop was a result of Wednesday data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showing that U.S. crude and gasoline inventories unexpectedly rose last week. U.S. crude supplies were up 4.5 million barrels in the week ended July 29, while gasoline supplies rose 200,000 barrels. This comes at a time when gasoline inventories usually fall on high seasonal demand. This report was, for the day, more than enough to offset the announcement of a smaller than expected increase in oil production by OPEC+ of just 100,000 barrels a day for September.
The advice is sound, very sound. Move part (at least of your portfolio to cash and sit out the worst of this bear market on the sidelines. And since you have that cash in hand, you’ll be ready to snap up bargains when the market has put in a bottom (or near the bottom, or on the way up from the bottom…or something.) But right now that’s easier said than done.
It’s likely that the current “disagreement” about how fast Russian oil production is falling will be resolved in favor of “pretty fast” despite spin from Moscow. Which would mean that Friday’s jump in oil prices–West Texas Intermediate crude gained 2.165 to $110.60 a barrel–will continue. And so will Friday’s rally in oil stocks. ConocoPhilips (COP), for example, was up 4.69% on Friday. Pioneer Natural Resources (PXD) gained 5.35%.
Normally at this time of year natural gas prices retreat and companies actually stash natural gas in storage for use durin hurricane outages in the fall and winter heating season. Not this year, however. Today natural gas prices in the U.S. hit a new 18-year high. At 11:20 a.m. New York time natural gas for June delivery climbed to $8.08 per million BTUs, up 8.12% on the morning
Today, April 21, reports from a number of different sources are pointing to lower oil production–which will mean higher oil prices. Even from current levels. And oil prices are significantly higher in the past three weeks. At 3:00 p.m. New York time today U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate traded at $103.44 a barrel, up 1.61% on the day. On April 11 West Texas Intermediate traded for just $94.29 a barrel.
Stocks rally on bad inflation news in the morning and then give it all back (on second thoughts) in the afternoon
As of noon New York time today, April 12, the Standard & Poor’s 500 was up 0.47% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average had gained 0.34%. The NASDAQ Composite was higher by 0.73% and the NASDAQ 100 had moved up by 0.67%. The small cap Russell 2000 had tacked on 1.49%. And then by the close stocks had given up all these gains and more. For the day, the S&P 500 closed down 0.34% and the Dow was off 0.26%. The NASDAQ Composite ended lower by 0.30% and the NASDAQ 100 was down 0.36%. The small cap Russell 2000 managed to close up 0.33% on the day.
Oil rallied again today with U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate up 4.79% on the day to $114.79 a barrel and international benchmark Brent up 5.12% to $121.39 a barrel. So, natural, oil and gas equities stocks are up today. And the broader market is down. What else isn’t new?