Portfolio Updates: Q1 2017 Total Income

It’s finally time to report my progress for the first quarter of 2017.  I’m pleased to say that I’m off to a great start!  I’m still raking in tons of dividend income and my other investment activities, like options and swing trading, are really starting to take off.

In this post I’ll provide an update on all of my investment activities over the last 3 months.  This will include dividends received (Empire portfolio and Retirement portfolio), income from options, swing trading and peer to peer lending (lending club).


Q1 2017 Income Summary

In Q1 2017 I made a total of $2,558.61 in my taxable accounts from dividends (Empire Portfolio), option trading, swing trading and peer to peer (P2P) lending.  This is a huge number for me.  To put this into perspective I made a total of $4,406.96 in all of 2016!  Here is a breakdown of all my income sources for the quarter and also my total income by month (compared to 2016):

Income By Portfolio

*Closed positions
**Taxable accounts only (Empire)


Income By Month

As usual the Option Income portfolio is leading the way.  I have been pumping more funds into this strategy due to my success last year and it’s paying off.  I also pulled in $217 from dividends and $610 from short-term swing trading.  Lending Club is way down since I’m in the process of selling off all of my notes.  You will find more details about all of these portfolios below.


Dividend Update

Please refer to my Historical Data page to view all past data with links to the write-ups.

Dividends Received By Quarter


The totals slipped slightly in Q1 2017 for the Empire portfolio because Coca Cola (KO) is on a weird schedule (pays twice in Q4).  Dividend income in my Retirement portfolio shot up last quarter due to heavy buying and a lot of dividend increases.  I’ve made several additions to both of these portfolios which, along with the many dividend increases I’ve received, should continue to boost my dividend income.


Q1 2017 Purchases

Dividend Increases:

Q1 2017 Dividend Increases

These purchases and pay raises will add about $60 in annual income to my Empire portfolio and about $350 to my Retirement portfolio, bringing my forward annual income to $913.23 (Empire) and $4,258.70 (Retirement).  I have some cash set aside in both portfolios to make some more purchases next quarter if any good opportunities arise.


Option Income Portfolio

Last update: January 2017

Q1 2017 Income: $1,719.32

Option Income By Month

The basic goal of the Option Income portfolio is to generate income from the sale of option contracts.  I write (sell) out of the money put contracts on stocks that I wish to own at the price that I wish to own them at.  If assigned shares, I simply write calls and collect dividends (if paid) until the shares are called away (detailed strategy).

I won’t go into the details of all of my transactions here because they can be found on my Option Income Portfolio page.  This page is updated daily with all transactions and price movements.  That said, I will try to post some interesting examples from this portfolio in the near future.

This strategy has been bringing in some serious cash for me.  I increased my allocation to this portfolio towards the end of last year (now ~$25k) and as a result I’m consistently bringing in about $500-$600 per month.  It is important to point out that I’m only reporting closed positions here (actual money in my pocket) – not just cash received for selling options.


Swing Trading Portfolio

Last update: January 2017

Q1 2017 Income: $610.40

Swing Trading Income By Month


For swing trading I use technical chart analysis (support/resistance, chart patterns, indicators, etc) to take advantage of short-term swings in various stocks.  These trades last anywhere from a couple of minutes to several weeks and the same analysis can be used on charts with multiple time frames.

So clearly the results from this strategy are more erratic than the Option Income portfolio but I’m definitely getting better.  I place winning trades much more often than losing trades (74% overall winning percentage) but unfortunately my average loss is greater than my average win.  I’m still coming out on top but there is a lot of room for improvement.


Q1 2017 Swing Trading Stats:

Q1 2017 Swing Trading Stats

Overall I made 38 trades, 19 swings (trades lasting greater than one day) and 19 day trades.  Out of my 19 swings last quarter I made money on 16 of them (84% wins).  I only made money 63% of the time on day trades.  My average gain per trade is $40 for swings and just a measly $3 for day trades so my path forward is obvious – no more (or very little) day trading.

In both cases my average loss was much greater than my average win and this is something I really have to work on.  I have this psychological issue where I take profits as soon as they appear instead of sticking with my original target.  On the flip side I let losers run all the way to my stop.  Letting trades go to my stop is fine as long as I also let them go to my target!

As always you can find all of my trades on my Swing Trading page (updated near real time).


Lending Club Portfolio (P2P)

I only made $12.12 last quarter because I’m in the process of selling all of my notes.  This venture was a total bust as a high percentage of my loans defaulted.  All but two of my notes have been sold at this point and I’m looking at about a break even overall.  All of the funds are being transferred to the Empire portfolio.


Moving Forward

My decision to move to a total return approach is paying off.  I’ve got the steady dividend income rolling in and my other strategies are working well so far.  I will continue pumping all of my gains and a portion of my day job income into dividend growth stocks and these other strategies (approximately 50/50).

I’m also hoping to do a couple of write ups on some dividend growth stocks over the coming months and I’ll also post some examples from my Option Income and Swing Trading strategies.

Thanks for reading and good luck to everyone in Q2!


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6 Responses

  1. dividendgeek says:

    I understand the idea of option trading to generate income. However, I don’t have the time to do it. What is your thoughts on trading ETFs that do covered calls?

    NASDAQ:QYLD https://www.google.com/finance?q=NASDAQ:QYLD

    • Dividend Empire Dividend Empire says:

      Hi there – thanks for the comment. I’m not at all familiar with the criteria used to select covered call positions in the QYLD ETF so I really can’t comment on it. I prefer selecting my own individual stocks since I can guarantee they are companies that I’m comfortable owning. If you don’t have the time to select stocks then perhaps the ETF is the way to go.

      Take care,


  2. desidividend says:

    very good numbers,somehow i never liked lending club,few times starting process to invest but backed out.I wanted to try some options,didnt get a chance so far.

    • Dividend Empire Dividend Empire says:

      Thanks! I think I would have made money with Lending Club – it’s just that I feel I can make much more with other types of investments.


  3. DivHut says:

    Solid result for the month of March. Dividends and options premiums are doing their part. Always love reading about P2P updates from the handful of bloggers that do it. I still am 100% dividends but have considered the P2P route. Others have had better results so I wonder why your experience has been such a bust. Did you invest in more high risk notes? Thanks for sharing your recent update.

    • Dividend Empire Dividend Empire says:

      Thanks DH. I probably shouldn’t have been so negative on P2P. It wasn’t a total bust really. I had my notes spread out across all risk levels with the average being a B rating. So I was definitely skewed towards less risk in my portfolio. The loans that defaulted were actually all B or above so go figure. After these bad loans I still would have been making around 4-5% annual return. My reason for cashing out completely was that I’m making much better returns with my options trading and dividend investing.

      Take care,


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