Every time I go on vacation, I get reminded of how my brain seems to be wired to think about investing. Even when I'm vacationing, I can't help but think of things I observe in a financial sense. I guess the phrase 'Money never sleeps' really is true.
Here is a couple of sample pictures from my trip. The first is part way through my 6 hour hike down the South Kaibab Trail into the Grand Canyon.
The second picture is a tail shot of the Space Shuttle Endeavor at the California Science Center.
A few things I noticed or thought about on this trip:
- Americans love American cars: Here in the Greater Toronto Area, German and Japanese import cars like Benz, BMW, Audi, Toyota/Lexus, Honda/Acura, Nissan/Infiniti are everywhere. During my 2000+ mile drive thru Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Death Valley, and Los Angeles, these import car brands were extremely rare. I almost want to say I see more of them in 1 day in Toronto/Markham, than I did in my entire 10 day 2000+ miles trip. What did I see a lot of? Dodge, Chevy, Ford, Cadillac, Lincoln, etc.
- South Korean cars are really poorly made, American cars are not bad: The crappy quality of both Hyundai cars I got as rentals (Santa Fe and Elantra) astounded me. Poor sound proofing, inconvenient placement of controls, and weak engine were 3 of many things that I did not like on the Hyundai vehicles. The Dodge Charger I drove from Vegas to LA via Death Valley was much more enjoyable, and not to mention very fuel efficient!! This reinforces my belief that Hyundai cars are overrated.
- Freeways in LA really suck: I couldn't believe how TERRIBLE the freeways in LA were in terms of road quality. I felt like I was driving over speed bumps at 75mph! I still can't get the ka-thump ka-thump ka-thump out of my head. Infrastructure investment is truly important. America needs to repair its roads and bridges!
- US McDonalds has a lot more variety than Canadian McDonalds: Egg White McMuffin! I hope they bring it to Canada. It was delicious, the same price as normal McMuffin, and in theory healthier for you. McDonalds is truly an innovation leader when it comes to quick serve food. They also have more burger selections (Deluxe, BLT, etc) than we do up here. I saw a lot of customers having breakfast and coffee at the various McD I visited throughout the trip. It looks like McDonalds is really having a lot of success at getting into the breakfast and coffee markets
- Americans really do eat A LOT: I swear American sized portions are even too big for me. No wonder I saw so many obese (not just mildly, but to the point their tummies flop on the tables) people on this trip. Made me think of investing more in healthcare businesses.
now, onto regular business :)
($ amount represents forward estimated yearly dividends of new shares)
Exxon Mobil - $63.00
Kinder Morgan - $76.00
Intrinsic Dividend Changes
($ amount represents change in forward estimated yearly dividends based on dividend increase)
April 2013 Annualized Dividend: $4878.54
+ $139.00 (from new purchases)
- $0 (from sales)
May 2013 Annualized Dividend: $5017.54
End of 2013 Goal: $4700 to $5000
Whisper Goal: $5500
YTD Dividends Received: $1389
2013 Dividends Received Goal: $4200
Whisper Goal: $4600
With that, I've actually reached my 2013 annualized dividend goal before the half way point of the year. That being said, my dividend goals are like Apple's guidance. There is a more realistic whisper goal that is the real goal I hope to achieve.