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Author: MisterFungi Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 75833  
Subject: Re: Yield in low interest rate environment Date: 7/14/2013 3:53 PM
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What do they want to accomplish? Is it a regular monthly income check, or something else?

I hold some preferred stocks. But preferreds require study. Since the market for most preferreds is fairly thin, their prices can be volatile. Also, many of them are linked to financial firms, and you surely know what happened to them in the not too distant past. There is also the complication of preferreds getting called in.

There are some preferred ETFs and CEFs (e.g., PFF, and various Nuveen CEFs). I had positions in them for some time. But the Nuveen CEFs are (were) leveraged to juice returns, and that leverage can turn around and bite you in the butt. So now I buy individual issues, and only after doing my homework.

Nothing that pays a decent return is risk-free, of course -- esp. these days. But having a decent fraction of the money invested in a basket of utilities and dividend champions is something to consider, esp. if they are more interested in steady dividends than they are in the nominal value of the stocks on any given day, month, or year.

Also consider averaging into the market rather than moving it all in at these market high levels.

Re annuities: you can almost always do as well or better with a sensible basket of ETFs as you can with an annuity, esp. one of the fancier variable-rate kinds promoted by commissioned sales people.
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