Economic releases continue to show an economy that is just about right for income investors-but we all know too well that this can change in an instant.
Today GDP was released at a level that was slightly above estimates for the 4th quarter of 2018, but some below the 3rd quarter. This is after yesterday we had factory orders come in pretty weak, which is in contrast to the Chicago purchasing managers index which came in kind of hot today compared to forecast. All in all it is a Goldilocks economy.
As an income investor I like calmness–BUT after the excitement of December and January–and the ‘deals’ that popped up for a while it seems boring. Preferred stocks and baby bonds are now mostly treading water after the super gains of previous weeks.
I find myself in need of a bargain to use some available cash. We have peeled off parts of very profitable positions to lock in some gains that were more like ‘gifts’. For instance the GasLog Partners GLOP-C was partially sold after a strong rise in price. Same of American Homes 4 Rent AMH-D issue. We have considered a partial peel off the Brookfield Property REIT BPRAP issue as well, but have continued to hold the full position.
We have not done wholesale selling to lock down gains (the above sales mentioned were only sales of partial positions), because honestly we have no place to go with funds-although there are a few reasonable deals available (see below).
Just this morning we did buy some of the RLJ Lodging $1.95 (7.9%) issue at $25.09. This is a $25/share convertible. It will go ex-dividend late in March and is off 50 cents in the last 10 days of so. We had noted Gridbird (and others) yakking about the issue and he has been playing this issue for years so we followed him into the issue–for now.