Geraldine Weiss: The Grande Dame of Dividends

Do you know the name Geraldine Weiss? 

If you looove My Money My Freedom, you should! (And let’s face it, who doesn’t?) 

She’s a big part of what we do here and an even bigger part of the financial industry as a whole, so if you don’t know her already, we’re here to help.

Geraldine Weiss was the first woman to have an investment advisory service. We might be biased, but that’s pretty rad, if you ask us.

Not only that, but like many women of her time, Geraldine had to navigate an industry dominated by men and forge her own path if she wanted to see success.

Whether she knew it or not, Geraldine paved the way for the women who came after her to meet their own financial and career goals, including us!

That’s right. The Infinite Income strategy is a modern take on Geraldine’s strategy of dividend growth investing.

If you didn’t know about her before, we want you to know about her now… because we owe a lot to Geraldine Weiss and her ongoing success!

Advice from Geraldine

Geraldine Weiss became interested in investing in the 1960s. She took night courses and read absolutely every book on the subject she could get her hands on.

Long story short, she was a self-taught, self-made woman, which we are totally here for.

As she learned about the industry and started seeking out jobs, she quickly realized that she would need to start her own business if she wanted to do anything more than be a secretary in the advisory business.

She founded her own newsletter – Investment Quality Trends – in 1966, identifying herself only as “G. Weiss” to hide her forbidden female-ness from subscribers. (Hmm, sound like anyone else we know?)

Geraldine’s advice was inventive because she believed that people should focus on dividends, rather than earnings.

Earnings, she believed, were too easily manipulated in companies’ accounts, which could give investors a false sense of the company’s profit margin or overall value.

That’s why Geraldine believes that a solid track record of high dividend yields and regular payments of those dividends is the best way to determine if a company is worth investing in.

Basically, Geraldine looked for “blue chip” companies (well-known, well-established, well-capitalized companies) that had high yields and a strong balance sheet that would make it easy for them to keep paying and growing their dividends.

Always a scholar, Geraldine constructed charts and kept careful track of historic dividend yields. She would buy when the yield reached historically high levels and sell when it reached lows. 

You can see why this seems somewhat backwards or radical when compared to what we usually think of as a solid investment strategy: buy when low, sell when high.

No, no. Geraldine wasn’t having any of that “normal” stuff because dividends work differently.

She also recommended compiling a small, concentrated portfolio — as opposed to covering all your bases by investing in a wide range of stocks. She suggested that an investor should have only 10-20 stocks — a small, but reliable foundation.

Investment Quality Trends

While somewhat unprecedented at the time, Geraldine’s strategy totally worked. And you know what? It not only worked “back then,” it still works now.

For the last 30 years, IQT’s top recommendations have returned roughly 11.2% per year. The overall market return rate hangs out at around 9.8%.

This means that she has beaten the market just as long as Warren Buffet has — because, hell yeah if a man has done it you can bet that a woman has, too. Only without the fanfare.

IQT produces those returns by continuing to recommend that original strategy: investing in dividend-paying stocks. The dividend yield of those stocks must meet the following criteria:

  1. Must be yielding more than its historical average dividend yield
  2. Must have raised dividends at a rate of at least 10% a year
  3. Trading for less than double the value of net assetslos angeles times dividend and conquer 1996
  4. Trading at less than 20 times earnings
  5. Earnings are at least double dividends
  6. Debt is less than 50% of total market cap
  7. Financially stable; considered “blue chip”

We give you all of these criteria in a list because it’s good to know what’s taken into consideration using this strategy.

Geraldine believed an investment should meet most — if not all — of these criteria. This strategy isn’t just luck — it was calculated strategically to maximize investments.

This strategy has also demonstrated (on average) about 15% less risk than the Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 Total Market Index. 

So, not only does Geraldine’s way maximize your investments, it also lowers your risk! What’s not to love?

Your Money, Your Freedom

That’s why Susan adapted this method for her Infinite Income™ strategy. It’s specifically designed to maximize your retirement wealth by generating enough tax-free income to cover all of your expenses and more.

Just like Geraldine, we believe in high profit, low risk… because that’s what’s best for the investor — you. We want to see you and your money out there absolutely killing it.

And… we’re also secretly hoping we’re making The Grande Dame of Dividends proud, who not only established a phenomenal financial advisory legacy, but continues to be an inspiration to us all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *