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Mutual Fund News

ME AND MY MONEY

Special to The Globe and Mail

Jason Ste. Marie, 34

Occupation

Semi-retired

Portfolio

Includes dozens of large-cap, dividend-paying stocks, such as Toronto-Dominion Bank, Enbridge Inc., Calloway REIT, Inter Pipeline Fund, Bank of Nova Scotia, Canadian Natural Resources, BCE Inc., Wal-Mart Stores Inc., and Johnson & Johnson.

The investor

Jason Ste. Marie became financially independent at the age of 33. Twelve years before, the Bachelor of Commerce graduate had gone into business with his father and brothers, selling services to mining companies in Labrador. As the global commodity boom ramped up, so did the company's revenues and value.

"The company was sold in 2009 and I benefited from the sale," reports Mr. Ste. Marie. Also, property prices had soared in the area, and he pocketed a sizable profit on a real estate transaction.

With a net worth of over $1-million, Mr. Ste. Marie left the work force last year and had "a blast" day-trading and playing video games. But feeling the need for new challenges and with a baby on the way, he recently took on seasonal work as a real-estate manager.

How he invests

He has invested much of his net worth in dividend stocks and three rental properties. "Between my investment income and rental revenue, I'm able to live a fairly comfortable life and plan for my family's future," he says.

His criteria for investing in dividend stocks:

a company history of maintaining and increasing dividends;

earnings per share that cover the annual dividend;

upcoming projects that offer strong earnings potential;

the share price is currently going for a bargain;

a solid company history of long-term capital appreciation.

Diversification "allows me to sleep at night," he observes. About 34 per cent of his wealth is allocated to equities - with the rest spread over fixed-income and cash (21 per cent) and rental properties and a principal residence (45 per cent).

Best move

"Investing in large-cap, dividend-paying stocks ... "

Worst move

"Leveraging oil and gas stocks leading up to the financial crisis of 2008-09 ..."

Advice

He encourages others to read about successful investors, formulate a plan and stick with it. He has more ideas to share in his blog at thewealthycanadian.com.

Want to share your strategies?

E-mail mccolumn@yahoo.com

© 2007 The Globe and Mail. All rights reserved.

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