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This 6.5% Dividend With Upside Is Hiding In Plain Sight

By Contrarian Outlook (Michael Foster)ETFsJan 23, 2020 04:17AM ET
This 6.5% Dividend With Upside Is Hiding In Plain Sight
By Contrarian Outlook (Michael Foster)   |  Jan 23, 2020 04:17AM ET
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The latest trade-war hype has served up a terrific opportunity for us to bag 6%+ dividends (and upside) in closed-end funds (CEFs).

Today I’m going to show you exactly where to look (hint: it’s the last place you’d expect) and reveal a CEF with serious upside in 2020. It’s set to ride this unheralded opportunity while dropping its generous 6.5%+ dividends on us.

First off, I hope your nest egg didn’t fall into this “tariff trap”:

First Shot in Trade War Takes Out Investors

Trade War SPY 2019 Chart
Trade War SPY 2019 Chart

That’s what the market did when President Trump announced his first tariffs on China two years ago, on solar panels and washing machines. Of course, those products are a blip on the Chinese economy, but they were just a warning shot. When Trump got serious, the first-level crowd really dashed for the exits:

Tariffs Rise, Investors Panic

Tariff Spike SPY Chart
Tariff Spike SPY Chart

Markets freaked out, resulting in the S&P 500’s first bear market in a decade. And it wasn’t just investors getting scared. Pundits lost it, too: Newsweek warned that “Trade war escalation could bring a recession within six months.”

All of this fear didn’t help, so stocks fell.

I, however, had a different take. Back on September 27, 2018, I wrote, “The drag on the economy from tariffs is too small to matter,” meaning any downturn in the market was a time to buy. Since then, America’s GDP has continued to grow:

No Recession Here

GDP Growth Chart
GDP Growth Chart

So much for the disastrous trade war!

While those doom-and-gloom prognosticators might feel a bit embarrassed, the real losers are people who sold on the fear those prognosticators encouraged. As a result, they missed out on this return since the start of the trade war:

Gains Left on the Table

SPY Steady Climb
SPY Steady Climb

But herein lies our opportunity—and the reason why pundits who say today’s market is in a bubble are all wet: that 13.7% return over two years comes out below 7% annualized, which is less than the S&P 500’s long-term 8% annualized return. That means it’s not too late to get in.

So what should we be buying? This is where the story gets really interesting.

Foreign-Focused Firms are Still Winning

The twist here is that foreign firms (and internationally focused US companies) are actually still delivering strong returns. In a world with rising tariffs, that just shouldn’t be happening.

We can see this by looking at the Fidelity Export and Multinational Fund (FEXPX), one of the few funds that focuses on firms that do most of their selling abroad. When we look at this fund’s returns over the last year, we see it’s had a strong 20% return since the start of 2018.

That’s well ahead of the SPDR Midcap 400 ETF Trust (NYSE:MDY), in blue below, a fair indicator of domestic-company performance, given that these firms make up a considerable portion of US midcap stocks:

Foreign Sales Drive High Returns

FEXPX SPY Total Returns
FEXPX SPY Total Returns

As you can see above, foreign-focused companies have delivered strong returns because of strong sales numbers, even if we include the trade-war selloff fears that drove 2018’s weakness. But in 2019, the market slowly began to understand what I’d said in 2018: the drag on the economy from tariffs is too small to matter.

The Foreign Approach

American companies that sell abroad aren’t the only way to play into this trend. Another is to invest in foreign countries that are enjoying growth thanks to the rising tide of a growing global economy—and global trade ties strong enough to resist trade-war jitters.

Take, for instance, the Brandywine Global Income Opportunities Fund (NYSE:BWG), a global debt fund that invests in bonds from foreign firms and foreign countries. BWG trades at a whopping 10.8% discount to net asset value, despite its generous 6.5% dividend yield and tremendous recent performance.

Trade War? What Trade War?

BWG Total Returns
BWG Total Returns

BWG is just one of many foreign funds you can use to get exposure to one of the best opportunities in the new post-trade war market of 2020.

4 Huge 8.8% Dividends That Fit Perfectly With BWG

BWG is just the start: I want to show you 4 more funds that hand you a bigger dividend payout—I’m talking a blockbuster 8.4% average yield!

PLUS, these funds are so cheap now, I’m calling for for 20%+ price upside in 2020.

So if you invested $500K in this diversified collection of income powerhouses now, you’d be looking at a cool $42,000 in dividend cash by this time in January 2021—and a potential $100,000+ in price gains too!

I say these 4 funds are a perfect fit with BWG because they add even more diversification, giving you exposure to US stocks, real estate investment trusts (REITs) and high-yield corporate bonds. This diversification, combined with these funds’ huge discounts, gives you 20%+ price upside and some critical protection in a market storm.

But these 4 income plays won’t be cheap for long, with low interest rates (which are likely to head lower still) driving more income-starved investors into the CEF market.

Disclosure: Brett Owens and Michael Foster are contrarian income investors who look for undervalued stocks/funds across the U.S. markets. Click here to learn how to profit from their strategies in the latest report, "7 Great Dividend Growth Stocks for a Secure Retirement."

This 6.5% Dividend With Upside Is Hiding In Plain Sight

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This 6.5% Dividend With Upside Is Hiding In Plain Sight

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