Oct 172016
 

So Long, Air Canada Bonds

Earlier this year I purchased some Air Canada bonds for $5,305, with an attractive coupon of 7.625% annual interest rate. Very nice! They weren’t suppose to mature until 2019. However Air Canada decided to be a jerk and redeem them early at the beginning of this month. So all the bonds were bought back, including mine.

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As we can see, I lost $305 on my principal amount. However I’ve collected more money back from interest payments. So overall I still came out with a small profit. This concludes my first junk bond investment. I wasn’t able to earn the attractive return all the way to the end as I hoped, but at least I didn’t lose any money. 😀

Anyway, redeeming the bonds means Air Canada returned the $5,000 cash back into my RRSP account. 🙂 So I used the money to purchase 2 relatively defensive stocks, Boardwalk REIT and Enbridge Inc. The stock market reached a new high this year and it’s been over 8 years since a major correction so I believe we are overdue for a pull back any day now. Both Boardwalk REIT and Enbridge generate stable cash flow so they are more resistant to market corrections than most other stocks.

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Boardwalk REIT – New Addition to my Retirement Portfolio

I purchased 60 units of Boardwalk REIT (BEI.UN) at $50.56 each. The total came to $3,043.59 including commissions.

I like REITs because they own and operate properties, and pass on the profits to their unit holders. This means investors can make money in the growing real estate industry without all the hassle of dealing with tenants. 🙂 Boardwalk specializes in multi-family residential properties.

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Normally we determine the value of a stock based on its earnings, but in the real estate business we use funds from operations (or FFO) instead to measure a company’s performance. According to Boardwalk’s forward guidance the company expects its annual FFO to be in the $3.20 per unit range. This gives BEI.UN an equivalent earnings yield of about 6.4%. Which translates to a P/E ratio of about 16x. To me 6.4% isn’t a bad return in today’s market. 🙂

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Boardwalk owns property across the country, but about half of its portfolio sits in Alberta, including some in Fort McMurray. Alberta is struggling due to the unfortunate wildfires this year and the continuous low price of oil. Calgary’s unemployment rate last month was 9.5%. Ouch! 🙁 As a result BEI.UN is down 10% compared to a year ago. However, I believe this is a good opportunity to get in before the REIT recovers. Oil has already bounced off the bottom. And forest fire season is over. A lot of people are pessimistic about Alberta’s economy. But I think their concerns are overblown.

Boardwalk is one of the better managed REITs. It’s portfolio maintains occupancy of 97% despite all the challenges it’s facing this year. The dividend is also quite attractive with an annual yield of 4.5% and I believe it is sustainable. To read more about Boardwalk, my friend who writes for The Motley Fool covered BEI.UN a couple of months ago.

Adding to my Enbridge Position

I bought 30 shares of ENB at $57.25 per share, which came to $1,727.49 including commissions. Now I have a total of 70 ENB shares in my RRSP.

Enbridge operates liquid pipelines, gas distribution, gas pipelines, and even produces renewable energy with its own wind and solar farms. The stock currently has a 3.7% dividend yield. Enbridge announced it will merge with Spectra Energy Corp in the U.S. which will make the combined company the largest pipeline operator in North America with a market capitalization around $90 billion. 🙂

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ENB has increased its dividends for 21 consecutive years. And over the last 10 years its dividends have increased by 10% annually. Its goal is to continue growing its dividends by 10% every year through 2024. This consistency is what investors like to see. 😉

Enbridge has one of the strongest economic moats of any company. Since pipelines require a lot of capital and regulatory approval, it’s not an industry where anyone can easily get in. Much like the railway industry, it’s pretty much an oligopoly without much competition.

Final Thoughts

Both Boardwalk and Enbridge are what I call retirement stocks. This means they’re relatively safe stocks that I can buy and hold forever. Both companies have predictable earnings, and easy to understand business models. They offer essential services like housing and utility and don’t have a lot of external competitors and disruptors. They’re both great investments for a long term investor like myself. 🙂

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Random Useless Fact:

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10 Comments on "Investing Defensively with Boardwalk REIT and Enbridge"

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Financial Canadian
Guest

I also just bought Enbridge after the announcement of the Spectra merger. My biggest fear with that investment is that the transaction won’t happen for some reason! If it does though, 10-12% dividend growth through 2024 sounds pretty good to me!

Investing Pursuits
Guest

Liquid,

Two great investments for sure. Boardwalk takes good care of their properties and Enbridge is a solid company. I own Enbridge in margin account and directly through the transfer agent where I have a full drip.

Finance Journey
Guest

Solid picks Liquid,

I have both stocks in my portfolio, and they performed really well over last few months. BEI.UN usually pays special dividend in December, and ENB hikes its dividend in December as well. You accumulate them in right time, I guess. 😀 .

Best Regards,

xyz from Our Financial Path
Guest

What a shame for AC, that 7.625% annual interest rate would have been amazing !

Jody
Guest
Jody

Hey Liquid,

Good thing you reinvested your AC money back into the market, I actually recently looked into boardwalk but ended up going with CAPREIT ticker CAR.UN. Reason boardwalk has too many eggs in the Alberta basket I think close to half their properties, Alberta is risky! Capreit is a bit more divided in Canada with majority holdings in Ontario, Capreit also pays a more attractive dividend payout, Was CAPREIT an option you looked at before buying Boardwalk?

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