The Story of Bill Spetrino and The Dividend Machine
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I think my destiny to become an investor was clear at a young age. I was 6 years old, and my parents just had my little brother. So I wouldn’t be jealous that my new sibling was getting all of my parents attention, my father bought me a box of baseball cards. I think there were 36 packs of cards, and each pack had 5 cards and a stick of gum. This was back when a pack of cards cost 5 cents, so it was literally a penny per card.
Well, I lived in a poorer neighborhood and one of my wealthier friends really wanted my Sam McDowell card. At the time, Sam McDowell was the favorite player of all the kids in my school. Of course I really didn’t want to sell the card. But then he offered me 35 cents for it. I decided to sell! I took the 35 cents and bought 7 more packs of cards. I kept selling cards to my schoolmates, and buying more with my profits. About two months later my dad came into my room and saw six shoeboxes full of cards. At first he thought I stole them. I explained to him what I was doing, and he was very impressed. He was even more impressed when I showed him the $35 I had saved . . .
I started writing the Dividend Machine because I wanted to share what I have learned about investing with as many people as possible. See, by creating a dividend machine for myself, I was able to retire at the age of 42. At that relatively young age I was able to literally walk away from my 9-5 job, and live comfortably just on the income that my investments generated. And so I started The Dividend Machine newsletter, so I could help as many people as possible experience the same freedom I enjoy every day.
I don’t measure success as the big house, fancy new cars, a country club membership, or any desire to “keep up with the Joneses.” To me that is debt, debt, debt, and more debt.
My idea of success is freedom. Freedom to spend every day how I want to spend it. To me debt means you can never enjoy true “freedom” if you have to work every day to make your monthly payments on all these materialistic pursuits.
I got started in the financial markets out of a pure desire to become financially independent. After graduating from John Carroll University with a degree in accounting, I went to work for a small accounting firm at the age of 23. After my first day on the job I thought, “I can’t do this for 45 more weeks, let alone 45 more years.” Every minute after that I focused on trying to figure out how to become financially independent so I could retire.
So I spent hours and hours reading every book I could find from some of the greatest financial minds in the world. I read Benjamin Graham, Warren Buffett, and anything I could get my hands on. I still read for about 3 hours every day. I am on a constant quest to learn from the wisdom of others.
So back to how I got started in the markets. I was reading all of these books and absorbing all the knowledge, and decided it was time to invest on my own. Like many in my small town, I didn’t grow up with a silver spoon, so to come up with my first money to invest I sold my BMW and bought an old beater for $1200. I took the remaining $8000 I had from selling the car and started building my dividend machine.
Every 3 months I would get my dividend checks. I kept reinvesting the dividends, and when the stocks I owned dropped in price, I was able to buy more. I quickly realized that my concept of building a dividend machine was fantastic.
It wasn’t a glamorous pursuit. I had to ignore the temptation to spend my money on materialistic goods, and focus on saving money to keep building my dividend machine. But the end result was that I was able to retire at 42 years old. All of my living expenses are now paid for by the income I receive from my investments.
That’s the goal I have for the subscribers of The Dividend Machine newsletter. To one day be able to live comfortably just on their investing income. To accomplish this, each month I help subscribers build a conservative portfolio that concentrates on safety, income, and growth. This will provide a consistent dividend income, and our goal is to achieve a compounded annual return of 10% or more.
I think we have been successful so far. Our compounded annual returns are greatly exceeding our goals, and The Dividend Machine newsletter has been recognized by the Hulbert Financial Digest, a leading authority, as the #1 low-risk newsletter in the industry. This recognition is an honor I take very seriously, and a testament to the time and effort I put into making The Dividend Machine an outstanding resource for the average investor.
Thanks for taking a few minutes to get to know me, and I hope to have you as a subscriber to my Dividend Machine newsletter.