Visions Advisors’ principal objective in its equity-based Dividend Portfolio is to provide returns from a diversified group of companies that have an attractive dividend rate, but still maintain many growth characteristics. Accordingly, the Dividend Portfolio is composed of mid-cap and/or large-cap stocks that maintain a targeted minimum dividend yield of at least 2.00% and exhibit a high level of financial strength coupled with a historical above average return on equity. Mid-cap stocks represent companies that have a total market capitalization between $1 billion and $5 billion. Mid-cap stocks tend to have a higher risk/reward ratio then large-cap stocks. Large-cap stocks represent companies that have a total market capitalization over more than $5 billion. Based on market conditions, this portfolio may have less diversification at times and may be more exposed to sector trends than a more diversified portfolio.
Vision Advisors employs technical screening methods to forecast revenue and earnings over the next one to two years. Upon identifying a number of issuers, the selection is further narrowed by applying other investment rules and financial ratios (such as PE ratio) to evaluate future price prospects. In addition to financial strength, dividend yield and return on equity, Vision Advisors also examines the dividend payout, the debt equity ratio and forward-looking PE ratios. Finally, we look at companies that also have an established history of buying back their stock and raising their dividend payments. Although certain industries tend to offer higher yielding stocks, the additional factors that we employ tend to screen out many less desirable stocks in certain industries.
Vision Advisors also employs, from time to time, a strategy of writing covered call positions against some or all of the stocks in the Dividend Portfolio.
The primary purpose of option writing is to earn additional income through premiums received from the buyers of the call options. By monitoring the volatility, delta and time to expiration, Vision Advisors seeks to optimize the tradeoff between receiving option premium income and the possibility of forgoing future price appreciation on the underlying stock above the written strike price of the option, until the option expires. At the same time, the investor receives a small measure of downside protection, to the extent of the net option premium received, should the price of the stock decline. By adding covered call positions to an existing long stock position, Vision Advisors attempts to enhance the potential overall return in the portfolio.
The goal of a covered call position is for the short option value to decay over time and allow the account holder to realize a gain, up to the total net option premium received, should the option position expire worthless. In order to calculate the gain or loss on the overall covered call position, one must measure the profit or loss realized during the period the covered call option position was open against the profit and loss of the open securities position during the same time periods.
In addition to covered calls, Vision Advisors may, from time to time, purchase out-of-the-money put options to add downside protection. The ratio of purchased put options may be less than the number of long shares of stock owned in the account. Please recognize that employing puts to help protect the account is likely to temper total returns (due to the premium paid to purchase the put options), but does provide some downside protection against declines in the underlying stocks.
*Options involve risk and are not suitable for all investors. Prior to buying or selling an option, a person must receive a copy of Characteristics and Risks of Standardized Options (with 1997 through 2012 supplements), November 2012 supplement and April 2015 supplement to Characteristics and Risks of Standardized Options. Besides being accessible via our Web site, copies of the Options Disclosure Document are available from your Vision sales representative, or by calling 1-888-OPTIONS, or from The Options Clearing Corporation, One North Wacker Drive, Suite 500, Chicago, Illinois 60606.