The Oxford Income Letter Review
Ease of Use
Are you considering using The Oxford Income Letter as an investment newsletter? The Oxford Income Letter is a subscription newsletter from The Oxford Club. This newsletter is run by Marc Lichtenfeld, a biotech expert and experienced fund manager. This newsletter is focused on income and dividend-paying stocks and bonds. Does it have all the information you’re looking for? Read our review of The Oxford Income Letter and find out.
About The Oxford Income Letter
The Oxford Income Letter is a stock picking newsletter produced by The Oxford Club, a financial analysis service with a more than 30-year history. The Oxford Income Letter is one of the service’s three flagship newsletters and it focuses on dividend income strategies, making it ideal for older investors who want to generate steady cash flow in retirement.
Is The Oxford Income Letter right for you? We’ll help you decide in our The Oxford Income Letter review.
The Oxford Income Letter Pricing Options
The Oxford Income Letter costs $49 for your first year and $79 per year after that for a Standard subscription, which includes a digital copy of the monthly newsletter.
The Premium subscription costs $79 for your first year and $249 per year after that. This adds two special research reports, access to four model portfolios, and a free hardcover copy of Get Rich with Dividends, a book by Marc Lichtenfeld, the editor of The Oxford Income Letter.
Which special reports you get vary based on when you sign up. Examples include “Retire Rich With Five Small Cap Dividend Stocks” and “101 Ways to Grow and Protect Your Retirement Savings.”
There’s also a Deluxe subscription that costs $129 per year, but this doesn’t add any extra features. It seems to exist mostly to make the other plans look cheaper.
All of the plans come with a one-year money-back guarantee.
Who Is Behind The Oxford Income Letter?
The Oxford Income Letter is edited by Marc Lichtenfeld, Chief Income Strategist at The Oxford Club. Lichtenfeld started his career at the trading desk at Carlin Equities. He then worked as a senior analyst for Avalon Research Group and at Jim Cramer’s The Street before moving to The Oxford Club.
Lichtenfeld has written two books: Get Rich with Dividends: A Proven System for Earning Double-Digit Returns and You Don’t Have to Drive an Uber in Retirement: How to Maintain Your Lifestyle without Getting a Job or Cutting Corners.
At The Oxford Club, Lichtenfeld is best known for his 10-11-12 System of investing. That refers to his focus on finding stocks that will deliver 11% dividend yields and 12% annual returns over a period of 10 years.
The Oxford Income Letter Investing Style
As the name suggests, The Oxford Income Letter is focused on generating income from stock investments. It primarily focuses on dividend-paying stocks, but there is also attention given to fixed-income investments like bonds. Price appreciation is taken into consideration, but much of the newsletter, including the way that stock picks are presented and the division of assets into different portfolios, is based on dividend yield.
How Does The Oxford Income Letter Work?
The Oxford Income Letter newsletter is somewhat different from most stock newsletters in that you aren’t getting just one portfolio’s worth of stock picks. Instead, you get four distinct portfolios with different goals and investment strategies (although all of them are income-related).
The Fixed Income Portfolio focuses on blue-chip corporate bonds and, to a lesser extent, municipal bonds. Most bonds that the newsletter recommends are rated BBB- or higher and mature in 5 to 10 years.
The Compound Income Portfolio is effectively a dividend investing portfolio. At the time of writing, the portfolio had an average yield of 5.8% and a projected annual dividend growth of 8%.
The Instant Income Portfolio focuses on dividend stocks that are poised for short- or medium-term growth. Generally, stocks in this portfolio are only held for months or a year at a time. The average yield was around 5.9% at the time of writing, and the constituent stocks had projected dividend growth of 7.5%.
The Retirement Catch-up/High-yield Portfolio invests in stocks that have high dividend yields at the moment. Not surprisingly, there are often only a few stocks in this portfolio since Lichtenfeld searches for stocks with a dividend yield of more than 10% that aren’t headed for a steep drop. Note that, at the time of writing, two out of three stocks in this portfolio had returned a loss since these high dividend payouts are often made by companies with questionable financial sustainability.
The Oxford Income Letter is released at the start of each month and delivers one new stock pick and (usually, but not always) one new bond pick. It’s split into a few different articles, most of which are written by Lichtenfeld. There’s typically one article written by another analyst who echoes Lichtenfeld’s recommendations.
The main story explains Lichtenfeld’s stock pick for the month and ends with instructions about what price to buy the stock at, whether to set a stop loss, and which portfolio to add it to. Interestingly, Lichtenfeld also advises readers about whether to hold the stock in a taxable or retirement account based on its anticipated appreciation and the expected length of the position. Another story explains the bond pick for the month, if there is one.
There isn’t a ton of discussion about the stock market beyond the picks that Lichtenfeld recommends. So, don’t expect to get research that you can use to inform other investment ideas.
The portfolio performances aren’t discussed in the articles, although each newsletter ends with a series of tables showing the overall performance of each portfolio. More importantly, the tables contain information about whether each stock or bond is rated a buy, hold, or sell. You must check the tables for sell signals, since this is the only way that you get updates about when to remove stocks and bonds from your portfolio.
The Compound Income Portfolio is the largest in the Oxford Income Letter collection, with more than a dozen stocks. Total returns on stocks in this portfolio range widely. Some stocks that have been in the portfolio for more than five years have yielded returns of more than 200%, while other stocks recommended in the past year or two had returned losses of -30 to -45%.
Lichtenfeld occasionally suggests stop losses when recommending stocks. But if no stop loss was suggested, there is no explanation of why a losing stock is being held – you’re simply given a buy, hold, or sell rating in the portfolio tables at the end of each newsletter. It can be a little frustrating when you’re holding onto losing stocks and you don’t know why.
The Oxford Income Letter Differentiators
The Oxford Income Letter offers something like The Motley Fool’s Stock Advisor, but for dividend stocks. It’s a relatively low-cost service that offers one to two picks per month, and that helps retirement investors build up an income-generating portfolio over time.
Importantly, The Oxford Income Letter’s performance record is mixed, particularly when it comes to the primary Compound Income Portfolio. Long-term investors would do well to pair these dividend picks with a growth stock portfolio. At the very least, you should consider setting stop losses even when Lichtenfeld does not recommend them.
Want to see how Oxford Income Letter compares to other newsletters? Check out some reviews of similar newsletters below:
- Motley Fool Review (Full Comparison: Oxford Club vs. Motley Fool)
- Gorilla Trades Review
- Forbes Investor Review
- Fidelity Investor Review
- Nate’s Notes Review
- Action Alerts Plus Review
- Stansberry Research Review
What Type Of Trader is The Oxford Income Letter Best For?
The Oxford Income Letter is best for long-term investors, and particularly retirement investors. It can also work well for dividend investors or investors who want to diversify a growth/momentum portfolio with some “safer” stock picks.
The newsletter’s investment strategy focuses primarily on generating future income by investing in stocks with sustainable dividend yields and high dividend growth projections. Bond investments also generate reliable income for the future.
There isn’t much that’s self-directed about the newsletter, which is nice for investors who want to be given concrete recommendations while also understanding the rationale behind their investments. You also only have to make changes to your portfolio once a month, so it doesn’t take a lot of time or attention.
Is The Oxford Income Letter Worth It?
At only $49 for the first year and $79 per year after that, The Oxford Income Letter is worthwhile for anyone who wants help building a dividend portfolio. The service is priced on the low end when compared to other advisory services and it’s very easy to follow along with.
The mixed track record is the only thing that gives us pause in recommending The Oxford Income Letter. But if you’re proactive in placing stop losses and pair this newsletter with a growth-oriented service like The Motley Fool’s Stock Advisor, it’s likely you’ll come out ahead.
- Relatively inexpensive subscription
- Four model portfolios to generate income over time
- Mix of stock and bond investments
- Easy to keep track of portfolio returns
- Invests in high-yield dividend stocks for instant income
- Not all stocks come with stop loss recommendations
- Mixed performance record