Wednesday, February 26, 2020

6 Higher-Quality, High-Yield Dividend Stocks

A successful dividend growth investor must start young enough to allow time for dividend growth to occur. What happens when a person waits too late in life to start investing and they need immediate income? Many times the person will invest in high-yield, high-risk stocks and lose their savings. If income is needed immediately and you want to mitigate the risk (to a degree), there are some things that can be done, such as...

Start With a High-Quality List of Stocks

If you are looking for a higher-quality dividend growth stock, Consider the stocks on these lists:

S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrats: is designed to measure the performance of S&P 500 index constituents that have followed a policy of consistently increasing dividends every year for at least 25 consecutive years. These stocks are the best of the best – the blue blood stocks.

Broad Dividend Achievers: is comprised of select US companies with at least ten consecutive years of increasing regular dividends. US companies must be listed on the NYSE, AMEX or NASDAQ. US Companies must have a minimum average daily cash volume of US$500,000 per day for the November and December prior to each Annual Reconstitution Date.

U.S. Dividend Champions: includes companies that had paid higher dividends for at least 25 consecutive years. The list includes some smaller companies not found on the other lists. This list is maintained by The Drip Investing Resource Center and is available on their website in an Excel spreadsheet.

Look For Sustainability

High-yield isn't free. There is usually a reason one stock's yield is higher than another and it is normally tied to risk. With all things being equal, the income investor would always select the higher yield stock, but all things are not equal. It is our job to identify what is driving a stocks yield up and determine if we are willing to accept the additional risk. When making this decision some of the things I consider are free cash flow, debt level, business model, among others.

Higher-Yielding Stocks To Consider

Putting it all together, I have identified these select stocks that yield at least 4% and have grown their dividends for at least 35 years. They are:

Weyco Group, Inc. (WEYS) designs and markets footwear for men, women and children under various brand names, including Florsheim, Nunn Bush, Stacy Adams, BOGS, Rafters and Umi. Yield: 4.0%

National Fuel Gas Co. (NFG) is an integrated energy company that has six operating segments: utility, pipeline & storage, exploration & production, international, energy marketing, and timber. Yield: 4.1%

Franklin Resources Inc. (BEN) is one of the world's largest asset managers, serving retail, institutional and high-net-worth clients. Yield: 4.2%

Abbvie Inc. (ABBV) is a global research-based pharmaceuticals business that emerged as a separate entity following its spin-off from Abbott Laboratories at the start of 2013. AbbVie's key drug is Humira for rheumatoid arthritis. Yield: 5.0%

AT&T Inc. (T) provides telephone and broadband service and holds full ownership of AT&T Mobility. Yield: 5.4%

Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), formed through the merger of Exxon and Mobil in late 1999, is the world's largest publicly owned integrated oil company. Yield: 5.9%

As noted earlier, yield comes with a cost. Each of the above stocks carries some level of additional risk higher than the average Aristocrat, Achiever or Champion. Ideally, we will start building our income portfolios years before we need the income, but if that is not possible, diversifying and focusing on higher quality stocks should help reduce our overall portfolio risk.

Full Disclosure: Long BEN, ABBV, T, XOM,

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