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Many investors are now craving high yield equities. The interest rate most banks now offer for cash and CDs is near zero and getting lower all the time, and US debt now yields historically low rates. As a result, many investors are avoiding the bond and cash-equivalent markets, and looking for stable large-cap equities that can supplement their fixed income portion of a portfolio.

There are literally thousands of dividend paying equities and funds (of the mutual, closed-end and exchange traded varietals). A prudent idea may be to consider the investment decisions made by one or a few of the more respected investors within the market.

Warren Buffett is considered one of the best long-term investors out there and Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A) currently holds several large positions in dividend paying equities. Several of his largest holdings have above-average dividends and a history of growing them over time.

Below are Warren Buffett's large, high-yield equity investments according Berkshire Hathaway’s latest 13F filing. I have only listed those positions valued at over $1 billion that also have a yield above S&P 500 average yield, which is now about 1.9%. I have included their current yields as well as their 1-month and 2011-to-date performance rates. With investments valued between almost $2 billion and over $14 billion, these investments should be considered high-conviction holdings for Berkshire and Buffett, whose main goal is to not lose money.

ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP)

  • Yield: 4%
  • 1-month: -5.29%
  • 2011-to-date: 0.03%

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)

  • Yield: 3.5%
  • 1-month: 1.71%
  • 2011-to-date: 5.83%

Kraft (KFT)

  • Yield: 3.4%
  • 1-month: 1.51%
  • 2011-to-date: 10.53%

Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO)

  • Yield: 2.7%
  • 1-month: 4.46%
  • 2011-to-date: 7.55%

Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG)

  • Yield: 3.4%
  • 1-month: 3.33%
  • 2011-to-date: -1.42%

Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT)

  • Yield: 2.8%
  • 1-month: 0.80%
  • 2011-to-date: -1.71%

Over the last month, only one of the above-named companies underperformed the S&P 500, which was down about 5.3% over the last month and down about 3% so far in 2011. In any event, all of them have outperformed the S&P 500 so far in 2011, even before their higher dividends are included.

Additionally, most of the businesses are familiar to novice investors. This does not mean a novice investor can immediately comprehend the complex accounting and international planning initiatives of, for example, Coca-Cola (KO), Berkshire’s largest holding, but they should have a good understanding of the business as well as its competition.

Disclaimer: This article is intended to be informative and should not be construed as personalized advice as it does not take into account your specific situation or objectives.

Source: Buffett's 6 High Yield Investments: Recent Performance Review