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Interested in knowing what stocks hedge funds are buying?

We ran a screen on the dividend stocks of the S&P 500 for those seeing the most significant net institutional purchases over the current quarter. These stocks pay dividend yields above 1% and sustainable payout ratios below 50%.

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the stocks mentioned below. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.‬

We also created a price-weighted index of the stocks mentioned below, and monitored the performance of the list relative to the S&P 500 index over the last month. To access a complete analysis of this list's recent performance, click here.


(Click to enlarge)

Do you agree with hedge funds on these names? Use this list as a starting point for your own analysis.

List sorted by net institutional purchases as a percent of share float.

1. Ecolab Inc. (NYSE:ECL): Develops and markets products and services for the hospitality, foodservice, healthcare, and industrial markets primarily in the United States. Market cap of $13.23B. Dividend yield at 1.23%, payout ratio at 32.16%. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 14.4M, which is 7.0% of the company's 205.69M share float. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 12.45% (equivalent to 10.61 days of average volume). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 7.56% over the last week.

2. Williams Companies, Inc. (NYSE:WMB): Engages in finding, producing, gathering, processing, and transporting natural gas primarily in the United States. Market cap of $19.03B. Dividend yield at 3.10%, payout ratio at 37.77%. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 34.6M, which is 5.89% of the company's 587.29M share float. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 7.56% over the last week.

3. Legg Mason Inc. (NYSE:LM): Operates as an asset management company worldwide. Market cap of $3.71B. Dividend yield at 1.21%, payout ratio at 16.94%. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 5.3M, which is 4.69% of the company's 112.92M share float. The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 12.65% over the last week.

4. Rockwell Collins Inc. (NYSE:COL): Engages in the design, production, and support of communications and aviation electronics for commercial and military customers worldwide. Market cap of $8.31B. Dividend yield at 1.75%, payout ratio at 24.04%. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 6.0M, which is 4.25% of the company's 141.32M share float. The stock has lost 2.66% over the last year.

5. Whirlpool Corp. (NYSE:WHR): Engages in the manufacture and marketing of home appliances worldwide. Market cap of $3.75B. Dividend yield at 4.08%, payout ratio at 39.71%. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 2.8M, which is 3.69% of the company's 75.98M share float. The stock has lost 32% over the last year.

6. Janus Capital Group, Inc. (NYSE:JNS): A publicly owned asset management holding company. Market cap of $1.23B. Dividend yield at 3.12%, payout ratio at 10.75%. Net institutional shares purchased over the current quarter at 6.5M, which is 3.61% of the company's 180.09M share float. This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.52). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 7.84% over the last week.

*Institutional data sourced from Fidelity, all other data sourced from Finviz.

Source: 6 S&P 500 Dividend Stocks Hedge Funds Are Snapping Up