Dividend Stocks In the News

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 |  Includes: ACN, CPB, LMT, MCD, MSFT
by: Dividend Growth Investor

The past several months have been characterized by tremendous volatility and a lot of negative news regarding the state of the economy as a whole. Given the uncertainties in the global economy, investors are wondering whether they should cash out their portfolios and simply wait for the storm to end.

I think that this would not be a good move, especially for the dividend investor who already has a diversified portfolio of income producing stocks. Such an investor will be more focused on the dividend raises that his or her stocks deliver.

Investors focusing on every tick of the market might miss some rare investment opportunities when there is a disconnect between fundamentals and price. Don’t forget that even during a crisis people will continue to eat, shave, take showers, purchase beverages, smoke and eat out. Thus it always pays to not lose track of the big picture, even during the most challenging times for your portfolio.

Several stocks had some major dividend increases over the past week. Others didn’t deliver such exciting news but reaffirmed their payments to shareholders.

McDonalds (NYSE:MCD) increased its annual dividend by 33% to $2.00 share. The company has increased its dividends for over 32 consecutive years. Annual dividend payments have increased over the past 10 years by an average of 25%. The current yield stands at 2.40%. The new dividend increases the yield to 3.16%

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) increased its annual dividend by 18% to $0.52 share. The company has increased its dividends since 2003. MSFT has recorded double digit annual dividend payment increases over the past 5 years. The current yield stands at 2.00%.

Accenture (NYSE:ACN) increased its annual dividend by 19% to $0.5 share. The company has increased its dividends since 2005. ACN has recorded double digit annual dividend payment increases over the past three years. The current yield stands at 1.26%.

Campbell (NYSE:CPB) Soup increased its annual dividend by 14% to $1.00 share. The company has increased its dividends every year since 2004. CPB has recorded double digit annual dividend payment increases over the past 4 years. The current yield stands at 2.30%. The new dividend increases the yield to 2.66%

Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) increased its annual dividend by 36% to $2.28 share. The company has consistently increased its dividends every year since 2003. LMT has recorded double digit annual dividend payment increases over the past 5 years. The current yield stands at 1.50%. The new dividend increases the yield to 2.03%

Of these stocks MCD only fits my criteria for purchase. The rest of the stocks have been added to my watchlist for further investigation.

Disclosure: Author is long MCD.