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  • Mon, Nov. 21, 4:35 AM
    | Mon, Nov. 21, 4:35 AM | 12 Comments
  • Thu, Oct. 13, 3:51 PM
    • Dividend strategies in general have done well this year, and dividend growth has outperformed since interest rates began their sharp rise in late summer.
    • Evercore's Ahbra Banerji suggests even better returns by adding a screen for low payout ratios. Banerji and team tested large-caps, mid-caps, and small-caps, and found combining dividend yield, payout ratio, and growth outperformed simpler dividend strategies.
    • His top picks using that troika: VF Corp (NYSE:VFC), with a 2.6% yield and 53.4% payout ratio; Tiffany (NYSE:TIF) 2.3% yield and 48.2% payout ratio; Marathon Petroleum (NYSE:MPC) 3.3% yield and 36.3% payout ratio; Phillips 66 (NYSE:PSX) 3% yield and 41.1% payout ratio; BB&T 3% and 42.7% payout ratio.
    • ETFs: DVY, VIG, SDY, SCHD, NOBL, SDOG, ADX, DLN, DGRW, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, PFM, SDYL, DGRO, JTD, LCEAX, RDVY, DIVC, REGL, LEAD, FDRR, FDVV
    | Thu, Oct. 13, 3:51 PM | 8 Comments
  • Thu, Oct. 6, 1:03 PM
    • Though still beating the S&P 500 for the year, popular dividend ETFs underperformed in Q3 as the number of dividend increases fell 14%, and dividend cuts rose. On a net basis, there were $6B in dividend increases last quarter, down from $10B in Q3 one year ago, and $7.3B in Q2.
    • In a world of still-invisible interest rates though, there's no flagging in the funds' popularity though. Vanguard's Dividend Appreciation ETF (NYSEARCA:VIG) took in $573M in Q3, while the iShares Select Dividend ETF (NYSEARCA:DVY) brought in $533M. The iShares Core High Dividend ETF (NYSEARCA:HDV) had net inflows of $591.4M, and nearly $1B in fresh money poured into the Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF (NYSEARCA:VYM). State Street's SPDR S&P Dividend ETF had net inflows of $429M.
    • Source: Teresa Rivas in Barron's
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, ADX, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL, LCEAX
    | Thu, Oct. 6, 1:03 PM
  • Mon, Sep. 26, 2:13 PM
    • WisdomTree U.S. SmallCap Quality Dividend Growth Fund (NASDAQ:DGRS) - $0.0750.
    • WisdomTree U.S. Quality Dividend Growth Fund (NASDAQ:DGRW) - $0.0950.
    • WisdomTree High Dividend Fund (NYSEARCA:DHS) - $0.2150.
    • WisdomTree LargeCap Dividend Fund (NYSEARCA:DLN) - $0.2150.
    • WisdomTree MidCap Dividend Fund (NYSEARCA:DON) - $0.3000.
    • WisdomTree Total Dividend Fund (NYSEARCA:DTD) - $0.2200.
    • WisdomTree Dividend ex-Financials Fund (NYSEARCA:DTN) - $0.2700.
    • Payable Sept. 30; for shareholders of record Sept. 28; ex-div Sept. 26.
    • Press release
    | Mon, Sep. 26, 2:13 PM
  • Fri, Aug. 19, 9:20 AM
    • Payouts at S&P 500 companies over the last year footed to nearly 38% of net income during the period, according to FactSet - the highest level since February 2009. A full 44 S&P 500 companies paid annual dividends in excess of the previous 12 months of income - that's the highest number in a decade.
    • Source: Aaron Kuriloff in the WSJ
    • At least part of the rise is thanks to earnings that have now fallen for five quarters in a row combined with corporations that bend over backwards not to cut dividends. Caterpillar makes a nice example: It hiked its dividend 10% in June 2015, now paying out at a $3.08 per share annual rate. EPS, however, slumped to $2.18 in the 12 months ended June 30 from $3.84 a year earlier, and the CEO isn't expecting a rebound this year.
    • CAT, however, is maintaining the dividend, not wanting to upset a 22-year record of making higher payouts.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, ADX, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL, LCEAX
    | Fri, Aug. 19, 9:20 AM | 8 Comments
  • Tue, Jul. 12, 2:51 PM
    • Net increases in dividends in Q2 of $7.3B are sizably higher than Q1's $3.9B, but materially below last year's Q2 when they increased $12.5B, according to data from S&P Dow Jones Indices.
    • For the 12 months ended in June, net increases of $24.8B were down nearly 50% from the previous 12 months.
    • Total dividend cuts in the year ended in June of $20.9B rose from $8.2B the previous year (thank energy).
    • The weighted dividend yield in Q2 of 2.69% rose 20 bps from Q1 and 10 bps from a year ago.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, ADX, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL, LCEAX
    | Tue, Jul. 12, 2:51 PM
  • Sun, Jun. 5, 9:02 AM
    • "John Bull can stand many things but he cannot stand two per cent,” said Walter Bagehot about 150 years ago.
    • Today, Carlyle Group's Jason Thomas says low interest rates are perversely working against raising the level of business investment. The reason, says Thomas, channeling Bagehot, is retirees' need for current income - public companies distributing more of their income today (instead of investing it for the future) are being rewarded with premium valuations.
    • Since the Fed took rates to about zero in 2009, U.S. companies have lifted buybacks by 194%, dividends by 66.5%, but investment by only 44%, says Thomas. Big energy companies boosting payouts while slashing capex are an easy example, but even companies not having to deal with lower commodity prices are doing so. Witness McDonald's, Eli Lilly, and Verizon holding the line on capex while lifting dividends.
    • The WSJ's Grep Ip notes when real five-year yields slid 50 basis points between February and May this year, the S&P Dividend Aristocrats Index outperformed the S&P 500 by 4.8% - as rates go lower, a new investment needs even a higher hurdle to boost the stock price more than a bigger dividend.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, ADX, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL, LCEAX
    | Sun, Jun. 5, 9:02 AM | 24 Comments
  • Fri, Feb. 19, 2:51 PM
    • Less than years ago, the rate crossed $300B for the first time, and a year later reached $350B. S&P Dow Jones Indices' Howard Silverblatt sees the number passing $400B by the time he opens his pool for the summer.
    • Though the absolute number continues to grow, the amount of dividend increases is slowing and the rate of payout cuts is surging, says Silverblatt.
    • In 2013, Silverblatt demonstrated the power of dividends (and hindsight) by highlighting a "magnificent seven" - those DJIA companies which had boosted payout for at least 30 years: 3M, Coca-Cola, Exxon, J&J, McDonald's, P&G, and Wal-Mart. One thousand dollars invested in each at the end of 1982 would have grown to $425K at the end of 2012 - a 14.7% annualized return.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, ADX, DLN, DHS, DTD, FDL, FVD, DVYL, SDYL, LCEAX
    | Fri, Feb. 19, 2:51 PM | 5 Comments
  • Dec. 10, 2015, 3:04 PM
    • Kinder Morgan is making plenty of headlines with its dividend cut, but Barclays says it's energy companies which have been the most reluctant to slash payouts, and energy sector dividends are at an all-time high even with the oil price crash.
    • In fact, says the team, dividends from the energy sector were up 3% Y/Y in Q3.
    • For the S&P 500 as a whole, Barclays expects a 5% increase next year, which would be the slowest pace of dividend growth since 2010. The energy sector should see a 10% decline in payouts.
    • The best strategy: Buy those companies with high dividend-growth rates (currently financials and tech).
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, ADX, SDOG, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL
    | Dec. 10, 2015, 3:04 PM | 1 Comment
  • Nov. 17, 2015, 3:41 PM
    • Calling the rise "astonishing," Henderson Global Investors says U.S. companies paid $107.9B in dividends in Q3, up 23.4% for the quarter and a new record.
    • Helping things along though was a $9.8B special payout from Kraft Foods after its purchase by Heinz.
    • The boost in dividends came alongside a 9.3% decline in the S&P 500.
    • The sharp rise capital returns came at least in part at the expense of capital spending, which fell 5.6% for the quarter and is expected to decline for the year.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, ADX, SDOG, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL
    | Nov. 17, 2015, 3:41 PM | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 5, 2015, 12:44 PM
    • Blame it (mostly) on energy/commodities as Markit expects another 62% cut in dividends in the basic resources sector. Payouts in the media sector will decline 21%, but this is due to Disney switching from paying annually to semi-annually, and reallocating $1.1B in returns to next year.
    • In total, Markit sees dividend growth of just 3.4% in Q4, down from 11.5%, 11.4%, and 24.1% growth in the previous three quarters. Special dividends in Q4 this year will total just $1.5B, down from $5.6B a year ago.
    • The top five dividend increases coming in Q4: MasterCard (NYSE:MA) is expected to boost its payout by 31%; Visa (NYSE:V) by 25%, CVS (NYSE:CVS) Health by 23%, Lincoln Financial (NYSE:LNC) by 20%, and Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) by 19%.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, ADX, SDOG, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL
    | Oct. 5, 2015, 12:44 PM | 4 Comments
  • May 18, 2015, 3:03 PM
    • Goldman's sees the S&P 500 hitting a mid-year high of 2,150 by mid-year, but fading to 2,100 by year-end after the Fed hikes rates. Its 12-month forecast of 2,125 stands against the current level of 2,130.
    • With appreciation returns expected to be nil, Goldman suggests having a look at its dividend growth portfolio - a sector-neutral basket of 50 stocks. They have a median yield of 2.5% and are expected to boost payouts by 16% this year and 12% in 2016. The group's P-E ratio is 15 vs. 17.3 for the S&P 500.
    • The ten highest-yielding additions: Harley-Davidson (NYSE:HOG) - with a 2.3% yield, Home Depot (NYSE:HD) - 2.1%, Dr. Pepper Snapple (NYSE:DPS) - 2.5%, National Oilwell Varco (NYSE:NOV) - 3.6%, Regions Financial (NYSE:RF) - 2.3%, Baxter International (NYSE:BAX) - 3.1%, Cummins (NYSE:CMI) - 2.4%, Seagate Technology (NASDAQ:STX) - 3.9%, International Paper (NYSE:IP) - 3.1%, AES Corp (NYSE:AES) - 3%.
    • Looking over a ten-year horizon, Goldman expects dividends to account for 46% of the S&P 500's 5% annualized return, up from 20% during the current bull market which started in 2009.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, ADX, SDOG, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL
    | May 18, 2015, 3:03 PM | 21 Comments
  • Mar. 11, 2015, 11:51 AM
    • At the top of the list of those outperforming the largest dividend ETFs and the S&P 500 by a sizable margin is the Deep Value ETF (NYSEARCA:DVP) - launched last September - up 3.1% YTD.
    • Also outperforming: Cambria Shareholder Yield (NYSEARCA:SYLD), First Trust NASDAQ Rising Dividend Achiever (NASDAQ:RDVY), FlexShares Quality Dividend (NYSEARCA:QDF), and WisdomTree U.S. Dividend Growth (NASDAQ:DGRW).
    • The three largest dividend ETFs: VIG, DVY, SDY - are lagging not only the above relative newcomers, but the S&P 500 as well.
    • Seeking Alpha RTA subscribers for the 5 outperformers: 892.
    • Seeking Alpha RTA subscribers for the popular laggards: 16,740.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL
    | Mar. 11, 2015, 11:51 AM | 5 Comments
  • Jan. 7, 2015, 10:24 AM
    • Net dividend increases of $12B in Q4 compared to $12.7B a year prior. For all 2014, dividend increases of $54.8B were roughly the same as the previous year. 3,308 companies boosted dividends last year vs. 2,895 in 2013.
    • Non-S&P 500 companies got more into the act, with the percentage of those paying dividends rising to 48.5% in Q4 from 47.7% a year earlier.
    • The next area to watch for potential increases is the S&P Small Cap 600, says S&P Dow Jones' Howard Silverblatt, noting a net gain of 15 payers over the past six months.
    • A word of caution: Though the dollar amount of total dividend cuts in Q4 was flat from a year earlier, over half the cuts came from energy issues. It's not yet the financial dividend meltdown of 2008/2009, says Silverblatt, but energy does account for 11% of dividends in the general market.
    • ETFs: DVY, VIG, SDY, SCHD, SDOG, NOBL, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, DGRW, FVD, PFM, DVYL, SDYL, DGRO, RDVY, DIVC
    | Jan. 7, 2015, 10:24 AM
  • Nov. 17, 2014, 3:40 PM
    • Companies in the S&P 500 could pay dividends totaling a record $41.2B in November, says S&P Dow Jones' Howard Silverblatt, who notes payouts are on pace for their third straight year of double-digit growth - through the end of October, cash payments of $38.59 per share for the trailing 12-month period are up 10.94% compared to the year previous.
    • For 2015, the pace is set to be at least $40.49 per share, and that assumes no changes to dividend policy (which isn't going to happen, says Silverblatt). At the moment, 364 of the S&P 500 have a higher indicated dividend rate than their actual 2013 payout, and almost half have already declared a higher rate than their 2014 payment.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, DVYL, SDYL
    | Nov. 17, 2014, 3:40 PM | 3 Comments
  • Jul. 1, 2014, 12:29 PM
    • Dividends in Q2 rose from the first quarter by $12.6B, but the growth lagged that of a year ago when they increased $17.6B, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices. The number of firms boosting payouts in Q2 was 696 vs. just 591 a year ago.
    • “The good news is that the number of dividend increases was strong again in Q2, as the 696 increases were the most since 1979,” says the group's Howard Silverblatt. “The bad news is that the growth rate of actual aggregate cash payments has slowed, even as dividends continue to set record payments.”
    • Among the S&P 500, 84.4% of firms currently pay a dividend, the most since September 1998, while all 30 of the DJIA pay a dividend.
    • ETFs: DVY, SCHD, SDOG, DLN, DHS, FDL, DTD, FVD, SDYL, DVYL
    | Jul. 1, 2014, 12:29 PM
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