Dividend Challengers (And Near-Challengers): 124 Increases Expected By March 31

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Includes: AGCO, AGII, AGM, AGO, AHH, AIG, AIT, AIV, AJG, ALE, ALK, ALL, AMSF, ANTM, ATVI, AVB, BAH, BAM, BORT, CBNK, CEB, CFNL, CHS, CLDB, CLDT, CME, CNS, CONE, CPT, CRI, CSGS, CZWI, DDR, DNKN, DOX, DPS, DPZ, EFX, EMCF, ENH, ETN, EVBN, EXPO, FBIZ, FDEF, FFG, FFNM, FHN, FIRT, FLIR, FORR, FR, GABC, GATX, GBNK, GHM, GIL, GLT, GLW, GME, GNC, GRRB, HBI, HD, HMN, HOG, HRC, HTBK, HURC, ICE, INDB, IPG, IR, ITT, KSS, KW, LB, LEA, LION, LMAT, LVS, MGA, MKTX, MLR, MOFG, MTN, NWBI, NXST, ONB, OPOF, PEB, PEG, PLOW, PNBI, PNFP, POWI, QNBC, RHP, ROIC, RUTH, SCS, SFBC, SFNC, SMP, SNI, SPB, SPTN, STLD, TBNK, TXRH, TYPE, UBOH, UPS, USPH, VLO, WLTW, WRI, WSBC, WTBFA, WYN, XRAY, XRX, XYL, ZBH
by: David Fish

Summary

Busiest time of year for dividend increases.

Enormous variety of industries available.

Kohl's offers 4% Yield.

In compiling the Dividend Champions list (found here), I get to see which companies are nearing the anniversaries of their previous dividend increases. Since most of these firms raise their payout about the same time every year, I can say with some confidence that they are likely to do so again. I have separated the Champions (25 or more years of higher dividends), Contenders (10-24 years), and Challengers (5-9 years) into distinct groupings, so please look for the other articles, which I hope will be published about the same time. Note that "CCC" refers to the combination of Champions, Contenders, and Challengers.

The Groundhog Cometh

As mentioned last month, the relatively light activity from mid-December to mid-January is now giving way to a pick-up in dividend-increase announcements with Ex-Dividend Dates beginning around Groundhog Day and carrying through March and April, when many companies first announce their annual earnings and then schedule the annual shareholder meeting. The number of announcements for all Champions, Contenders, Challengers, and Near-Challengers expected in the next 11 weeks has risen to 186 from 108 a month ago.

The table below coincides with the usual "forward look" of about 11 weeks for this article. Based on last year's announcements, I'm expecting the following companies to announce dividend increases between now and the anniversary of the Ex-Dividend Date of their previous increase:

Dividend Challengers (5-9 years):

Company

Ticker

No.

12/30/16

Div.

MR%

LY

Ann.

DGR

Name

Symbol

Yrs

Price

Yield

Inc.

Ex-Div

Div.

5-yr

Cardinal Financial Corp.

(NASDAQ:CFNL)

7

32.79

1.46

9.09

2/2/16

0.48

32.0

Northwest Bancshares, Inc.

(NASDAQ:NWBI)

7

18.03

3.33

7.14

2/2/16

0.60

6.9

Valero Energy Corp.

(NYSE:VLO)

6

68.32

3.51

20.00

2/5/16

2.40

54.3

Booz Allen Hamilton Holding

(NYSE:BAH)

5

36.07

1.66

15.38

2/8/16

0.60

n/a

Cortland Bancorp

(OTCQX:CLDB)

5

17.50

1.60

16.67

2/8/16

0.28

n/a

MarketAxess Holdings, Inc.

(NASDAQ:MKTX)

8

146.92

0.71

30.00

2/9/16

1.04

23.6

Territorial Bancorp

(NASDAQ:TBNK)

7

32.84

2.19

5.88

2/9/16

0.72

16.2

Allete, Inc.

(NYSE:ALE)

6

64.19

3.24

2.97

2/11/16

2.08

3.2

Standard Motor Products, Inc.

(NYSE:SMP)

7

53.22

1.28

13.33

2/11/16

0.68

19.4

Applied Industrial Tech.

(NYSE:AIT)

7

59.40

1.89

3.70

2/12/16

1.12

8.6

Harley-Davidson, Inc.

(NYSE:HOG)

6

58.34

2.40

12.90

2/12/16

1.40

24.1

Xylem, Inc.

(NYSE:XYL)

6

49.52

1.25

10.01

2/16/16

0.62

43.7

Apartment Invest. & Mgmt.

(NYSE:AIV)

6

45.45

2.90

10.00

2/17/16

1.32

22.4

First Defiance Financial Corp.

(NASDAQ:FDEF)

6

50.74

1.73

10.00

2/17/16

0.88

77.5

Flir Systems, Inc.

(NASDAQ:FLIR)

6

36.19

1.33

9.09

2/17/16

0.48

14.9

L Brands, Inc.

(NYSE:LB)

6

65.84

3.65

20.00

2/17/16

2.40

24.6

United Parcel Service, Inc.

(NYSE:UPS)

7

114.64

2.72

6.85

2/18/16

3.12

8.4

Corning, Inc.

(NYSE:GLW)

6

24.27

2.22

12.50

2/23/16

0.54

19.1

GATX Corp.

(NYSE:GATX)

6

61.58

2.60

5.26

2/24/16

1.60

6.6

GrandSouth Bancorp

(OTCQB:GRRB)

5

13.42

2.98

25.00

2/24/16

0.40

n/a

Allstate Corp.

(NYSE:ALL)

6

74.12

1.78

10.00

2/25/16

1.32

9.0

Brookfield Asset Management

(NYSE:BAM)

5

33.01

1.58

8.33

2/25/16

0.52

11.7

Emclaire Financial Corp.

(NASDAQ:EMCF)

6

29.00

3.59

8.33

2/25/16

1.04

10.2

Scripps Networks Interactive

(NYSE:SNI)

6

71.37

1.40

8.70

2/25/16

1.00

21.7

United Bancshares, Inc.

(NASDAQ:UBOH)

5

21.42

2.05

22.22

2/25/16

0.44

n/a

MidWest One Financial Group

(NASDAQ:MOFG)

6

37.60

1.70

6.67

2/26/16

0.64

23.8

Old National Bancorp

(NYSE:ONB)

5

18.15

2.87

8.33

2/26/16

0.52

13.2

Forrester Research, Inc.

(NASDAQ:FORR)

5

42.95

1.68

5.88

2/29/16

0.72

n/a

Lear Corp.

(NYSE:LEA)

6

132.37

0.91

20.00

2/29/16

1.20

19.1

Equifax, Inc.

(NYSE:EFX)

7

118.23

1.12

13.79

3/1/16

1.32

15.6

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.

(NYSE:AJG)

6

51.96

2.93

2.70

3/2/16

1.52

2.9

Dunkin' Brands Group, Inc.

(NASDAQ:DNKN)

5

52.44

2.29

13.21

3/3/16

1.20

n/a

Eaton Corp. plc

(NYSE:ETN)

7

67.09

3.40

3.64

3/3/16

2.28

10.9

GameStop Corp.

(NYSE:GME)

5

25.26

5.86

2.78

3/4/16

1.48

n/a

Weingarten Realty Investors

(NYSE:WRI)

6

35.79

4.08

5.80

3/4/16

1.46

5.8

Assured Guaranty Ltd.

(NYSE:AGO)

5

37.77

1.38

8.33

3/7/16

0.52

23.6

Cohen & Steers, Inc.

(NYSE:CNS)

7

33.60

3.10

4.00

3/7/16

1.04

11.6

Kohl's Corp.

(NYSE:KSS)

6

49.38

4.05

11.11

3/7/16

2.00

14.9

Anthem, Inc.

(NYSE:ANTM)

6

143.77

1.81

4.00

3/8/16

2.60

21.1

CME Group, Inc.

(NASDAQ:CME)

6

115.35

2.08

20.00

3/8/16

2.40

16.5

DDR Corp.

(NYSE:DDR)

6

15.27

4.98

10.14

3/8/16

0.76

35.9

Gildan Activewear, Inc.

(NYSE:GIL)

6

25.37

1.23

20.00

3/8/16

0.31

21.6

Home Depot, Inc.

(NYSE:HD)

7

134.08

2.06

16.95

3/8/16

2.76

21.6

Public Service Enterprise Gp

(NYSE:PEG)

5

43.88

3.74

5.13

3/8/16

1.64

3.7

GNC Holdings, Inc.

(NYSE:GNC)

5

11.04

7.25

11.11

3/9/16

0.80

n/a

Ingersoll-Rand plc

(NYSE:IR)

6

75.04

2.13

25.00

3/9/16

1.60

28.8

Magna International, Inc.

(NYSE:MGA)

6

43.40

2.30

13.64

3/9/16

1.00

14.9

QNB Corp.

(OTCPK:QNBC)

6

35.80

3.35

3.45

3/9/16

1.20

3.7

WesBanco, Inc.

(NASDAQ:WSBC)

6

43.06

2.23

4.35

3/9/16

0.96

9.6

Wyndham Worldwide Corp.

(NYSE:WYN)

7

76.37

2.62

19.05

3/9/16

2.00

27.2

Chico's FAS, Inc.

(NYSE:CHS)

7

14.39

2.22

3.23

3/10/16

0.32

9.9

Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc.

(NYSE:HRC)

6

56.14

1.21

6.25

3/10/16

0.68

9.1

CEB, Inc.

(NYSE:CEB)

6

60.60

2.72

10.00

3/11/16

1.65

22.4

Dr Pepper Snapple Group

(NYSE:DPS)

7

90.67

2.34

10.42

3/11/16

2.12

12.7

Evans Bancorp, Inc.

(NYSEMKT:EVBN)

5

31.55

2.41

5.56

3/11/16

0.76

13.7

FBL Financial Group, Inc.

(NYSE:FFG)

6

78.15

2.15

5.00

3/11/16

1.68

42.3

Simmons First National Corp.

(NASDAQ:SFNC)

5

62.15

1.54

4.35

3/11/16

0.96

4.0

Retail Opportunity Investments

(NASDAQ:ROIC)

7

21.13

3.41

5.88

3/14/16

0.72

13.0

Texas Roadhouse, Inc.

(NASDAQ:TXRH)

6

48.24

1.58

11.76

3/14/16

0.76

18.3

Endurance Specialty Holdings

(NYSE:ENH)

6

92.40

1.65

8.57

3/16/16

1.52

4.8

US Physical Therapy, Inc.

(NASDAQ:USPH)

6

70.20

0.97

13.33

3/16/16

0.68

15.6

Douglas Dynamics, Inc.

(NYSE:PLOW)

7

33.65

2.79

5.62

3/17/16

0.94

3.1

Federal Agricultural Mortgage

(NYSE:AGM)

5

57.27

1.82

62.50

3/17/16

1.04

39.1

Horace Mann Educators Corp.

(NYSE:HMN)

7

42.80

2.48

6.00

3/17/16

1.06

18.2

LeMaitre Vascular, Inc.

(NASDAQ:LMAT)

6

25.34

0.71

12.50

3/17/16

0.18

23.9

Miller Industries, Inc.

(NYSE:MLR)

7

26.45

2.57

6.25

3/17/16

0.68

7.2

Pioneer Bankshares, Inc.

(OTCPK:PNBI)

7

24.00

3.17

5.56

3/17/16

0.76

5.2

SpartanNash Company

(NASDAQ:SPTN)

6

39.54

1.52

11.11

3/17/16

0.60

19.6

Las Vegas Sands Corp.

(NYSE:LVS)

5

53.41

5.39

10.77

3/18/16

2.88

63.0

Dentsply Sirona, Inc.

(NASDAQ:XRAY)

5

57.73

0.54

6.90

3/22/16

0.31

8.8

Independent Bancorp MA

(NASDAQ:INDB)

6

70.45

1.65

11.54

3/24/16

1.16

8.5

Vail Resorts, Inc.

(NYSE:MTN)

6

161.31

2.01

30.12

3/25/16

3.24

59.0

Activision Blizzard, Inc.

(NASDAQ:ATVI)

7

36.11

0.72

13.04

3/28/16

0.26

9.5

Amdocs Limited

(NYSE:DOX)

5

58.25

1.34

14.71

3/29/16

0.78

n/a

AvalonBay Communities, Inc.

(NYSE:AVB)

5

177.15

3.05

8.00

3/29/16

5.40

8.2

Camden Property Trust

(NYSE:CPT)

6

84.07

3.57

7.14

3/29/16

3.00

9.0

Chatham Lodging Trust

(NYSE:CLDT)

7

20.55

6.42

10.00

3/29/16

1.32

13.0

Kennedy-Wilson Holdings

(NYSE:KW)

6

20.50

2.73

16.67

3/29/16

0.56

46.5

Steel Dynamics, Inc.

(NASDAQ:STLD)

6

35.58

1.57

1.82

3/29/16

0.56

8.3

Willis Towers Watson plc

(NASDAQ:WLTW)

5

122.28

1.57

54.84

3/29/16

1.92

11.0

Zimmer Biomet Holdings, Inc.

(NYSE:ZBH)

5

103.20

0.93

9.09

3/29/16

0.96

n/a

Monotype Imaging Holdings

(NASDAQ:TYPE)

5

19.85

2.22

10.00

3/30/16

0.44

n/a

Steelcase, Inc.

(NYSE:SCS)

6

17.90

2.68

6.67

3/31/16

0.48

16.5

MR=Most Recent; LY=Last Year; DGR=Dividend Growth Rate through 2015

In addition, there's a number of Near-Challengers that are on schedule to record their fifth year of increases during this period:

Company

Ticker

No.

LY

Name

Symbol

Yrs

Ex-Div

German American Bancorp

(NASDAQ:GABC)

4

1/27/16

Fidelity Southern Corp.

(NASDAQ:LION)

4

2/2/16

Chicopee Bancorp, Inc.

(NASDAQ:CBNK)

4

2/3/16

First Federal of Northern MI

(NASDAQ:FFNM)

4

2/3/16

Pinnacle Financial Partners

(NASDAQ:PNFP)

4

2/3/16

Heritage Commerce Corp.

(NASDAQ:HTBK)

4

2/8/16

Sound Financial Bancorp, Inc.

(NASDAQ:SFBC)

4

2/8/16

Graham Corp.

(NYSEMKT:GHM)

4

2/9/16

Botetourt Bankshares, Inc.

(OTCPK:BORT)

4

2/10/16

First Business Financial Svcs

(NASDAQ:FBIZ)

4

2/10/16

Guaranty Bancorp

(NASDAQ:GBNK)

4

2/10/16

Nexstar Broadcasting Group

(NASDAQ:NXST)

4

2/10/16

AGCO Corp.

(NYSE:AGCO)

4

2/11/16

Spectrum Brands Holdings

(NYSE:SPB)

4

2/11/16

Hanesbrands, Inc.

(NYSE:HBI)

4

2/12/16

Alaska Air Group, Inc.

(NYSE:ALK)

4

2/19/16

Ruth's Hospitality Group, Inc.

(NASDAQ:RUTH)

4

2/23/16

Old Point Financial Corp.

(NASDAQ:OPOF)

4

2/25/16

Power Integrations, Inc.

(NASDAQ:POWI)

4

2/25/16

Argo Group Int'l Holdings Ltd.

(NASDAQ:AGII)

4

2/26/16

Interpublic Group of Co's

(NYSE:IPG)

4

2/26/16

Exponent, Inc.

(NASDAQ:EXPO)

4

3/2/16

First Banc Trust Corp.

(OTCQX:FIRT)

4

3/3/16

W.T.B. Financial Corp.

(OTCPK:WTBFA)

4

3/3/16

Carter's, Inc.

(NYSE:CRI)

4

3/9/16

Citizens Community Bancorp

(NASDAQ:CZWI)

4

3/9/16

First Horizon National Corp.

(NYSE:FHN)

4

3/9/16

ITT Corp.

(NYSE:ITT)

4

3/9/16

American International Group

(NYSE:AIG)

4

3/10/16

Amerisafe, Inc.

(NASDAQ:AMSF)

4

3/10/16

Domino's Pizza, Inc.

(NYSE:DPZ)

4

3/11/16

CSG Systems International

(NASDAQ:CSGS)

4

3/14/16

Intercontinental Exchange, Inc.

(NYSE:ICE)

4

3/14/16

CyrusOne, Inc.

(NASDAQ:CONE)

4

3/22/16

Hurco Companies, Inc.

(NASDAQ:HURC)

4

3/23/16

Armada Hoffler Properties

(NYSE:AHH)

4

3/28/16

First Industrial Realty Trust

(NYSE:FR)

4

3/29/16

Pebblebrook Hotel Trust

(NYSE:PEB)

4

3/29/16

Ryman Hospitality Properties

(NYSE:RHP)

4

3/29/16

Xerox Corp.

(NYSE:XRX)

4

3/29/16

PH Glatfelter Co.

(NYSE:GLT)

4

3/30/16

Not all of the above companies will meet the strict standards of every investor, but some may be appropriate for portfolio diversification. Potential investors should do more research before committing funds.

Every Picture Tells a Story

As a bonus, I'm inserting one of Chuck Carnevale's F.A.S.T. Graphs below, highlighting one of the companies listed above. When the stock's price line has moved into the green area, it indicates that the stock is undervalued in relation to its earnings. I'm attaching the chart below.

Disclosure: I am/we are long GLW.

I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Editor's Note: This article covers one or more stocks trading at less than $1 per share and/or with less than a $100 million market cap. Please be aware of the risks associated with these stocks.

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