#1 – Xcel Energy
Xcel Energy Inc. (NYSE: XEL) is a utility stock, and like many companies in this sector, it has a solid dividend — a yield of about 4.3% at current valuations. But unlike some of its competitors, in the past 12 months Xcel has outperformed the broader market. Specifically, while S&P 500 is up around 9% this year, XEL stock is up almost 12%.
I have recommended Xcel consistently in 2010 because the power of its compounding interest should be a vital part of your portfolio. For this same reason, I think it’s a great buy for December.
The fact that it has paid dividends since 1910 also means that the plump payouts are here to stay — even if 2011 gets a bit rocky.