13 Companies Increasing Dividends

by Jim Woods | November 18, 2011 12:18 pm

13 Companies Increasing Dividends

IncreasingDividends 13 Companies Increasing Dividends[1]Things aren’t looking too good in Europe, and renewed fears over an imminent recession in the region weighed heavily on global equities this week. The euro zone debt-induced selling took domestic stock stocks down about 3% this week, as traders tried to reduce exposure to the riskiest assets affected by the region’s woes.

The gloomy skies over Europe might portend more pain for the region, but the euro zone’s looming problems didn’t stop the parade of companies spreading the wealth among shareholders. This week, we saw some very big names boosting payouts, including a home improvement giant, an athletic footwear icon and several industrial behemoths.

This week, these 13 companies made it onto our Companies Increasing Dividends[2] list:

Biologic and medical products maker Baxter International (NYSE:BAX[3]) gave shareholders a fresh dose of fiscal plasma, lifting its quarterly dividend to 33.5 cents per share from 31 cents. The new payout transfusion will be conducted Jan. 4 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 9. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 15 closing price (the day the dividend was announced) of $54.57, is 2.46%. Late last month, Baxter reported both better-than-expected revenue and earnings for the third quarter.

Brown-Forman (NYSE:BF.B[4]) is an alcoholic beverage company that makes iconic American brands such as Jack Daniel’s and Southern Comfort. This week, the company raised its shot glass to shareholders, drinking up a new dividend of 35 cents per share vs. the 32 cents paid last quarter. The new dividend is payable Dec. 27 to shareholders of record Dec. 6. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 17 closing price of $74.54, is 1.88%.

Diversified insurance giant Hanover Insurance Group (NYSE:THG[5]) moved to ensure investors of its fiscal health, raising its quarterly dividend to 30 cents per share from 27.5 cents. The increased payout will be delivered on Dec. 13 to shareholders of record as of Nov. 29. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 15 closing price of $37.11, is 3.23%. Earlier this month, the company posted a narrower-than-expected quarterly loss on increased policy sales.

Mega do-it-yourself home improvement retailer Home Depot (NYSE:HD[6]) supplied the fiscal materials to renovate shareholders’ portfolios, upping its quarterly payout by four cents to 29 cents per share. The refurbished dividend will be paid on Dec. 15 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 1. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 15 closing price of $38.07, is 3.05%. Along with the dividend boost, Home Depot said third-quarter net income rose 12% as consumers spent more on home-improvement projects and repairs in the wake of Hurricane Irene.

Automotive and building equipment maker Johnson Controls (NYSE:JCI[7]) turned up the meter on its quarterly dividend, boosting its payout to shareholders by 13% to 18 cents per share. The new dividend will be paid on Jan. 3 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 9. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 16 closing price of $31.10, is 2.32%. Last month, the company reported a 25% increase in fiscal Q4 profit to 75 cents per share; however, that number fell just shy of Wall Street expectations.

Diversified natural resource and energy company MDU Resources Group (NYSE:MDU[8]) raised its quarterly dividend to 16.75 cents per share from 16.25 cents. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 17 closing price of $20.56, is 3.26%. It was the 21st consecutive year that MDU Resources has increased its common stock dividend. The company has paid dividends for 74 consecutive years going back to 1937.

Oil and gas drilling equipment maker National-Oilwell Varco (NYSE:NOV[9]) pumped out a new quarterly dividend of 12 cents per share from 11 cents. The new payout will be made on Dec. 16 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 2. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 17 closing price of $67.87, is 0.71%. In October, the company reported outstanding Q3 earnings that jumped nearly 25% year-over-year on an increase in all of its oil service segments.

Footwear and sports apparel maker Nike Inc. (NYSE:NKE[10]) laced up a 16% boost in its quarterly dividend, upping its payout to 36 cents per share. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 17 closing price of $91.89, is 1.57%. The new dividend swoosh will arrive in investors’ accounts on Jan. 3 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 5. The increase marks the 10th straight year of dividend increases for the iconic athletic wear firm.

Regional natural gas and energy distributor New Jersey Resources (NYSE:NJR[11]), which operates in states from the Gulf Coast to New England, pumped up its quarterly payout by 5.6% to 38 cents per share. The new dividend will be paid on Jan. 3 to shareholders of record on Dec. 15. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 16 closing price of $47.17, is 3.22%.

Royal Gold Inc. (NASDAQ:RGLD[12]) is a company that owns interest in gold and precious metals mining companies. The company buffed out its quarterly payout to shareholders by increasing the shine on its dividend by 36%. The new dividend of 15 cents per share is payable Jan. 20 to shareholders of record as of Jan. 6. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 16 closing price of $79.61, is 0.75%. The company currently has investment and royalty interest in 37 active precious metals mines.

Sysco Corp (NYSE:SYY[13]) is a food distributor to restaurants and hotels, but this week it provided some fiscal nourishment to shareholders. The company increased the portion size on its quarterly payout, by a penny to 27 cents per share. The new dividend is payable on Jan. 27 to shareholders of record as of Jan. 6. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 16 closing price of $27.52, is 3.92%. Along with the dividend increase, Sysco said it will buy back up to 20 million of its common shares. The company said it launched the share repurchase program as part of an ongoing goal to keep the number of diluted shares outstanding relatively constant. The company has an estimated 586 million shares outstanding.

The dividend train keeps on rolling for Union Pacific (NYSE:UNP[14]) shareholders. This week, the company announced its second dividend increase this year, upping its quarterly payout by 26% to 60 cents per share. The new dividend is payable Jan. 2 to shareholders of record as of Nov. 30. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 17 closing price of $100.92, is 2.38%. Dividends per share in 2011 have increased a total of 58%. Union Pacific has an outstanding track record of 112 consecutive years of paying dividends.

Natural gas producer and transportation giant Williams Companies, Inc. (NYSE:WMB[15]) expanded its pipeline to shareholders, raising its quarterly dividend by 25% to 25 cents per share. The increased payout will be made on Dec. 27 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 9. The new dividend yield, based on the Nov. 17 closing price of $30.29, is 3.3%. The new dividend is double the amount paid in December 2010. The company has paid a common stock dividend every quarter since 1974.

As of this writing, Jim Woods did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned stocks. For more payout winners, see previous weeks’ lists of Companies Increasing Dividends[2].

Endnotes:
  1. [Image]: http://investorplace.com/hot-topics/companies-increasing-dividends/
  2. Companies Increasing Dividends: http://investorplace.com/hot-topics/companies-increasing-dividends/%20
  3. BAX: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=BAX
  4. BF.B: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=BF.B
  5. THG: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=THG
  6. HD: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=HD
  7. JCI: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=JCI
  8. MDU: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=MDU
  9. NOV: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=NOV
  10. NKE: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=NKE
  11. NJR: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=NJR
  12. RGLD: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=RGLD
  13. SYY: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=SYY
  14. UNP: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=UNP
  15. WMB: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=WMB

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