Current Dividend Yield: 3.3%
Performance So Far in 2012: +2%
Worried about expensive gasoline? Don’t be. Crude oil has rolled back slightly from its 2012 high of around $111 a barrel to down below $90 again as of this writing. Oil is challenging lows not seen since October of last year and right on par with crude oil prices at the end of 2010.
So it’s no surprise that amid weaker prices and pretty flat demand, Chevron (NYSE:CVX) has lagged a bit on the share-price side — up just 1% to the Dow’s 5%. Last quarter, oil stock earnings showed that refining continues to be a bit of a drag in the short term for Chevron and other oil majors — and we can expect similar results when Chevron earnings come out July 27 with other oil majors.
But on the income side, Chevron has strength that is difficult to overlook. The company has paid dividends since 1912. It has increased its payouts twice in the past year — from 72 cents quarterly in March 2011 to 78 cents in June 2011, then up again to 81 cents as of December 2011.
And while crude oil prices have rolled back, let’s not pretend we’re going to get back to $50 per barrel anytime soon, with geopolitical unrest in the Middle East and hungry emerging markets like China and Brazil increasing energy demand at an impressive clip despite relative “slowdowns” there. If you’re a dividend investor looking for a low-risk stock with a reliable revenue stream that ensures juicy payouts, Chevron certainly is worth looking into.