A slow week for dividend increases got a boost Wednesday from a big bellwether technology name, as Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO) surprised analysts by announcing a 75% dividend hike coming on the heels of a strong quarter.
Corporate dividend hikes are not expected to accelerate anytime soon, as the summer and Q2 2012 earnings seasons come to a close heading into the Labor Day weekend. Still, seven companies made it onto our Companies Increasing Dividends list this week:
New Albany, Ohio-based clothing retailer Abercrombie and Fitch (NYSE:ANF) raised its quarterly payout 3% to 17.5 cents per share, payable on Sept. 11 to shareholders of record at the close of business on Aug. 27, 2012. ANF has paid dividends since 2004. The new yield, based on the Aug. 14 closing price of $32.33 (the day the dividend was announced), is 2.16%.
Badger Meter (NYSE:BMI), a Milwaukee-based manufacturer of control technologies, raised its quarterly dividend by 6.25% to 17 cents per share, payable on Sept. 14 to stockholders of record as of Aug. 31. This hike marks the 20th straight year BMI has raised its dividend. Its new yield, based on the Aug. 15 closing price of $34.72, is 1.96%.
San Jose-based IP networking manufacturer Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO) gave a 75% jolt to its quarterly dividend to 14 cents per share, payable Oct. 24 to all shareholders of record as of the close of business on Oct. 4. Cisco’s new yield, based on Aug. 15’s closing price of $17.35, is 3.2%.
Clinton, Conn.-based Connecticut Water Service (NASDAQ:CTWS) juiced its quarterly dividend by 2.1% to 24.25 cents per share, payable on Sept. 13 to shareholders of record on Sept. 3. CTWS’ recent hike marks 43 consecutive years of increased dividend payments. The new yield, based on Aug. 13’s closing price of $31.50, is 3.05%.
Kingstone Companies (NASDAQ:KINS), a Hewlett, N.Y., property and casualty company, raised its quarterly dividend 33% to 4 cents per share, payable Sept. 18 to shareholders of record at the close of business on Aug. 31. The new yield, based on the Aug. 14 price of $5.78, is 2.77%.
Westlake, Ohio-based Nordson (NASDAQ:NDSN) — a manufacturer of equipment used for precision material dispensing, testing and inspection, surface preparation and curing — raised its quarterly dividend 20% to 15 cents per share, payable Sept. 11 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on Aug. 28, 2012. The increase represents Nordson’s 49th consecutive year of annual dividend increases. The new yield, as of the Aug. 14 closing price of $54.41, is 1.1%.
Questar Corporation (NYSE:STR), a Salt Lake City-based integrated natural gas holding company, raised its quarterly dividend by 5% to 17 cents per share, payable Sept. 10 to shareholders of record as of Aug. 17. Questar’s payout marks the 40th dividend increase in as many years, and the company has paid dividends for 271 straight quarters. STR’s yield, as of the Aug. 13 closing price of $20.15, is 3.37%.
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. For more payout winners, see previous weeks’ lists of Companies Increasing Dividends.