OK, time to go out on a little limb here since I just wondered aloud about the Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) “WinTel” dynasty showing signs of age and maybe in a bit of competitive trouble. But since paying its first dividend in 2003, MSFT has increased it on a very consistent basis. Today it stands at a modest 80 cents per share annually, for a yield of 2.6%. Not bad for starters, and in fact rumor on the blogs and elsewhere is that another increase may be in the works for this week.
You see, here’s the kicker for MSFT dividend investors: $63 billion in cash, and around $7 billion in free cash flow. Wow, that’s a load of money that could carry MSFT — and investors looking for increased dividends — for a very long time. In fact, with Microsoft’s dividend payout at 38% investors should be asking for a major raise, just like in the case of XOM. So keep your fingers crossed.
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing he’s long MSFT, INTC, and XOM.