WGL Holdings (WGL)
The first of the secret dividend stocks is WGL Holdings (WGL), a rather unique stock in that it’s a diversified energy play. The company is split into four segments, of which two are regulated natural gas utilities, representing about 82% of the company’s total assets. The utility portions sell and deliver natural gas to some two million customers in the Washington D.C. and Virginia areas.
The company then does something rather clever. Another segment of its business involves retail energy marketing, which means it competes with regulated utilities and other third party marketers to sell and deliver natural gas and electricity in Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania and DC.
The part I like the most is that WGL sells energy credits and carbon offsets to retail customers. The company makes good money on these elements, selling to customers who just like to feel good about how they are “helping the environment”. WGL has a long history as an energy company and has paid a dividend for 37 years. It currently pays 4.3% annually.