Daily Gains Letter

dividend payments

Three Ways to Have a Company Return Its Wealth to You

By for Daily Gains Letter | Apr 9, 2013


When it comes to the stock market, there are three ways a profitable, publicly traded company can reward its investors: 1) pay a dividend; 2) initiate a share buyback plan; or 3) invest it back into the company. All three of these are aimed at building shareholder wealth, though some are more popular than others.

1. Dividends

Investors looking for capital gains and an income stream in today’s economic climate can’t go wrong with fundamentally strong companies with a good history of paying out quarterly or monthly dividends.

In light of low interest rates, many dividend-yielding stocks outperform the historical avenues for investment income. Most banks begrudgingly doll out just 0.5% interest, while 30-year Treasuries come in near a mere three percent.

Investors hoping to maintain a comfortable retirement need to find better income streams—and for many, it’s in high-yield dividend stocks. Consumer goods company Altria Group Inc.’s (NYSE/MO) share price is up almost 200% since the beginning of 2009, and it currently provides an annual dividend of 5.1%. And business equipment provider Pitney Bowes Inc. (NYSE/PBI) provides an annual dividend of 10.1% and is up 35.5% since the beginning of 2013.

Getting quarterly checks from a company for simply being an investor is a great way to generate additional income. But are there any downsides? Cutting or eliminating a dividend can significantly impact a company’s share price. Paying out dividends decreases the amount of money a company has, meaning it may not be able to operate as efficiently if an unforeseen situation arises—like one did in 2008, when the markets crashed. Companies that didn’t have enough cash to operate … Read More

Avoid the Eurozone Mess: How to Profit Domestically

By for Daily Gains Letter | Mar 28, 2013

280313_DL_clarkMost investors will consider utility stocks in saving for retirement, or when looking for regular stock market income while in retirement. This is a group that has a better track record on the stock market than you might think. Old economy stocks can still generate solid investment returns, even if they are well-established utilities.

The Dow Jones Utility Average has a good long-term track record of wealth creation, but it has not been without volatility. Clearly this is a group that is less volatile than many other stock market sectors and these stocks experience waves of enthusiasm from institutional investors.

Utility stocks are not for everyone. A lot of investors feel that they would be better off in faster-growing, brand-name companies that have long-term track records of paying dividends. But in terms of dividend yield, utility stocks are definitely a group that is worth looking into.

One of the standout utility stocks is The Southern Company (NYSE/SO). The stock has been a powerhouse wealth creator, with much less volatility than the rest of the group. The company’s long-term stock chart is featured below:

dl_03282013_image001Stock chart courtesy of www.StockCharts.com

In my estimation, Southern is one of the few utility stocks that combine excellent dividend payments with solid potential for further capital gains on the stock market. Considering Southern today, you might say that it is fully priced with a current price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of approximately 17. But the dividend yield is 4.3%, which is very substantial in today’s environment. And you know that this business is still going to be there and that people are still going to be moving to … Read More