Notable Dividend Hikes: RBCAA, TWGP, NHC, PL, MCGC
Republic Bancorp, Inc. (RBCAA).Protective Gives Shareholders a 14% RaiseProtective Life Corp. (PL) declared a quarterly dividend of $0.16 per share today, representing a 14% improvement over the $0.14 paid each of the previous four quarters by the insurance company. This is the second time Protective has raised its dividend since a big 49% cut in 2008. Shares of PL are currently trading at $25.11, where they now feature a 2.55% dividend yield.
Protective had strung together decades of consistent dividend growth before slashing its payout from a peak of $0.235 per share all the way down to $0.12 per share at the end of 2008. The company has now recovered about 35% of its big cut.
MCG Capital Reports Solid Q1, Pushes Yield Over 10%MCG Capital Corporation (MCGC) declared a quarterly dividend of $0.17 per share within today’s first quarter earnings release, pushing its payout higher by 13%. This marks the fourth consecutive quarter the business development company has increased its dividend, which still sits well below its peak level. As for its first quarter results, the company reported distributable net operating income (DNOI) of $0.18 per share on $24.3 million in revenue, edging the consensus estimates for both DNOI ($0.17 per share) and revenue ($22.6 million). The company’s net asset value fell from $7.54 to $7.23 per share during the quarter.
Shares of MCGC are currently trading at $6.30 (+0.32%), where they now feature a 10.79% dividend yield.
MCG suspended its dividend in 2008 before finally bringing it back last May. Though the company has raised its quarterly payout by a total of 55% since the reinstatement, it still sits well below the pre-cut high of $0.44 per share.
Tower Beats Q1 Estimates, Ups Dividend Another 50%Tower Group, Inc. (TWGP) reported adjusted first quarter earnings of $0.49 per share after today’s closing bell, beating the average analyst estimate of $0.46 per share. The insurance holding company also guided above the consensus full-year earnings view, and gave shareholders another huge raise. Tower said it expects to earn $2.70 to $2.90 per share in 2011. While this is a reiteration of the guidance given two months ago, the average analyst estimate currently forecasts a profit of just $2.68 per share.
The company declared a quarterly dividend of $0.1875 per share within the release, which is a 50% improvement over the $0.125 it paid each of the previous three quarters. Tower has now given its shareholders four big dividend hikes since 2007, pushing its payout higher by 650% over that short period.
Shares of TWGP closed at $22.30 today, or less than 8x the midpoint of their own 2011 earnings guidance. At that level, the stock now features a 3.36% dividend yield.
Tower Group has been a mainstay near the top of the Dividend Stock Value Rankings ever since it debuted at #2 in December. The company closed out 2010 ranked #2 on my list of The 100 Best Values Among Dividend-Paying Stocks, but shares have really struggled over the last few months. They closed today’s session down 13% for the year.
National HealthCare Raises Dividend by 7%National HealthCare Corporation (NHC) declared a quarterly dividend of $0.30 per share today, which represents a 7.1% improvement over the $0.28 paid each of the previous four quarters by the operator of long-term health care centers. After a six year hiatus, National HealthCare reinstated its quarterly dividend in 2004. The company has raised its payout every year since, boosting it by a total of 140% over the last seven years.
Shares of NHC now feature a 2.62% dividend yield at today’s closing price of $45.8
Republic Bancorp Boosts Dividend for 11th Straight YearRepublic Bancorp, Inc. (RBCAA) declared a quarterly dividend of $0.154 per share today, a 7.7% improvement over the $0.143 paid each of the previous four quarters by the bank holding company. This marks the 11th consecutive year Republic has given its shareholders a raise. Shares of RBCAA now feature a 3.05% dividend yield at today’s $20.18 closing price.
Republic has increased its annual dividend total every year since it began returning cash to shareholders in 1998, pushing its payout higher by 568% in the process.