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Daily Dividend Roundup: ROK, DAKT, ELRC, JOYG, HT

June 02, 2011 | About:
The following dividend-related developments were featured on The Dynamic Dividend today:

Rockwell Automation Pushes Yield Over 2%

Rockwell Automation Inc. (ROK) declared a quarterly dividend of $0.425 per share after today’s closing bell, pushing its payout higher by 21.4%. This is the second consecutive year the industrial automation company has given its shareholders a raise of more than 20%.

Rockwell raised its payout by 20.7% last June, ending a drought of 16 consecutive quarters without a dividend hike. Since the big spin-off of Rockwell Collins (COL) in 2001, Rockwell Automation has given its shareholders four raises and boosted its payout by a total of 158%.

Shares of Rockwell ended Thursday’s session trading at $83.05, where they now feature a 2.05% dividend yield.

Daktronics Boosts Dividend by 10%

Daktronics Inc. (DAKT), which reported impressive fourth quarter results yesterday, declared an annual dividend of $0.11 per share after today’s closing bell. The new rate is a 10% improvement over the $0.10 paid last year by the video display company.

Daktronics initiated its annual dividend in 2005 and has raised its payout each subsequent year, improving its rate by a total of 120% in the process. This is the largest raise the company has given to its shareholders since 2008.

Shares of Daktronics popped to $11.74 (+2.71%) during extended trading, where they now feature a 0.94% dividend yield.

Daktronics Gives Shareholders a 33% Raise

Electro Rent Corporation (ELRC) declared a quarterly dividend of $0.20 per share after today’s closing bell, a one-third improvement over the $0.15 paid each of the previous 13 quarters by the company.

Shares of Daktronics closed Thursday’s session trading at $14.62, where they now feature a 5.47% dividend yield.

This is the second time Electro Rent, which rents, sells, and leases electronic test equipment, has given its shareholders a raise. The company initiated a quarterly dividend of $0.10 per share in 2007 and increased it by 50% to $0.15 per share the following year.

Joy Global: Rising Profits, Guidance, Shares ... and Dividend?

Joy Global Inc. (JOYG) reported second quarter results that beat Wall Street’s expectations this morning. The mining equipment giant also raised its full-year guidance, sending shares higher in pre-market trading.

The company posted earnings of $1.52 per share on $1.07 billion in revenue, easily topping the consensus estimates for both profit ($1.35 per share) and sales ($1.03 billion). Net income rose 34% year over year, while revenue grew 19%.

For the full year, the company now expects to earn $5.30 to $5.60 per share, up from its prior guidance range ($5.10 to $5.40 per share) and mostly ahead of the average analyst estimate of $5.41 per share. Joy also raised its revenue forecast from a range of $4.0-4.2 billion to a range of $4.1-$4.3 billion, which is also mostly above of the current consensus view ($4.17 billion).

Shares of Joy Global popped to $89.12 (+3.56%) in pre-market trading, where they feature a 0.79% dividend yield.

Joy Global initiated its quarterly payout in 2003, and managed to improve its dividend total each of the next six years, raising its rate by nearly 700% over that short period. But the company has held its payout flat for three years now, something that I see changing in a big way very soon — possibly by the end of 2011.

Assuming it can hit the midpoint of the aforementioned earnings guidance, the company is currently on pace to return just 12.8% of its profit to shareholders. That’s much lower than the 19% payout ratio Joy carried during its early dividend boom years (2004-2008). A return to its historic payout ratio would require a near-50% dividend hike, which sounds extreme for a company that hasn’t raised its payout since the summer of 2008, but it’s actually far from unprecedented: Joy has raised its payout by exactly 50% on four separate occasions during its short dividend-paying era.

The mining equipment giant has already declared its June dividend, leaving its rate unchanged for the 12th consecutive quarter. Joy’s next dividend declaration traditionally comes in mid-August. It’s one to watch for.

Hersha’s First Step Toward Dividend Recovery

Hersha Hospitality Trust (HT) declared a quarterly dividend of $0.06 per share this morning, pushing its payout higher by 20%. This is the first time the real estate investment trust has given its shareholders a raise since slashing its payout by 72% two years ago.

Shares of Hersha closed Tuesday’s session trading at $6.02, where they now feature a 3.99% dividend yield.

Hersha had maintained a quarterly dividend of $0.18 per share for more than a decade before the hotel-focused REIT cut its payout down to $0.05 per share in 2009.

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Dynamic Dividend
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