GuruFocus Premium Membership

Serving Intelligent Investors since 2004. Only 96 cents a day.

Free Trial

Free 7-day Trial
All Articles and Columns »

Dividend Investing in times of a Social Media Bubble

Last week, the icon of Social Media Facebook filed for its IPO. As a result, it was pretty hard to miss news articles proclaiming that it will have a $100 billion valuation. This is equivalent to 25 times revenues for 2011, and about 100 times earnings. In order to justify its valuation, the company needs to keep growing rapidly for the next few years.

Facebook might indeed deserve a big valuation if it manages to rapidly increase revenues. However, this looks like a highly speculative venture. As a dividend investor, I prefer the slow and steady approach for building wealth by investing in companies with proven business models and strong brands, which have a long history of delivering a product or service which consumers are in love with. The switching costs for consumers are typically very high for the products and services that most dividend champions offer. For example, if you care about your teeth, you would keep brushing them with Colgate (CL) toothpaste. This is what has allowed many dividend companies to enjoy steady increases in earnings, which have trickled down to result in years of dividend growth. The steady rise in earnings, coupled with the compounding effect of growing dividends create much better odds of building wealth than the heads I win tails I lose type mentality that investors in highly speculative Internet IPO’s seem to have.

Every week, I focus on consistent dividend paying companies, as identified by a record of at least five years of consecutive dividend increases. While not all might be good additions at the time of my weekly review, I end up uncovering hidden gems in the process and begin studying the story of companies. This enables me to be ready to pull the trigger whenever a certain stock that is overpriced today reaches my buy territory.

Bemis Company, Inc. (BMS) manufactures and sells flexible packaging products and pressure sensitive materials in the United States, Canada, Mexico, South America, Europe, and Australasia. The company operates in two segments, Flexible Packaging and Pressure Sensitive Materials. The company raised quarterly distributions by 4.20% to 25 cents/share. This marked the 29th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend aristocrat. Yield: 3.20% (analysis)

Pitney Bowes Inc. (PBI) provides mail processing equipment and integrated mail solutions worldwide. The company raised quarterly distributions by 1.40% to 37.50 cents/share. This marked the 30th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend aristocrat. Yield: 7.80%

Polaris Industries Inc. (PII) designs, engineers, and manufactures off-road vehicles. The company raised quarterly distributions by 64.40% to 37 cents/share. This marked the 17th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever. Yield: 2.30%

Sunoco Logistics Partners L.P. (SXL) engages in the transport, terminalling, and storage of refined products and crude oil, as well as the purchase and sale of crude oil in the United States. This master limited partnership raised quarterly distributions to 42 cents/unit. Sunoco Logistics Partners is a dividend achiever, which has raised distributions for 11 years in a row. Yield: 4.60%

Praxair, Inc. (PX) engages in the production, sale, and distribution of industrial gases primarily in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. The company raised quarterly distributions by 10% to 55 cents/share. This marked the 20th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever. Yield: 2.10%

Hasbro, Inc. (HAS) engages in the design, manufacture, and marketing of games and toys, and other entertainment offerings worldwide. The company raised quarterly distributions by 20% to 36 cents/share. This marked the 9th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend stock. Yield: 4.20%

J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc. (JBHT), together with its subsidiaries, operates as a surface transportation, delivery, and logistics company in North America. The company raised quarterly distributions by 7.70% to 14 cents/share. This marked the 9th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend stock. Yield: 1.10%

Microchip Technology Incorporated (MCHP) engages in the design, development, manufacture, and market of semiconductor products for embedded control applications. The company raised quarterly distributions to 34.90 cents/share. This marked the 10th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever. Yield: 3.80%

Nu Skin Enterprises, Inc. (NUS) develops and distributes anti-aging personal care products and nutritional supplements worldwide. The company raised quarterly distributions by 25% to 20 cents/share. This marked the 12th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever. Yield: 1.60%

TECO Energy, Inc. (TE), an electric and gas utility company, through its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, purchase, transmission, distribution, and sale of electric energy. The company raised quarterly distributions by 2.30% to 22 cents/share. This marked the 6th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend stock. Yield: 4.90%

National Instruments Corporation (NATI) manufactures and supplies measurement and automation products. The company raised quarterly distributions by 40% to 14 cents/share. This marked the 11th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever. Yield: 2.10%

Full Disclosure: Long CL

About the author:

Dividend Growth Investor
http://www.dividendgrowthinvestor.com

Rating: 4.3/5 (4 votes)

Comments

Please leave your comment:


Get WordPress Plugins for easy affiliate links on Stock Tickers and Guru Names | Earn affiliate commissions by embedding GuruFocus Charts
GuruFocus Affiliate Program: Earn up to $400 per referral. ( Learn More)
Free 7-day Trial
FEEDBACK