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25 Companies raising distribution in 2012’s busiest week for dividend increases

The past week was the busiest week for dividends increases that I have noticed in my four and a half years as a dividend blogger. There were 66 companies which raised distributions. Apparently, no one bothered to inform these Board of Directors committees about the potential for steep increases in taxes on dividend income. I chose to highlight 25 of these companies that have been able to successfully raise dividends for over 5 years in a row. Corporations’ dividend policies are typically forward looking. Companies that announce dividend increases do so, only after a careful consideration of future economic and business factors, in order to make certain that it will be able to afford the increased payout. This vote of confidence shows that few corporate boardrooms consider the risk of increases in tax rates to be a big issue. This is also a vote of confidence in the business prospects for the next few years.

The companies which announced dividend increases over the past week included:

Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) engages in the research, development, manufacture, and sale of various products in the health care field worldwide. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 7% to 61 cents/share. This confirmed my prediction from early January, that the company will boost distributions to 61 cents/share. This marked the 50th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend king. Yield: 3.80% (analysis)

Chevron Corporation (CVX), through its subsidiaries, engages in petroleum, chemicals, mining, power generation, and energy operations worldwide. It operates in two segments, Upstream and Downstream. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 11.10% to 90 cents/share. This marked the 25th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend champion. Yield: 3.40% (analysis)

Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM) engages in the exploration and production of crude oil and natural gas, and manufacture of petroleum products, as well as transportation and sale of crude oil, natural gas, and petroleum products. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 21.30% to 57 cents/share. This marked the 30th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend aristocrat. Yield: 2.65% (analysis)

International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) provides information technology (IT) products and services worldwide. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 13.30% to 85 cents/share. This marked the 17th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever Yield: 1.70% (analysis)

W.W. Grainger, Inc. (GWW) engages in the distribution of maintenance, repair, and operating supplies, as well as other related products and services for businesses and institutions primarily in the United States and Canada. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 21.20% to 80 cents/share. This marked the 41 consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend aristocrat. Yield: 1.50% (analysis)

Parker Hannifin Corporation (PH) manufactures fluid power systems, electromechanical controls, and related components worldwide. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 5.10% to 41 cents/share. This was the second dividend increase in a year. This dividend king has raised dividends for 55 years in a row. Yield: 1.90%

Sunoco Logistics Partners L.P. (SXL) engages in the transport, terminalling, and storage of crude oil and refined products in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 42.75 cents/unit. This dividend achiever has raised distributions for 10 years in a row. Yield: 4.40%

AmeriGas Partners, L.P.(APU), through its subsidiary, AmeriGas Propane, L.P., operates as a retail and wholesale distributor of propane gas in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 80 cents/unit. This dividend achiever has raised distributions for 8 years in a row. Yield: 8.10%

Williams Partners L.P. (WPZ) focuses on natural gas transportation, gathering, treating and processing, storage, natural gas liquid fractionation, and oil transportation activities in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 77.75 cents/unit. Williams Partners has raised distributions for 8 years in a row. Yield: 5.50%

El Paso Pipeline Partners, L.P. (EPB) engages in the interstate storage and transportation of natural gas in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 89.50 cents/unit. El Paso Pipeline Partners has raised distributions for 5 years in a row. Yield: 5.90%

Magellan Midstream Partners, L.P. (MMP) engages in the transportation, storage, and distribution of petroleum products in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 84 cents/unit. This dividend achiever has raised distributions for 12 years in a row. Yield: 4.75%

Holly Energy Partners, L.P. (HEP) operates a system of petroleum product and crude pipelines, storage tanks, distribution terminals, and loading rack facilities. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 89.50 cents/unit. Holly Energy Partners has raised distributions for 8 years in a row. Yield: 5.90%

Vanguard Natural Resources, LLC (VNR), through its subsidiaries, engages in the acquisition and development of oil and natural gas properties in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 59.25 cents/unit. Vanguard Natural Resources has raised distributions for 8 years in a row. Yield: 8.30%

EV Energy Partners, L.P. (EVEP) engages in the acquisition, development, and production of oil and natural gas properties in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to76.40 cents/unit. EV Energy Partners has raised distributions for 6 years in a row. Yield: 4.80%

Exterran Partners, L.P. (EXLP) provides natural gas contract operations services to customers in the United States. The partnership raised its quarterly distributions to 49.75 cents/unit. Exterran Partners has raised distributions for 6 years in a row. Yield: 9.10%

Artesian Resources Corporation (ARTNA), through its subsidiaries, provides water, wastewater, and engineering services on the Delmarva Peninsula. The company raised its quarterly dividend to 19.78 cents/share. This dividend achiever has raised distributions for 14 years in a row. Yield: 4.10%

Cullen/Frost Bankers, Inc. (CFR) operates as the holding company for The Frost National Bank that offers commercial and consumer banking, and other financial products and services primarily in Texas. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 4.30% to 48 cents/share. This marked the 19th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever. Yield: 3.25%

UGI Corporation (UGI), through its subsidiaries, distributes and markets energy products and related services in the United States and internationally. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 3.80% to 27 cents/share. This marked the 25th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend champion. Yield: 4%

Bar Harbor Bankshares (BHB) operates as the holding company for Bar Harbor Bank & Trust that provides various banking products and services to individuals, businesses, not-for-profit organizations, and municipalities primarily in Hancock, Washington, and Knox counties. The company raised its quarterly dividend to 29 cents/share. Bar Harbor Bankshares has boosted distributions for 9 consecutive years. Yield: 3.10%

Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (CBRL), through its subsidiaries, engages in the development and operation of the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store restaurant and retail concept in the United States. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 60% to 40 cents/share. This marked the tenth consecutive annual dividend increase for Cracker Barrel. Yield: 2.80%

BOK Financial Corporation (BOKF), a financial holding company, offers a range of financial products and services to commercial and industrial customers, and other financial institutions and consumers. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 15.20% to 38 cents/share. This was the second dividend increase in a year. BOK Financial Corporation has raised dividends for 7 years in a row. Yield: 2.80%

Ameriprise Financial Inc. (AMP), through its subsidiaries, provides a range of financial products and services in the United States and internationally. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 25% to 35 cents/share. This marked the ninth consecutive annual dividend increase for Ameriprise Financial. Yield: 2.70%

Sensient Technologies Corporation (SXT) and its subsidiaries engage in the manufacture and sale of colors, flavors, and fragrances worldwide. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 4.80% to 22 cents/share. This marked the seventh consecutive annual dividend increase for Sensient Technologies. Yield: 2.30%

The Gorman-Rupp Company (GRC) designs, manufactures, and sells pumps and related fluid control equipment and systems worldwide. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 11.10% to 10 cents/share. This marked the 40th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend champion. Yield: 1.35%

Valmont Industries, Inc. (VMI) produces and sells fabricated metal products, pole and tower structures, and mechanized irrigation systems in the United States and internationally. The company raised its quarterly dividend by 25% to 22.50 cents/share. This marked the 12th consecutive annual dividend increase for this dividend achiever. Yield: 0.70%

Full Disclosure: Long JNJ,CVX, XOM, GWW

About the author:

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

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