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10 Stocks Avoiding a March Freeze with Increased Dividends

Dividends4Life

Dividends4Life

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For a dividend investor, there is not much worse than a stock that cuts or eliminates its dividend. Suddenly, the reason you purchased the stock no longer exists. Many dividend investors, myself included, have a hard and fast rule to immediately sell any stock held as income investment if it cuts its dividend. However, when a company freezes its dividend at the current rate, the decision is not as clear-cut. At this point you must look at alternative investments, along with the company’s current yield and future outlook.

Here are a few select companies that have avoided a March freeze by increasing the cash dividends paid to their shareholders:

Hewlett-Packard Company (HPQ) provides products, technologies, software, solutions and services. March 20, the company increased its quarterly dividend 10.2% to $0.16 per share. The increase in the amount of the dividend will be effective when the HP board of directors declares HP's next dividend. The yield based on the new payout is 2.0%.

Air Products and Chemicals Inc. (APD) provides atmospheric gases, process and specialty gases, performance materials, equipment, and services worldwide. March 20, the company increased its quarterly dividend 8.5% to $0.77 per share. The dividend is payable May 12, 2014 to stockholders of record on April 1, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 2.5%.

W. P. Carey Inc. (WPC) is an independent equity real estate investment trust. March 20th the company increased its quarterly dividend 2.9% to $0.895 per share. The dividend is payable April 15, 2014 to stockholders of record on March 31, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 5.8%.

Independent Bank Corp. (INDB) operates as the bank holding company for Rockland Trust Company that provides banking products and services in Massachusetts. March 20, the company increased its quarterly dividend 9.1% to $0.24 per share. The dividend is payable April 11, 2014 to stockholders of record on March 31, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 2.4%.

Kite Realty Group Trust (KRG) is a publicly owned real estate investment trust. March 20, the company increased its quarterly dividend 8.3% to $0.065 per share. The dividend is payable April 14, 2014 to stockholders of record on April 7, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 4.3%.

Raytheon Company (RTN) develops integrated products, services, and solutions in the areas of sensing; effects; command, control, communications and intelligence; mission support; and cyber and information security worldwide. March 19, the company increased its quarterly dividend 10% to $0.605 per share. The dividend is payable May 1, 2014 to stockholders of record on April 2, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 2.4%.

UDR Inc. (UDR) is an independent real estate investment trust. The firm invests in the real estate markets of the U.S. March 19, the company increased its quarterly dividend 11.1% to $0.26 per share. The dividend is payable April 30, 2014 to stockholders of record on April 9, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 4.1%.

Great Southern Bancorp Inc. (GSBC) operates as a bank holding company for Great Southern Bank that offers various financial banking products and services. March 19, the company increased its quarterly dividend 11.1% to $0.20 per share. The dividend is payable April 10, 2014 to stockholders of record on March 31, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 2.7%.

RAIT Financial Trust (RAS) operates as a self-managed and self-advised real estate investment trust (REIT). March 19th the company increased its quarterly dividend 6.3% to $0.17 per share. The dividend is payable April 30, 2014 to stockholders of record on April 4, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 8.2%.

Cohen & Steers Inc. (CNS) operates as an investment manager in the U.S., Japan, and internationally. March 14, the company increased its quarterly dividend 10% to $0.22 per share. The dividend is payable April 11, 2014 to stockholders of record on March 28, 2014. The yield based on the new payout is 2.3%.

Selecting stocks with increasing dividends is critical for an income growth strategy. The above list contains stocks that recently raised their dividends; it is not a list of recommend buys. As always, due diligence should be performed before buying or selling any stock. For a list of stocks with a long string of consecutive cash dividend increases, see this list.

Full Disclosure: Long RTN in my Dividend Growth Portfolio. See a list of all my dividend growth holdings here.

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