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Low Beta Dividend Stocks for an Uncertain Market

As the markets continue to show uncertainty and a lack of capitulation, investors are looking for a place to hunker down.  The best place at this time is in low beta stocks with dividend yields (defensive stocks) to support the share price.  I had identified 5 stocks that are up in price the last 4 weeks and have a bullish outlook for when the market rallies.  Here are 5 stocks to consider:

Tobacco operator Altria Group (MO) seems to do well in these types of markets.  It is up 4.9% over the last 4 weeks.  It has a low beta of 0.25 with a dividend yield of 4.91%.  MO has an equity summary score of 7.4 out of 10 for a Bullish outlook.

Low cost retailer Wal-Mart (WMT) shines when there is a slow economy.  WMT is up 14% in the last 4 weeks.  It has a beta of 0.33 and a dividend yield of 2.35%.  WMT has an equity summary score of 8.4 out of 10 for a Bullish outlook.

Telecom giant AT&T (T) is a steady as they go in this type of market.  AT&T is up 5.4% in the last 4 weeks.  It has a beta of 0.57 and a dividend yield of 5.03%.  AT&T has an equity summary score of 9.8 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Retailer Target Corp (TGT) has been performing great this year.  TGT is up 5.13% in the last 4 weeks.  It has a beta of 0.58 with a dividend yield of 2.06%. TGT just announced a 20% increase in its dividend.  TGT has an equity summary score of 9.2 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Pharmaceutical giant Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) is a solid dividend stock.  BMY is up 3.73% in the past month.  It has a beta of 0.41 with a dividend yield of 3.97%.  BMY has an equity summary score of 9.1 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Stocks Growing Dividends with High Equity Summary Scores

As the earnings season continues, many companies are increasing their dividends. While the dividend increase is positive for stocks, it doesn’t indicate that the stock outlook is bullish. For income investors seeking to implement new dividend positions, they should consider if the outlook for the stock is positive so they don’t fall into a bear trap. The equity summary score is a consensus ranking among all analyst ratings of the stock.  A bullish outlook from the equity summary score is 7.0 or better on a 10 point system. The following list provides stocks that have increased their dividends recently and have a bullish outlook etermined by their equity summary score.

Semiconductor-manufacturing giant Applied Materials (AMAT) processed a 13% jump in its quarterly payout, raising its dividend to 9 cents per share. The new dividend is payable June 14 to shareholders of record as of May 24. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $12.56, is 2.88%. AMAT has a payout ratio of 26%.  It has a five-year annual dividend increase of 12.5%. AMAT has an equity summary score of 9.9 out of 10 for a very bullish outlook.

Iconic American agricultural-equipment maker Deere & Co. (DE) plowed through its balance sheet and dug up a 12% dividend increase, to 46 cents per share. The new dividend is payable May 1 to shareholders of record as of March 30. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $81.46, is 2.25%. DE has a payout ratio of 23%. It has a five-year annual dividend increase of 15.9%. DE has an equity summary score of 9.7 out of 10 for a very bullish outlook.

Communication-equipment maker Harris Corp. (HRS) supplies tactical radios to the military. The company listened to its balance sheet and moved its quarterly payout up 18%, to 33 cents per share. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $43.71, is 3.01%. HRS has a payout ratio of 24%. It has a five-year annual dividend increase of 24.5%. HRS has an equity summary score of 9.6 out of 10 for a very bullish outlook.

Electrical-components maker Hubbell Incorporated (HUB-B) sparked an 8% increase in its quarterly payout, to 41 cents per share. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $78.50, is 2.07%. HUB-B has a payout ratio of 34%. It has a five-year annual dividend increase of 4.4%. HUB-B has an equity summary score of 9.3 out of 10 for a very bullish outlook.

Chipmaker Cypress Semiconductor (CY) processed a 22% jump in its quarterly payout, to 11 cents per share. The new dividend is payable April 19 to
shareholders at the close of business on March 29. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $15.84, is 2.76%. CY has a payout ratio of 18%. CY has
an equity summary score of 8.9 out of 10 for a bullish outlook.

Medical-devices maker St. Jude Medical (STJ) put in a stent to boost the flow of its dividend, raising its payout 10%, to 23 cents per share. The new dividend is payable April 30 to shareholders of record as of March 30. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $42.09, is 2.15%. STJ has a payout
ratio of 33%. It has a five-year annual dividend increase of 83.3%. STJ has an equity summary score of 8.9 out of 10 for a bullish outlook.

Athletic footwear retailer Foot Locker (FL) gave shareholders a March Madness win in the form of a 9% jump in its quarterly payout. The new dividend is payable on Apr. 27 to shareholders of record as of Apr. 13. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $30.18, is 2.38%. FL has a payout ratio of 37%. It has a five-year annual dividend increase of 7.6%. FL has an equity summary score of 8.6 out of 10 for a bullish outlook.

Energy and utility holding company PPL Corporation (PPL) sent a new dividend to shareholders that is approximately 2.86% higher. The new dividend yield, based on the closing price of $28.05, is 5.07%. PPL has a payout ratio of 52%. It has a five-year annual dividend increase of 3.4%. PPL has an equity summary score of 8.4 out of 10 for a bullish outlook.

 

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