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Stocks with 30% Dividend Increases in Last Quarter

As the market uncertainty continues throughout 2012, investors are still seeking safety from income investments.  While a significant amount of money has moved into bonds, dividend stocks are still a great place to find income streams.  The boards of many companies are realizing this and responding by increasing their dividends.  You have many dividend growth companies that continue to increase their dividends at a high pace each year.  The following list includes companies that increased their dividend payments by 30% in the previous quarter.

Southwest Airlines (LUV) engages in the operation of a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation in the United States.  LUV increased its dividend from $0.045 to $0.10 for an increase of 122%.  LUV has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 17.32%.  LUV has a dividend yield of 0.43% with a 5% payout ratio.  LUV is trading at $9.18 with a market cap of $7.12 billion.  LUV has an equity summary score of 7.1 out of 10 for a Bullish outlook.

KeyCorp (KEY) operates as a holding company for KeyBank National Association that provides various banking services in the United States.  KEY increased its dividend from $0.03 to $0.05 for an increase of 66%.  KEY is rebuilding its dividend since being cut in the financial crisis of 2008.  KEY has a dividend yield of 2.60% with a 13% payout ratio.  KEY is trading at $7.66 with a market cap of $7.34 billion.  KEY has an equity summary score of 4.4 out of 10 for a Neutral outlook.

Coach, Inc. (COH) designs and markets accessories and gifts for women and men in the United States and internationally.  It primarily offers handbags, women’s and men’s bag, accessories, business cases, footwear, wearables, jewelry, sunwear, travel bags, watches, and fragrance products.  COH increased its dividend from $0.225 to $0.30 for an increase of 33%.  COH has increased its dividend each year since initiating in 2009 for a total increase of 329%.  COH has a dividend yield of 2.08% with a 26% payout ratio.  COH is trading at $57.49 with a market cap of $16.5 billion.  COH has an equity summary score of 8.7 out of 10 for a Bullish outlook.

Barrick Gold Corporation (ABX) engages in the production and sale of gold and copper. The company has a portfolio of 26 operating mines, and exploration and development projects located in North America, South America, the Australia Pacific region, and Africa.  ABX is down 20% in the past year as the price of gold has declined.  ABX increased its dividend from $0.15 to $0.20 for an increase of 33%.  ABX has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 21.7%.  ABX has a dividend yield of 2.17% with a 12% payout ratio.  ABX is trading at $36.36 with a market cap of $36.8 billion.  ABX has an equity summary score of 4.4 out of 10 for a Neutral outlook.

The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS) provides investment banking, securities, and investment management services, as well as a range of financial services to corporations, financial institutions, governments and high-net-worth individuals worldwide.  GS increased its dividend from $0.35 to $0.46 for an increase of 31.4%.  GS has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 5.6%.  GS has a dividend yield of 1.93% with a 20% payout ratio.  GS is trading at $94.05 with a market cap of $46.96 billion.  GS has an equity summary score of 0.9 out of 10 for a VERY Bearish outlook.

Marriott International, Inc. (MAR) operates, franchises, and licenses hotels and corporate housing properties worldwide.  MAR increased its dividend from $0.10 to $0.13 for an increase of 30%.  MAR has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 12%.  MAR has a dividend yield of 1.32% with a 68% payout ratio.  MAR is trading at $39.12 with a market cap of $13.0 billion.  MAR has an equity summary score of 8.5 out of 10 for a Bullish outlook.

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (UNH) operates as a diversified health and well-being company in the United States.  UNH increased its dividend from $0.1625 to $0.2125 for an increase of 30.8%.  UNH has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 95%.  UNH has a dividend yield of 1.52% with a 13% payout ratio.  UNH is trading at $55.70 with a market cap of $57.9 billion.  UNH has an equity summary score of 9.5 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Fastest Dividend Growers with a Bullish Outlook

Buying stocks that increase dividends allows you to take advantage of one of the most powerful tools in the investors’ arsenal — the wealth-building effect of compounding.  And consistent dividend growth is like jet fuel for the compounding engine.   But there are more advantages to companies able to consistently grow dividend payments.  One often overlooked “plus” is that they tend to be safer investments.  Dividends are a litmus test of a company’s true financial strength.  Only companies able to grow earnings through good times and bad will commit to consistently raising dividends.  And these are the types of business that tend to see more stability in their shares.

It’s even better when you have companies that are increasing their dividends at high rates over a five year or longer period.  My search for 5-year dividend growth rates creates a list of potential fast dividend growers.  But to make the list more appealing, I also require an equity summary score that indicates the consensus among analysts is Bullish or Very Bullish.  Investors should keep in mind that dividend growers may not have a high yield today but will grow your yield on cost for years to come.  This is a list of the best stocks with highest dividend growth rates:

UnitedHealth Group (UNH) is a diversified health and well-being company dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and making health care work better.  While the clouds overhead are the ruling on Obama’s Health care law, UNH has not missed a beat with its dividend growth.  UNH has a dividend yield of 1.18% on a 13% payout ratio.  More impressively, UNH has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 85%.  UNH increased its dividend 30% in the past year. UNH has an equity summary rating of 9.4 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Fertilizer producer CF Industries Holdings Inc’s (CF) quarterly profit easily beat Wall Street’s expectations due to strong demand for nitrogen during the North American spring planting season as reported on May 5 2012.  Long term, we believe tight global grain stocks will sustain high farm profits, plantings and fertilizer demand.  CF has a dividend yield of 0.99% on a 5% payout ratio.  CF has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 82%.  UNH increased its dividend 300% in the past year.  CF has an equity summary rating of 9.3 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Herbalife Ltd. (HLF) is a global nutrition company that sells weight-management, nutrition, and personal care products intended to support a healthy lifestyle.  HLF sank to a 52-week low as David Einhorn of Greenlight Capital asked a few questions on the company’s earnings call but had no position in Greenlight’s recent portfolio update.  HLF has a dividend yield of 2.72% on a 25% payout ratio.  HLF has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 64%.  HLF increased its dividend 50% in the past year.  HLF has an equity summary rating of 9.7 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Access National Corporation (ANCX)) is the parent company of Access National Bank, an independent bank serving the business community of the DC Metropolitan area.  ANCX reported first quarter net income of $3.4 million, a 50.3% increase over the $2.3 millionrecorded in the first quarter of 2011.  This represents the company’s 47th consecutive quarterly profit over its 12 year history.  ANCX has a dividend yield of 2.02% on a 13% payout ratio.  ANCX has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 43%.  ANCX increased its dividend 100% in the past year.  ANCX has an equity summary rating of 9.9 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Harman International Industries Inc.’s (HAR), the maker of high-end stereo, audio and recording equipment and digital products, has notched top-line growth recently by aggressively expanding into emerging markets and from the benefits of an overall recovery in consumer and automotive spending.  Harman is gaining audio market share in the luxury auto market and has inked deals inChina and India.  HAR has a dividend yield of 0.89% on a 6% payout ratio.  HAR has a 5-year average dividend growth rate of 43%.  HAR increased its dividend 200% in the past year.  HAR has an equity summary rating of 8.5 out of 10 for a Bullish outlook.

UNH Dividend Yield Chart

UNH Dividend Yield data by YCharts

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