Stocks that make up a list known as The Dividend Aristocrats have been profiled in quite a few articles on Seeking Alpha lately. These are companies that, first, need to be members of the S&P 500 Index and secondly, they need to have increased dividends for at least 25 years in a row. Now, while there are stocks that have accomplished this milestone of increasing dividends 25 years in a row, if they are not part of the S&P 500, they are not included in The Dividend Aristocrats.

For those who choose not to purchase individual stocks, there is an ETF that you might want to take a look at. It is called ProShares S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrats (NYSEARCA:NOBL). While the ETF was started on 10/9/2013 and does not have a long history, the actual Dividend Aristocrats have been in existence since 1989. Now, that list of stocks that qualify as Dividend Aristocrats has changed over the years. Companies have been added to the list and companies have been deleted.

Source: Seeking Alpha

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Readers of my column know how much I love preferred stocks. These stock-bond hybrids offer yields that wipe out anything that bonds can offer, even junk bonds. They are safer than junk bonds in most cases, with ratings that often exceed those of junk. They trade like bonds, in fairly tight ranges. Preferred stocks also offer security in being just behind bondholders should a company need to liquidate. The common stock dividend of a company must be cut first before cutting that of a preferred issue, and most preferred stock is cumulative, meaning the company must pay out all the dividends that have accrued since any suspension if it ever starts paying out again.

Investors should be careful about some very high-yielding preferred stocks, such as those in the energy sector. Those yields are crazy because the preferred stock price has fallen significantly, as the market doubts whether the underlying companies will remains solvent. However, the solvency of these three preferred stocks seems pretty secure in the near future: Barclays PLC (ADR)’s (NYSE:BCS) Preferred 8.125% Non-cumulative Series D, Arbor Realty Trust Inc’s (NYSE:ABR) 8.25% Series A Cumulative Redeemable and Ladenburg Thalman Financial Services’ (NYSE:LTS) Series A 8% Cumulative Preferred.

Source: InvestorPlace

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Count On MMM for a Strong Dividend Yield

Posted by D4L | Monday, March 30, 2015 | | 0 comments »

3M Co (NYSE:MMM) has been named to the Dividend Channel ”S.A.F.E. 25” list, signifying a stock with above-average DividendRank statistics including a strong 2.5% yield, as well as a superb track record of at least two decades of dividend growth, according to the most recent DividendRank report.

According to the ETF Finder at ETF Channel, 3M is a member of the iShares S&P 1500 Index Fund (ETF) (NYSEARCA:ITOT) and is also an underlying holding representing 1.18% of the SPDR S&P Dividend ETF (NYSEARCA:SDY), which holds $165,388,581 worth of MMM shares. The annualized dividend paid by 3M is $4.10 per share, currently paid in quarterly installments, and MMM stock’s most recent dividend ex-date was on Feb. 11, 2015.

Source: InvestorPlace

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3 High-Yield Closed-End Funds

Posted by D4L | Monday, March 30, 2015 | | 0 comments »

Until a few years ago, nobody paid much attention to closed-end funds. There weren’t that many CEFs, and nobody really wanted to mess with something unusual. Times have changed, however, as the rise of exchange-traded products have made it easier to get into asset classes normally closed to the public. Closed-end funds have provided yet another way of getting into alternative investments, but they also offer a great way to enhance income generation. Most closed-end funds spin off some kind of distribution on a quarterly basis, and some even do so on a monthly basis.

CEFs are a bit better than ETFs, in my opinion, because they have more flexibility. They can own private company investments and can use leverage to earn a better return. In addition, they may appear to have higher expense ratios, but some analysts think that any use of leverage should be considered a reduction of investment income. Regardless, here are three particularly interesting closed-end funds that allow you to get into some otherwise difficult investment classes. And don’t worry, all come with high yields for the income crowd: Voya Prime Rate Trust (NYSE:PPR), Gabelli Convertible and Income Securities Fund (NYSE:GCV) and Gabelli Utility Trust (NYSE:GUT).

Source: InvestorPlace

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Stocks to own for 2015 and Beyond

Posted by D4L | Sunday, March 29, 2015 | | 0 comments »

A few securities worth considering for the entire year and longer. Biotech, Robotics, Google, Shake Shack, and everything Disney. That is what is going to make money this year and worth your investing dollars. Those equities of choice are Walt Disney Company (DIS), Shake Shack Inc (SHAK), iRobot Corp (IRBT), and two others discussed after the jump.

We know you can wait, the other two are the most popular (and reliable with plenty of volume) Biotech ETF out there the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology (IBB) and the most used website on the planet Google Inc (GOOGL). I love this lineup myself so much after compiling it I will most likely make some entry positions in the coming weeks. All of these names have room to grow and if you stock and smell the roses, you will agree they are the future.

Source: The Stock Masters

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