Dividend stocks have become increasingly important to investors, and companies are taking note.
Some 84% of S&P 500 Index components were paying dividends as of April 30, according to FactSet.
Except for a slight dip during the 2008 financial crisis, the number of S&P 500 companies that pay dividends has been rising for the last decade. Last month's tally represented the highest month-end figure in 18 years.
Dividend-paying stocks are particularly appealing amid today's market volatility and low interest rate environment. Indeed, companies that paid dividends outperformed nonpayers this past March and April – both rocky months for stocks. Returns in March and April averaged 1.3% and 0.89% respectively for dividend payers, compared with negative 2.3% and negative 2.6% respectively for nonpayers, FactSet reports.
Last week, 72 companies hiked their payouts. Following are 25 notable dividend stocks that boosted payouts in the week ending May 9.
Dividend-Paying Stocks That Just Increased Payouts
Access Midstream Partners LP (NYSE: ACMP) increased its quarterly dividend 50% to $0.09 per share for a yield just shy of 4%.
Baxter Intl. Inc. (NYSE: BAX) boosted its quarterly dividend $0.03 to $0.52 a share for a 2.77% yield. The new rate maintains Baxter's dividend payout ratio of approximately 40%. Since 2008, the healthcare giant has more than doubled its dividend.
Buckeye Partners LP (NYSE: BPL) raised its quarterly dividend 1.1% to $1.10 a share for a 5.73% yield.
Cabot Corp. (NYSE: CBT) increased its quarterly payout $0.02 to $0.22 a share for a 1.37% yield.
Cardinal Health Inc. (NYSE: CAH) upped its quarterly dividend 13.2% to $0.34 a share for a 2.13% yield.
Portfolio Strategy Alert: Over time you can make more money in dividends than you paid to buy the stocks that produce them. Get today's best dividend strategy for building wealth in the low-yield era.
Chesapeake Utilities Corp. (NYSE: CPK) raised its quarterly dividend 5.2% to $0.40 a share for a 2.54% yield. The Dover, Del.-based company has maintained or hiked its dividend for 53 straight years.
FactSet Research Systems Inc. (NYSE: FDS) fattened its quarterly dividend $0.04 to $0.39 a share for a 1.48% yield.
Hyster-Yale Materials Handling Inc. (NYSE: HY) hiked its quarterly payout 10% to $0.25 a share for a 1.25% yield.