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Dividend investing news, Oct. 6, 2014: Dividend growth in the third quarter of 2014 set a record, but Q4 is widely expected to surpass Q3's gains.
Among the 30 Dow Jones Industrial Average components, seven members hiked their payouts in Q3. The blue-chip benchmark, yielding 2.2%, collectively shelled out $96.20 in distributions in the July-September period, up 12.4% year over year.
Investors continue to flock to dividend stocks amid nearly six years of a near-zero interest rate environment. But with rising rates on the horizon, high yield is becoming increasingly less important than dividend growth potential.
You see, companies that continuously increase their payouts have historically performed better than those that do not pay dividends after federal funds rate hikes, according to Ned Davis Research.
So a portfolio that includes dividend growers is one that tends to beat the market.
Last week 14 companies grew their dividends and one announced a stock split. Here's the full list of dividend enrichments for the week ending Oct. 3.
Dividend Investing: 15 New Payout Hikes
American Financial Group Inc. (NYSE: AFG) upped its quarterly dividend $0.03, or 14%, to $0.25 a share for a 1.73% yield.
Azz Inc. (NYSE: AZZ) increased its quarterly dividend a penny to $0.15 a share for a 1.4% yield.
Bank of the Ozarks Inc. (Nasdaq: OZRK) boosted its quarterly payout 4.2% to $0.125 a share for a 1.5% yield. The Little Rock, Ark.-based company has increased its quarterly dividend in each of the last 17 quarters.
Black Rock Health Sciences Trust (NYSE: BME) sweetened its monthly distribution 15.1% to $0.165 a share for a 5.09% yield.
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