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Net increases (positive payout action minus negative ones) rose $12.3 billion during Q3 for U.S.-traded companies. That's up from $11.9 billion, or 3.7%, in the same period a year ago.
According to data from S&P Dow Jones Indexes, 563 companies raised, restored, or approved extra dividends in Q3. That's up 18.5% from last year's Q3 tally of 475.
This brings the total number of dividend hikes so far in 2014 to 2,337, up 16.3% from 2,101 in the same period a year ago.
Dividend boosts in Q4 2014 are expected to trump Q3's activity.
Dividend Investing: 23 New Increases
A. Schulman Inc. (Nasdaq: SHLM) upped its quarterly payout 2.5% to $0.205 a share for a 2.61% yield. "The company's strong balance sheet and cash flow from operations – expected to be in excess of $110 million in fiscal 2014 – enable A. Schulman to continue the streak of annual dividend payments that began when we went public in 1972," said Chief Executive Officer Joseph M. Gingo.
Ameren Corp. (NYSE: AEE) raised its quarterly dividend a penny to $0.40 a share for a 4.13% yield. The company expects annual earnings growth of 7% to 10% through 2018 and said future dividend increases will be driven by earnings growth, cash flows, and other business conditions.
American Capital Agency Corp. (Nasdaq: AGNC) increased its monthly payout 1.5% to $0.22 a share for a 11.6% yield.
Bluerock Residential Growth REIT Inc. (NYSEMKT: BRG) boosted its monthly distribution 1.5% to $0.096 a share for a 9.6% yield.
Cordorus Valley Bancorp Inc. (Nasdaq: CVLY) hiked its quarterly dividend 5% to $0.125 a share for a 2.47% yield.
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