Safe fixed-income investments are yielding incredibly low rates, causing investors to look elsewhere for investment income. These low interest rates combined with investment fear over a volatile market environment have made dividend-paying stocks a desired investment vehicle for investors seeking total performance.
In this installment of On the Internet, we look at several websites that are devoted to providing information on dividend-paying stocks and tools for selecting among them.
Dividend.com offers detailed investment resources on dividend-paying stocks. At the very top of the page, users can search for stocks, which brings up a company summary page that displays dividend information such as the annualized dividend and dividend yield. There is also a Recent/Upcoming Dividend Payouts table, which reports the last four dividends payments along with the ex-dividend date, record date, pay date and declaration date. Premium subscribers to the website also see a proprietary dividend stock rating, plus a rating breakdown for relative strength, overall yield attractiveness, dividend reliability, dividend uptrend and earnings growth.
Users can browse dividend-paying stocks by sector. In addition, the website presents tabs for stocks with special dividends as well as for master-limited partnerships and real-estate investment trusts. Separate pages listing more unique dividend-paying stock offerings, such as monthly dividend stocks and 25-year dividend increasing stocks, are also provided.
A wide range of tools are offered by the website. The dividend income portfolio generator is a very simple tool that randomly generates three separate dividend portfolios—a dividend income portfolio made up of stocks with a yield of 4% or greater and very little risk, a steady growth portfolio of stocks with a yield between 2% and 4% and solid growth opportunities, and an aggressive dividend portfolio of stocks with a high growth outlook for investors willing to accept higher risk. The Monthly Dividend Generator is a tool that helps users to “ladder” their dividend-paying stocks. Furthermore, the website provides a list of the dividend-paying stocks it has given the highest rating to. The Dividend Stock Screener is very basic, but allows users to screen by price and dividend payout, dividend payout frequency, whether the company has been paying dividends for over 25 years and rating (Figure 1).
Much of the site is free. A premium subscription costs $149.00 per year; a free 14-day trial is available.
DividendInvestor.com also begins with a company summary page for dividend information, giving a quick rundown of company profile data such as sector, segment, industry and direct purchase investment minimum (Figure 2). The dividend information provided includes current and five-year average dividend yields, current and historical average dividend payout ratios and growth rates, years of consecutive dividend increases and a proprietary ranking. The page also shows some fundamental data such as net income, cash flow and price-earnings ratio.
Like Dividend.com, DividendInvestor.com offers an array of tools to premium subscribers. According to its website, the Dividend Tracker tool allows users to calendar-search ex-dividend, dividend record and dividend payment dates for thousands of stocks on the NYSE, NASDAQ and Amex exchanges and on the over-the-counter bulletin board. You can calendar-search 20 years of dividend stock data by selecting a custom date range, market cap, dividend yield and exchange of your choice. After finding stocks, you can export the data into an Excel file. In addition, a Dividend Screener is also available. Unfortunately, neither of these tools is available to regular free users and requires a monthly or annual subscription.
Finally, DividendInvestor.com provides email alerts to investors with several alert triggers. Users are able to receive, via email, notices on dividend announcements, increases, decreases, yields above 4% or 7%, and special and suspended dividends.
Use of the site is free. Premium features cost $299.90 per year, or $29.99 per month.
DividendDetective.com provides several free lists of stocks that pay dividends (Figure 3). The Big List shows 800 dividend-paying stocks that are yielding above 2%. Not all dividend-paying stocks are listed, as those deemed too risky or with faltering earnings prospects are omitted. The website also provides a Big List of ETFs that shows the highest-yielding exchange-traded funds. This list includes the category that the ETF is in, as well as its recent yield. A list of high monthly dividend payers is also presented.
For paying customers, DividendDetective.com provides three sample dividend portfolios. The three portfolios range from conservative to high yield/speculative. The conservative portfolio aims for a yield of over 4.5% through safe dividend payments. Growth and income, the medium-risk portfolio, aims for yield of 4% with growth potential. The Speculative portfolio’s average yield is 8% to 10% but, needless to say, this portfolio is not recommended for everyone due to its higher risk.
Dividend lists are free; access to sample portfolios and commentary costs $15 per month.