Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



Dell Saves the Day With a Timely Reminder

Watch stocks you care about

The single, easiest way to keep track of all the stocks that matter...

Your own personalized stock watchlist!

It's a 100% FREE Motley Fool service...

Click Here Now

The iPhone 5 launch on Wednesday, Sept. 12, is sure to be the most important event for tech investors this year. The Motley Fool will be hosting a live chat where our top tech analysts will answer your questions and break down what the announcement means for Apple and tech investors everywhere. Be sure to swing by at 12:45 p.m. ET next Wednesday for all your coverage of Apple's next big announcement.

Don't you love it when company leaders follow through on their commitments?

Dell (Nasdaq: DELL  ) approved its first-ever dividend policy back in June, so the payout isn't exactly breaking news. Management even told us that it would amount to $0.08 per quarter, or $0.32 annually, and that payouts would start in the third quarter.

But that didn't stop today's announcement of the actual dividend date from boosting Dell shares. That $0.08 payout per share is now slated for disbursement on Oct. 22, handed out to shareholders of record as of Oct. 1. And there was much rejoicing.

Indeed, Dell shares rose 1.2% in Friday morning's market action, even as a terrible market report from Intel (Nasdaq: INTC  ) weighed on other computing stocks. Intel shares ended the day down 3.6%. Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ  ) lost 1% of its value, and Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) plunged 1.6%. But Dell soldiers on in positive territory.

You can always back out of a nebulous dividend policy without firm delivery dates, but the idea is written in stone now. Plus, it never hurts to remind investors of your company's commitment to shareholder value, especially on a negative day like today. And that's exactly what Dell did here.

"The payment of a quarterly cash dividend is intended to help contribute to long-term shareholder value," said CFO Brian Gladden. The company has committed to returning 20% of its free cash flows directly to shareholders, and this policy will help the existing buybacks out in a big way.

At today's prices, Dell's dividend works out to a 3% annual yield. That's right in line with Microsoft (2.6%), Intel (3.7%), and HP (3.1%). The promise to return 20% of free cash flows to shareholders isn't particularly daring -- only nine of the 30 stocks in the Dow return less than that today.

Then again, Dell ain't the Dow-grade blue chip it was 10 years ago. The company has a lot to prove before becoming a true dividend champion. Dell is facing the same market headwinds as the rest of the computing industry, and there are no guarantees that the dividend will grow like clockwork over the years.

So you can take a chance on Dell as an income generator for your golden years -- or you can invest in rock-solid performers with decades of uninterrupted dividend growth. This free report will help you find the latter kind of proven dividend aristocrats.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies mentioned. Check out Anders' holdings and bio, or follow him on Twitter and Google+. The Motley Fool owns shares of Intel, Apple, and Microsoft. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Apple, Microsoft, and Intel, creating a synthetic covered call position in Microsoft, and creating a bull call spread position in Apple. We Fools don't all hold the same opinion, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (2)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2010273, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/28/2016 11:58:04 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated Moments ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,224.91 55.23 0.30%
S&P 500 2,137.58 4.54 0.21%
NASD 5,223.66 7.69 0.15%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

12/31/1969 7:00 PM
DELL.DL $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
Dell CAPS Rating: *
HPQ $14.16 Up +0.17 +1.22%
HP CAPS Rating: ***
INTC $35.09 Up +0.28 +0.80%
Intel CAPS Rating: ****
MSFT $60.42 Up +0.32 +0.52%
Microsoft CAPS Rating: ****