Income investors know just how lucrative dividend stocks can be in an investment portfolio. With opportunities to get valuable cash quarter after quarter as well as potentially seeing share-price appreciation as well, companies that pay dividends are worth looking at closely as you put together your overall investing strategy.
Many top dividend stocks don't just pay dividends regularly but also boost their payouts year after year. For some, the timing of those increases has become a science, and investors should expect to hear good news in the not-too-distant future from several well-known giants in the consumer products industry. Here, we'll look at Clorox (CLX -2.19%), Colgate-Palmolive (CL -0.92%), and Procter & Gamble (PG -0.27%) to see why investors will probably see bigger dividend checks soon.
Squeaky clean dividends
Clorox has a strong record of dividend growth, having made consecutive annual dividend increases for 41 straight years coming into 2019. The stock boasts a yield of about 2.4%, and the company has been generous with payout boosts, raising its dividend last April by 14% to its current quarterly payout of $0.96 per share.
Clorox makes household goods like its namesake bleach, along with a host of other products that include Burt's Bees personal care products, Hidden Valley dressing mix, and various home-care goods. The company's business has come under some pressure lately, with acquisitions boosting revenue but with net income taking a 22% hit in the most recent quarter. Yet CEO Benno Dorer has high hopes for stronger performance in 2019, including 3% organic growth in sales and stable earnings compared to 2018's final figures. That doesn't point to huge gains, but it does support the business model that's produced such a consistent dividend history for decades, and it should let Clorox do its typical spring dividend increase.
Brushing up for cash
Colgate-Palmolive is another big consumer products giant, with toothpaste and dishwashing soap representing just a couple of the dozens of profitable product lines that the company sells. For 55 straight years, Colgate-Palmolive has rewarded dividend investors with higher payouts each year, including a 5% boost last April to $0.42 per share on a quarterly basis. That gives Colgate a 2.6% dividend yield.
Colgate has faced many of the same challenges as its consumer peers, with organic sales climbing but declines in adjusted earnings in its most recent quarter. Colgate has worked hard to use its pricing power to keep sales on the rise, but higher commodity costs wiped out much of the gain from charging its customers more. The company doesn't expect a huge increase in sales for 2019, and earnings could remain under pressure. Yet with plenty of room between what Colgate pays out in dividends and what it brings in on the bottom line, shareholders can still to get a rising check later in the spring.
Let this stock tide you over with dividend payments
Finally, Procter & Gamble has a host of billion-dollar brand names that have found their way into households across the globe. From Tide detergent to Pampers diapers and Scope mouthwash, the consumer giant has racked up sales, and it's used its profit to boost its dividends for 62 straight years. The company boasts a 2.9% dividend yield, with its most recent 4% dividend increase having come last April, bringing the payout to $0.7172 per share every quarter.
P&G has worked hard to turn itself around, and its most recent quarterly results show the progress on that front. Sales were flat, but net income jumped 26% from year-earlier levels as a result of strong volume and higher pricing. Lower taxes also helped, but Procter & Gamble sees continued momentum, and its management team boosted the company's outlook for the rest of 2019. That's good news for those expecting the company to extend its streak to 63 years within the next couple of months.
Reliable dividend stocks are worth their weight in gold
There's always an outside chance that these three stocks will break with tradition and fail to deliver a dividend increase on schedule within the next couple of months. Yet that's highly unlikely, and so you should watch Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive, and Clorox to see whether they follow through with higher dividend income -- and how big an increase they give to their loyal shareholders.