A better retirement means living as comfortably as possible, and part of that comes down to strategic retirement planning.
At its essence, retirement planning is all about income and capital preservation. Finding stocks that can grow your wealth without sacrificing reliability can give you the income needed to pay the bills, and a little extra too.
Procter & Gamble
Procter & Gamble (PG -1.90%) is the ultimate "sleep well at night" stock for retirees. With a market capitalization of over $300 billion, P&G is one of the largest consumer staple stocks. Unlike most stocks that are vulnerable to economic cycles, P&G's lines of products are simply a part of everyday life. Babies need their diapers, laundry needs cleaning, and teeth need to be brushed, no matter what the economy is doing.
P&G has done an impressive job reducing its quantity of brands so that it can simply focus on its best performing brands. That's helped P&G improve its organic sales growth. For example, its goal of growing organic sales 4% to 5% in fiscal year (FY) 2020 is much higher than the 2% sales growth it achieved in FY 2017 or the 1% sales growth in FY 2018.
P&G yields 2.5% at the time of this writing.
Not only can Starbucks (SBUX -2.67%) give you the energy to get up and go, it can also give you a nice 2.2% dividend yield to boost your income during retirement.
Starbucks has raised its dividend an astounding 530% over the past 10 years as the coffee chain has transitioned from a growth stock to more of a stalwart. This is good news for retirees that want to invest in an industry leader and get a dividend as well.
In terms of what's next for Starbucks, the company has decided to reduce its store count and transition to smaller stores that focus on convenience and grab-and-go ordering. The decision makes sense because it leverages the company's 19.4 million rewards members and mobile ordering. Although the short term will be challenging for Starbucks as it transitions stores and navigates the virus, the company has proven it has staying power over the long term.
Honeywell International (HON -1.82%) is one of the largest US industrial stocks, manufacturing and maintaining a slew of industrial and household products and software. The company is a global technology leader and a pioneer in everything from cybersecurity to onboard vibration monitoring systems.
Honeywell's size, international exposure, and product portfolio would make it one of the key companies to benefit from an economic recovery, but that doesn't mean Honeywell needs an economic recovery. The company's balance sheet is strong, as Honeywell holds very little debt for a company of its size.
Honeywell's dividend payment has more than quadrupled since the year 2000 thanks to FCF that has continued to rise and now well exceeds dividend obligations. Theoretically, FCF could fall by 50% or more and Honeywell could still pay its dividend with cash. Honeywell is a good stock for a better retirement because of its low debt, strong FCF that well exceeds dividend payments, and its reputation for raising its dividend.
Honeywell yields 2.4% at the time of this writing.
Waste Management (WM -1.05%) is an industry leader. It has the largest waste collection, transportation, and disposal business in the United States. Its planned acquisition of Advanced Disposal, the fourth-largest solid waste company in the U.S., reinforces its leading position.
The waste business isn't exactly a glamorous line of work, but there are many reasons why Waste Management is a great stock for retirees. For starters, it has a reliable revenue stream -- 75% of Waste Management's revenue has what the company calls "annuity-like characteristics" consisting of multiyear contracts with the public and private sector. Second, it benefits from tailwinds -- such as a rising population -- which results in more trash. And third, Waste Management has had 17 years of consecutive dividend increases and has already approved another 6% dividend raise in 2020. It yields 2% at the time of this writing.
UPS has proved its devotion to increasing dividend payments. In the year 2000, UPS was paying a $0.17 per share quarterly dividend, or $0.68 per share annually. In 2019, UPS paid $0.96 per share quarterly, or $3.84 per share for the year, representing a more than 500% dividend raise in 20 years.
As an industrial tied to global commerce, UPS faces some headwinds as a result of the pandemic -- but it has some tailwinds too. The company has already seen sales from Asia improve. UPS Premier, the company's critical healthcare shipment service, has been answering the needs of the healthcare industry in response to the pandemic.
Its stock price has run up in the last month, but it still sports a 3.5% dividend yield at the time of this writing.
A better retirement
By now you've likely noticed a couple of themes with the stocks on this list. The first is that they all offer attractive and reliable dividends. The second is that they are leaders in their respective industries. P&G, Starbucks, Honeywell, Waste Management, and UPS are five stocks that have the qualities and characteristics to give you a better retirement.