Some investors buy dividend stocks for only their dividends. There's nothing wrong with that, especially when you're primarily seeking steady income. Any growth generated by the stocks is just an added bonus.
But are there good stocks to buy that provide strong dividends and generate sufficient growth to beat the market? Absolutely. Here are three that are already doing it and should be able to do so over the long run.
1. Abbott Laboratories
Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) isn't your run-of-the-mill boring dividend stock. It's a Dividend Aristocrat with 48 consecutive years of dividend increases under its belt. Calvin Coolidge had just become president of the U.S. the last time Abbott didn't pay a dividend.
The healthcare stock is on a roll so far in 2020 thanks in large part to Abbott's COVID-19 tests. Abbott has received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for six such tests. The company's BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card is especially viewed as a game changer because of its low cost, high accuracy, and speedy results.
Diagnostic tests, in general, should continue to drive growth for Abbott even after the pandemic is over. The company also should enjoy strong long-term sales growth for many of its other products, including its Freestyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitoring system.
Wall Street analysts project that Abbott will increase its earnings by an average of nearly 15% over the next five years. This level of growth, combined with the company's steadily increasing dividend, should enable Abbott to handily beat the overall stock market for years to come.
2. Brookfield Renewable
Brookfield Renewable (NYSE:BEP) (NYSE:BEPC) uses the term distributions to refer to what other companies would call dividends. Whatever the name, distributions have been growing nicely -- with a 6% compound annual growth rate over the last two decades and a yield that's now well over 3%.
My Motley Fool colleague Matt DiLallo recently picked Brookfield Renewable as his top renewable energy stock to buy right now. I completely agree. The stock has definitely been a big winner this year so far, with shares up more than 40% year to date.
Brookfield Renewable has plenty of tailwinds that should keep its momentum going. Countries across the world and big states in the U.S. have a long way to go to meet their carbon reduction goals. At the same time, wind and solar energy prices have plunged in recent years, making these renewable energy sources significantly cheaper than fossil fuel alternatives. Those cost advantages will only grow over the new few years.
The combination of Brookfield Renewable's existing development pipeline and its built-in inflation adjustments on current contracts should enable the company to deliver organic cash flow growth of between 6% and 11% annually. In addition, Brookfield Renewable expects acquisitions to boost its growth by around 5% per year. Even at the low end of this range, Brookfield Renewable should be able to generate market-beating total returns inclusive of distributions.
3. Innovative Industrial Properties
Innovative Industrial Properties (NYSE:IIPR) is benefiting from another kind of "green revolution." In IIP's case, it's the booming U.S. cannabis market. IIP ranks as the leading cannabis-focused real estate investment trust (REIT).
The stock has been an even bigger winner than Abbott and Brookfield Renewable in 2020, soaring more than 60%. IIP achieved this success by simply adding more properties to its portfolio and immediately leasing each new property to medical cannabis operators.
As a REIT, IIP must distribute at least 90% of its taxable income to shareholders as dividends. The company's remarkable growth has fueled an equally impressive dividend increase of 368% over the last three years. IIP's dividend yield currently stands at nearly 3.8%.
Can IIP keep up its winning ways? I think so. All it needs to do is continue buying and leasing new properties. That should be a relatively easy task with the U.S. cannabis market projected to double over the next four years. I anticipate that IIP could double your money even sooner, thanks to the company's strong growth prospects combined with its rising dividend.