Dividend investors appreciate the value of getting cash back from their stock holdings. Whether you use that income to cover living expenses or reinvest it into additional shares of stock, dividends can give you confidence to get through hard times.

That said, investors always like to see signs that their dividend stocks are set to boost their payouts. Many stalwart companies have long histories of raising their dividends, and some of them traditionally wait until the last couple of months of the year to make their increases. Read on to find out about three stocks that are highly likely to deliver dividend hikes to their shareholders before the year draws to a close.

1. Nike

Nike (NKE -1.26%) is the world's premier athletic apparel and footwear company, but it actually has the shortest track record of dividend increases among the trio of stocks in this article. For 20  straight years, Nike has boosted its dividend payout on an annual basis, with the most recent increase of 11% having come in mid-November 2021. That hike brought the dividend to $0.305 per share on a quarterly basis, which works out to a 1.3% dividend yield at current share prices.

Dividends aside, Nike's stock has had a tough year, with share prices down by more than a third from where they started 2022. The company has had to deal with supply chain and logistics challenges that have increased its costs, and with inventory at elevated levels, Nike had to boost its promotional discounting in order to move its products out the door. That has hurt the athletic giant's profitability in the short-term, and concerns about an economic slowdown are also weighing on confidence.

In the long run, though, Nike's brand dominance and growth potential remain in place. Investors probably shouldn't count on as large a dividend increase as they received in 2021, but odds are good that they'll get at least a modest hike sometime in the next couple of weeks.

2. McCormick

If you want to spice up your dividend portfolio, take a look at spice maker McCormick (MKC 1.68%). The food flavoring specialist currently yields nearly 2%, with investors receiving quarterly dividend payments of $0.37 per share.

McCormick's history of raising dividends goes back further than Nike, with the increase at the end  of November 2021 marking the 36th straight year in which the spice maker increased its quarterly payout. Moreover, the pace of McCormick's dividend growth has been impressive, as investors are now receiving twice as much in dividends as they did in 2014.

McCormick has faced some challenges in the current economic environment, as consumers have scaled back their purchases recently. Yet McCormick has successfully used its pricing power to keep profits intact, and that should keep it strong in the long run. Investors might not get the 9% boost they got in 2021, but McCormick remains committed to delivering value to shareholders, so some increase is highly likely around the end of November.

3. Hormel Foods

Lastly, Hormel Foods (HRL 1.05%) is the old-timer on this list of dividend-raising stocks. Just before Thanksgiving last year, the maker of Skippy peanut butter, Spam, and Planters snacks boosted its dividend for the 56th year in a row. Shareholders received $0.26 per share, a 6% rise over the previous dividend payout.

Hormel is also the top-yielding dividend stock on the list. Its stock has held up a lot better than most since the beginning of the year, but the food company still has a market-beating yield of nearly 2.3%.

Despite tough economic times, Hormel has delivered record results lately, with continuing growth in sales and earnings. That's exactly what you want to see in a dividend stock, and that strong performance bodes well for Hormel being able to match its 6% boost in the coming weeks.

Get ready for some cash

Income investors rely on the dividends their stocks pay. Be sure to keep an eye on Hormel, McCormick, and Nike to see if they'll make good on their commitment to dividend investors both now and in the years to come.