Dividends are cool, but more dividends are even cooler. As long as the company is good for the hike, a spruced-up yield can mean more than just more greenery in your pocket. More importantly, it's a show of confidence from a company that sees a future bright enough to afford it the flexibility to relinquish more of its greenbacks.

Let's take a closer look at four of the companies that inched their payouts higher this past week.

World Wrestling Entertainment (NYSE:WWE) sent its dividend hurtling toward the ropes, and it bounced back even stronger. The company is doubling its quarterly payout to a chiseled $0.24 per share. The move came as operating profits soared at the grappler's stronghold. It bulks up its yield to an impressive 6.5%, but investors should note that the company's dividend policy finds the WWE paying out nearly twice as much as it has been earning. That's rarely a sustainable policy without the balance sheet suffering along the way.

Another company making sure that its payout is no Mickey Mouse amount is Disney (NYSE:DIS). The company pays out a single dividend every year, and this time it will be climbing from $0.24 a share -- sorry, WWE -- to $0.27 a stub. Strength at the company's two largest divisions -- its theme parks and its media networks -- provided the company with the flexibility to loosen up on those purse strings. Then again, perhaps it could be the family entertainment leader's success with Chicken Little that is giving Disney hope that it can run on more than just its two trusted cylinders.

Hillenbrand Industries (NYSE:HB) was another hiker. The maker of caskets, funeral parlor furnishing, and medical equipment is growing its quarterly dividend by the thinnest of slices. Blink, and you may miss the company's payout per share going from $0.28 to a $0.2825, but it's certainly a step in the right direction. The company wrapped up its fiscal year with a loss last week, but that was a charge-laden occurrence. Backing out the many one-time expenses, Hillenbrand actually earned $2.94 a share in 2005, which is more than enough to easily cover its dividend-paying commitments.

Deere (NYSE:DE) is the fourth company we'll take a closer look at this week. Come February, investors will be treated to $0.39 for every share they own, as opposed to this year's quarterly distribution of just $0.31 a share. That may come as a surprise to those who noticed that the company's latest quarter saw earnings come in well ahead of published expectations but still below last year's levels. With mixed results from some of its rivals in construction machinery and agricultural equipment like Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) and AGCO (NYSE:AG), it's not as if the sector is necessarily in a lull. If anything, the fact that Deere is able to raise its dividend so aggressively should encourage shareholders in believing that the company sees bluer skies ahead.

Subscribers to our Income Investor newsletter can appreciate the companies sending more and more money to their investors. Analyst Mathew Emmert has often singled out companies that are committed to growing their distributions with market-thumping results.

Want to see what Mathew likes these days? Go ahead and give his newsletter service a shot with a 30-day trial subscription. Who knows? Maybe the next thing that will get hiked will be your interest.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz pays attention to yield signs. He does own shares in Disney. The Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.