Could it be? Could Apple
Apple has $81.6 billion in cash and investments on hand. The tech company has increased in net income for years but hasn't paid dividends to shareholders for 15 years, when the company was facing more difficult times.
"We're going to see a dividend announced for Apple at some point in the first half of 2012," says Ward of Gamco Investors in an interview with "Street Smart" on Bloomberg Television. "That could easily be a 3 percent dividend-yielding stock or even higher."
Steve Dowling, an Apple spokesman, declined to comment.
On the topic of its cash holdings, Apple CEO Tim Cook had said in an October 18 conference, "The cash that we do spend, we're doing an extremely good job of it and we're very frugal about using it and using it in the right places."
Could a dividend be considered a "right place" for Apple's growing cash reserves? Or will it continue to hold its profits for its own uses, such as earlier today, when Apple's $500 million deal to buy Israeli flash memory maker Anobit was confirmed.
Apple might be declaring a dividend, but that's still an uncertainty. Instead, we wanted to focus on companies that are already paying a dividend.
Below, we listed companies with high dividend yields (above 4%). In addition, all of these companies are more profitable than their competitors, based on gross and net profit margins.
These high dividend yield stocks have a track record of being more profitable than their competitors -- does that make their dividend payments more stable?
A word of warning: Very high dividend yields can be a by-product of a falling stock price, and there are often good reasons for a falling stock price, so be careful when analyzing these companies.
Use this list as a starting point for your own analysis. (Click here to access free, interactive tools to analyze these ideas.)
1. USA Mobility
2. Douglas Dynamics
5. Public Service Enterprise Group
6. Microchip Technology
7. B&G Foods
Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the stocks mentioned above. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.
List compiled by Eben Esterhuizen, CFA. Kapitall's Eben Esterhuizen and Rebecca Lipman do not own any of the shares mentioned above. Profitability data sourced from Yahoo! Finance.