Hospital Corporation of America (NYSE: HCA) has become the latest company to announce it will hop on the special-dividend bandwagon and take advantage of current tax rates before the fiscal cliff at the end of the year by paying out another special dividend to its shareholders. HCA already paid out $2.50 per share on Nov. 16; now it has announced an additional $2 payout, which it is issuing $1 billion in bonds to pay for. These two dividends, combined with the corporation's regular dividends throughout the year and its overall growth and 45% share-price gain for the year, mean HCA investors this year saw a very handsome return on their investments.

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