Dividend checks continue to get fatter in corporate America, as more companies jack up their distribution rates.

Readers of the Income Investor newsletter can certainly appreciate that kind of thinking. Let's take a closer look at some of the companies that inched their payouts higher these past few days.

We can start with Questcor Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: QCOR)The drugmaker's quarterly dividend is moving 25% higher to $0.25 a share. Why not? It's coming off a strong quarter with revenue and profitability more than doubling. Despite knocks of the high price of its flagship Acthar gel, it's clearly popular. The move pushes Questcor's yield to just above 3%.

Sturm, Ruger (NYSE:RGR) is also arming its investors with dividend checks packing more firepower. Fueled by another better-than-expected quarter as legislation-wary consumers load up on firearms, Sturm, Ruger is beefing up its rate to $0.404 a share. Sturm, Ruger shells out roughly 40% of its earnings as distributions, so improving profitability results in more money returning to its stakeholders.

Pacific Coast Oil Trust (OTC:ROYT) is another gusher. Higher crude oil prices and a boost in production afford the limited partnership the ability to increase its monthly distribution to $0.15403 per unit for March.

Finally, we have Waste Management (NYSE:WM) turning trash into treasure. The waste hauler is giving its quarterly payout a 3% boost to $0.365 a share. Picking up trash is a dirty job, but it's a consistently clean gig for investors.

Checks and balances
Subscribers to the Income Investor newsletter can appreciate the companies sending more and more money to their investors. The newsletter singles out companies that are committed to growing their distributions with market-thumping results. A 30-day trial subscription will let you see if it's right for you.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.