Gold, bonds, real estate and ... trash?
Waste Management (
), America's biggest garbage hauler, also offers a store of
The stock is up 2.7% this year, and while that trails the
S&P 500's 6.7% gain, the company in February hiked its
dividend for the 11th straight year. The annual dividend yield is
now 3.3% at the current share price, topping the S&P average
of 1.9%. The long-term dividend growth rate is 6%.
Also, the stock is in buying range after clearing a 45.07 buy
point of a saucer-with-handle base in huge volume July 29. That
day, Waste Management announced it would sell trash-to-energy
subsidiary Wheelabrator Technologies for $1.94 billion in cash to
private equity firm Energy Capital Partners.
Houston-based Waste Management collects trash, plus operates
facilities that turn the gas produced in landfills into
The planned sale of Wheelabrator is part of the company's plan
to move away from less profitable power production. The deal is
expected to close late this year.
Meanwhile, CEO David Steiner told Bloomberg on Aug. 6 that he
expects "big growth" in sales from pending regulations that would
force coal-fired power plants to deposit their ash waste in lined
landfills instead of in ash pits.
"The utilities see the regulations coming, so we are already
starting to get a lot of coal ash," Bloomberg quoted Steiner as
Waste Management announced July 29 that Q2 profit rose 11%
from a year earlier to 60 cents a share, beating views by a
penny. Revenue edged up 1% to $3.56 billion, below Wall Street
The company boasts a three- and five-year earnings stability
factor of 2 on a scale of 1 (most stable) to 99 (least
Profit for the current year is expected to rise 10%, followed
by an 8% gain in 2015.