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4 Top Income Stocks With Steady, Rising Dividends

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A s far as most income investors are concerned, the steadier the payout the better. An added bonus: a high dividend growth rate. Here are five Dividend Leaders that offer both, as well as a yield that's well above the S&P 500's average 2.08% payout.

All five score a Dividend Stability Factor of 1 on a scale from 0 (most stable) to 99 (most volatile) on a three- to five-year basis.

Philip Morris International ( PM ), which pays a 4.6% annual dividend, tops the list based on that measure. Its long-term dividend growth rate is 11%. The Marlboro maker on Dec. 9 boosted its quarterly payout by 20% to $1.02 a share, or $4.08 for the year.

Analysts expect the tobacco firm's earnings to decline for a second straight year in 2015, before rising 5% next year. The stock is below a 90.18 flat-base buy point. It's up about 7% year to date, vs. the S&P 500's 2% loss.

Pfizer ( PFE ), which also made the Friday column featuring high-yield drug stocks , is second, with an annualized payout of 3.7%. Like Philip Morris, its dividend growth rate is 11%. The stock is still below its 10-week and 40-week lines as it consolidates.

General Mills ( GIS ) also has a long-term dividend growth rate of 11%. The cereal maker on Thursday announced a 33% increase in its quarterly payout to 44 cents a share. That works out to $1.76 on a full-year basis, for a 3.1% yield.

The company also reported quarterly results that day that missed views on both the top and bottom lines. Shares fell 3% Thursday but found support at the 200-day moving average. The stock, up about 8% year to date, has been consolidating since early August.

Coca-Cola ( KO ), which also pays a 3.1% annual dividend, has a long-term dividend growth rate of 9%. The beverage giant is an S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrat -- companies that have increased their dividends each year for the past 25 years -- and a top Warren Buffett holding. Shares are slightly positive this year.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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