With the second quarter almost over, investors and many Wall Street money managers are looking out through the summer and into the fall, anticipating an increase in volatility and inflation as the presidential election continues to heat up. Many of the top firms we cover are biased to large cap, lower volatility stocks, which should do well as some choppy market waters could lie ahead.
In the June report on the UBS Dividend Rulers portfolio, while the firm does not make any changes, it does stress that the overall portfolio yields 2.8%, which is a full 1% higher than the 10-year U.S. Treasury note. In addition, companies in the UBS portfolio increased dividends by 9% to 10% over the past three years and by 7% so far in 2016, an outstanding hedge against future inflation, which while still low historically appears to be creeping up — faster than some may think.
We screened the Dividend Rulers list for the four top-yielding stocks in the portfolio.
This company remains a top Warren Buffet holding and offers not only safety, but an incredible strong worldwide brand. Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands.
Led by Coca-Cola, its portfolio features 20 billion-dollar brands, including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade and Minute Maid. Globally, it is the top provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees and juices and juice drinks. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy its beverages at a rate of more than 1.9 billion servings a day.
Despite reporting better than expected first-quarter results, the stock was hit as many portfolio managers were overweight consumer stocks, and the market noted that the company’s multiple had jumped higher than peers. It is important to remember though that the company own 31.5% of Monster Beverage, which continues to deliver big numbers.
Coca-Cola investors are paid an outstanding 3.09% dividend. The Thomson/First Call consensus price target is set at $47.50. The stock closed most recently at $45.37 per share.
This company remains a top Wall Street energy pick. Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) is an energy sector play that the Merrill Lynch analysts are very positive on long-term, as the overall corporate strength of the massive integrated giant plays a significant part in the company’s usually solid earnings reporting pattern and in maintaining dividend coverage.
The company’s global downstream chemical segment plays a huge part for Exxon. It may be a part that many on Wall Street don’t fully appreciate as the segment contributes an estimated 16% of overall total revenue. Some very solid reasons for adding the stock to a long-term growth portfolio are that the company has consistently demonstrated disciplined investing, operational excellence and technological innovation.
Exxon is also a very strong company from a financial standpoint. It has an AA+ credit rating and an outstanding debt-to-equity ratio of 0.23. Exxon is free cash flow positive, with the company reporting free cash flow of $6.5 billion in 2015 and management cutting the capital expenditures budget for 2016. It is a sound investment to buy and hold forever.
Exxon investors are paid a very sizable 3.36% dividend. The consensus price objective is posted at $85.16. Note that shares closed above that on Monday at $89.34.