In a year when things have gone pretty good for most companies, and the indexes are all on track to finish higher, it would seem to be somewhat of an anomaly for companies that are leaders in their respective sectors to be down in 2016. However, dividend stocks have recently been thrown out with the proverbial bath water as investors fear interest rate increases.
A new Jefferies research note says that the 2016 Dogs of the Dow, which were the lowest priced, highest yielding stocks in the venerable index, are doing outstanding. What we found interesting is the companies that could very well be in that category next year. Four top Dow Jones Industrial Average stocks that all yield more than 3% are down so far in 2016 and may be outstanding buys at current levels.
This top aerospace industrial is still down almost 8% since the beginning of the year, and it was removed from the Dividend Ruler portfolio. Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA), together with its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, sells, services and supports commercial jetliners, military aircraft, satellites, missile defense, human space flight and launch systems and services worldwide.
Top analysts have noted that the commercial aerospace business is cyclical and there are some indications that airlines may have expanded their wide-body fleets too aggressively in recent years, suggesting a period of weaker demand going forward. In addition, the fall in oil prices reduces the incentive to upgrade to the most fuel-efficient planes. Boeing is launching refreshed versions of the 737 and the 777 in the next couple of years. New product introductions carry the risk of potential cost overruns. As a result, confidence in the dividend growth outlook has waned.
Boeing shareholders receive a 3.27% dividend. The Wall Street consensus price target is $148.71. The stock closed most recently at $133.38.
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 second-quarter earnings that came in above some estimates, slower growth and flat volumes brought out the sellers and they tagged Coke stock big time. It is important to remember though that the company owns 31.5% of Monster Beverage, which continues to deliver big numbers.
Investors receive a 3.35% dividend. The consensus price target is $47.17, and the stock closed Thursday at $41.76.
This iconic blue chip industrial was on a roll but has sold off 15% since July and is giving investors a nice entry point. General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) is a highly diversified, global industrial corporation. Its businesses are organized broadly under six segments: GE Capital, Energy Infrastructure, Aviation, Healthcare, Transportation and Home & Business Solutions. Its products and services include power generation equipment, aircraft engines, locomotives, medical equipment, appliances, commercial leasing and personal finance. Wall Street analysts feel that the American giant will be a large player in the efficient energy field.
While the analysts recently lowered earnings expectations for the quarter slightly, they remain positive as expectations for orders and free cash flow already seem very low. They also note that the industrial giant has a massive $25 billion in cash, which could be put to use to drive earnings toward $2 a share by 2018.
GE shareholders are paid a 3.3% dividend. The consensus price target is $33.13. The shares closed at $28.77.
The fast-food giant has been hit hard since earnings were released, but it remains a solid pick for investors seeking dividends and a degree of safety. McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD) is the world’s leading global foodservice retailer, with over 36,000 locations serving approximately 69 million customers in over 100 countries each day. More than 80% of McDonald’s restaurants worldwide are owned and operated by independent local business persons.
The company reported solid second-quarter results, but the U.S. store comparable sales growth of just less than 2% disappointed investors. Merrill Lynch noted that charges and refranchising gains make the earnings numbers a bit dicey, so the firm lowered its GAAP numbers to $5.40 from $5.60.
McDonald’s shareholders receive a 3.26% dividend. The consensus price objective is $128.33. The shares closed at $115.41.
These four of the top companies in the world all yield over 3% and have had a lousy 2016 so far. All may very well be in the Dogs of the Dow for 2017, and may be outstanding buys at current depressed levels.