4 Analyst Favorite 'Strong Buy' Stocks With Expected Dividend Hikes This Week

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With interest rates moving higher over the past year, many investors are looking at short-term Treasury debt, as volatility and a weakening stock market have made some market participants very nervous. However, many long-term horizon investors still turn to equities not only for the growth potential but also for solid and dependable dividends that help to provide an income stream. What this equates to is total return, which is one of the most powerful investment strategies going.

We like to remind our readers about the impact total return has on portfolios because it is one of the best ways to help improve the chances for overall investing success. Again, total return is the combined increase in a stock’s value plus dividends. For instance, if you buy a stock at $20 that pays a 3% dividend, and it goes up to $22 in a year, your total return is 13%: 10% for the increase in stock price and 3% for the dividends paid.

The following four top companies are Wall Street favorites and are expected to raise their dividends this week. Their stocks are rated Buy at some of the top firms on Wall Street as well. While it is always possible that not all four do raise their dividends, top analysts expect them to. Generally, this expectation is based on past increases in each firm’s dividend payouts.

It is important to remember that no single analyst report should be used as a sole basis for any buying or selling decision.

Cousins Properties

This company already pays a big dividend, so shareholders will applaud an increase this week for sure. Cousins Properties Inc. (NYSE: CUZ) is a fully integrated, self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT) based in Atlanta.

Acting through its operating partnership, Cousins Properties L.P., the company primarily invests in Class A office towers located in high-growth Sun Belt markets. Founded in 1958, Cousins creates shareholder value through its extensive expertise in the development, acquisition, leasing and management of high-quality real estate assets.

The company has a comprehensive strategy in place based on a simple platform, trophy assets and opportunistic investments. It posted solid results last month for the full year of 2022, in which funds from operations per share beat analysts’ expectations and revenues rose nicely year over year.

Shareholders now receive a 6.08% yield. The company is expected to lift its $0.32 per share dividend to $0.33. Baird has a $32 target price on Cousins Properties stock. The consensus target is $28, and the shares closed on Monday at $19.85.

Oxford Industries

While it is probably off the radar for many investors, this company makes some of the most popular brands of clothing and apparel. Oxford Industries Inc. (NYSE: OXM)designs, sources, markets and distributes products of lifestyle and other brands worldwide.

The company offers men’s and women’s sportswear and related products under the Tommy Bahama brand; women’s and girl’s dresses and sportswear, scarves, bags, jewelry and belts, as well as footwear and children’s apparel, under the Lilly Pulitzer brand; and men’s shirts, pants, shorts, outerwear, ties, swimwear, footwear and accessories, as well as women and youth products, under the Southern Tide brand.

The company also designs, sources, markets and distributes premium childrenswear, including bonnets, hats, apparel, swimwear and accessories, as well as men’s apparel, including pants, shorts and tops, online and through wholesale specialty retailers.
The company licenses the Tommy Bahama brand for various products. including indoor and outdoor furniture, beach chairs, bedding and bath linens, fabrics, leather goods and gifts, headwear, hosiery, sleepwear, shampoo, toiletries, fragrances, cigar accessories, distilled spirits and other products. It licenses the Lilly Pulitzer brand for stationery and gift products, home furnishing products and eyewear, and the Southern Tide brand for bed and bath products.

Oxford Industries offers products through its retail stores and e-commerce sites, department stores, specialty stores, multi-branded e-commerce retailers, off-price retailers and other retailers. It operates 187 brand-specific full-price retail stores, 20 Tommy Bahama food and beverage locations and 35 Tommy Bahama outlet stores.

The company is scheduled to report earnings this week.

Investors currently receive a 1.94% yield. The $0.55 per share dividend is expected to increase to $0.58. The KeyCorp price target is $130, and Oxford Industries stock has a consensus target of $125. Monday’s closing share price was $115.60.

Shoe Carnival

If there is one item that never goes out of favor, it is shoes and accessories, and with a huge selection, this stock has solid upside potential. Shoe Carnival Inc. (NASDAQ: SCVL) operates as a family footwear retailer in the United States.

The company offers various dress, casual and athletic footwear products for men, women and children. Accessories include socks, belts, shoe care items, handbags, hats, sport bags, backpacks, water bottles and wallets. As of January 30, 2021, the company operated 383 stores in 35 states and Puerto Rico. It also sells its products online and through mobile applications.

The current dividend yield is 1.46%. The company is expected to lift the dividend to $0.11 from $0.09. The $44 price objective at Seaport Securities accompanies a Strong Buy rating, and that target is about two dollars greater than the consensus figure. Monday’s final trade was for $23.09 a share.

TJX Companies

Wall Street loves this off-price retailer. TJX Companies Inc. (NYSE: TJX) operates as an off-price apparel and home fashions retailer. It sells family apparel, including footwear and accessories, and home fashions, such as home basics, furniture, rugs, lighting products, giftware, soft home products, decorative accessories, tabletop and cookware, as well as expanded pet, kids and gourmet food departments. It also offers fine jewelry and accessories, as well as other merchandise.

As of February 23, 2022, it operated 1,284 T.J. Maxx, 1,148 Marshalls, 850 HomeGoods, 59 Sierra and 39 HomeSense stores (as well as websites) in the United States. It also operated 293 Winners, 147 HomeSense and 106 Marshalls stores in Canada; 618 T.K. Maxx and 77 Homesense stores in Europe; and 68 T.K. Maxx stores in Australia.

TJX Companies stock investors receive a 1.58% dividend. The expected dividend hike is to $0.3325 from $0.2950. The $95 J.P. Morgan target price is well above both the $86.32 consensus target and the most recent close for TJX Companies stock at $75.40.

These four top stocks are rated Buy across Wall Street, and the dividends paid to shareholders are expected to increase this week. Not only is increasing dividends and returning capital to investors important, but it also shows that the company is doing well and has the earnings and cash flow strength to increase the payouts.

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