Investors love dividend stocks. Not only do they provide dependable income, but they also give investors a great opportunity for solid total return. Total return includes interest, capital gains, dividends and distributions realized over time. In other words, the total return on an investment or a portfolio includes both dividend income and stock appreciation.
We screened our 24/7 Wall St. research database looking S&P 500 stocks that were rated Buy at major Wall Street firms and that came with among the highest dividends in the venerable index. In addition, we focused on seven very timely stocks to own for the balance of the first quarter and the rest of 2023.
It is important to remember that no single analyst report should be used as a sole basis for any buying or selling decision.
This maker of tobacco products offers value investors a great entry point now as it has been hit as cigarette sales have slowed. Altria Group Inc. (NYSE: MO) is the parent company of Philip Morris USA (cigarettes), UST (smokeless), John Middleton (cigars), Ste. Michelle Wine Estates and Philip Morris Capital. PMUSA enjoys a 51% share of the U.S. cigarette market, led by its top cigarette brand Marlboro.
Altria also owns over 10% of Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer, which some feel is worth more than $10 billion and may be a segment of the company that could be sold. Altria posted outstanding fourth-quarter results and also announced a shareholder-friendly $1 billion stock buyback plan. Furthermore, the company has increased its dividend for 51 consecutive years.
Shareholders receive an 8.03% dividend. Jefferies has a $58 target on Altria stock, and the consensus target is $49.65 The shares closed on Thursday at $46.74.
This blue chip giant still offers investors an incredibly solid entry point. International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM) is a leading provider of enterprise solutions, offering a broad portfolio of IT hardware, business and IT services and a full suite of software solutions. The company integrates its hardware products with its software and services offerings in order to provide high-value solutions.
IBM operates in five major segments: Cognitive Solutions, Global Business Services, Technology Services & Cloud Platforms, Systems, and Global Financing. The analysts have cited the company’s potential in the public cloud as a reason for their positive outlook going forward.