Nike (NKE), Merck (MRK), and Aflac (AFL) were among the large U.S. companies that announced dividend increases this week.
Nike, the global sports apparel and footwear company, plans to boost its quarterly disbursement by 3 cents, or 12%, to 27.5 cents a share. The stock, which yields 0.7%, has returned about 32% this year.
The major pharmaceutical company Merck has declared a quarterly payout of 65 cents a share, a 6.6% hike from 61 cents currently. The stock, whose year-to-date return is minus 9%, yields 3.2%.
Insurer Aflac declared a quarterly dividend of 33 cents a share, an increase of 5 cents, or nearly 18%. The stock is down about 15% this year, dividends included. It yields 3%.
Real-estate investment trust Kimco Realty (KIM), which owns and operates open-air shopping centers, said it plans to boost its quarterly dividend to 16 cents a share, up 60% from 10 cents.
The company suspended its quarterly dividend in May, then 28 cents a share, due to the coronavirus pandemic, but reinstated it in early September at 10 cents a share. The stock, which yields 2.7%, is down about 25% this year, dividends included.
Motorola Solutions (MSI) declared a quarterly dividend of 71 cents a share. That is an 11% boost from 64 cents. The stock, which yields 1.5%, has returned about 5% in 2020.
Agilent Technologies (A), which makes medical supplies and other products, is planning to raise its quarterly payout to 19.4 cents a share from 18 cents. That is an increase of nearly 8%. The stock, which yields 0.7%, has returned about 32% this year, including dividends.
Brown-Forman (BF/B) is raising its quarterly dividend by 3% to 17.95 cents a share from 17.43 cents. The increase applies the company’s class A and B common stock. Its brands include Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey and Finlandia vodka.
The stock, which yields 0.9%, has returned about 19% this year.
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