Markets have moved so fast that investors are now once again braced with the question that plagued them for almost a decade—how to get some income in a low yield world. Ten-year Treasuries are now yielding a very weak 2.36%, way down from the 3.2% they reached in 2018. That means investors need a place to park money. High yield savings accounts are still looking like a strong option, while a plethora of dividend funds and dividend stocks now look much more appealing than just a couple of months ago. Yield-sensitive sectors like REITs and utilities also have good outlooks.
FINSUM: The good news for investors is that short-term yields are still high, so it is not nearly as hard to get good yielding, low duration, investments as it was a few years ago.
Barron’s has been running a series of articles outlining the best dividend funds by different category. They have also put out a piece outlining the best performing dividend funds overall. The funds mentioned below have all provided top performance over the last half decade. The three top funds are the Vanguard Dividend Growth Fund (VDIGX), The Bishop Street Dividend Value Fund (BSLIX), and the Madison Dividend Income Fund (BHBFX). The Vanguard fund has achieved an annual 10.19% average return over the last five years, just under the S&P 500’s 10.67%. Its fees are much lower than the others at only 0.26%.
FINSUM: VDIGX is a great option for solid dividends and returns, but the field of these kinds of funds is growing and diverse.
Where is the best place to find inexpensive income? That is a great question for any portfolio. With that in mind, here is a list of seven funds that can help investors get solid yields via inexpensive ETFs: iShares Core High Dividend ETF (HDV), SPDR Portfolio S&P 500 High Dividend ETF (SPYD), Invesco Dow Jones Industrial Average Dividend ETF (DJD), Vanguard High Dividend Yield ETF (VYM), JPMorgan U.S. Dividend ETF (JDIV), Xtrackers MSCI EAFE High Dividend Yield Equity ETF (HDEF). All the funds have expense ratios of between 0.07% and 0.20% and average yields ranging up to around 4%.
FINSUM: These are very core funds with good awareness, but always nice to have them all in one place. We particularly like the Xtrackers internationally-focused income fund because it can help get income from differing rate environments.
“Cheap dividend” is a welcome phrase for many advisors. Income investments are precious, especially as clients age, but inexpensive and good-performing dividend funds are not quite as easy to find as one might expect. With that in mind, here are few names to consider: the Invesco S&P 500 High Dividend Low Volatility ETF (SPHD), the Oppenheimer S&P Ultra Dividend Revenue ETF (RDIV), and the Wisdom Tree US Quality Dividend Growth ETF (DGRW). The first two average just under 4% yields and have fees well under 40 bp. The Wisdomtree fund seeks dividend growth names, has lower yields, and costs 28 bp.
FINSUM: We are fans of the high dividend and low volatility approach, so quite like the Invesco fund here. LeggMason also has another good option with that theme, LVHD.
Stable income is in the best place it has been for years. The yield curve has stabilized with rates at reasonable levels, which means finding decent-yielding investments isn’t nearly as hard as it was a few years ago. That said, income investments, especially at the higher-yielding end, have pitfalls. With that in mind, here are some good income ideas. The picks come from Franklin Templeton’s $73 bn Income Fund. Some of the top names held (holding assets across the capital structure) are Chesapeake Energy, Tenet Healthcare, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Softbank Group, and Bank of America.
FINSUM: This is a very energy and financials heavy group, which has its risks.
Safe and stable income is the name of the game for many investors, especially as the country ages. That means many advisors are on the look out for stocks that can offer that combination. With that in mind, here is a list of ten safe dividend stocks. The “safe” in this context means stable dividends. It should be noted that the S&P 500 is only current yielding around 2% as a whole, but there are many stocks with over 3% yields. Here is the list: AbbVie, Broadcom, SL Green Realty, Regions Financial, Phillips 66, Marathon Petroleum, T. Rowe Price Group, PNC Financial Services, JPMorgan Chase, Comerica.
FINSUM: This is a nice diversified group. One thing we like in S&P 500 dividend stocks is that they tend to be value picks as well, since higher dividends are often a buy-product of previous share price declines.