As the broader stock market continues to extend its volatile streak, dividend stocks continue to gain traction among investors. If anything, this would be due to a wide variety of factors weighing in on the market now. These range from the less-than-ideal economic backdrop to active debates about the debt ceiling. Accordingly, this could see investors looking for more consistent returns in the form of dividends. For the uninitiated, dividends are essentially payouts from companies towards shareholders. With the promise of either quarterly or monthly returns on top of potential equity gains, I can see the current appeal.
Moreover, some of the best dividend stocks now belong to companies whose services are constantly in demand. This would include consumer staples, infrastructure, materials, and health care firms. With the uncertainty around the current state of the economy, this could also incentivize investors now. For instance, we could take a look at the likes of 3M (NYSE: MMM). The company announced its latest dividend payment of $1.48 per share back in August. Notably, 3M has been paying dividends consecutively for over 100 years now by the company’s estimates.
Elsewhere, companies like ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM) are hard at work refining their operations as well. As of this week, the company is now working with Rosneft, a leading Russian petroleum refinery firm. The duo are developing lower-carbon technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from their overall operations. Additionally, they are also considering projects focused on alternative fuels such as hydrogen and ammonia. This would indicate that even dividend giants are looking to grow with the times. Overall, the dividend stock trade is well and active now. Could that make one of these three dividend stocks top picks in the stock market this week?Top Dividend Stocks To Watch In The Stock Market Now
- Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ: COST)
- Leggett & Platt Inc. (NYSE: LEG)
- Albemarle Corporation (NYSE: ALB)
To begin with, we will be taking a look at the Costco Wholesale Corporation. In brief, Costco is a big-box retail store. It is one of the largest retailers in the world today. For the most part, Costco offers consumers a vast array of wares ranging from daily necessities to household supplies and consumables. All of this is only available to Costco members who pay a yearly membership fee. However, one of the key differences between the company and other retailers is the volume of items customers can purchase.
Thanks to its big-box offerings, many have and continue to turn to Costco when looking to stock up on supplies. From the ongoing pandemic to hurricane season, the company’s services would be relevant in the current market. Likewise, this could see COST stock gaining attention amongst investors now. With sizable year-to-date gains of over 18%, could it be worth investing in?
Well, for one thing, Costco appears to be performing on the financial front. In its latest fiscal quarter report, the company saw a total revenue increase of 17% year-over-year. Given that this is in comparison to a quarter where consumers were stocking up heavily, this is admirable. All of this adds up to a whopping $195.93 billion in revenue for the quarter. On top of that, Costco also posted gains of over 24% in both its net income and earnings per share. After considering all of this, would COST stock be a top buy for you?Source: TD Ameritrade TOS Leggett & Platt
Another name to know among dividend stocks now would be Leggett & Platt (LEG). In essence, it is a diversified manufacturer that designs a wide variety of engineered components. This ranges from seating components in automobiles to carpet cushions and hard-surface flooring for houses alongside textiles. Given the importance of LEG’s wares across numerous industries, LEG stock could be worth watching now.
By and large, the company’s shares have almost doubled in value since its pandemic era low. Adding to that, LEG reported stellar figures in its latest fiscal quarter report back in August. In it, the company posted a record quarterly revenue of $1.27 billion, marking a solid 50% year-over-year increase. Furthermore, LEG also reported massive surges of 1,939% in net income and 1,740% in earnings per share. Even amidst the current pandemic conditions, LEG continues to show its resilience. All in all, CEO Karl Glassman cited strong consumer demand for LEG’s wares and the company’s continued drive as key growth factors for the quarter.
At the same time, the company also increased its quarterly dividend by 5% quarter-over-quarter. This adds up to an annual dividend yield of 3.5%, marking LEG’s 50th consecutive year of annual dividend increases. As a result of this solid quarter, the company also raised its full-year 2021 guidance for sales and earnings per share. Given LEG’s current momentum, could LEG stock be worth investing in for you?Source: TD Ameritrade TOS Albemarle
Next up, we have the Albemarle Corporation. It is a North Carolina-based chemical manufacturing company. The company primarily operates via three divisions, lithium, bromine specialties, and catalysts. By the company’s estimates, it is one of the largest providers of lithium for electric vehicle (EV) batteries in the world now. Given the overall shift in focus towards clean energy vehicles globally, investors could be keeping an eye on ALB stock now.
If anything, the company’s shares are now looking at gains of over 150% in the past year. Even so, Albemarle does not appear to be slowing down anytime soon. Through one of its U.K. subsidiaries, the company is looking to acquire Guangxi Tianyuan New Energy Materials (Tianyuan). For some perspective, the Chinese firm mainly acts as a lithium converter. With this acquisition, Albemarle will be getting access to Tianyuan’s lithium processing plant. The likes of which boasts an annual conversion capacity of up to 25,000 metric tons of battery-grade lithium. With the plant set to begin commercial production by the first half of 2022, Albemarle could be looking at busy days ahead.
In closing, CEO Kent Masters said, “The acquisition of Tianyuan, which owns and operates a newly constructed lithium processing plant, aligns with our strategy to pursue profitable growth in line with customer demand.” Alongside the global growth of the EV market, Albemarle seems to be aggressively expanding its international operations. All things considered, will you be adding ALB stock to your portfolio anytime soon?Source: TD Ameritrade TOS