4 Dividend Kings and If They Are Worth Buying

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The Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) is often considered to be the gold standard of dividend stocks. It pays a little more than half of its profits out in the form of a dividend. This provides a nice 3.1 percent yield to investors while still giving it room to raise its dividend. This is the key thing – the company doesn’t just pay a dividend, it raises it. P&G has raised its dividend an incredible 57 years in a row.

Among large-cap stocks, this cannot be beat. But at the same time, there are companies out there that have even longer track records of raising its dividends. These often fly under the radar, but investors who are believers in rising dividends that create long-term wealth should be familiar with them. These are:

  1. Diebold (NYSE:DBD), which has raised its dividend 60 years in a row.
  2. American States Water (NYSE:AWR), which has raised its dividend 59 years in a row.
  3. Dover Corp. (NYSE:DOV), which has raised its dividend 58 years in a row.
  4. Northwest Natural Gas (NYSE:NWN), which has raised its dividend 57 years in a row.

Let’s take a brief look at them individually.

1. Diebold

Source: Thinkstock

Diebold is the dividend king, but its crown could be up for grabs. It is a security and business solutions company that has raised its dividend for 60 years in a row. Right now, this dividend is roughly 3 percent, although a look at the company’s financials over the past couple of years indicates that this dividend could be in jeopardy. In 2013, it lost $180 million versus its $2.5 billion valuation.

Also, the company’s book value has been dropping — it is down $200 million in the past year. While the company has a long history of success and while it operates in a stable business, its financial troubles could lead it to not raise or to even cut its dividend in the near future. Still, the recent troubles could be a short term glitch, as investors seem to think — shares are up 18 percent year-to-date and they are on the verge of reaching their highest level since 2008. If that is the case, then we should continue to see dividend raises from Diebold — the dividend king.

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