You can’t beat dividend stocks.
While share prices are wild, dividends are like the German trains of finance. They almost always arrive on time, regardless of what the market is doing.
As a new investor, you could do worse than dividend stocks. But sifting through hundreds of businesses is daunting if you’re just getting started. To help you get going with income investing, I’ve highlighted three of my favorite names.
Here are three dividend stocks I’d consider buying if I were investing my first $5,000.
1. Enbridge Inc
Enbridge Inc (NYSE:ENB) is in the oil business, but this isn’t your typical energy stock.
Enbridge owns pipelines, terminals, and storage facilities across the continent. In exchange for shipping products like oil and gas, the company charges a fee.
Yield hogs love this business. Sure, oil prices can swing all over the place. The total volume of crude, though, remains steady from year to year. As a result, the company’s cash flows are as dependable as bond coupons.
For shareholders, this has turned into a growing stream of income. Enbridge has paid a distribution every year since 1953. Today, the company pays out an annual dividend of $2.12 per share, which comes out to a yield of 4.8%. (Source: “Enbridge Dividend History,” Enbridge Investor Relations, last accessed February 16, 2016.)
2. Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P.
If you want to wow folks at a cocktail party, then Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P. (NYSE:BIP) is not for you. But if you like good, old-fashioned dividends, then a stock like this one will do just fine.
Brookfield owns railroads, toll roads, and other infrastructure properties around the world. I’ve never seen such a valuable collection of assets in one place. I can think of only three, maybe four, other firms like this anywhere else in the world. None of them, though, are public companies.
These assets are virtual monopolies. No one can just build a competing highway or railroad. So while these businesses are as exciting as watching paint dry, they crank out steady cash flow.
This has translated into safe, dependable income. Since Brookfield started paying dividends in 2009, it has never missed a payment. You shouldn’t expect this streak to end anytime soon.
3. Realty Income Corp
Realty Income Corp (NYSE:O) gives you the benefits of owning real estate without being a landlord.
Realty’s empire totals some 5,300 properties totaling more than 70 million square feet. Of this, more than 98% is currently occupied. (Source: “Realty Corp Investor Presentation,” Realty Corp Investor Relations, last accessed February 16, 2016.)
This is how Realty Income has been able to pay out such consistent, oversized rent checks. Since 1994, the firm has never missed a monthly dividend payment to investors. Today, Realty Income Corp pays an annual distribution of $2.38 per share, which comes out to a yield of four percent.