California Water Service Group Increases Quarterly Dividend $CWT



  • California Water Service (NYSE:CWT) declares $0.1975/share quarterly dividend, 5.3% increase from prior dividend of $0.1875.
  • Forward yield 1.69%
  • Payable Feb. 22; for shareholders of record Feb. 11; ex-div Feb. 8.


Chevron Corporation Increases Quarterly Dividend $CVX



  • Chevron (NYSE:CVX) declares $1.19/share quarterly dividend, 6.2% increase from prior dividend of $1.12.
  • Forward yield 4.21%
  • Payable March 11; for shareholders of record Feb. 15; ex-div Feb. 14.


S&P Global Increases Quarterly Dividend $SPGI



  • S&P Global (NYSE:SPGI) declares $0.57/share quarterly dividend, 14% increase from prior dividend of $0.50.
  • Forward yield 1.23%
  • Payable March 12; for shareholders of record Feb. 26; ex-div Feb. 25.


5 Best Stocks to Buy and Hold for the Long Term


It can be tough to take a buy-and-hold approach when markets are volatile, but it can mean getting market-beating returns



One of the core philosophies of Berkshire Hathaway’s (NYSE:BRK.A, NYSE:BRK.B) Warren Buffett is the importance of taking a buy-and-hold approach to investing. About long-term stocks, he once famously said: “I never attempt to make money on the stock market. I buy on the assumption that they could close the market the next day and not reopen it for five years.”

No doubt, this focus on long-term stocks has worked out extremely well for him. Buffett is worth a staggering $81 billion. He has also done this by generally avoiding the high-growth areas of the markets, such as tech stocks.




OK then, in light of all this, what are some stocks to buy right now — and to hold on to for the long term? Let’s take a look at five:




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Is Procter & Gamble Worth Its Premium Price?


The company’s current much-touted pricing power is evanescent and will diminish as competition increases and the staples sector continues to experience profound change



Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE:PG) posted good results for its latest quarter, exceeding analyst expectations for some measures.

Earnings per share were $1.21, beating the consensus of $1.21. At $17.44 billion, net sales remained unchanged from the prior year. The company’s sales were not uniform across all its segments. While the beauty products logged an 8% increase in organic sales, other areas, such as diapers and its Gillette shaving products division, continue to be flat. The steady erosion in Gillette’s share of the razor market has been pronounced. In many ways, it could be construed as a bellwether for the company in particular and the entire consumer staples sector in general.




After several quarters of anemic growth, investors were understandably ebullient that the company had first and second back-to-back quarters of 4% organic sales growth. However, it is paramount to note that the price increases have been announced but have not yet been fully implemented. How consumers will react remains to be seen, prompting the question: Should the stock command a premium multiple?




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Week's Most Significant Insider Trades: Week of January 21, 2019



Disposals:


Accenture Plc (NYSE:ACN) CEO David Rowland sold 2,883 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, January 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $151.75, for a total value of $437,495.25. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 27,367 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,152,942.25. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink.

David Rowland also recently made the following trade(s):
On Friday, January 18th, David Rowland sold 2,916 shares of Accenture stock. The stock was sold at an average price of $150.00, for a total value of $437,400.00.

Shares of NYSE ACN traded up $1.70 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $151.85. 1,742,762 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,103,674. The firm has a market cap of $98.95 billion, a P/E ratio of 22.53, a P/E/G ratio of 2.00 and a beta of 1.10. Accenture Plc has a twelve month low of $132.63 and a twelve month high of $175.64. Read more …


Baxter International Inc (NYSE:BAX) Director Thomas T. Stallkamp sold 3,187 shares of Baxter International stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, January 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $70.00, for a total value of $223,090.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 9,418 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $659,260. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Shares of BAX traded down $0.02 during mid-day trading on Wednesday, reaching $69.64. 2,834,424 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 4,151,867. The stock has a market cap of $37.59 billion, a PE ratio of 28.08, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.76 and a beta of 0.96. The company has a current ratio of 2.60, a quick ratio of 1.96 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.38. Baxter International Inc has a 12 month low of $61.05 and a 12 month high of $78.38. Read more …

Hershey Co (NYSE:HSY) CEO Michele Buck sold 1,500 shares of Hershey stock in a transaction on Tuesday, January 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $108.19, for a total transaction of $162,285.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 166,394 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $18,002,166.86. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website.

Michele Buck also recently made the following trade(s):
On Thursday, December 20th, Michele Buck sold 1,500 shares of Hershey stock. The stock was sold at an average price of $106.68, for a total transaction of $160,020.00.
On Tuesday, November 20th, Michele Buck sold 1,500 shares of Hershey stock. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.86, for a total transaction of $161,790.00.

Shares of HSY opened at $105.37 on Friday. Hershey Co has a 1 year low of $89.10 and a 1 year high of $111.81. The firm has a market cap of $22.71 billion, a PE ratio of 22.14, a PEG ratio of 2.25 and a beta of 0.18. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.60, a current ratio of 1.01 and a quick ratio of 0.69. Read more …




UnitedHealth Group Inc (NYSE:UNH) Director William C. Ballard, Jr. sold 5,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $266.61, for a total transaction of $1,333,050.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 77,702 shares in the company, valued at $20,716,130.22. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. NYSE UNH opened at $266.13 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.64, a quick ratio of 0.69 and a current ratio of 0.73. UnitedHealth Group Inc has a 12-month low of $208.48 and a 12-month high of $287.94. The company has a market capitalization of $255.60 billion, a PE ratio of 20.66, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.36 and a beta of 0.88. Read more …


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Notable Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades for Week of January 21, 2019



Upgrades:


Royal Bank of Canada upgraded shares of Anheuser Busch Inbev (NYSE:BUD) from an outperform rating to a top pick rating in a report released on Tuesday morning, Marketbeat reports. Other analysts have also issued reports about the company. Jefferies Financial Group lowered Anheuser Busch Inbev from a hold rating to an underperform rating and set a $62.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Wednesday, January 16th. Argus lowered Anheuser Busch Inbev from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Monday, November 12th. Macquarie set a $92.00 price objective on Anheuser Busch Inbev and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, October 16th. Goldman Sachs Group lowered Anheuser Busch Inbev from a buy rating to a neutral rating in a report on Friday, January 4th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered Anheuser Busch Inbev from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Thursday, January 17th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating, seven have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $106.06. Read more …

Cowen upgraded shares of Nike (NYSE:NKE) from a market perform rating to an outperform rating in a report published on Tuesday morning, MarketBeat reports. The brokerage currently has $90.00 price objective on the footwear maker’s stock, up from their previous price objective of $80.00. A number of other research firms have also weighed in on NKE. Stifel Nicolaus upped their target price on shares of Nike from $90.00 to $96.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Monday, September 24th. Morgan Stanley upped their target price on shares of Nike from $88.00 to $103.00 and gave the stock an overweight rating in a research note on Wednesday, September 26th. Citigroup upped their target price on shares of Nike from $87.00 to $94.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Wednesday, September 26th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $93.00 target price on shares of Nike and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Wednesday, September 26th. Finally, Deutsche Bank cut their target price on shares of Nike from $92.00 to $91.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, September 26th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have given a hold rating and twenty-four have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $83.43. Read more …

D. R. Horton (NYSE:DHI) was upgraded by equities researchers at Mizuho from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Wednesday, Marketbeat.com reports. The brokerage presently has a $45.00 target price on the construction company’s stock, up from their previous target price of $40.00. Mizuho’s price target points to a potential upside of 17.49% from the company’s previous close. Other research analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. Wedbush set a $43.00 price target on D. R. Horton and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, November 9th. BTIG Research reduced their price target on D. R. Horton to $52.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, November 9th. Barclays reissued a “buy” rating and set a $41.00 price target on shares of D. R. Horton in a research report on Friday, November 9th. Credit Suisse Group set a $45.00 price target on D. R. Horton and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 17th. Finally, Bank of America set a $65.00 price target on D. R. Horton and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, October 11th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. D. R. Horton presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $46.43. Read more …

Stephens upgraded shares of International Paper (NYSE:IP) from an equal weight rating to an overweight rating in a research note released on Wednesday, Marketbeat.com reports. The brokerage currently has $60.00 target price on the basic materials company’s stock, up from their prior target price of $50.00. A number of other brokerages have also recently issued reports on IP. Wells Fargo & Co cut shares of International Paper from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a report on Wednesday, January 9th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of International Paper from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, December 5th. BMO Capital Markets cut shares of International Paper from an outperform rating to a market perform rating and dropped their target price for the company from $66.00 to $51.00 in a report on Tuesday, October 9th. Deutsche Bank dropped their target price on shares of International Paper from $55.00 to $46.00 and set a hold rating for the company in a report on Thursday, January 17th. Finally, ValuEngine cut shares of International Paper from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a report on Wednesday, October 3rd. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. International Paper presently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $56.57. Read more …

Air Products and Chemicals Increases Quarterly Dividend $APD



  • Air Products and Chemicals (NYSE:APD) declares $1.16/share quarterly dividend, 5.5% increase from prior dividend of $1.10.
  • Forward yield 2.97%
  • Payable May 13; for shareholders of record April 1; ex-div March 29.


Kimberly-Clark Corporation Increases Quarterly Dividend $KMB



  • Kimberly-Clark (NYSE:KMB) declares $1.03/share quarterly dividend, 3% increase from prior dividend of $1.00.
  • Forward yield 3.58%
  • Payable April 2; for shareholders of record March 8; ex-div March 7.


Comcast Corporation Increases Quarterly Dividend $CMCSA



  • Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) declares $0.21/share quarterly dividend, 10.5% increase from prior dividend of $0.19.
  • Forward yield 2.4%
  • Payable April 24; for shareholders of record April 3; ex-div April 2.


Wells Fargo & Company Increases Quarterly Dividend $WFC



  • Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) declares $0.45/share quarterly dividend, 4.7% increase from prior dividend of $0.43.
  • Forward yield 3.6%
  • Payable March 1; for shareholders of record Feb. 1; ex-div Jan. 31.


The Dogs of the Dow 2019: 10 Dividend Stocks to Watch


The “Dogs of the Dow” is a simple but successful value investing strategy that many on Wall Street swear by. It’s easy: At the beginning of the year, buy the 10 highest-yielding dividend stocks in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Hold them for a year. Next year, rinse and repeat.

While this does result in higher-than-average income, the investment case really is a value one. The idea: A high dividend yield – in the kind of rock-solid blue-chip stocks the Dow tends to hold – implies that shares are oversold. Meanwhile, the continued payment of dividends shows that management remains confident in the company’s earnings. Investors thus should profit both from an above-average yield, as well as an eventual recovery in share prices once Wall Street realizes its selling has gone too far.

How well does the strategy work? In 2018, the Dogs of the Dow lost just 1.5% on average versus a 5.6% decline for the Dow and a 6.2% drop for the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index. The win marked the Dogs’ fourth consecutive year of outperformance. And already in 2019, some Dogs are baring their fangs.


Here are the 10 dividend stocks that make up the Dogs of the Dow, listed in order of their dividend yields as of the start of 2019. We also list their current yields, which have shifted a bit in the first few days of this year’s trading.




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Top 5 Dividend Growth Stocks For 2019


Last year was a wild ride for US investors, with domestic equities hit by higher volatility coupled with a precipitous drop in prices in the last quarter. A combination of factors including a deteriorating trade relationship with China and impending rising interest rates have negatively impacted the equity markets. Faced with increased uncertainty as they move into the new year, investors might need to analyze their existing portfolio and formulate new portfolio strategies to meet their financial goals for 2019.

Given this backdrop, investors may want to consider a significant body of research suggesting stocks that have consistently grown their dividends have historically outperformed all other categories of stocks. Furthermore, the research team at Reality Shares found that companies with the highest dividend growth rates have historically outperformed the S&P 500 even more, as shown in the figure below displaying the five year annualized total percent return (relative to outperformance or underperformance of the S&P 500) for different types of dividend growing stocks.




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Notable Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades for Week of January 14, 2019



Upgrades:


Citigroup upgraded shares of Emerson Electric (NYSE:EMR) from a sell rating to a neutral rating in a research report released on Monday, MarketBeat.com reports. Citigroup currently has $66.00 price target on the industrial products company’s stock. Other equities analysts also recently issued reports about the stock. Barclays boosted their target price on shares of Emerson Electric from $85.00 to $88.00 and gave the stock an overweight rating in a report on Monday, September 24th. Cowen restated a buy rating and set a $81.00 target price on shares of Emerson Electric in a report on Wednesday, September 19th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Emerson Electric from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Tuesday, January 8th. Bank of America boosted their target price on shares of Emerson Electric from $82.00 to $90.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Thursday, October 4th. Finally, Berenberg Bank set a $67.00 target price on shares of Emerson Electric and gave the stock a hold rating in a report on Monday, November 19th. Eleven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $74.86. Read more …

Wells Fargo & Co upgraded shares of Sherwin-Williams (NYSE:SHW) from a market perform rating to an outperform rating in a research note released on Monday morning, MarketBeat reports. The firm currently has $475.00 target price on the specialty chemicals company’s stock. Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on SHW. Gabelli assumed coverage on shares of Sherwin-Williams in a research report on Friday, September 21st. They issued a buy rating and a $553.00 price objective on the stock. Seaport Global Securities cut shares of Sherwin-Williams from a buy rating to a neutral rating in a research report on Monday, September 17th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. ValuEngine cut shares of Sherwin-Williams from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 3rd. Citigroup cut shares of Sherwin-Williams from a buy rating to a neutral rating and decreased their price objective for the stock from $492.00 to $435.00 in a research report on Wednesday, October 10th. Finally, Longbow Research assumed coverage on shares of Sherwin-Williams in a research report on Friday, November 30th. They issued a neutral rating on the stock. Nine equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fifteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $459.85. Read more …

Credit Suisse Group upgraded shares of Canadian National Railway (NYSE:CNI) (TSE:CNR) from a neutral rating to an outperform rating in a research report report published on Tuesday morning, Marketbeat Ratings reports. Credit Suisse Group currently has $95.00 target price on the transportation company’s stock, up from their previous target price of $90.00. Several other research analysts have also recently issued reports on CNI. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Canadian National Railway from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Friday, October 26th. Raymond James restated a buy rating on shares of Canadian National Railway in a report on Tuesday, December 11th. Barclays restated a hold rating and issued a $88.00 target price on shares of Canadian National Railway in a report on Wednesday, September 26th. BMO Capital Markets restated a hold rating on shares of Canadian National Railway in a report on Sunday, December 16th. Finally, Deutsche Bank raised their target price on shares of Canadian National Railway from $96.00 to $101.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Monday, December 3rd. Eleven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $92.35. Read more …


W W Grainger (NYSE:GWW) was upgraded by research analysts at Macquarie from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday, MarketBeat Ratings reports. The firm currently has a $281.21 price target on the industrial products company’s stock. Macquarie’s price target indicates a potential downside of 2.63% from the stock’s current price. A number of other research analysts have also commented on GWW. Oppenheimer upped their target price on W W Grainger from $400.00 to $410.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, September 21st. Gordon Haskett started coverage on W W Grainger in a research note on Friday, October 12th. They issued a “hold” rating for the company. ValuEngine lowered W W Grainger from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 17th. BMO Capital Markets cut their target price on W W Grainger from $332.00 to $330.00 and set a “market perform” rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday, October 17th. Finally, Longbow Research restated a “hold” rating on shares of W W Grainger in a research note on Wednesday, October 17th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $301.37. Read more …

Consolidated Edison, Inc. Increases Quarterly Dividend $ED



  • Consolidated Edison (NYSE:ED) declares $0.74/share quarterly dividend, 3.5% increase from prior dividend of $0.715.
  • Forward yield 3.84%
  • Payable March 15; for shareholders of record Feb. 13; ex-div Feb. 12.


WEC Energy Group Increases Quarterly Dividend $WEC



  • WEC Energy (NYSE:WEC) declares $0.59/share quarterly dividend, 6.8% increase from prior dividend of $0.55.
  • Forward yield 3.34%
  • Payable March 1; for shareholders of record Feb. 14; ex-div Feb. 13.


Fastenal Company Increases Quarterly Dividend $FAST



  • Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) declares $0.43/share quarterly dividend, 7.5% increase from prior dividend of $0.40.
  • Forward yield 3.18%
  • Payable Feb. 27; for shareholders of record Jan. 31; ex-div Jan. 30.


Realty Income Corporation Increases Quarterly Dividend $O



  • Realty Income (NYSE:O) declares $0.2255/share monthly dividend, 3% increase from prior dividend of $0.221.
  • Forward yield 4.18%
  • Payable Feb. 15; for shareholders of record Feb. 1; ex-div Jan. 31.

High Yield Dividend Stocks — January 2019


High dividend stocks appeal to many investors living off dividends in retirement because their high yields provide generous income.

Many of the highest paying dividend stocks offer a high yield in excess of 4%, and some even yield 10% or more.

However, not all high yield dividend stocks are safe. Let’s review what high dividend stocks are, where stocks with high dividends can be found in the market, and how to identify which high dividends are risky.

At the end of the article, we will take a look at 29 of the best high dividend stocks, providing analysis on each company. Almost all of these high yield stocks offer a dividend yield greater than 4%, have increased their dividends for at least five consecutive years, and maintain healthy Dividend Safety Scores.

The market’s strength has reduced the number of safe dividend stocks with high yields, but there are still several dozen worth reviewing.


By the way, many of the people interested in high dividend stocks are retirees looking to generate safe income from dividend-paying stocks. If that sounds like you, you might like to try our online product, which lets you track your portfolio’s income, dividend safety, and more.





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Notable Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades for Week of January 7, 2019



Upgrades:


Enbridge (NYSE:ENB) (TSE:ENB) was upgraded by stock analysts at Wolfe Research from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Monday, The Fly reports. Other research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. Zacks Investment Research lowered Enbridge from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Monday, December 31st. ValuEngine upgraded Enbridge from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 2nd. Wells Fargo & Co upgraded Enbridge from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, November 5th. Citigroup restated a “neutral” rating on shares of Enbridge in a research report on Monday, September 24th. Finally, UBS Group assumed coverage on Enbridge in a research report on Thursday, October 4th. They set a “buy” rating for the company. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $48.20. Read more …

BMO Capital Markets upgraded shares of General Motors (NYSE:GM) (TSE:GMM.U) from a market perform rating to an outperform rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday, The Fly reports. GM has been the topic of several other reports. Goldman Sachs Group set a $36.00 target price on shares of General Motors and gave the stock a neutral rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 11th. Citigroup cut their target price on shares of General Motors from $60.00 to $57.00 and set a buy rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, October 4th. Morgan Stanley lifted their target price on shares of General Motors from $43.00 to $44.00 and gave the stock an overweight rating in a research report on Tuesday, November 6th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of General Motors from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Thursday, November 1st. Finally, Barclays set a $48.00 target price on shares of General Motors and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Friday, January 4th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating, twelve have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. General Motors currently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $44.91. Read more …

Scotiabank upgraded shares of Union Pacific (NYSE:UNP) from a sector perform rating to an outperform rating in a research report report published on Monday, The Fly reports. UNP has been the topic of a number of other reports. Deutsche Bank upgraded shares of Union Pacific from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $175.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, November 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Union Pacific from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $176.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Wednesday, September 19th. UBS Group increased their price objective on shares of Union Pacific from $161.00 to $185.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Thursday, September 20th. Bank of America lowered shares of Union Pacific from a buy rating to a neutral rating and set a $164.00 price objective on the stock. in a report on Thursday, October 18th. Finally, Loop Capital upgraded shares of Union Pacific from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, September 18th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $163.82. Read more…


Bank of America upgraded shares of Accenture (NYSE:ACN) from a neutral rating to a buy rating in a research report report published on Tuesday, MarketBeat reports. Bank of America currently has $143.07 price target on the information technology services provider’s stock. The analysts noted that the move was a valuation call. Several other analysts have also commented on ACN. Deutsche Bank raised their price objective on shares of Accenture from $170.00 to $180.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Thursday, September 20th. SunTrust Banks raised their price objective on shares of Accenture to $178.00 and gave the stock a hold rating in a report on Monday, October 1st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Accenture from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Tuesday, September 25th. Moffett Nathanson initiated coverage on shares of Accenture in a report on Thursday, October 4th. They issued a buy rating and a $200.00 price objective for the company. Finally, UBS Group set a $180.00 price objective on shares of Accenture and gave the stock a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, September 26th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and sixteen have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $173.55. Read more …

Is Apple Stock a Buy or a Sell Right Now?


The right answer for Apple stock investors depends on a few key things



Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), to its credit, is as much of a cult for its customers as it is for its shareholders. And that’s a plus for the company. Its customers have been very sticky, meaning that they continue to buy and own their iPhones remaining inside Apple World and all of the content and apps that run through iTunes.

And these same customers fawn over the annual product presentations and even line up at stores around the globe to buy the latest new or not so new devices.

Apple stock owners have had much of the same relationship with the company. They have bought and held the stock even with its paltry dividend and are willing to pay nearly 7 times its underlying book value — with a large share of that in cash and its equivalents. And that has largely been paying off for Apple stock. The last five years have seen the shares rise by just shy of 100% — more than doubling the gains of the S&P 500.


But AAPL stock has really not done that much better than the S&P 500 Information Technology Index, as Apple merely beat the tech index by only 6% for the trailing five years. Now, as the shares have dropped from Oct. 3 to date by nearly 35%, investors need to answer the question: is AAPL stock a buy or a sell right now?





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The 9 Best Dividend Growth Stocks in the Dow Jones


The Dow Jones Industrial Average is one of the oldest and hallowed stock market indices in the world. Created in 1896, the Dow consists of 30 large-cap American companies, many of which pay dividends.

While many companies in the Dow are considered blue chips, they certainly aren’t created equal, nor are all the industrial average’s dividend stocks necessarily safe bets for dependable income. In June 2018, for example, General Electric (GE) was booted from the index after having been a member for more than a century.

GE’s share price had slumped more than 50% in the year leading up to the firm’s removal from the Dow, and management also had cut the dividend for just the second time since the Great Depression.

To help identify the best dividend growth stocks in the Dow and avoid the GEs of the world, research firm Simply Safe Dividends utilizes a Dividend Safety Score system that has caught more than 98% of dividend cuts in advance.


We’ll use that system to take a closer look at nine Dow dividend growth stocks that appear positioned to reward shareholders with safe and solid payout expansion in the years ahead.




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Most Significant Insider Trades: Week of December 31, 2018



Acquisitions:


Enterprise Products Partners L.P. (NYSE:EPD) CEO Aj Teague acquired 10,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 31st. The shares were bought at an average price of $24.36 per share, with a total value of $243,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 1,654,372 shares in the company, valued at $40,300,501.92. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink.

Aj Teague also recently made the following trade(s):
On Thursday, December 20th, Aj Teague acquired 10,000 shares of Enterprise Products Partners stock. The shares were bought at an average price of $24.61 per share, with a total value of $246,100.00.
On Wednesday, November 14th, Aj Teague acquired 15,005 shares of Enterprise Products Partners stock. The shares were bought at an average price of $26.32 per share, with a total value of $394,931.60.

EPD opened at $24.59 on Tuesday. Enterprise Products Partners L.P. has a fifty-two week low of $23.10 and a fifty-two week high of $30.05. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.96, a quick ratio of 0.49 and a current ratio of 0.70. The company has a market cap of $51.61 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.63, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.25 and a beta of 0.88. Read more …

FedEx Co. (NYSE:FDX) Director David P. Steiner purchased 7,000 shares of FedEx stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 2nd. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $162.92 per share, with a total value of $1,140,440.00. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Shares of FDX stock traded up $7.24 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $164.43. 2,918,701 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 2,690,910. FedEx Co. has a 12 month low of $150.94 and a 12 month high of $274.66. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.85, a current ratio of 1.42 and a quick ratio of 1.36. The company has a market cap of $42.11 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.74, a PEG ratio of 0.80 and a beta of 1.63. Read more …


Disposals:


AbbVie Inc (NYSE:ABBV) Vice Chairman Laura J. Schumacher sold 25,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, December 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $90.00, for a total value of $2,250,000.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. AbbVie stock traded down $2.96 on Wednesday, reaching $89.23. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 6,906,809 shares, compared to its average volume of 5,944,501. The firm has a market cap of $138.67 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.93, a P/E/G ratio of 0.86 and a beta of 1.45. AbbVie Inc has a twelve month low of $77.50 and a twelve month high of $125.86. Read more …




Kroger Co (NYSE:KR) Director Robert D. Beyer sold 50,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, January 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.39, for a total value of $1,369,500.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 230,722 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $6,319,475.58. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Shares of NYSE:KR opened at $27.35 on Friday. Kroger Co has a twelve month low of $22.85 and a twelve month high of $32.74. The company has a market cap of $21.94 billion, a P/E ratio of 13.41, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.90 and a beta of 0.82. The company has a quick ratio of 0.25, a current ratio of 0.73 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.53. Read more …

NextEra Energy Inc (NYSE:NEE) Director Rudy E. Schupp sold 1,600 shares of NextEra Energy stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, January 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $170.23, for a total value of $272,368.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 20,100 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $3,421,623. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. NextEra Energy stock traded up $0.09 during midday trading on Thursday, reaching $169.92. The stock had a trading volume of 97,812 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,399,461. NextEra Energy Inc has a 12 month low of $145.10 and a 12 month high of $184.20. The firm has a market capitalization of $83.08 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.44, a PEG ratio of 2.40 and a beta of 0.22. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72, a current ratio of 0.65 and a quick ratio of 0.57. Read more …

Costco Wholesale Co. (NASDAQ:COST) Director Susan L. Decker sold 1,611 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, January 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $206.15, for a total value of $332,107.65. Following the transaction, the director now owns 51,389 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,593,842.35. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. NASDAQ:COST traded up $5.82 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $206.24. 2,734,400 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 2,585,033. Costco Wholesale Co. has a twelve month low of $175.79 and a twelve month high of $245.16. The company has a quick ratio of 0.48, a current ratio of 1.02 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.48. The company has a market cap of $89.73 billion, a P/E ratio of 30.20, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.67 and a beta of 0.99. Read more …


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Analysis Collection


Notable Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades for Week of December 31, 2018



Upgrades:


Morgan Stanley upgraded shares of Baxter International (NYSE:BAX) from an equal weight rating to an overweight rating in a report released on Wednesday, Marketbeat Ratings reports. The firm currently has $77.00 price target on the medical instruments supplier’s stock, up from their previous price target of $66.00. A number of other analysts also recently commented on BAX. Zacks Investment Research reiterated a hold rating and issued a $71.00 price objective on shares of Baxter International in a report on Monday, November 12th. Piper Jaffray Companies cut their price objective on shares of Baxter International from $83.00 to $72.00 and set an overweight rating for the company in a report on Thursday, November 1st. Citigroup upgraded shares of Baxter International from a neutral rating to a buy rating and increased their price objective for the company from $69.00 to $76.00 in a report on Wednesday. BMO Capital Markets cut their price objective on shares of Baxter International from $86.00 to $76.00 and set an outperform rating for the company in a report on Thursday, November 1st. Finally, Credit Suisse Group began coverage on shares of Baxter International in a report on Monday, December 17th. They issued an outperform rating and a $77.00 price objective for the company. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and sixteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Baxter International has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $75.72. Read more …

Viacom (NASDAQ:VIAB) was upgraded by analysts at Barrington Research from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday, Marketbeat Ratings reports. The firm presently has a $35.00 target price on the stock. Barrington Research’s target price suggests a potential upside of 32.63% from the stock’s previous close. Other analysts have also issued research reports about the company. BidaskClub raised Viacom from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 19th. ValuEngine raised Viacom from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, November 20th. Zacks Investment Research raised Viacom from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $37.00 target price on the stock in a report on Friday, October 12th. UBS Group lowered Viacom from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $34.00 target price on the stock. in a report on Monday, November 5th. Finally, Wolfe Research began coverage on Viacom in a report on Friday, December 7th. They issued an “outperform” rating on the stock. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have assigned a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $33.76. Read more …

Royal Bank of Canada upgraded shares of Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) from an underperform rating to a sector perform rating in a research report released on Wednesday morning, Marketbeat.com reports. They currently have $45.50 target price on the financial services provider’s stock. Several other equities analysts have also issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research lowered Wells Fargo & Co from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Monday, December 17th. ValuEngine lowered Wells Fargo & Co from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report on Wednesday, December 12th. Credit Suisse Group decreased their target price on Wells Fargo & Co from $62.00 to $60.00 and set a neutral rating for the company in a research report on Friday, December 7th. Citigroup upgraded Wells Fargo & Co from a neutral rating to a buy rating in a research report on Friday, November 2nd. Finally, BMO Capital Markets boosted their target price on Wells Fargo & Co to $65.00 and gave the stock a market perform rating in a research report on Monday, October 15th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and fifteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $62.36. Read more …




Credit Suisse Group upgraded shares of Emerson Electric (NYSE:EMR) from a neutral rating to an outperform rating in a report issued on Thursday morning, Marketbeat reports. They currently have $59.60 price objective on the industrial products company’s stock. EMR has been the topic of several other research reports. Barclays lifted their price target on Emerson Electric from $85.00 to $88.00 and gave the stock an overweight rating in a research report on Monday, September 24th. Cowen reissued a buy rating and set a $81.00 price target on shares of Emerson Electric in a research report on Wednesday, September 19th. Bank of America upped their price objective on Emerson Electric from $82.00 to $90.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, October 4th. Berenberg Bank set a $67.00 price target on Emerson Electric and gave the stock a hold rating in a research report on Monday, November 19th. Finally, Gordon Haskett lowered Emerson Electric from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 12th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Emerson Electric currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $75.55. Read more …