I’ve made some updates to my UK Dividend Champions list for October. There aren’t many changes to the list membership although the stock price & yield data for all symbols is updated as of the market close today and I’ve summarized the changes further below.
Anglo American plc (AAL.L)
Not to be confused with American Airlines in the US, AAL is a $17B mining companies with nearly 160,000 employees that was formed in 1917 and started operations in South Africa. Its dividend yield is 3.84% and its dividends are determined in USD but remained flat last year at $0.85. Based on this year’s announced dividend payments and currency conversion to UK pounds, this stock has lowered its dividend payment this year. So it’s no longer a 4 year Near-Contender and is removed from the list entirely.
Associated British Foods (ABF.L)
Formed in 1935, ABF is the world’s second largest producer of sugar and yeast. If you’re a tea drinker, you’ll know its Twinings brand, and it has other popular brands such as Ovaltine and Ryvita. It even operates the Primark retail stores in the UK. In the US, I know it from its Fleischmann’s brand as I buy yeast for our home-made bread.
ABF is a long-term dividend growth company and depending on how you view its dividend history, it has either an 8 or 14 year growth history. If you count dividends by the company’s Financial Year then it has a 14 year history with an annualized growth rate of 8% starting from £0.1075 in 1999 to today’s dividend of £0.32. There was a 88:100 stock split in 1999 along with a special dividend payment of £0.50 which I’ve excluded from my calculations.
I’m tracking Calendar year dividend payments however in my list and here the number is lower with only an 8 year dividend growth history. ABF changed its dividend payment schedule in 2004 resulting in three dividend being declared in 2004 which had the effect of making 2005 a decrease.
Ultra Electronics plc (ULE.L)
ULE is a defense technology company with diverse interests in aerospace, cyber security, transport and energy markets. It’s listed on the FTSE-250 index. This year it increased its dividends, so its dividend growth history increases from 17 to 18 years. Its 2014 dividend payment of £0.4270 represents an annualized 18% growth since its first dividend payment of £0.024 in 1997.
WPP Group (WPP.L)
Last but not least this month is WPP who have earned a place in the Contenders list with a re-calculated 21 year dividend growth history based on Calendar Year dividend declarations. If you count by Financial Year then it’s only a 4 year increase since the FY 2008/9 payments were the same.
WPP first started paying dividends in 1993 with 0.35p a share. It now pays 30.27p a share which is an annualized 25% increase over the last 20 years.
WPP is an advertising and public relations company, and based on revenue, it’s the world’s largest employing over 160,000 around the world. Its original name was Wire and Plastics Products and they made wire shopping baskets however in 1987 the company transformed into an advertising company via a number of acquisitions and named itself WPP Group.
The company is listed as an ADR on the US NASDAQ exchanged under the symbol WPPGY and it’s a near-challenger in the US Dividend Champion list.
Quote of the day
Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.