Over the past week,
(JPM - Get Report)
(C - Get Report)
announced that they plan to resume or increase dividends. Others, such as
Bank of America
(BAC - Get Report)
Capital One Financial
(COF - Get Report)
, weren't so lucky. They remain in rehab until they are strong enough to handle the real world.
As bankers will tell you, the dividend has turned into a brutal mistress. It is something that investors, especially institutional investors, have come to expect as a quid pro quo for owning shares that offer growth in the less-than-nothing range.
In many ways, dividends have turned into a shareholder protection scheme. A few notes stuffed in an envelope every quarter for investors to make sure, you know, nothing
happens to a bank's stock.
Research In Motion's
late introduction of its PlayBook tablet was deemed the least dumbest thing of the week, garnering only 7.5% of the vote.
Delays have plagued RIM's effort to catch up with
(AAPL - Get Report)
(MMI - Get Report)
in the tablet race.
The RIM PlayBook will be the fourth sizable player in the market, and its QNX operating system represents a much smaller sales opportunity for application developers targeting Apple,
Android and even
(MSFT - Get Report)
Windows Phone 7 software.
Written by Ross Tucker in New York