) is another name that's had a stellar year in 2013. The hard drive maker has seen its shares rally more than 41% since the calendar flipped over to January, and another breakout this week points to even more upside in shares in the near-term. But it's Seagate's 38-cent dividend payout that looks most attractive right now; despite the huge climb in this stock's share price, it still yields 3.5%.
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Seagate is a major manufacturer of computer hard drives. More specifically, it's the biggest manufacturer of enterprise hard drives, the storage medium that powers the world's servers and IT departments. The firm's growing consumer segment provides an attractive way to harness increasing user demands for storage space, but ultimately the same "cloud storage" model is buoying all ships in this market. Datacenters and computer manufacturers can't increase storage capacities quickly enough.
Hard drives won't be around forever. Newer, faster solid state drives have some big benefits over conventional disk drives, albeit at a much higher cost per GB. Seagate's early investments into solid state technology should pay off even as solid state sales eat into its bread and butter business. It's better STX eat some of its own lunch than a third party SSD manufacturer, after all.
With almost $2 billion in cash on its balance sheet to offset a $2.5 billion debt load, as well as massive cash flow generation from its sales, Seagate has the wherewithal to boost its dividend payout in the near-term.
Republic Services Group
Dividends and garbage go together like peanut butter and jelly. Don't follow?
Waste management companies are like the defensive line of your portfolio: They're recession resistant, they have limited competition, and they throw off tons of cash that gets paid out as dividends. So it should come as little surprise that solid waste management firm
Republic Services Group
) is on our list of potential dividend hikers today. There's no doubt that Republic is a garbage stock -- but in a good way.
The company is the No. 2 trash collection company in the country, with 334 individual subsidiaries, close to 200 active landfills and a trash-to-energy business. While trash collection is recession resistant, it's not completely insulated from the economy's ebb and flow. With rising trash volumes as the economy continues to heat up, Republic's business should looks increasingly attractive in 2013. As one of two national players in the trash business, RSG is also able to capture the biggest country-wide contracts that smaller rivals can't handle.