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NVDA) has posted some strong performance this year for a chipmaker -- the firm's 21% gains year-to-date have outpaced the S&P by a respectable margin. Nvidia is a graphics chip designer whose products are found in devices ranging from PCs and mobile phones to gaming consoles. Right now, the firm pays out a 7.5-cent dividend for a 2% yield. While that's not exactly "high yield" in the historical sense, the low bar set by the
Fed makes it look at whole lot more impressive.
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In recent years, processor makers like Intel have been working to add graphics processing abilities to their own chips. While that's harmed demand for dedicated graphics cards in laptops and lower end desktops, it's trickling up the food chain as capabilities improve. The trend towards higher-end graphics (such as 4K displays) in pro-level machines should help to limit that encroachment, as should Nvidia's increasing exposure to graphics hardware for supercomputers and consumer electronics such as the PlayStation 3.
Nvidia outsources all of its production, and that's a good thing. By keeping the capital-intense fixed costs of manufacturing off of NVDA's plate, the firm is able to keep its head above water when times get tough in exchange for slightly smaller margins. That's a tradeoff worth taking. With close to $3 billion in the bank and effectively no debt, NVDA sports a bargain valuation right now, and plenty of free cash to hike its dividend in the next quarter.
To see these stocks in action, check out
the Dividend Hikes portfolio at Stockpickr.
-- Written by Jonas Elmerraji in Baltimore.