Monday, Monday, December 14, 2015, 23 U.S. common stocks are scheduled to go ex-dividend. The dividend yields on these stocks range from 0.4% to 22.2%. All of these stocks can be found on our

stocks going ex-dividend

section of our

dividend calendar

.

Highlighted Stocks Going Ex-Dividend Monday:

Ivy High Income Opportunities Fund

Owners of

Ivy High Income Opportunities Fund

(NYSE:

IVH

) shares, as of market close today, will be eligible for a dividend of 23 cents per share. At a price of $12.33 as of 9:35 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 12%.

The average volume for Ivy High Income Opportunities Fund has been 75,000 shares per day over the past 30 days. Ivy High Income Opportunities Fund has a market cap of $206.8 million and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are down 21.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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American Railcar Industries

Owners of

American Railcar Industries

(NASDAQ:

ARII

) shares, as of market close today, will be eligible for a dividend of 40 cents per share. At a price of $49.13 as of 9:33 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 3.2%.

The average volume for American Railcar Industries has been 218,600 shares per day over the past 30 days. American Railcar Industries has a market cap of $1.0 billion and is part of the transportation industry. Shares are down 2.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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American Railcar Industries, Inc. designs and manufactures hopper and tank railcars in North America. It operates through three segments: Manufacturing, Railcar Leasing, and Railcar Services. The company has a P/E ratio of 8.98.

TheStreet Ratings rates

American Railcar Industries

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, notable return on equity and expanding profit margins. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. You can view the full

American Railcar Industries Ratings Report

now.

Texas Roadhouse

Owners of

Texas Roadhouse

(NASDAQ:

TXRH

) shares, as of market close today, will be eligible for a dividend of 17 cents per share. At a price of $34.39 as of 9:37 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 2%.

The average volume for Texas Roadhouse has been 682,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. Texas Roadhouse has a market cap of $2.4 billion and is part of the leisure industry. Shares are up 2.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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Texas Roadhouse, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a full-service restaurant company. The company operates its restaurants primarily under the Texas Roadhouse name. The company has a P/E ratio of 26.39.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Texas Roadhouse

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and reasonable valuation levels. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. You can view the full

Texas Roadhouse Ratings Report

now.

More About Dividends:

One benefit of owning a stock is the potential that you will be paid a dividend. The distribution of dividend payments is another way for a company to share its profit with you. A dividend means that the company pays you a certain amount of money, either as a one-time payment or more commonly on a quarterly basis, for each share of stock you own.

Many times, dividends come at the expense of greater price appreciation, because the company is distributing its profits to shareholders rather than reinvesting the profits back into the growth of the company. However, companies that pay dividends can be very attractive to investors when they offer a steady stream of income. There are some important terms and dates an investor should be familiar with before purchasing any dividend-paying companies. Let's work through an example to help better explain some of these terms:

On March 1, ABC Widget Company has decided that because it holds excess cash and lacks investment opportunities, it would like to reward shareholders with a regular quarterly dividend payment. The date for this particular announcement is known as the declaration date. It is on this date that the company announces the specific dividend payment along with the holder-of-record date (aka record date) and the payment date. The company announces that a dividend payment of 25 cents per share will be payable March 31, 2012 (the payment date) to all shareholders of record at the close of business on March 16, 2012 (holder-of-record date). What does this all mean? Well the short story is that the company looks at its records on March 16 and anyone listed on the books as an owner of ABC Widget company will be eligible for the dividend payment (on March 31).

The one other important term to remember is the ex-dividend date. The ex-dividend date (typically two trading days before the holder-of-record date for U.S. securities) is the day in which a company begins trading without the dividend. In order to have a claim on a dividend, shares must be purchased no later than the last business day before the ex-dividend date. A company trading ex-dividend will have the upcoming dividend subtracted from the share price at the start of the trading day. Many times, the price of a stock will increase in anticipation of the upcoming dividend as the ex-dividend date approaches, yet will fall back by the amount of the dividend on the ex-dividend date.