13 Dividend Stocks Increasing Payouts

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Microsoft ( MSFT), ConAgra Foods ( CAG) and McDonald's ( MCD) joined a roster of companies raising their shareholder payouts this week.

Real estate investment trust advisor W. P. Carey ( WPC) added 0.4% to its quarterly dividend for a new payout of 50.8 cents per share.

Comtech Telecommunications ( CMTL) put its name on the list of dividend-paying stocks for the first time this week. The maker of amplifiers and communications equipment used by the U.S. military posted quarterly earnings that more than doubled year-earlier results and initiated a quarterly dividend of 25 cents per share.

Comtech's new dividend will be paid on Nov. 22 to shareholders of record at the close of business on Oct. 22. Comtech's dividend yield was 3.8% as of midday Friday.

Arlington Asset Investment ( AI), a holding company that through its subsidiaries acquires mortgage-related assets, declared a quarterly cash dividend of 60 cents per share, up 25 cents from its prior payout. The company formerly known as Friedman Billings Ramsey Group will pay the new dividend Oct. 29 to shareholders of record on Sept. 30, for a yield of 10.1%.

Technology giant Microsoft upped its quarterly payout by 23.1% to 16 cents per share, its first dividend hike in two years. Mister Softee's new dividend will be paid Dec. 9 to shareholders of record on Nov.18 for a new current yield of 2.6%.

Invesco Mortgage Capital ( IVR), a firm that focuses on investing in, financing and managing residential and commercial mortgage-backed securities and mortgage loans, raised its shareholder payout by 35.1% to $1 per share. The new higher dividend will be paid on Oct. 27 to shareholders of record on Sept. 30 for a current yield of 17.5%.

Processed food producer ConAgra said this week its board approved a 15% increase to its quarterly dividend, bringing its shareholder payout to 23 cents per share for a current yield of 4.2%. The higher dividend will be paid Dec. 1 to shareholders of record on Oct. 29.

The maker of Chef Boyardee and Healthy Choice branded foods posted an 11% drop in fiscal first quarter profits to 34 cents per share, missing expectations by a nickel. Sales fell 2.4% year-over-year.

Realty Income ( O), a REIT that pays its dividends on a monthly -- rather than quarterly -- basis, raised its payout this week to 14.39 cents per share. The next payday will be Oct. 15 for shareholders of record on Oct. 1. That brings its current yield to 5.2%.

Realty Income was recently featured on TheStreet's list of dividend-paying all-stars, a ranking of REITs that have increased their shareholder payouts every year for at least the past decade.

>> 14 REITs Increasing Dividends Annually

McDonald's announced early Thursday a 10.9% jump in its quarterly dividend.

The Golden Arches will now pay a quarterly dividend of 61 cents per share, up from its prior payout of 55 cents per share. The new dividend will be available Dec. 15 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 1, for a current yield of 3.2%.

Regional bank First of Long Island ( FLIC) raised its quarterly payout by 10% to 20 cents per share. The dividend will be paid on Oct. 15 to shareholders of record on Oct. 5 for a new yield of 3.2%.

Lockheed Martin ( LMT), the world's largest military weapons manufacturer, raised its quarterly dividend by 19% from 63 cents per share to 75 cents, its eighth consecutive annual increase.

The aerospace and defense firm will pay the higher dividend Dec. 31 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 1 for a new annualized yield of 4.1%.

Hingham Institution for Savings ( HIFS) upped its dividend by a penny to 24 cents per share, to be paid Oct. 20 to stockholders of record as of Oct. 8. The higher payout brings Hingham's yield to 2.4%.

Poultry processor Sanderson Farms ( SAFM) increased its quarterly dividend 13.3% to 17 cents per share. The new payout will be available Oct. 19 to shareholders of record on Oct. 5 for a current yield of 1.6%.

Finally, Covidien ( COV) will pay its shareholders 11.1% more than it used to, the medical supplies maker said this week. Covidien raised its dividend to 20 cents per share, to be paid Nov. 8 to shareholders of record on Oct. 4. That brings Covidien's current yield to 2%.

Covidien said last week it expects its fiscal 2011 net revenue to grow in a range between 6% and 9% year-over-year.

-- Written by Miriam Marcus Reimer in New York.

>To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/miriamsmarket.

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Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors and reporters from holding positions in any individual stocks.

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