H.J. Heinz

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New Dividend: 52 cents quarterly (per share)

Dividend Percent Increase: 7.3%

Current Yield: 3.87%

Last week, in I said that H.J. Heinz ( HNZ) was one of five food stocks that was likely to hike its dividend payouts. That prediction turned out to be right; that Thursday, management announced a 7.3% dividend hike that brought the firm's payout to 52 cents per share.

Heinz may be best known for its ketchup, but this food firm also manufactures everything from baby food to Ore-Ida frozen French fries. Emerging markets look like a good prospect for HNZ, especially because it's so saturated in developed markets right now: only a third of Heinz's overseas sales come from emerging markets currently. With a huge dividend yield and plenty of cash generation ability, investors should turn to Heinz as a core income holding in 2012.

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