5 Stocks Going Ex-Dividend Tomorrow: APU, FNFG, PBI, COST, IBM

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

Tomorrow, Aug. 7, 2013, 32 U.S. common stocks are scheduled to go ex-dividend. The dividend yields on these stocks range from 0.6% to 7.3%. All of these stocks can be found on our stocks going ex-dividend section of our dividend calendar.

Highlighted Stocks Going Ex-Dividend Tomorrow:

AmeriGas Partners

Owners of AmeriGas Partners (NYSE: APU) shares as of market close today will be eligible for a dividend of 84 cents per share. At a price of $45.47 as of 9:35 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 7.3%.

The average volume for AmeriGas Partners has been 247,800 shares per day over the past 30 days. AmeriGas Partners has a market cap of $4.3 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 17.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

AmeriGas Partners, L.P. operates as a retail and wholesale distributor of propane gas, and related equipment and supplies in the United States. The company has a P/E ratio of 27.40.

TheStreet Ratings rates AmeriGas Partners as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in stock price during the past year, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, growth in earnings per share and expanding profit margins. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results. You can view the full AmeriGas Partners Ratings Report now.

First Niagara Financial Group

Owners of First Niagara Financial Group (NASDAQ: FNFG) shares as of market close today will be eligible for a dividend of 8 cents per share. At a price of $10.97 as of 9:35 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 2.9%.

The average volume for First Niagara Financial Group has been 3.6 million shares per day over the past 30 days. First Niagara Financial Group has a market cap of $3.9 billion and is part of the banking industry. Shares are up 37.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

First Niagara Financial Group, Inc. operates as the bank holding company for First Niagara Bank, N.A. that provides retail and commercial banking, and other financial services to individuals, families, and businesses. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.80.

TheStreet Ratings rates First Niagara Financial Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, expanding profit margins, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth and notable return on equity. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook. You can view the full First Niagara Financial Group Ratings Report now.

Pitney Bowes

Owners of Pitney Bowes (NYSE: PBI) shares as of market close today will be eligible for a dividend of 19 cents per share. At a price of $17.52 as of 9:35 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 4.3%.

The average volume for Pitney Bowes has been 4.9 million shares per day over the past 30 days. Pitney Bowes has a market cap of $3.5 billion and is part of the consumer durables industry. Shares are up 65.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

Pitney Bowes Inc. provides software, hardware, and services to enable physical and digital communications in the United States and internationally. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.84.

TheStreet Ratings rates Pitney Bowes as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its notable return on equity, solid stock price performance and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, generally higher debt management risk and feeble growth in the company's earnings per share. You can view the full Pitney Bowes Ratings Report now.

Costco Wholesale Corporation

Owners of Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ: COST) shares as of market close today will be eligible for a dividend of 31 cents per share. At a price of $119.57 as of 9:35 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 1%.

The average volume for Costco Wholesale Corporation has been 1.6 million shares per day over the past 30 days. Costco Wholesale Corporation has a market cap of $52.1 billion and is part of the retail industry. Shares are up 21.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

Costco Wholesale Corporation engages in the operation of membership warehouses. The company offers branded and private-label products in a range of merchandise categories. The company has a P/E ratio of 25.84.

TheStreet Ratings rates Costco Wholesale Corporation 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, good cash flow from operations and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. You can view the full Costco Wholesale Corporation Ratings Report now.

International Business Machines

Owners of International Business Machines (NYSE: IBM) shares as of market close today will be eligible for a dividend of 95 cents per share. At a price of $190.39 as of 9:35 a.m. ET, the dividend yield is 1.9%.

The average volume for International Business Machines has been 4.0 million shares per day over the past 30 days. International Business Machines has a market cap of $213.8 billion and is part of the computer software & services industry. Shares are up 2.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

International Business Machines Corporation provides information technology (IT) products and services worldwide. The company operates in five segments: Global Technology Services, Global Business Services, Software, Systems and Technology, and Global Financing. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.92.

TheStreet Ratings rates International Business Machines as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. You can view the full International Business Machines 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.

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