Compare that to Europe, which is seeing declining growth, deflationary conditions, and heavy exposure to the conflict in Ukraine.

InvestorPlace.com just released a list of top performing U.S. dividend stocks for August, giving investors some clues where money could be best allocated.

The top three companies on the list are:

3. Frontier Communications (FTR)

Dividend Yield: 6%

Frontier Communications is a regional telecom with junk-bond-type yields. The stock, at $6.50, is having an incredible year, up 41% so far in 2014.

The company is focusing on retaining customers and cutting costs. Analysts believe Frontier Communications will post profit increases in both 2014 and 2015. This, alongside a river of free cash flow, helps ensure the fat dividends will keep coming.

 2. Transocean (RIG)

Dividend Yield: 7.6%

Transocean is an offshore driller that has been beaten down due to stagnant energy prices recently. The stock, at $39, is off more than 20% for the year to date.

The company is in the midst of a restructuring, which will spin off eight rigs into a new publicly traded company. But that won't do much for the stock in the short term. Despite the disappointing fundamental picture, Transocean continues upping the dividend yield, hopefully leading to positive total returns when the share price does improve.

1. Windstream Holdings (WIN)

Dividend: 9.9%

Windstream Holdings is the long-reigning champion of S&P 500 dividend stocks. The company's dividend yield, however, has fallen this year from over 12% to 9.9%.

Investors are not too concerned, though, as the stock is up more than 40% for the year to date. This share price appreciation has been the main culprit in the falling yield. At around $4, shares are up nearly 11% for the year to date.

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