5 Solid Stocks With Secure Dividends

Even when the market's doing well you should consider companies that make regular payouts.

When the market is on a roll nobody seems to care about dividends. But we do. We like companies that have the discipline and the cash flow to make regular quarterly payments to shareholders -- and better yet, to increase them on a regular basis.

But in 2009, the two-thirds of the companies in Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index that pay dividends are being clobbered by the remaining third that make no payout. Here’s the score: Dividend-payers are up 21% (including reinvested dividends) through November 30. Non-payers are up 54% over the same period.

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Contributing Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance