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Dividends are a precious perk.

Research over the past few years from FactSet, Ned Davis Research and River Road Asset Management, among others, has illustrated the long-term benefits of owning dividend stocks versus their non-paying peers. A 2019 Hartford Funds study showed that $10,000 invested in Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index in 1960 would have generated $460,095 excluding the effect of dividends … but $2,571,920 once dividends were reinvested.

No wonder, then, that dividend stocks are a favorite holding of numerous “smart money” investors. Even Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) – which famously does not pay a dividend because Buffett believes he can allocate profits in better ways – has depended on numerous income-generating stocks for its long-term market outperformance.

Hedge funds are no different. According to WalletHub data gathered from regulatory filings, more than two-thirds of the most popular holdings among hedge-fund managers offer up some sort of dividend, and the majority of those out-yield the market. These stocks provide defense in market downturns, and compounding dividends over time contribute to long-term returns.

Here are a dozen dividend stocks that are popular among hedge funds. Better still, all of the following stocks yield more than the S&P 500 at present.


Data is as of April 1, 2019, unless otherwise noted. Companies are listed in reverse order of popularity with hedge funds, according to WalletHub. Dividend yields are calculated by annualizing the most recent quarterly payout and dividing by the share price. Analysts’ ratings provided by FactSet via

Dan Burrows
Senior Investing Writer,

Dan Burrows is Kiplinger's senior investing writer, having joined the august publication full time in 2016.

A long-time financial journalist, Dan is a veteran of SmartMoney, MarketWatch, CBS MoneyWatch, InvestorPlace and DailyFinance. He has written for The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Consumer Reports, Senior Executive and Boston magazine, and his stories have appeared in the New York Daily News, the San Jose Mercury News and Investor's Business Daily, among other publications. As a senior writer at AOL's DailyFinance, Dan reported market news from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange and hosted a weekly video segment on equities.

Once upon a time – before his days as a financial reporter and assistant financial editor at legendary fashion trade paper Women's Wear Daily – Dan worked for Spy magazine, scribbled away at Time Inc. and contributed to Maxim magazine back when lad mags were a thing. He's also written for Esquire magazine's Dubious Achievements Awards.

In his current role at Kiplinger, Dan writes about equities, fixed income, currencies, commodities, funds, macroeconomics, demographics, real estate, cost of living indexes and more.

Dan holds a bachelor's degree from Oberlin College and a master's degree from Columbia University.

Disclosure: Dan does not trade stocks or other securities. Rather, he dollar-cost averages into cheap funds and index funds and holds them forever in tax-advantaged accounts.