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Caterpillar Inc. (CAT), Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (WMT), Waste Management, Inc. (WM): Defensive Dividend Picks By Bill Gates’ Foundation Trust

On the first spot is Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT), in which the foundation holds 11.26 million shares, valued at $1.03 billion. The holding is only the third-largest in the equity portfolio, but Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) pays a quarterly dividend of $0.70, which gives it a yield of 3.53%. While, Mr. Larson has been holding shares of the company for a long-time and the Foundation remains to be one of the top shareholders of the company, other investors seem to have different opinions. Among over 700 funds that we track, the number of investors holding shares of Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) went down to 35 from 37 a quarter earlier, but the aggregate value of the stakes held by these funds went up to $2.16 billion from $1.60 billion. However, in an interview earlier this year, short-seller Jim Chanos of Kynikos Associates said that he is short Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) because the company has a lot of exposure to mining and energy, both of which are very challenged. Another investor that is long Caterpillar is Joel Greenblatt of Gotham Asset Management, which held 860,700 shares at the end of December, up by 147% on the quarter.

Next in line is Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT), in which Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Trust owns 11.60 million shares, valued at $996.47 million. Wal-Mart is one of the so-called dividend aristocrats stocks, which are S&P 500 constituents that have raised their dividends by at least 25 years. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) pays $0.49 in dividends, which gives it a yield of 2.35%, which is the second-highest among discount stores, trailing only Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT), which has a yield of 2.58%. Among the funds that we track, the largest shareholder of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) Stores is Warren Buffett, who holds 60.39 million shares as of the end of 2014, while the Foundation is on the second spot.

And the last, but not the least is Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM), a $25 billion company that through its subsidiaries is engaged in environmental and waste management services in North America. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Trust owns 18.63 million shares, valued at $956.28 million. Mr. Larson has been a long-term shareholder of the company and the investment has paid off well, taking into account that the stock gained over 55% in the last three years alone. Moreover, Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM) pays a dividend $0.38 per share, which gives it a yield of 2.84%. Jim Simons‘ Renaissance Technologies is another shareholder of Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM), holding 1.52 million shares.

Disclosure: none

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