Hewlett-Packard Company (HPQ), Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ): These 10 Stocks Are Outshining the Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI)

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Hewlett-Packard (HPQ)“Dogs of the Dow” refers to one of the simplest dividend strategies to beat the market. Over the coming year, I’ll track the Dogs’ performance and keep you abreast of news affecting these companies.

The strategy
The Dogs is an investing strategy that buys and holds equal dollar amounts of the 10 best-yielding dividend stocks of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (Dow Jones Indices:.DJI). The strategy banks on the idea that blue-chip stocks with high yields are near the bottom of their business cycle and should do much better going forward. Investors in the strategy then would get not only large dividends but also gains in the stocks underlying those dividends.

High-yield dividends
High-yield portfolios are often dismissed as inferior to their growth counterparts for various reasons:

Many people fear that increasing dividend yields mean lower portfolio returns.

Others believe that dividend payments mean that management believes the business is done growing.

Evidence compiled by Tweedy, Browne refutes these falsehoods. Research shows that portfolios of high-yield dividend stocks outperform lower-yielding portfolios and the market in general. In fact, a study by noted finance professor Jeremy Siegel found that over 45 years, the highest-yielding 20% of S&P 500 stocks outperformed the S&P 500 by three times! The highest-yielding stocks turned a $1,000 investment in 1957 into $462,750 by 2002, compared with $130,768 if the same money was invested in the index.

After beating the Dow Jones Industrial Average (Dow Jones Indices:.DJI) by 6.8% in 2011, the Dogs underperformed the Dow by 0.2% in 2012.

Check out the Dogs of the Dow’s performance in 2013 so far:

Company Initial Yield Initial Price YTD Performance
AT&T 5.34% $33.71 12.26%
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) 4.76% $43.27 23.66%
Intel 4.36% $20.62 20.10%
Merck 4.20% $40.94 13.32%
Pfizer 3.83% $25.08 15.53%
E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co (NYSE:DD) 3.82% $44.98 24.41%
Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) 3.72% $14.25 52.12%
General Electric 3.62% $20.99 9.99%
McDonald’s 3.49% $88.21 14.51%
Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)
3.48% $70.10 23.32%
Dow Jones Industrial Average 13,104 15.37%
Dogs of the Dow 20.92%
Dogs Return vs. Dow (Percentage Points) +5.55%

Source: S&P Capital IQ as of May 11.

This week the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.96%. The Dogs rose less than the Dow Jones Industrial Average (Dow Jones Indices:.DJI), bringing the Dogs’ outperformance down to 5.55 percentage points better than the Dow.

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