With uncertainty still present in the clouds, investors may find solace in dependable dividend stocks. Unlike your pure growth-oriented enterprises, companies that provide passive income tend to be less volatile when the stuff goes down. Basically, the qualities that allow companies to pay dividends – stable business model, consistent profitability – afford a level of insulation.
Further, dividend stocks tend to be defensive in nature. Yes, many companies that provide passive income may also feature relevant or even exciting revenue streams. Boredom doesn’t have to be an exclusive quality of enterprises in this market segment. Still, if the economy enters a downcycle, you want to lever your portfolio toward resilient institutions.
Also, by default, dependable dividend stocks provide multiple ways of winning in the market. During stable cycles, investors may enjoy both capital gains and passive income. However, during the rough patches, investors can still weather the storm with the latter.
On that note, below are dividend stocks to consider during these unusual circumstances.
Understandably a controversial idea for some investors, RTX (NYSE:RTX) nevertheless deserves consideration for dependable dividend stocks thanks to its relevancies. Again, as an aerospace and defense contractor, RTX isn’t exactly a choice for environmental, social, and governance (ESG) ideas. However, the harsh realities of geopolitical flashpoints necessitate that the U.S. maintain dominance in the military sphere.
Granted, we’d all love to live in a world where weapons of mass-scale warfare are unnecessary. That world doesn’t exist. It will never exist. The faster we all come to grips with this fact, the better we can make practical, informed decisions. Since 2022, we’ve seen firsthand what our adversaries are capable of. And that’s why I’m comfortable with RTX as one of the dependable dividend stocks.
On the passive income front, RTX carries a forward yield of 3.01%. Also, it commands 30 years of consecutive dividend increases. If that’s not dependable, I don’t know what is.
Analysts rate RTX as a moderate buy with an $86.71 price target, projecting almost 11% growth.
Exxon Mobil (XOM)
Another idea for what I’d call “reality check” dividend stocks to buy, Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) might initially seem anachronistic. After all, the political and social winds appear to favor green and renewable sources of energy. However, one of my top arguments for hydrocarbon players like Exxon Mobil is population growth. Through a combination of natural births and immigration, the U.S. will continue to expand.
Therefore, it comes down to simple math: more people equates to more consumption. It’s at this point where policymakers will realize that it’s probably impossible to just rely on renewables to feed demand. Rather, we’ll more than likely be forced to marshal all resources – including hydrocarbons – to bolster energy supplies. Plus, the little matter of geopolitical tensions doesn’t exactly help the equation.
Further, Exxon Mobil offers a forward yield of 3.36%. While that’s a bit lower than the energy sector’s average yield of 4.24%, the company also enjoys 40 years of consecutive dividend increases. That’s dependability for you.
Analysts peg XOM a moderate buy with a $128.39 target, implying over 18% upside.
Dick’s Sporting Goods (DKS)
At first glance, Dick’s Sporting Goods (NYSE:DKS) seems a stupid idea for dependable dividend stocks, if I’m being honest. As a consumer discretionary play, Dick’s appears vulnerable to pressures impacting everyday households. Nevertheless, for forward-looking investors, DKS could be a shrewd opportunity if you’re willing to accept some risk.
Here’s my thinking. Currently, consumers continue to open their wallets but for social experiences. One corporate executive called the phenomenon “funflation.” For example, people are swarming to buy Taylor Swift tickets and not for tangible goods. However, if economic pressures build, a pivot may occur toward bang-for-the-buck purchases. It doesn’t get more high value than sporting goods you can use multiple times for fitness and entertainment.
Is it the most surefire investment idea? No. However, DKS is one of the dependable dividend stocks with a forward yield of 3.74%. It also has a low (sustainable) payout ratio of 32.5%. Analysts rate DKS a moderate buy with a $130.18 target, implying nearly 22% growth.
Keurig Dr Pepper (KDP)
Billed as a leading producer and distributor of hot and cold beverages, Keurig Dr Pepper (NASDAQ:KDP) might benefit from the trade-down effect. During the early phase of the Covid-19 pandemic, consumers suffering from collective cabin fever wanted to make up for lost time. Armed with savings and stimulus checks, the concept of retail revenge quickly materialized.
Now, you have revenge travel, a component of the funflation factor mentioned above. However, with economic pressures leading to undesirable events such as mass layoffs, people must be more careful with their expenditures. In the discretionary space, folks may seek more value-added acquisitions. When it comes to beverages, consumers may eschew fancy coffee shops for caffeinated products at their local grocery stores.
To be fair, the market doesn’t quite believe in this narrative, with KDP losing 18% of equity value since the January opener. That said, it’s one of the dependable dividend stocks with a forward yield of 2.95%. Also, the payout ratio comes in at a reasonable 44.87%.
Lastly, analysts peg KDP a moderate buy with a $35.64 target projecting growth of over 22%.
NextEra Energy (NEE)
One of the dependable dividend stocks levered to the broader energy generation industry, NextEra Energy (NYSE:NEE) represents the largest electric utility holding firm by market capitalization. Also, according to its public profile, NextEra generates about 58 gigawatts (GW) of generating capacity. In recent years, NEE has attracted attention for its investments in wind and solar power infrastructures.
However, a cursory look at the price charts shows that NextEra has struggled this year. Since the January opener, NEE hemorrhaged over 34% of equity value. Factors such as one of its subsidiaries cutting its distribution growth outlook obviously didn’t help. Still, for the speculator, the utility giant might seem de-risked.
For instance, at the moment, NEE trades for 13.63x trailing earnings. That’s modestly undervalued compared to the rest of the field. Also, the company carries a forward yield of 3.39% against 30 years of consecutive dividend increases.
Analysts rate NEE a consensus strong buy with a $74.73 target, implying almost 36% upside potential.
Sealed Air (SEE)
Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, Sealed Air (NYSE:SEE) is a packaging firm featuring well-known brands. These include Cryovac, a food packaging brand, and Bubble Wrap, which focuses on cushioning-related packaging products. If you’re bored just listening to such descriptions, that’s the main reason why SEE could be a candidate for dependable dividend stocks.
Let me address the giant pink elephant in the room first. I understand that shares have lost nearly 40% of equity value since the January opener. No, it’s not a great look. Also, the company’s CEO stepped down, effective immediately. Such abrupt C-suite shakeups raise eyebrows, at the very least. Still, so far, the market responded positively to the development.
Financially, Sealed Air benefits from strong margins and consistent annual profitability. It’s also de-risked from a valuation standpoint. Given the everyday need for the underlying products, I like the 2.64% forward yield.
No, it’s not generous but analysts are anticipating a price target of $42.50, which projects over 40% growth. Thus, it’s an interesting candidate for dependable dividend stocks.
Headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, FMC (NYSE:FMC) is a chemical manufacturing firm. To be fair, the company probably isn’t going to win any awards for sexiness anytime soon. Nevertheless, investors concerned about a possible slowdown in the economy should put FMC on their radar. As an agricultural sciences company, FMC has deep roots in the food production system.
From that standpoint, FMC benefits from permanent relevance. Unfortunately, relevance doesn’t always translate to market viability. Since the January opener, shares fell just over 55%. Again, it’s an ugly print that prospective investors must acknowledge. Also, certain factors such as bad weather did not help the enterprise. I’m sure geopolitical instability – especially regarding the procurement of critical commodities – was an unwanted headwind.
Still, I like the long-term. Demonstrating consistent profitability and robust margins (along with that permanently relevant business), FMC is attractive trading at forward earnings multiple of 7.56X. in contrast, the sector median stands at 10.64x. For passive income, FMC carries a forward yield of 4.13%.
Finally, analysts rate FMC a moderate buy with an $82.41 target, implying nearly 47% growth.
On the date of publication, Josh Enomoto did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.