The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE) provides both capital gains and income from dividends. Or, at least, that’s what’s supposed to happen, but there’s been precious little of the former in recent weeks with the UK’s top index heading for a sixth straight week of losses — it’s currently down 114 points on the week at 6,438.
But on the dividend front, the forecast average yield is rising as the index falls, and we’re now looking at a likely 3.3%. But how are individual shares doing against this benchmark? Here are three from the FTSE indices that have lifted their dividends this week:
TUI Travel (LSE: TT) shareholders have been having a great time, after their shares have come close to trebling over the past two years to 378p. And they’ve had good dividends too, with this week’s full-year results adding nicely to their income.
In what was billed as “another record year“, the firm raised its final dividend for the year ended 30 September by 17% to 9.75p per share. Added to the interim payout, that gives us a total for the year of 13.5p — and that’s a 15% increase over last year, representing a yield of 3.6% on the current share price.
The hike was made possible by a 21% rise in underlying pre-tax profit to £473m, with earnings per share (EPS) up 19% to 30.8p.
Equipment-rental firm Ashtead Group (LSE: AHT) also lifted its dividend this week, this time a first-half payment.
With revenue for the six months to 31 October up 23% to £849.7m and underlying pre-tax profit up 49% to £212.3m, underlying EPS gained 50% to 26.7p. That allowed the company to boost its interim payment by 50% to 2.25p per share.
Ashtead isn’t a great yielder, mind. With its share price having soared by around 80% over the past 12 months to 724p, a similar 50% rise in the final dividend would provide a yield of only 1.6%.
It’s back to travel for our third for this week, with Stagecoach Group (LSE: SGC) bringing us halftime results.
The six months ended 31 October delivered a 5% rise in revenue to £1,474m, with pre-tax profit up just 1.1% to £105.6m and EPS up 2.8% to 14.6p, all on an underlying basis. But the bus and rail operator raised its interim dividend by 11.5% to 2.9p per share, which is amply covered by earnings.
The Stagecoach dividend has been growing steadily year-on-year, and another 11.5% rise at year-end would give us 9.59p per share. With the shares at 367p, that would be a yield of 2.6%.
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> Alan does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned. The Motley Fool has recommended shares in Stagecoach.