Author Topic: Australian Dividends?  (Read 11753 times)

Reepekg

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Australian Dividends?
« on: April 17, 2013, 08:46:36 PM »
So I'm poking around in the commission free etfs offered in my TD Ameritrade account (which I like, because I can buy a few shares at a time without fees as I find a couple dollars here and there), and I come across EWA which is an index fund of stocks on the Australian exchange.

The dividends on this thing are 5%. The S&P500 is only throwing off 2%. Is there a reason for this? Is there some kind of 60% Australian dividend tax or does the index price grow more slowly than the S&P historically?

I hold a small amount of EWJ and EWZ (Japan and Brazil indexes) from my pre-MMM days, but their dividends are also pretty close to the 2% range. What's up, Aussies?
« Last Edit: April 17, 2013, 09:04:33 PM by Reepekg »

AdrianM

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2013, 09:04:28 PM »
IMHO don't touch it, as the top 5 companies make up 45% of the index.
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If you are interested have a look at.
http://au.ishares.com/fund/fund-overview-IHD-ASX.do

the only catch with most of these index funds in Australia is liquidity.

Reepekg

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2013, 09:12:14 PM »
Edit: Thanks for the heads up on the composition of EWA. I do like the look of the better diversification, but it seems my US brokerage doesn't offer ASX:IHD. Imagine my surprise when I viewed the summary of NYSE:IHD instead.

Still curious if a 5% dividend level is normal.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2013, 10:04:24 PM by Reepekg »

idjces

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2013, 11:57:15 AM »
i would assume its because our interest rates are higher over here, around the 5% mark.

the stock market had a nice rise around the nov-feb period, which happens to coincide with the rba dropping the reserve rate .5% (also an assumption)

mobilisinmobili

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2013, 04:04:35 PM »
FYI - the interest rates in Australia are FUCKING INSANE. Seriously, I don't even understand how it's possible.

When I was leaving in Sydney I opened a checking/savings account.. and was advised that my interest ANY balance in the account would be 5%. I almost shat my pants. Made the guy repeat himself like 5-6 times.

This was right in the middle of the global financial crisis btw. Jan 2009.

daverobev

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2013, 04:33:33 PM »
Oz is hugely export driven, and hence the AU$ is really strong. When the commodities market goes bear (and it is), exporters (Canada, Australia) will probably have much weaker currencies.

Meaning: look at the 5 year chart for the AU$ vs your own currency, and factor that in as a cost of buying Australian stocks. As well as the fact the index itself will probably go down, significantly.

Reepekg

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2013, 05:42:43 PM »
Oz is hugely export driven, and hence the AU$ is really strong. When the commodities market goes bear (and it is), exporters (Canada, Australia) will probably have much weaker currencies.

Meaning: look at the 5 year chart for the AU$ vs your own currency, and factor that in as a cost of buying Australian stocks. As well as the fact the index itself will probably go down, significantly.

Versus the USD, the AUD is the most expensive it's been in 20 years and has had a steady run up for the last 11-12. Sounds like the ASX might be going on sale for me in the next few years...

Before anybody gets too concerned that I've gone completely mad, I'm looking for something speculative and foreign to do with <1% of my 'stache in the form of about $25/week from a side hustle (refereeing kids soccer games, so really just paid exercise). Plus at 28, my buy and hold horizon is effectively infinite. Any other ideas out there?

bigchrisb

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2013, 07:54:35 PM »
Australian dividend payouts have historically been higher than in other countries.  My understanding is that much of this is due to the imputation of franking credits in Australia.  This means that for an Australian taxpayer, the company tax paid by a company is passed through as a tax credit to the shareholder.  This means that there is less issue with double taxation of dividends, so a greater preference to pay dividends rather than retain profits for capital gains.

So, for an Australian tax payer, a dividend of 5% has another 2.1% of tax credit, for a pre-tax yield of 7.1%.  I don't know if franking credits pass through to offshore investors.  Do your own research on this!

marty998

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2013, 11:08:56 PM »
Aus dividends are also higher because large companies here generally operate in saturated markets where there is limited scope for high future growth rates. Hence a larger proportion of earnings are returned to shareholders rather than reinvested into the businesses.

Companies that do retain earnings generally tend to fuck-up spectacularly. Especially when boards have hired overpaid American CEOs (sorry guys, but your managers that come down here really are shite). Best known recent example is Rio Tinto's purchases of Alcan and Riversdale resulting in massive asset writedowns. Shareholders here prefer the cash to stop this from happening.

IMHO don't touch it, as the top 5 companies make up 45% of the index.
4 Banks
1 miner

If you are interested have a look at.
http://au.ishares.com/fund/fund-overview-IHD-ASX.do

the only catch with most of these index funds in Australia is liquidity.


Our 4 banks are the best in the world, by a freaking huge margin thankyou very much. And all have a minor exposure to financial planning, Insurance, superannuation and Funds Management.

BHP gives you exposure to every major commodity in every region of the globe. That 1 company gives you more diversity in earnings than if you held thousands of smaller mining stocks.


I don't know if franking credits pass through to offshore investors.  Do your own research on this!


Franking credits are not refundable to offshore investors, but in most countries with tax treaties with Oz there should be no further tax paid on the cash div. DYOR

marty998

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2013, 11:20:28 PM »
Oz is hugely export driven, and hence the AU$ is really strong. When the commodities market goes bear (and it is), exporters (Canada, Australia) will probably have much weaker currencies.

Meaning: look at the 5 year chart for the AU$ vs your own currency, and factor that in as a cost of buying Australian stocks. As well as the fact the index itself will probably go down, significantly.

The party is already over, commodity prices have come off but the A$ is still high. The reason is because the rest of the world (especially Japan, the US and the UK) are printing money like there is no tomorrow.

Our currency is but a cork floating on an ocean. If the big countries are manipulating their currencies downwards, there is not much we can do about it.

FYI - the interest rates in Australia are FUCKING INSANE. Seriously, I don't even understand how it's possible.

When I was leaving in Sydney I opened a checking/savings account.. and was advised that my interest ANY balance in the account would be 5%. I almost shat my pants. Made the guy repeat himself like 5-6 times.

This was right in the middle of the global financial crisis btw. Jan 2009.

Insanely high? They are at historic lows for us :) Most commentators are worried rates this "low" will cause inflation to start running. Fortunately that isn't happening yet because certain overheated sectors of the economy (such as mining) are returning to more normal levels. But at some point it will happen and rates will start rising again.

I don't think anyone will be able to predict what sort of long term damage the effect of zero/negative real interest rates will do to the US, UK, Euro zone etc. A case study is Japan who have been battling away for 20 years with expansionary policy, but every country has its own problems, including ours (dutch disease perhaps?)

Ozstache

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #10 on: April 21, 2013, 05:28:56 AM »
Australian interest rates are insanely high because if they weren't our already overpriced housing market would boiling with speculators borrowing even more money to feed into it. I really wish we'd had a major housing correction like most of the rest of the world during the GFC, but we didn't so smugness still reigns supreme. And before anyone thinks I am a sore loser for not getting in on the action, I own my (now) overpriced house hence am not really affected. Think of the children! ;-)

PKFFW

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #11 on: April 21, 2013, 06:26:29 AM »
Australian interest rates are insanely high because if they weren't our already overpriced housing market would boiling with speculators borrowing even more money to feed into it. I really wish we'd had a major housing correction like most of the rest of the world during the GFC, but we didn't so smugness still reigns supreme. And before anyone thinks I am a sore loser for not getting in on the action, I own my (now) overpriced house hence am not really affected. Think of the children! ;-)
Our interest rates are insanely high?  Besides a brief stint at the same level at the height of the GFC they haven't been this low ever!  If the high interest rates of today is what is keeping investors out of the market I can't wait until they rise and the bloodbath begins!  I will have a field day picking and choosing what I want to buy.

As for a housing meltdown, I wont use the often quoted line "but Australia is different" but well, Australia is different. ;)

Seriously though, looking at the history of Australian residential property, it was, and still is, extremely unlikely that we would have an across the board meltdown similar to the US, Ireland etc.  There are many factors at play, not the least of which was the exposure to sub prime type loans being orders of magnitude less in Australia.

Having said that, some places did see falls of 30-50%.  Look at the Gold Coast and Mandurah in WA to name two.  The rest of the country, on average, has come around 10% off its peak and gone through a couple of years of stagnation and consolidation.  Which for Australia is pretty much the routine in the property cycle.

I don't want to sound smug, as anything could happen but people have been predicting a bloodbath in Australian resi property during each economic calamity for the past 50 odd years, always with the accompanying prediction that our children wont be able to afford to buy their own homes.  Hasn't happened yet.

AdrianM

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #12 on: April 21, 2013, 06:34:01 PM »
11 post was all it to to go from high dividends to housing bubble.

I have a passion for stock investing. So i have taken the time to learn how to do it with a reasonable level of accuracy.

I love the high dividends that you can find in the Aussie stock market.
I am regularly picking up High yielding stocks that pay 8% fully franked.

Most of the companies are in the 100- 500 million market cap and off the radar of big institutional funds.
So with patience I can find a perfectly good and unloved stock that pays me 8% after taxes just for the pleasure of holding it.
And with a bit of luck it goes up in price but its not a key plank of my strategy, just a bonus.
If it goes down and nothing fundamental has changed, it's a buying opportunity and I will add to my portfolio.

Caution I own this stock so am talking my own book.
An unloved mining services stock

Sedgman Limited ASX:SDM
https://www.google.com/finance?q=ASX%3ASDM&ei=jm50UYibBMuYkgWU5wE
Yeild       11.5% Fully franked.
PE Ratio       6
Market Cap      $167 Million
EPS Growth Rate         12.13%
Cashflow Growth Rate      16.93%
Equity Growth Rate         22.11%
Sales Growth Rate         32.25%



bigchrisb

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #13 on: April 21, 2013, 08:39:11 PM »
Adrian, I agree with you.  I look upon the housing debate in Australia as a bit like debates on politics or religion.  There are plenty of people who hold very strong views one way or the other.   To me, residential property it a valid asset class, but one that I can't get to stack up at the moment, so I steer clear of of it an invest elsewhere.  The nice thing is that its diverse views like this that make a market!

I just wish that there were more people in Australia that could talk more broadly on investment than a pure fixation on property.  But I guess the lack just makes for another mis-pricing in the market to try to take advantage of?

happy

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2013, 12:58:40 AM »
11 post was all it to to go from high dividends to housing bubble.

LOL @ Adrian. Being a boring Aussie overallocated in residential property what do you guys think about  Vanguard index funds vs Aussie high dividend paying stocks?  Also are there any Aussie based websites, forums etc that you think are worthwhile for a beginner like me? Or should I just chew the Fin Review regularly?

marty998

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #15 on: April 22, 2013, 01:39:53 AM »
HotCopper is a favourite of mine. Always a plethora of viewpoints on virtually every ASX stock.

Vanguard/high div/ETFs/LIC's I have no preference, If you want high yield there are also hybrids to think about.

Whatever the best you think you can get after-fees after-tax is the one you should go for. SANF (sleep at night factor) is also something to ponder.

mobilisinmobili

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #16 on: April 22, 2013, 01:05:15 PM »

FYI - the interest rates in Australia are FUCKING INSANE. Seriously, I don't even understand how it's possible.

When I was leaving in Sydney I opened a checking/savings account.. and was advised that my interest ANY balance in the account would be 5%. I almost shat my pants. Made the guy repeat himself like 5-6 times.

This was right in the middle of the global financial crisis btw. Jan 2009.

Insanely high? They are at historic lows for us :) Most commentators are worried rates this "low" will cause inflation to start running. Fortunately that isn't happening yet because certain overheated sectors of the economy (such as mining) are returning to more normal levels. But at some point it will happen and rates will start rising again.

I don't think anyone will be able to predict what sort of long term damage the effect of zero/negative real interest rates will do to the US, UK, Euro zone etc. A case study is Japan who have been battling away for 20 years with expansionary policy, but every country has its own problems, including ours (dutch disease perhaps?)

I didn't mean to imply in a negative sense at all, though I might have come across that way. When a "high-interest" savings account in Canada has a rate of 1.25% having a checking account with 5-7% interest doesn't feel like it should be possible. But happy for you guys that it is.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2013, 04:44:02 PM by mobilisinmobili »

marz1982

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #17 on: April 22, 2013, 03:29:59 PM »
The party is already over, commodity prices have come off but the A$ is still high. The reason is because the rest of the world (especially Japan, the US and the UK) are printing money like there is no tomorrow.

Our currency is but a cork floating on an ocean. If the big countries are manipulating their currencies downwards, there is not much we can do about it.

....

A case study is Japan who have been battling away for 20 years with expansionary policy, but every country has its own problems, including ours (dutch disease perhaps?)

Thanks for the alternative viewpoint Marty, I'm investing in both NZ and AUS at the moment.  New Zealand bank account interest is also very high, mostly in the "super saver" type accounts though, not in any ordinary cheque account, I guess because most of the banks are Australian anyway :)

A suggestion for New Zealand's problem - Tall Poppy Syndrome! ;) 

Reepekg

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #18 on: April 22, 2013, 03:34:08 PM »
When a "high-interest" savings account in Canada has a rate of 1.25% having a checking account with 5-7% interest doesn't feel like it should be possible.

Right. Upon hearing this, I briefly considered investing in Australian checking accounts... which should not be a thing.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2013, 03:36:40 PM by Reepekg »

AdrianM

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #19 on: April 22, 2013, 04:26:51 PM »
11 post was all it to to go from high dividends to housing bubble.

LOL @ Adrian. Being a boring Aussie overallocated in residential property what do you guys think about  Vanguard index funds vs Aussie high dividend paying stocks?  Also are there any Aussie based websites, forums etc that you think are worthwhile for a beginner like me? Or should I just chew the Fin Review regularly?

Mate i am with you on being over allocated into property, But that is the way it has to be when you want to own your family home.

On index investing in Australia I like IHD as its not OTT on a sector basis like the asx200 is.
http://au.ishares.com/fund/fund-holdings-IHD-ASX.do;jsessionid=zECzW8jpVs0hbgxDSEb5GA__.isharesau-pea02

I invest in High dividend payers because I like researching stocks and am contrarian in nature.
And have a high tolerance for risk.

When it comes to getting your information there is two schools of thought, one follow the herd to hot copper read the fin review and invest as everyone else does.
Or Two find the contrarian newsletters like the daily reckoning http://www.dailyreckoning.com.au/ and take a contrarian view of the investing world.



PKFFW

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #20 on: April 22, 2013, 05:29:54 PM »
Just to be clear, I'm not a property fanatic by any means.  I just like discussing it and investing in it.

I'm invested in shares as well.  However I'm firmly in the "impossible to beat the average over the long term" camp.  I also don't have the skills, time and resources to feel it is worth it for me to even try to beat the average by investing in individual stocks.  So I invest in index funds to get exposure to the stock market.

idjces

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #21 on: April 24, 2013, 04:15:02 AM »

Mate i am with you on being over allocated into property, But that is the way it has to be when you want to own your family home.

On index investing in Australia I like IHD as its not OTT on a sector basis like the asx200 is.
http://au.ishares.com/fund/fund-holdings-IHD-ASX.do;jsessionid=zECzW8jpVs0hbgxDSEb5GA__.isharesau-pea02

I invest in High dividend payers because I like researching stocks and am contrarian in nature.
And have a high tolerance for risk.

When it comes to getting your information there is two schools of thought, one follow the herd to hot copper read the fin review and invest as everyone else does.
Or Two find the contrarian newsletters like the daily reckoning http://www.dailyreckoning.com.au/ and take a contrarian view of the investing world.

Thanks for the links, they're good reads.


Anyone think there'll be somewhat of a correction in May? I was hoping to buy in some shares that go ex-dividend around late may (also to give me time to save funds), i'm not so sure if it's worth it anymore. The price rise since november is depressing - not having got my act together earlier heh :)

marty998

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #22 on: April 24, 2013, 06:04:30 AM »
Yes I agree. Wish I had more banks, bit of WOW & WES, bit of DJS and MYR.

Even the perennial dogs AMP and IAG have gone up, and TLS is almost back at $5!

Hindsight is wonderful.

I agree. For the most part prices have risen without corresponding rises in forecast earnings. There should be a slight correction, but its hard to see the ASX falling back to 4500 from here.

bigchrisb

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #23 on: April 29, 2013, 08:14:34 PM »
Those pesky Australian dividends seem to be growing.  In the last couple of days:

- Woodside Petroleum (an oil producer) and the 11th largest stock in the Australian market paid a special dividend, and announced an increase in dividend payout ratio.  Based on the price before their announcement, that takes the yield to a gross yield of 7.5%.  Forecasts are for it to be on a similar yield over the next few years.
- ANZ, the 4th largest stock boosted its dividend 11% today, taking its gross yield to about 7.5% for the last year.

Even the dividend misers miners are trading on a handy gross yield - BHP is running at 5% gross, and RIO is at 4.4%.

With access to margin loans in USD at one-point-something percent, I have to say I'm enjoying being positively geared.

idjces

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #24 on: April 30, 2013, 01:34:38 AM »
With access to margin loans in USD at one-point-something percent, I have to say I'm enjoying being positively geared.

Wow, how have you achieved that?

I brought into NAB today, luckily at the lowest price of the day. Figured that even if the price trend reverses, i'll still be better off long term at today's yield/valuation - why I originally wanted in. If the price does reverse I can always buy more on margin.

This market frustrates me, up 3% today, 30% year to date AND still attractive -.-
« Last Edit: April 30, 2013, 01:36:28 AM by idjces »

bigchrisb

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #25 on: April 30, 2013, 04:34:22 AM »
I dipped in too.  However, at the moment I'm choosing not to buy individual stocks, but to buy shares in listed investment companies.  Some of these are trading a long way below the value of the shares I hold.  I bought about $20k worth of CIN today.  In essence, for $22.50, you get a basket of (typically blue chip, dividend yielding) shares with a nominal value of about $27.00  I figure I'm getting exposure to an extra 20% shares this way.  And the MER is on par with the better ETFs in Australia, at about 0.12%.  Gross yield is currently about 5.4%, and its only paying out ~70% of the dividends they receive, so some reinvestment for increased future cash flow, even if the dividends of its holdings are zero. 

Gearing 50/50, I put in $10,000 of my money. Borrow another $10,000 at 1.15% through IB.  Gross income, $1080/year. Less $115 in interest = $965 pre-tax income, or 9.65% on my original $10k.  Even after being done over by the ATO at 38.5% (or worse once gillard/swan introduce some more levies), its still almost 6% post tax, assuming stock prices go nowhere.  I'll take that sort of return any day!

(of course, do your own research.  For example, CIN has a concentrated ownership in AHD, which looks like a cross-share ownership, and if the Australian dollar really tanks, I'm up for exchange rate losses.  And of course, using margin has the potential for a margin call and total wipeout of capital).  But on balance, I'm happy to wear those risks!

idjces

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #26 on: April 30, 2013, 04:56:08 AM »
Ah, very smart :)

I don't have near enough for a big portfolio, so happy to buy into one now with the small amount I have, and accumulate elsewhere later for diversity.

Does IB deal in Aus$ or US$?

eg, are the shares purchased in US$ or Aus$? do you have to convert a US$ margin loan to Aus$?

bigchrisb

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #27 on: April 30, 2013, 09:48:22 PM »
Yes, you need to do some currency conversions in IB - in effect, when I buy shares, I end up with a negative AUD balance.  I then sell USD (go into debt of USD to bring the AUD balance back to neutral).

AdrianM

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #28 on: May 01, 2013, 06:44:59 PM »
Love the Idea Chris am going to look at it further,

Did you set up your account with AUD or USD as the base currency?

My only concern would be the risk of the AUD falling in value and its implications on servicing a USD margin loan.

bigchrisb

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #29 on: May 01, 2013, 09:08:12 PM »
I set up my account with AUD as the base currency. I transfer cash into it via a regular direct deposit form my Australian bank - IB have an Aus bank setup, so no international fees.  Once its in there, then convert to USD loan.  Withdrawing funds has a fee if you do it more than once a month, and there is a non-activity cost if you don't trade enough (but the cheap interest rates outweigh these with the amount of $ I have in there).  I also didn't bother with paying for data - I use the data off my regular Aussie broker for this.

Agree about the exchange rate risk - it is quite real.  However, my personal feeling is that there is enough potential reward to justify the risk - others may feel differently.

And as a follow-up on CIN, they released their monthly NTA figures today, and it is almost $28, so in effect buying them was an extra 23% exposure to stocks than buying an equivalent index fund.


bigchrisb

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Re: Australian Dividends?
« Reply #30 on: May 02, 2013, 05:29:17 PM »
Some more dividend increases from profit announcements today.  Both are stocks I own:
WBC: Interim dividend raised to 86c from 82c, up 5%.  Plus a 10c special dividend for a total increase of 17%. 
MQG: Dividend increased from $0.75 unfranked to $1.25 40% franked (gross value $1.46), for a total increase of 95%.

Between these and ANZ's announced dividend earlier in the week, I'll have $3k (pre tax) coming my way in July. Fun times!