W.P. Carey Pays Rising Dividends for 67 Consecutive Quarters (WPC)
By: Ned Piplovic,
W.P. Carey Inc. has paid rising dividends every quarter since September 2000 and currently offers its investors a 5.8% dividend yield.
In addition to offering a reliable income from steadily rising dividends, the company rewarded its shareholders with long-term asset appreciation. Since July 2001, when the current streak of consecutive rising dividends began, the share price rose 240% and the share price gained almost 20% just in the last year.
The company’s next ex-dividend date will be on December 28, 2017, and the pay date will be in the third week of next year on January 16, 2018.
W.P. Carey Inc. (NYSE:WPC)
Founded in 1973 and based in New York City, W. P. Carey Inc. became a publicly traded company in 1998 and changed its status to an equity real estate investment trust (REIT) in 2012. The company primarily invests in commercial properties that include office, warehouse, industrial, logistics, retail, hotel and self-storage properties. Additionally, the firm provides long-term sale-leaseback and build-to-suit financing for companies. As of September 30, 2017, W. P. Carey owned and managed more than 85 million square feet of rentable space, which was spread among 890 buildings and had a total asset value of $8.3 billion. Geographically, 65% of facilities are in the United States, 9% in Germany and 5% in the United Kingdom, with Finland, France, The Netherlands, Poland, Spain and other countries accounting for less than 5% each. The REIT’s current occupancy rate is 99.8% and the average lease term is 9.5 years. Currently, more than 25% of W. P. Carey’s leases terminate after 2030, which allows the company to execute long-term strategies to the benefit of its shareholders. Additionally, the REIT manages a series of non-traded publicly registered and private investment programs with assets under management of approximately $13.2 billion.
The company hiked its quarterly dividend 0.5% from $1.005 in the previous period to the current $1.01 quarterly dividend. This quarterly payout is equivalent to a $4.04 annualized dividend amount and a 5.8% dividend yield. The current yield, is just 0.2% below the company’s own average yield over the past five years. Additionally, the current yield is 56% higher than the 3.7% average yield of the Financials sector and 27% above the 4.57% average yield of all the companies in the Industrial REITs segment.
Since starting its current rising dividends steak, the REIT has hiked its quarterly distribution at an average growth rate of 1.3% per quarter for the past 67 consecutive quarters. On an annualized basis, this is equivalent to a 5.2% average growth rate per year, for a total annual dividend amount increase of almost 140% over the past 17 consecutive years.
The firm’s share price showed minor movement in the first two weeks of its current trailing 12-month period and dropped just 1% from $58.51 by December 14, 2016, to its 52-week low of $57.93 on December 28, 2016. However, after the late-December 2016 low, the share price embarked on a generally stable uptrend while exhibiting some volatility. Since December 28, 2016, the share price ascended nearly 25% towards its 52-week high of $72.32 on November 21, 2017. This 52-week high was just 7.8% below the all-time high price of $78.42 from May 13, 2013.
Since reaching its 52-week high in late November 2017, the share price pulled back 3.5% and closed on December 14, 2017, at $69.79, which was 19.3% above the December 14, 2016, share price, 20.5% above the price’s December 2016 low and 36% above the $51.50 price from five years ago.
Over the past 12 months, the shareholders received a 25% total return from the combined share price growth and rising dividends. Because the share price stumbled 27% between January 2015 and February 2016, the total return over the last three years is only 19%. However, over the past five-year period, shareholders received an 84% total return.
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