How my income increased $193 by doing nothing

Do you like getting paid for doing nothing? I do! That’s why I love dividend stocks. You buy stock in companies that share profits with their shareholders. Most pay every quarter, some pay monthly, and some of them increase their dividends every year. That means more money for me!

In this blog post, I’m going to show you how my annual income increased by $193 this year just by owning dividend stocks that raised their payouts. I’m also going to tell you about some changes that happened to the Dividend Safety Scores of some of my stocks, and what they mean for my portfolio.

Dividend Safety Scores come from a service called Simply Safe Dividends (they do not sponsor this blog). They provide a cool tool that tells me how safe a dividend is based on things like earnings, debt, and industry trends. They go from Very Unsafe (0-20) to Very Safe (80-100), and help me pick the best dividend stocks to buy and hold.

In May 2023, three of my stocks had changes in their Dividend Safety Scores. UGI’s (UGI) propane business had a rough time, but it’s still a good dividend stock. It got a lower score because its propane business made less money and cash flow. But it’s still a solid dividend stock with 36 years of growing dividends and a diverse business mix.

ONEOK (OKE) bought Magellan Midstream Partners (I sold my position in Magellan Midstream Partners (MMP) after this announcement. You can read more about that here.) and became a better dividend stock. It got a higher score because it improved its finances and growth potential with the $17 billion deal. It plans to keep its current dividend level and pay off its debt over time.

First of Long Island’s (FLIC) dividend got squeezed by higher costs. It got a lower score because it made less money from lending and paid out more of its earnings as dividends. But it’s still a decent regional bank with a careful lending style and loyal customers.

One of my other stocks, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), spun off its consumer health division and kept its majority ownership. It kept its Very Safe score because it did well with its drug and medical device businesses. It expects to do even better with the new company Kenvue (KVUE), which will also pay a dividend to JNJ shareholders.

Besides these changes, nine of my stocks increased their dividends, giving me an extra $193 of income:

  • Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM) raised its dividend by 2.4%, making it 13 years in a row
  • Artesian Resources (ARTNA) increased its dividend by 2.0%
  • Cabot Corporation (CBT) boosted its dividend by 8.1%
  • Arbor Realty (ABR) hiked its dividend by 5.0%
  • Pembina Pipeline Corporation (PBA) nudged its distribution higher by 2.3%, showing it cares about its payout
  • Leggett & Platt (LEG) bumped its payout higher by 4.5%, making it 52 years of growing dividends
  • UGI (UGI) raised its dividend by 4.2%, making it 36 years of growing dividends
  • Main Street Capital (MAIN) upped its dividend by 2.2%, showing it cares about its payout
    • Also paid a special dividend of $0.225 per share

As you can see, dividend growth investing is an great way to make money and income over time.