With so many analysts and market pundits claiming a recession - or at the very least a market correction - is on the horizon, it begs the question: should you play a little defense and head for the consistent yield of well-known dividend stocks?
If we look at the S&P 500, there are currently 54 names paying dividends of 4% or more. If we back out the REITs, which are typically the bulk of the dividend payers, we still have 46 names paying 4% or greater. This 4% is better than what JP Morgan (JPM ) and Vanguard are telling their clients to expect as far as market returns over the next few years.
Centurylink (CTL ) is by far the highest-paying dividend stock in the S&P 500 with a yield of 14.16%. While the yield may be high, the stock has shown amazing relative weakness so far in 2019. While the S&P 500 has recovered over 8% since hitting recent lows, Centurylink remains just off 52-week lows, showing no real sign of a bounce.
The other names at the top of the list are Ford (F ) and AT&T (T ), which are familiar names at the top of the S&P 500 dividend list. With 6.88% and 6.8% yields respectively, these are some of the most common "go-to" stocks for those looking for less volatility with the highest possible yields offered.
Finally, provided that you have no qualms about investing in ethically dubious companies, you have Phillip Morris (PM ) and Altria Group (MO ), which both pay 6.5%. Altria Group comes in as the least volatile of all the names mentioned in this article today, and with a 6.5% yield, it's easy to see why investors nervous about more market downside are considering such a name.