Stock dividend payouts have soared over the past few years, especially in the United States. But that heady growth will decelerate in 2015 amid slowing global economic growth, predicts Henderson Global Investors, a London-based money management firm.
The top 1,200 publicly held global companies will pay $1.24 trillion in dividends next year, rising 4 percent from 2014, according to Henderson, CNBC
reports. Henderson predicts payouts of $1.19 trillion this year, a 12.6 percent jump from 2013.
"Despite the uncertain outlook for economic growth in 2015, we expect another good year of dividend growth, albeit at a slower rate than this year," said Alex Crooke, head of global equity income at Henderson.
Europe is one source of the expected slowdown. Already, dividend payments among European companies slid 4.6 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier, according to Henderson.
To be sure, the United States shows no sign of weakness, with dividends rising 11.4 percent in the third quarter compared with the third quarter of 2013, Henderson says.
"The U.S. is particularly impressive, as American firms increase dividend payouts helped by rising profits. Globally, investors should reap approximately $133billion more in dividends this year than last," Crooke said.
One company you shouldn't expect a dividend from is Berkshire Hathaway, which is led by legendary investor Warren Buffett.
Berkshire hasn't provided a dividend since 1967, notes Elizabeth MacDonald, senior stocks editor at Fox Business Network
. But its top four holdings do so generously: American Express, Coca-Cola, IBM and Wells Fargo.
Buffett lauded Coke in his 2010 shareholders letter
for increasing its dividend every year since Berkshire purchased its shares in 1994. "Other companies we hold are likely to increase their dividends as well," he wrote.
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