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2017 has been an incredibly successful year for dividend investors.

With the Dow Jones Industrial Average up by almost 20% this year, there were very few companies that cut their dividends; most companies either increased or maintained their dividend from 2016 to 2017. However, there were some sectors that were buoyed more than others by the economic conditions that we are living in and the geopolitical tensions that existed this year.

Six trends that we observed in dividend investors’ watch lists this year were:

  1. Investors prefer more regular income. Companies that pay monthly dividends were preferred over companies that pay quarterly.
  1. The aerospace and defense industry was the biggest winner on the list, as most top stocks in that industry saw their rank move up.
  1. The best dividend stocks, or stocks that have high DARS ratings, continued to move up on investor watchlists.
  1. Companies that cut dividends were not well received by investors, irrespective of sector or industry.
  1. Industrial goods stocks such as Eaton Corp moved up on the list as investors preferred a perfect combination of above-average dividend yields and balanced payout ratios.
  1. REITs were major winners, as they typically are in rising interest rate environments. They saw their ranks improve as their yields were significantly higher than the market average.

Our Most Watched Stocks List is a user-generated, interest-based ranking of dividend-paying stocks, giving you a real-time snapshot of buying interest in the market. Generated by our Premium members’ watchlists, it’s aggregated and ranked by the most-watched criteria.

The list has been designed to help income investors navigate the top dividend stocks being tracked by one of the world’s most advanced investing communities.

Check out which stocks improved their ranks on the list last week here.

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