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Trending: Apple Makes Further Forays Into Banking With Savings Accounts Offering analyzes the search patterns of our visitors each week. By sharing these trends with our readers, we hope to provide insights into what the financial world is concerned about and how to position your portfolio.

Apple has taken the first position in the list, as the iPhone maker is making further inroads into the banking sector by offering savings accounts to its credit card clients. Exxon Mobil is second, as the oil major is slowly building its climate-friendly business. ARMOUR Residential, a high-yield dividend stock, is third, while oil pipeline operator Enterprise Products Partners closes the list.

Don’t forget to read our previous edition of trends here.

Apple Launches Savings Accounts in Partnership With Goldman Sachs

Apple (AAPL) is the leader in readership growth for the past two weeks, seeing its viewership rise 35%. The company has trended after announcing it will offer high-yield savings accounts to its credit card clients.

This represents Apple’s further foray into financial services, after its payment system Apple Pay has been a big success, as the company seeks more ways to boost growth in the coming years. Earlier this year, Apple announced it was joining the ‘buy now, pay later’ trend, but it was forced to delay for unknown reasons.

The news comes about a month after Apple released the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro, the latest iteration of its flagship product and the generator of the bulk of its revenues and profits. However, demand for the new phone is lower than expected, with the company asking suppliers to scale back production.

Apple shares have been outperforming the broader market. The company’s stock is down 2.7% over the past 12 months, compared with a fall of 18% for the S&P 500 Index. Apple shares also yield an annual dividend of 0.65%, and the company has been increasing it for the past 11 years.



Exxon Launches Carbon Capture Business Venture

Exxon Mobil (XOM) is second in the list, seeing its viewership rise 21%. Exxon has been in the news thanks to its strong stock price performance and the expansion of its climate-friendly business.

The company has for years been capturing and storing the carbon emissions it generates, but now wants to turn this into a business. It tapped Dan Ammann from General Motors’ autonomous car unit to lead the venture called Low Carbon Solutions. The unit has already struck a deal with CF Industries, a large ammonia producer, to capture around 2 million metric tons of carbon greenhouse gas emissions at its plant in Louisiana.

However, one of the biggest challenges of emissions sequestration businesses has been the difficulty to create a viable business model. Exxon hopes to achieve 10% returns on the business, but the odds are stacked against the company.

Thanks to rising oil prices, Exxon shares have surged 59% so far this year, comfortably beating the broad market. Exxon also pays its shareholders a dividend of $3.50 per share, yielding around 3.5% annually. The company pays out 32% of its earnings to shareholders.


ARMOUR Residential Sees Drop in Book Value

Mortgage real estate investment trust ARMOUR Residential (ARR) has taken the third position in the list with an advance in viewership of 19%. Without a doubt, ARMOUR Residential’s high dividend yield attracted a lot of viewership.

The investor in mortgage-backed securities has continued to pay regular monthly dividends of $0.10 per share even though its book value and the stock price have continued to fall. Due to rising interest rates, mortgage REITs are suffering as spreads are widening between agency mortgage-backed securities and Treasury yields.

Shares in ARMOUR fell 55% over the past 12 months, trading at around $4.76 per share. The company said its book value in the third quarter fell from $7.25 to between $5.79 and $5.83.


Enterprise Products Raises Dividend

Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) is last in the list with an advance in readership of 13%.

Enterprise raised its dividend in the third quarter by 5.6% to an annual $1.90 per unit, the 24th year of consecutive dividend increases. Enterprise, which operates midstream natural gas and oil pipeline and has a market capitalization of $55 billion, has been offering investors stable revenues in the form of ever-rising dividend payments.

Enterprise’s current dividend yields an impressive 7.5% on a payout ratio of 73%. Its shares are slightly up over the past 12 months. The company’s stock plunged during the depths of the COVID-19 crisis and has yet to recover fully.


The Bottom Line

Apple has launched a savings accounts product in partnership with Goldman Sachs. Exxon is betting on making a viable business from carbon sequestration solutions. ARMOUR Residential has seen its stock and book value plunge following a rise in interest rates. Enterprise Products has raised its dividend thanks to growing revenues and profitability.

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