I’m not going out on a limb to say that nobody likes paying bills. However, things like electricity, heat, and the Internet are kind of cool to have, regardless of their monthly expense. I’m sure our forefathers would be envious.
And guess what? The providers of these services are well aware of this dynamic!
Outside of the grocery store, there’s no bigger drain on my bank account, month in and month out, than the payout I provide to Rogers Communications Inc. (TSX:RCI.B)(NYSE:RCI). And with three young children coming into their prime data-consuming years, I don’t expect these payments to shrink anytime soon.
However, I’m here to tell you there is a solution. Or at least a partial solution, outside of severing ties altogether.
Within the past year, I’ve become a Rogers shareholder—something that has, in a sense, inverted my relationship with the company (you might rightly ask where this logic has been for the past 20 years!).
Rather than money flowing one way—out of my bank account and into theirs—because of the company’s healthy dividend of $1.92 per share per year, there is now a two-way flow of cash.
I’m still paying Rogers, but Rogers is now paying me.
Though not a BCE Inc. (TSX:BCE)(NYSE:BCE) customer or shareholder, this same scenario holds. Same with Telus, or going beyond the telecom space, Enbridge, or any of the banks for that matter.
You see, dividends are a magical and oft-overlooked part of investing, and given the regular inflow of payments they receive from you and I, there are few companies as well tailored to dishing out dividend cheques as the ones found in the telecom sector.
That’s not all
Here’s another great thing about owning Rogers and/or BCE.
Another bane of my existence, for virtually my entire life, has been the Toronto Maple Leafs. Sure, they’ve had the odd playoff run, but a championship has rarely, if ever, truly been in sight during all of my near-40 years.
However, I’m not sure there’s a tougher ticket in all of sports. The Air Canada Centre, and before it, Maple Leaf Gardens, is jammed night in and night out. Heck, they even sell out preseason games! People spend a literal small fortune to consume what’s often a very mediocre product. And given the roster that’s set to hit the ice this coming fall, mediocre might be a best case scenario for the coming season.
Indeed, though frequently terrible, the organization seems to possess something of a license to print money. But by owning Rogers and/or BCE, you too can get in on a piece of the action. Trust me. It makes watching the team lose night after night significantly more tolerable. (Which, by the way, might go a long way in explaining the predicament they’re perpetually in.)
Fat dividends and a line into one of the world’s most richly valued sports organizations are really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what these organizations offer up to investors.
Personally, I’ve hitched my wagon to Rogers largely because, in my opinion, there are more unique assets in its back pocket than the competition (namely BCE and Telus): full ownership of the Toronto Blue Jays (how ’bout them Jays, by the way!), an unmatched portfolio of wireless spectrum, and a hard-wired expansive fibre network, to name but a few. And to boot, it’s the cheapest of the bunch from a valuation perspective. Given these attributes, Rogers is much more than just a dividend stock. There’s a case to be made for all three telecoms in this respect.
If your portfolio has been battered and bruised of late, and if your bank account is like mine and sees a significant outflow each month into the coffers of Rogers or BCE (or Telus), consider picking up some shares in these companies. They’re relatively defensive and they pay you to own them—an attractive combination in any market, but especially these days!
Iain Butler owns shares of Rogers Communications. Rogers Communications is a recommendation of Stock Advisor Canada. The Motley Fool owns shares of ROGERS COMMUNICATIONS INC. CL B NV.