Statistics Canada released its retail trade numbers for November 2017 on January 25, 2018. Retail sales rose for the third month in a row to $50.1 billion — up 0.2%. Apart from some slightly weaker numbers in the summer, retail appeared strong in 2017. Excluding the poor numbers in motor vehicle and parts dealers, retail sales climbed 1.6% in the month of November. Here are some of my top dividend stocks to monitor in light of these new numbers.
Gildan is a Montreal-based apparel manufacturer with a significant footprint in Canada, the United States, and a number of other countries around the world. Shares of Gildan have climbed 2.8% in 2018 as of close on January 26. In its 2017 third-quarter results, Gildan posted net sales of $716.4 million, which were mostly flat year over year. Gildan boosted its adjusted EPS guidance range to $1.70-1.72. It is expected to release its fourth-quarter results in February.
In November 2017, sales at clothing and clothing accessories stores rose 3%. Clothing retail typically performs well in the lead up to the holiday sales season. Gildan also announced a dividend of $0.12 per share, representing a 1.1% dividend yield.
BMTC Group Inc. (TSX:GBT)
BMTC is a holding company also based in Montreal. It manages and operates furniture and household and electronic retail sales networks in Quebec. Shares have increased 1.2% in 2018 and 29.9% year over year. In the third quarter of 2017, revenues jumped 2.8%, and net earnings rose to $31.6 million from $26.1 million in the prior year. BMTC announced a dividend of $0.12 per share with a 1.4% dividend yield.
Electronics and appliances stores saw a 12.9% increase in activity in November 2017. The province of Quebec also reported the largest growth in dollar terms — up 0.9% in the month. Retail sales in the Montreal metropolitan area rose 1.2%.
Imperial Oil Ltd. (TSX:IMO)(NYSE:IMO)
Imperial Oil is a Calgary-based oil and natural gas company. The stock is down 0.3% in 2018 thus far, but shares have climbed 8.3% over a six-month span on the back of strong oil and gas price increases. The company last announced a dividend of $0.16 per share, representing a 1.6% dividend yield.
The spot price of oil reached above $66 on January 26. The potential for continued production cuts from OPEC and rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East have propelled oil since the late summer. Receipts at gas stations were up 5.9% in November 2017, the third time in four months that gas stations have seen more activity. Imperial Oil boasts a number of retail operations across North American, including Esso-branded service stations.
Canadian Tire Corporation Limited (TSX:CTC.A)
Canadian Tire is a Toronto-based retail company. In the 2017 third quarter, Canadian Tire saw consolidated same-stores sales rise 3.9% and consolidated revenue increase 5.6%. Sales at general merchandise stores increased 1.8% in November. Canadian Tire also owns and operates the clothing and footwear retailer Mark’s. Shoe retail saw a 7.4% boost in activity in the month.
Canadian Tire last boasted a dividend of $0.90 per share, representing a 2% dividend yield.
Fool contributor Ambrose O'Callaghan has no position in any stocks mentioned.