Now may not be the safest time to go looking for dividend stocks. Many companies are cutting or suspending their payouts in order to conserve cash. However, the three stocks below are still safe bets to continue paying their dividends. With their stock prices down this year, investors have an opportunity to buy them while they’re paying better-than-normal yields:
Telus Corp (TSX:T)(NYSE:TU) is a top stock that investors can buy on the dip today. Down 10% by the end of April, it’s done a bit better than the TSX, which is down about 14%. Stability is one thing investors have come to expect from Telus. The stock averages a beta of 0.60, suggesting that it’s a lot more stable than the TSX in its movements.
The telecom company is an industry leader in Canada — and demand for Internet isn’t going to go anywhere, certainly not during a pandemic when people are staying indoors. That’s why it may be one of the better TSX stocks to buy today — it’s a safe bet to get through these difficult times without incurring much carnage.
The stock currently pays a quarterly dividend of $0.29125 which yields around 5.1% annually. It’s a solid dividend from a company that investors should be able to count on. Telus has also increased its dividends in the past. And with growing payouts, investors can earn more on their initial investment the longer they hold onto Telus.
Hydro One Limited (TSX:H) is even less volatile than Telus, with its beta around 0.23. The utility stock makes for another good investment that you can count on to produce cash flow for your portfolio. The company’s posted a strong operating margin of at least 15% in each of its last 10 quarterly results.
The consistency the stock offers is a key reason why investors haven’t been quick to sell the stock — year to date, Hydro One is down just 1%.
The stock suffered a larger decline in March when the markets were crashing. However, it was quick to bounce back and is now around where it started the year. Hydro One pays investors a quarterly dividend of $0.2415, which on an annual basis pays approximately 3.9%.
While that’s not as high a yield as what Telus offers, it may be a better fit for risk-averse investors who just want a payout and not worry about anything else.
NorthWest Healthcare Properties Real Estate Investment Trust (TSX:NWH.UN) is down more than 20% through the first four months of 2020. The stock pays investors a monthly dividend of $0.06667. At a reduced share price, the dividend now yields around 8.5% per year. It’s a top dividend you might expect from a risky investment.
However, NorthWest’s portfolio consists of hospitals, medical office buildings, and other healthcare facilities. The stock has relatively lower risk than other real estate investment trusts because it’s not heavily exposed to retail and has strong geographical diversification.
The company issued an update relating to COVID-19 in April. NorthWest reminded investors that the majority of its tenants in Germany and Canada, where it has the bulk of its properties, are “comprised primarily of doctors and related medical professionals.”
Shares of NorthWest are currently trading around book value. Investors may benefit not only from its dividend income, but also from the potential for the stock to rise in value. Prior to 2020, the last time shares of NorthWest traded this low was back in late 2018 during the last big market selloff.