Earn 3% or more a year with these dividend-paying stocks

Portion of stock certificate

If you’re looking to earn a greater return on your money, we’ve got a few stocks that pay 3% to 6% a year in dividends for you to check out.

Just remember that money you invest in stock isn't FDIC-insured as it is when you purchase certificates of deposit.

The value of your shares can go down, and you should already know how volatile the stock market has been lately.

You can minimize the risk by checking a stock’s beta value, which is a common measure of volatility.

A beta below 1 means a stock's price moves less than the market average, while anything above 1 means the stock moves more than the market.

If you’re willing to take a chance, here are a few blue chip stocks in the Dow Jones Industrial Average that you might want to check out:

AT&T, the communications giant, pays a huge 5.96% dividend and has a beta of 0.62 as of Dec. 1. The stock price crashed hard in the nosedive of 2008, but it’s been relatively stable over the past three years.

Heinz, the food manufacturer, is a good company that seems to fly under the radar. It yields a modest 3.65% (still better than any deposit account) and has a beta of 0.57. Share price has grown 47% over the past decade, and it is pretty recession-proof, considering people will always want ketchup for their fries.

Pfizer, the massive pharmaceutical company, pays a 3.99% dividend and has a beta of 0.71. The stock lost half of its value in the past decade but has remained relatively stable since 2008.

Learn how to build a strategy and find more examples of companies worth investigating by reading our story about how you can earn higher yields with dividend-paying stocks.

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