Why Dividends Are Evil

Last Friday two venerable American corporate brands, General Electric and AT&T, both raised their dividends in response to good business news. Next month, GE shareholders can expect $0.22 per share, up 16 percent from its previous quarterly dividend of $0.19. AT&T’s move was a more modest 2.2 percent increase. But while GE is partially rolling back dividend cuts implemented at the depth of the recession, AT&T is on a steadily increasing path, with last week’s move marking the 30th straight year of dividend hikes.

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