Deep Dive: 17 dividend stocks that may rise up to 26% in the next year

Long-term stock performance is helped greatly when companies not only pay dividends but reduce the share count by repurchasing shares, say analysts at New York-based investment bank Jefferies. A lower share count means rising earnings per share for a profitable company.

With interest rates so low for so long, and billions of dollars in government bonds around the world with negative yields, dividend stocks have been on fire. This year’s best-performing sectors in the S&P 500 SPX, +0.00% are telecommunications, with a total return of 14.9%, and utilities, at 13%.

Making the case for dividends and buybacks

The world is awash with cash, as the Federal Reserve and other central banks have unleashed stimulus after stimulus since the credit crisis of 2008.

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