By 2020, according to our calculations, there will be at least 287 US publicly traded stocks that have canceled or cut dividends so far, mostly in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition, we have not included stocks that have canceled the dividend for one quarter and recently recovered with a reinstatement, such as Estée Lauder, Guess, Kimco Realty and Foot Locker. All of these stocks canceled the dividend for at least one quarter and only recently started paying out again. On balance, this means a dividend cut in 2020 because less will be paid out than in 2019.
At least 138 stocks have canceled their dividend in 2020 and are still not paying dividend or have announced a reinstatement.
These include big names such as Walt Disney, Boeing, TJX Companies, General Motors, HCA Healthcare, Las Vegas Sands, Marriott International, Ross Stores and Ford Motor.
In fact, of the stocks listed above, off-price retailer Ross Stores is a Dividend Aristocrats. OR at least that was Ross, as S&P removed the stock from its renowned S & P500 Dividend Aristocrats Index a few months ago after the dividend was cut. A salient detail is that the Ross stock was only added as one of the new Aristocrats at the beginning of 2020, precisely because the retailer had recently reached the milestone of 25 years in a row of continuous annual dividend increases. After less than six months, Ross is removed again, making it one of the shortest-recorded Aristocrats ever. The circumstances are therefore extremely natural.
Below we have listed the largest US stocks in terms of market cap that canceled their dividends in 2020, including returns in 2020.
Thus, the above list only shows the top 25 of currently largest companies by market cap.
In addition to stocks that canceled the dividend in 2020, there are also many listed companies that did not discontinue the dividend, but did cut it significantly. These are of course always available in the overview on the home page of dividendhike.com under the YTD cuts tab.
Large companies such as Occidental Petroleum and MGM Resorts, among others, announced very large dividend cuts of more than 90% due to COVID-19, but so still pay their shareholders a small dividend.
The most notable dividend cuts of more than 25 percent from companies with a current market cap of more than $10.0 billion in 2020 are below.
- Wells Fargo (WFC) announced a 80.4 percent dividend cut
- Schlumberger (SLB) AND Halliburton (HAL) both cut their dividend by 75.0 percent
- Capital One Financial (COF) cut its dividend by 75.0 percent
- Ventas (VTR) cut its dividend by 43.2 percent
- Simon Property Group (SPG) cut its dividend by 38.1 percent
- Raytheon Technologies (RTX) cut its dividend by 35.4 percent
- Welltower (WELL) cut its dividend by 29.9 percent
A third group of companies hit by COVID-19 are the ones that did not announce their annual dividend increase yet, including many Dividend Aristocrats such as Lowe's Companies. Dividend Aristocrat Lowe's Companies surprised many investors this June by not raising its dividend. However the company did announce a dividend hike a couple of weeks ago, marking the 58th consecutive year of dividend increases by the home improvement retailer.