The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

December 11, 2012

Local companies fear recession from ‘fiscal cliff’; tax hike on dividends could affect utilities

CARTHAGE, Mo. — Leggett & Platt Inc. prides itself on the dividends it has consistently paid its investors over the years.

In November, the company announced a fourth-quarter dividend of 29 cents per share, or $1.16 per year, giving it an annual yield at that time of 4.3 percent — which was about double the average of other companies in the S&P 500.

“Leggett & Platt possesses the highest dividend yield among all the S&P 500’s Dividend Aristocrats,” the company said in a statement, “with more than 30 consecutive annual dividend increases.” Dividend Aristocrats are those S&P companies that have followed a policy of increasing dividends every year for at least 20 consecutive years.

“Leggett & Platt has increased its annual dividend for 41 consecutive years, at a 13 percent compound average growth rate,” the company said. “Only 11 members of the S&P 500 have a longer string of consecutive annual dividend increases.”

But in November, the Carthage-based company took an unusual step with regard to dividends, announcing that it would pay its fourth-quarter dividend on Dec. 27 rather than in January, as it normally does.

It said it was moving up the dividend payment “given the significant pending increase of the federal tax rate on dividend income in 2013.”

In other words, it wanted to spare investors — at least for one quarter — the possible higher tax rate if Congress and President Barack Obama are unable to avoid going over the “fiscal cliff.”

The fiscal cliff refers to tax increases and spending cuts that are set to take effect on Jan. 1 unless Congress and the president reach some agreement before then. Among those automatic tax increases is a steep rise in the tax rate for dividend income for many investors.

Dividends are payments companies make to investors, usually every quarter, although they are not required to do so. Investors can take it in the form of a payment or roll it back into stock.

Text Only
Local News
  • Pseudoephedrine sales in Pittsburg to require prescription

    Starting Friday, those who purchase pseudoephedrine and related products in Pittsburg will need a prescription to do so.

    July 22, 2014

  • Cherokee County Commission accepts general counsel's resignation

    Kevin Cure, who has served as general counsel for the Cherokee County Commission since 2005, submitted a handwritten resignation to the board on Monday in the aftermath of a landfill controversy.

    July 22, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Parents can get help with school supplies

    I don’t know much about demographics other than the fact that I no longer belong to a “targeted demographic.” When I was younger, I was bombarded by commercials and ads from companies that were trying to sell me things that I not only needed but wanted.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jasper County Commission reviews traffic plans

    The Jasper County Commission will hold public hearings today and Thursday on a number of traffic changes proposed in the county. No one spoke when the first hearing was held Tuesday as part of the regular commission meeting, according to Jim Honey, Eastern District associate commissioner.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

  • r072214soroptimist3.jpg Volunteers spend week providing camp experience to foster youths

    Karen McGlamery is a massage therapist. Terri Falis-Cochran is a finance manager. Jane McCaulley is a retired art teacher. But for a week each summer, the three are among dozens of area residents who become camp counselors.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Neosho school board hires company to manage substitutes

    Citing its hopes of shifting health care costs and utilizing more time from retired teachers, the Neosho Board of Education granted a contract Monday to a temporary employee company to manage its substitute teacher program.

    July 22, 2014

  • Main Street TIF district study to begin

    A measure that allows the city to charge its $15,000 in administrative costs for studying a proposal to create a tax increment financing district on South Main Street was approved Monday by the Joplin City Council.

    July 21, 2014

  • Carthage man pleads guilty in sexual abuse case

    A Carthage man pleaded guilty Monday to sexual abuse of a 12-year-old girl in a plea agreement that would cap the length of his prison term at no more than 15 years.

    July 21, 2014

Must Read
Sports
Photos


Facebook
Poll

A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined. Do you think those kinds of measures should be taken?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Opinion
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter