Dividends, strictly speaking, are not traditionally accompanied by strong growth in share value over time. The purpose of a dividend, which gives profits away to investors rather than reinvesting them, on a basic level is supposed to continue drawing investors to a stock even after its growth potential has plateaued. However, there are those companies that offer very healthy dividends and yet still have real growth potential, offering investors the rare double-whammy of return-on-investment. The following companies have yields that exceed 5 percent and share prices that have jumped over the last year.
Cedar Fair, L.P. (FUN)
Investors in Cedar Fair have certainly had "fun" over the last year. Cedar Fair is a Sandusky, OH-based amusement park operator which owns six amusement parks including the renowned Cedar Point in Sandusky. Cedar Fair managed growth in share value in 2011 that exceeded 35 percent that, unlike a roller coaster, never plunged below its original starting point. However, this sort of return wasn't all that Cedar Fair shareholders had to celebrate. Cedar increased its dividend yield to 12.28 percent in December. That should give any Cedar investor with plenty of money to spend on corn dogs and funnel cake.
Eagle Rock Energy Partners, L.P. (EROC)
Eagle Rock Energy Partners is a Houston, TX-based natural gas company engaged in gathering, compressing, treating, processing and transporting of natural gas. Eagle Rock's primary business is in the gathering and refining of natural gas, with a healthy midstream business that fuels its revenues. Its been a solid business for Eagle Rock as the company's shares jumped nearly 30 percent in 2011. Combine this with a dividend yield of just under 7 percent and Eagle Rock appears to be doing more than enough to keep its investors happy.
MarkWest Energy Partners, L.P. (MWE)
Immediately following Eagle Rock is one of its competitiors in the business of gathering and processing natural gas: MarkWest Energy. MarkWest, though, is a larger company that also works in the gathering and transportation of crude oil. MarkWest had a banner year in 2011, bringing in a jump in share price of over 27 percent. This came on top of MarkWest's solid dividend yield of 5.3 percent.
Main Street Capital Corporation (MAIN)
Main Street Capital is a principle investment firm focused on providing customized debt and equity financing to companies with annual revenues falling between $10 million and $100 million. By partnering with entrepreneurs, management teams, and business owners, Main Street is able to provide "one-stop" financing alternatives for the companies in its portfolio. Main Street saw a rise in its own prospects in 2011, with shares jumping over 15 percent along with the company's monthly dividend that pays out an overall yield of 7.58 percent.
Crosstex Energy, L.P. (XTEX)
Finishing the list is a return to the oil and gas industry with Crosstex energy. Crosstex is an independent midstream energy company based in Dallas, TX. The company has assets in North Texas for gathering, processing and transmission services for companies active in the Barnett Shale as well as an intrastate pipeline system in Louisiana among other holdings. The company enjoyed a 12 percent rise in share prices during 2011 and has the added bonus of a 7.21 percent dividend yield.
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