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Dividend Payments Hit A Record $1.7 Trillion In 2023

Dividend payments to shareholders around the world hit a record $1.7 trillion U.S. in 2023, according to a new report from British asset manager Janus Henderson.

The Global Dividend Index report shows that dividend payouts rose 5% year-over-year, with the fourth and final quarter of 2023 seeing a 7.2% increase from the previous third quarter.

The record payouts to shareholders were the result of a booming stock market and a banking sector that boosted its payouts as high interest rates led to improved margins.

The report notes that banks such as JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Morgan Stanley (MS), and others raised their quarterly dividends after passing the U.S. Federal Reserve’s annual stress test.

Partially offsetting the global payouts to stockholders last year were large dividend cuts by major companies such as BHP (BHP), Rio Tinto (RIO), Intel (INTC) and AT&T (T).

In all, 86% of publicly traded companies around the world either increased their dividends or maintained them at current levels in 2023, according to the Janus Henderson report.

A total of 22 countries, including the U.S., France, Germany, Italy, Canada, and Indonesia, saw record dividend payouts last year.

Europe saw the largest dividend increase with payouts rising an average of 10.4% year-over-year.

For 2024, Janus Henderson forecasts that dividend payouts worldwide will rise slightly to $1.72 trillion U.S.