A Safe Dividend Stock That Just Reported Great Earnings Numbers

Some of the best stocks to buy this year have been those involved with consumer staples, which can provide lots of stability . Within that sector are companies that sell necessary, day-to-day goods like groceries. And one top grocery retailer that has been doing well of late is Kroger (NYSE:KR). Year to date, the stock is up over 13% and has been a much better buy than the S&P 500 – it's down around 15%.

Kroger's business still looks to be in solid shape as last week the company reported its second-quarter earnings, which beat expectations. Its adjusted earnings per share topped $0.90 – well ahead of the $0.77 that Wall Street analysts were expecting. Its comparable sales excluding fuel were up 5.8% year over year. Kroger also raised its outlook for the year, projecting that adjusted EPS for fiscal 2022 will be between $3.95 and $4.05, up from a previous range of $3.85 and $3.95.

The company is doing so well that its Board of Directors also approved $1 billion in share buybacks.

Kroger makes for a solid, safe investment to buy and hold for years. Regardless of what happens with the economy and if inflation persists, there will be a need to buy groceries. And with the stock trading at a forward price-to-earnings multiple of just 12, it's not an expensive stock to buy. Plus, it also pays a dividend yield of around 2.1%. That means that on a $25,000 investment, you could be collecting approximately around $525 in annual dividends, to go along with the stock's stable long-run returns.