About Air Products & Chemicals, Inc.
Air Products & Chemicals, Inc. supplies industrial gases, performance materials, equipment and technology for a variety of uses including, but not limited to medical, energy, electronics, transportation, construction, and agriculture applications. Air Products was founded in 1940 in Detroit, Michigan to provide on-site production of industrial gases for customers. Following World War II, the company moved to Allentown, Pennsylvania and transitioned to civilian production. Air Products supplies gases and specialty chemicals to the petrochemical industry, food and beverage industry, and pharmaceutical industry, among others and employs over 20,000 employees in more than 50 countries.
The company is a member of the S&P 500 index and a Fortune 500 company, and is traded under the ticker symbol APD.
Air Products’ Dividend and Stock Split History
Air Products’ joined the S&P Dividend Aristocrats in 2007 and have increased their annual dividends for 32 consecutive years. The company usually increases their dividend in the 2nd quarter of the calendar year. In 2014, Air Products’ increased the quarterly dividend by over 8%, to 77 cents from 71 cents. The next dividend increase is expected to be announced in March 2015 and paid in May 2015.
Air Products has compounded their payout by an annualized dividend growth of 10.26% over the last 5 years and by an annualized dividend growth of 12.15% over the last 10 years. This represents an acceleration of dividend growth from the 20 and 25 year compounded growth rates of 9.51% and 9.68%, respectively.
Air Products has split their stock 2 for 1 six times: in May 1966, May 1973, July 1976, June 1986, March 1992, and June 1998. One share of stock purchased at the beginning of 1966 would now be 64 shares that would have paid a total of $177.28 in dividends in 2013. An investor that purchased a single share at the beginning of 1981, when Air Products began paying regular dividends, would have received 80 cents in dividends that year. By 2013, that investor would now own 16 shares and received a total of $44.32 in cash dividends.
Direct Purchase and Dividend Reinvestment Plans
Air Products has both direct stock purchase and dividend reinvestment plans. Both plans have fees that are charged to the investor. The minimum initial purchase is $500 and for additional purchases the minimum is $100. For direct stock purchases, there is a $2.50 charge per purchase. For dividend reinvestment purchases, the fee is 2% of the reinvested amount, up to $2.50. For stock sales, investors are charged a fee of $15 plus a per share charge of 10 cents. The maximum fee is $20 for sales of more than 50 shares. The best way to minimize purchase and sales fees is to buy and sell shares in large batches.