Dividend Aristocrat Overview: Consolidated Edison, Inc.

About Consolidated Edison

Consolidated Edison has increased dividends since 1975 by keeping the power flowing in Greater Metropolitan New York City. Photo courtesy snorpey/flickr.com.

Consolidated Edison has increased dividends since 1975 by keeping the power flowing in New York City.
Photo courtesy snorpey/flickr.com.

Consolidated Edison, Inc. (Con Ed) provides electricity, gas and steam power to nearly 5.5 million customers in metropolitan New York City, southeastern New York State, northern New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania through its subsidiaries Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Orange & Rockland Utilities Inc, Pike County Light & Power Company, and Rockland Electric Company.  In addition to the regulated utility business, Con Ed also has three separate competitive business segments that are less regulated: Con Edison Solutions sells electricity directly to customers in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions, Con Edison Development develops and participates in energy infrastructure projects, and Con Edison Energy brokers electric energy and capacity and provides risk management services for Con Edison Solutions and other companies.

In 2013, Con Ed earned $1.06 billion on $12.3 billion in revenues.  Net income was down about 7% while revenues were up less than 2% from 2012.  The competitive energy businesses contributed less than 10% of 2013 net revenues to Con Ed and generated a net loss in 2013 for Con Ed due to a $68 million loss from Con Edison Development.

The company is a member of the S&P 500 index and trades under the ticker symbol ED.

Consolidated Edison’s Dividend and Stock Split History

Con Ed has increased dividends annually since 1975 and met the Dividend Aristocrat criteria of 25 straight years of dividend growth in 1999.  During the entire period of dividend growth, Con Ed increases its dividend in the 1st quarter of the year; the next dividend increase is expected next March.

Despite the long duration of dividend growth, Con Ed has one of the worst dividend growth rates among all the Dividend Aristocrats.  Con Ed increased its quarterly dividend by 1.5 cents, from 61.5 cents to 63 cents.  This is a 2.44% increase and – despite the small increase – is the largest dividend increase by percentage in 20 years.  For the last 2 decades, Con Ed has increased the quarterly payout by between 0.5 and 1.0 cents, resulting in an abysmal compounded annual dividend growth rate (CADGR) over time.  Con Ed’s 5 and 10 year CADGRs are 1.36% and 1.09%.  These are consistent with longer-term dividend growth rates.  The company’s 20 and 25 year CADGRs are 1.16% and 1.54%.  Clearly, Con Ed values the prestige of the Dividend Aristocrat label, but does not want to increase dividends too quickly and risk the record of continuous dividend growth in the future.

Con Ed has split its stock twice since beginning its record of annual dividend growth in 1975.  Both stock splits were 2 for 1 and occurred in June 1982 and June 1989.

Direct Purchase and Dividend Reinvestment Plans

Con Ed offers both a direct purchase and dividend reinvestment plan.  If you’re interested in participating in the plans, minimum purchase is $100.  The only fee for purchases is a $2 fee per purchase, whether by check or by automatic debit.  The company pays all other fees, including set up and dividend reinvestment fees.

When you decide to sell your shares in the plan, you’ll pay $10 per sell order plus 10 cents per share sold. 

Helpful Links

Consolidated Edison Investor Relations Website

Current quote and financial summary for Consolidated Edison (finviz.com)

Information on the direct purchase and dividend reinvestment plans for ED

Want to find out about more great dividend growth stocks?

Check out the list of current S&P Dividend Aristocrats.