You can’t spend earnings! At first glance, this seems like an odd statement, possibly even incorrect. However, it is not only correct, but an important axiom for all types of investors. Through fraud and manipulation financial statements can be made to look quite impressive, but the cash that arrives in your brokerage account is real.
An increasing cash dividend keeps pressure on management to ensure the company is well run. If there are too many missteps, eventually the dividend will slip. Here are several stocks where management recently met the challenge by raising their cash dividends: