Paying for dividends

Dividend risk

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Company earnings have been in rude health since the bursting of the dotcom bubble in the early part of this decade. Stock prices have climbed virtually non-stop, in some cases hitting all-time highs, while equity investors have been rewarded with bulky dividend payouts. Since August, however, the outlook has been a lot gloomier. The crisis that began in the US subprime mortgage market has spread throughout the economy, with the country teetering on the brink of a recession. Stock prices have plu

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