While high-profile banks such as Barclays and a number of companies have had to cut their dividends already this year, if you're an income seeking investor, don't be put off: the dividend heroes are here.
A list of 19 investment companies with at least 20-year records of dividend rises, dubbed the "dividend heroes", has been released by the Association of Investment Companies (AIC).
The City of London Investment Trust, Bankers Investment Trust and Alliance Trust lead the heroes pack, with 49 years each of dividend rises.
A further seven companies have between 41 and 48 years of dividend increases, while British & American and Schroder Income Growth both enter the list for the first time with 20 years' of rising experience.
The City of London Investment Trust could become the first dividend hero to reach 50 years of consecutive dividend increases in 2016.
|Company||Number of consecutive years dividend increased|
|City of London Investment Trust||49|
|Bankers Investment Trust||49|
|F&C Global Smaller Companies||45|
|Foreign & Colonial Investment Trust||44|
|Brunner Investment Trust||44|
|JPMorgan Claverhouse Investment Trust||43|
|Witan Investment Trust||41|
|Scottish Investment Trust||32|
|Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust||32|
|Value & Income||28|
|F&C Capital & Income||22|
|British & American||20|
|Schroder Income Growth||20|
"After a bumper start to the year, with some well-known companies cutting their dividends, it's reassuring for investors that some investment companies have an unrivalled record of dividend increases," Annabel Brodie-Smith, communications director at AIC, said.
"Many investment companies have been able to increase their dividends every year because they have the unique ability to squirrel away some of the income they receive each year for bad times ahead," Brodie-Smith added.
"This is known as dividend smoothing and is a particularly useful feature to boost dividend payments. So it's not surprising that some investors may want to consider investment companies for their ISAs or pensions."