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UK dividends starting to rise

Despite the fact that the overall picture for UK equity dividend payments is likely to show a fall of 6.5% in 2010 the vast majority of the shortfall is made up of the fact that BP will suspend dividend payments in the short-term. If you strip out the BP dividend, which is by far the largest factor, the trend has actually turned and is beginning to improve. So what can we hope for the future?

It seems as though a number or cyclical companies, i.e. those whose performance is directly linked to the economy, are beginning to emerge from the depths of financial hardship. A number of the more defensive companies, such as utilities, are now being left behind in relation to growth in dividend payments. Whether this will last remains to be seen but the very fact that a number of UK companies are apparently more positive on the economy than they have been for some time is a welcome change.

If like many you consider that the UK stock market reflects future hopes for the UK economy then we could well be in for a very volatile period if recent performance is anything to go by!

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