It used to be that dividend-paying stocks and stock funds were seen as fit only for orphans and widows. But following the market volatility of 2008 and the current uncertainty of the low-yielding bond market, investing in companies that pay dividends is now seen as a prudent choice.

“Management shares the growth of the business directly with shareholders through dividend increases. It’s a vital sign of financial health,” Josh Peters, editor of Morningstar’s DividendInvestor told The Wall Street Journal’s “Fund Track” column.

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