Advisors who favor dividend-paying stocks for client portfolios have reason to be pleased with this year's activity.

There were 1,774 positive dividend actions -- a list that includes increases, initiations, resumptions and extras -- in the first half of 2014, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices. That's the most in a first half since 1979, when there were 1,910 positive actions. What's more, positive dividend actions were up 15.6% from the first half of last year.

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