Sell Any August Rally as September May Be a Disaster: 7 Safe-Haven Dividend Buys

The writing could be on the wall, as the Moody’s downgrade was poo-pooed by many across Wall Street as “late to the party.” The truth is that the United States is swimming in debt, as are consumers, now that total credit card debt is now over $1 trillion, while household debt is a stunning $17 trillion. Both are all-time records.

Very quietly at the end of July, another bank (albeit smaller than Silicon Valley and First Republic), Heartland Tri-State Bank in Kansas, bit the dust. In addition, there could be some more big ratings downgrades for the banks on the way. This time, money center giants such as JPMorgan Chase are being mentioned as possible candidates for downgrades.

The remarkable artificial intelligence rally this year has pushed the markets higher as fundamentals continue to deteriorate. With the potential for inflation to heat back up, it makes sense now to take winnings, move them to insured money markets (many now yield 5% or more) and, if you want to stay in the game, move to dividend-paying safe-haven stocks.

We screened our 24/7 Wall St. research database looking for safe-haven type stocks that are Buy rated across Wall Street and come with dependable and, in many cases, outsized dividends. Although these stocks are Buy rated, it is important to remember that no single analyst report should be used as a sole basis for any buying or selling decision.


This maker of tobacco products offers value investors a great entry point now as it has been hit as cigarette sales have slowed. Altria Group Inc. (NYSE: MO) is the parent company of Philip Morris USA (cigarettes), UST (smokeless), John Middleton (cigars), Ste. Michelle Wine Estates and Philip Morris Capital. PMUSA enjoys a 51% share of the U.S. cigarette market, led by its top cigarette brand Marlboro.

Altria also owns over 10% of Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer, which some feel is worth more than $10 billion and may be a segment of the company that could be sold. Given the issues the brewer has had this year, it may indeed be a candidate to be sold.

Investors receive an 8.80% dividend. Stifel’s target price on Altria stock is $52, and the consensus target across Wall Street is $49.44. Wednesday’s closing share price was $42.75.

ALSO READ: Worried About a Market Crash in the Fall? These 5 Dividend Sin Stocks to Buy Always Have Demand

American Electric Power

This industry-leading utility is also a solid dividend-paying company. American Electric Power Co. Inc. (NYSE: AEP) is one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, delivering electricity to more than 5.4 million customers in 11 states.

The company ranks among the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning nearly 38,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the United States. It also owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, a more than 40,000-mile network that includes more 765-kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined.

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