Dividend Aristocrat Overview: McCormick & Company, Inc.

Photo: Flickr.com/Gabor Palla

About McCormick & Company

McCormick & Company is one of the world’s leading spice and flavor companies.  It markets its products in North America through a variety of brands including Old Bay, Lowry’s, Zatarain’s, and the eponymous McCormick’s.  Other brands around the world include Schwartz (in the United Kingdom), Silvo (in the Netherlands), Kamis (in Poland), Kohinoor (in India), and McCormick China.

McCormick’s began in 1889 when Willoughby M. McCormick and three co-workers began selling flavors and extracts door to door.  15 years later, in 1904, the Great Baltimore Fire nearly put the company out of business, but McCormick rebuilt the company factory in Baltimore.

Over the next 110 years, the company expanded through acquisitions and partnerships across the world, first to Mexico, South America and Canada and then, in the 1960s to Europe, Australia and the Pacific Rim.  McCormick continued to expand across the world, with additional acquisitions and joint ventures in Mexico, Finland, Indonesia, India, Switzerland, Australia, and China in the 1990s.

The company is headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland in suburban Baltimore.

The company has been a member of the S&P 500 index since late 2010 and trades under the ticker symbol MKC.

McCormick’s Dividend and Stock Split History

McCormick has paid quarterly dividends continuously since 1925 and began its streak of annual dividend growth in 1987.  McCormick joined the S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrats index in 2011. The company usually announces annual dividend increases around Thanksgiving and the stock goes ex-dividend between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

McCormick has compounded its payout at an average rate of 8.9% over the last 5 years and 9.1% over the last 10 years.

McCormick has split its stock 2 for 1 four times: in April 1988, January 1990, January 1992, and April 2002.  For each share of stock you purchased prior to early 1988, you would now have 16 shares.

Direct Purchase and Dividend Reinvestment Plans

McCormick & Company has both a direct purchase and dividend reinvestment plan for non-voting stock, both of which are administered by Wells Fargo.  The minimum investment is $500 for initial purchases and $50 for subsequent direct purchases (as opposed to dividend reinvestment).

Both plans have purchase and sales fees.  Compared to other Dividend Aristocrats, these fees are relatively modest.  There is a $15 fee to establish a direct purchase fee, and there is a 6 cent per share fee on all direct purchases.  When selling shares, investors will pay a $15 fee per transaction, along with a 12 cent per share fee.  There is an additional $5 fee for the direct deposit of sales proceeds into your account.

Helpful Links

McCormick & Company’s Investor Relations Website

Current quote and financial summary for McCormick & Company

Information on the direct purchase and dividend reinvestment plans for McCormick & Company

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