Dividend Aristocrat Overview: S&P Global, Inc.

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About S&P Global, Inc.

S&P Global provides financial information and intelligence to the global capital, commodity and corporate markets, including credit ratings for bond markets around the world.  S&P Global owns the Standard & Poor’s and Dow Jones brands, and employs 17,000 people in 29 countries around the world.

The company has three reportable segments: Ratings, Market and Commodities Intelligence, and S&P Dow Jones Indices.

The Ratings segment provides credit ratings, research and analytics to investors and issuers of financial instruments.  Customers for these services include debt issuers like corporations, state and local governments, and insurance companies, and investors and advisors like asset managers, commercial and investment banks, and retail investors.

The Market and Commodities Intelligence segment provides services that assist the financial community track performance, identify new trading and investment ideas, perform risk analysis, and make better investment decisions.

The S&P Dow Jones Indices segment provides a wide variety of benchmarks to help investors track performance.

The history of the company goes back to the 19th century.  Both James H. McGraw and John A. Hill got started in the publishing industry by covering the major American industry of the 2nd half of the 19th century: railroads.  McGraw had purchased a rail industry magazine The American Journal of Railway Appliances in 1888, and in 1897 Hill acquired the remaining interest in the American Machinist.  In 1902, The American Machinist Press was incorporated as the Hill Publishing Company, and in 1909 the two men merged their book publishing departments to form the McGraw-Hill Book Company.  Eight years later, the two companies merged their remaining operations and formed the McGraw-Hill Publishing Company.

McGraw-Hill began trading on the New York Stock Exchange in 1929 and began publishing The Business Week about 7 weeks before the crash of the stock market in October.  With McGraw’s publishing company having entered the reference book market in 1907 with the first publication of the Standard Handbook for Electrical Engineers, the merged company expanded into other publication markets, including the trade book field with The World’s Economic Dilemma in 1930 and the commodities information field with the acquisition in 1953 of what would become McGraw Hill’s Platts brand.  In 1966, McGraw-Hill acquired Standard & Poor’s, which itself was formed in 1941 with the merger of the Standard Statistics Company and Poor’s Publishing Company.

Expansion continued during the rest of the 20th century and into the 21st with multiple acquisitions and joint ventures.  In 1970, the company and India’s Tata formed the Tata McGraw-Hill Publishing Company, and in 1989 the Macmillan/McGraw-Hill School Publishing Company joint venture was formed to meet the needs of the K-12 market.  Opinion research company J. D. Power & Associates, independent since its creation in 1968, was acquired in 2005.  The J. D. Power segment was sold in September 2016.

Following the 2012 sale of McGraw-Hill Education to Apollo Global Management LLC, in May 2013 the company changed its name to McGraw Hill and the stock ticker symbol to MHFI.

Finally, in April 2016, McGraw Hill changed its name to S&P Global Inc. and its stock ticker symbol to SPGI to focus on its Standard and Poor’s businesses.

S&P Global’s Dividend and Stock Split History

S&P Global and its predecessor companies have paid dividends each year since 1937.  The company started increasing dividends in 1974 and met the Dividend Aristocrat criteria of 25 consecutive years of increasing regular dividend payments in 1998.  S&P Global has traditionally announced dividend increases in the second half of January with the stock going ex-dividend in the second half of February.

S&P Global has compounded its payout at an average rate of 12.3% over the last 5 years and 8.6% over the last 10 years.

In the last 20 years, S&P Global has split its stock 3 times, each time 2-for-1: in April 1996, March 1999 and, most recently in May 2005. Prior to this, McGraw Hill split its stock 5 times: 2-for-1 in August 1953, 3-for-1 in August 1956 and March 1961, and 2-for-1 in July 1967 and June 1983.  You’d now have 4 shares of S&P Global stock for each share purchased when the company qualified as a Dividend Aristocrat in 1997.

S&P Global’s Direct Purchase and Dividend Reinvestment Plans

S&P Global has both direct purchase and dividend reinvestment plans. Investors interested in participating in either of these plans can find information at ComputerShare’s Investment Center website. The dividend reinvestment plan allows you to reinvest dividends in full or in part; you can also choose to have the dividends directly deposited into your checking account.

The minimum investment for non-shareholders is $500, either through a one-time purchase or through 5 monthly purchases of $100 each. The minimum for subsequent investments is $25.

S&P Global covers all of the fees associated with the direct purchase and dividend reinvestment plans, with one exception. As a new participant in the plan, you’ll pay an enrollment fee of $10. (This is a standard fee for all ComputerShare investment plans.) There’s no fee for direct investments, either by check or automatic debit, and for dividend reinvestments.

When you sell your shares in the plan, you’ll pay 10 cents per share plus a transaction fee of $15 for a batch order, or 12 cents per share sold plus a transaction fee of $25 for a market or limit order. If you enter your order directly through a customer representative instead of online, you’ll pay an additional fee of $15.

Helpful Links

S&P Global’s Investor Relations Website

Current quote and financial summary for S&P Global Inc. (finviz.com)

Information on the direct purchase and dividend reinvestment plans for SPGI

Want to find out about more great dividend growth stocks?

Check out the list of current S&P Dividend Aristocrats.

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