Yes, what about those reports of increased dividends you mentioned? The closest I could find was a loose reference to upbeat dividends reports and takeover rumors mentioned in a reuters article. To me "upbeat dividend reports" means I should have less fear of seeing a cut in the dividend rate. Calling that a prediction of an increase is a bit of a stretch. There was also the caution that the banking sector in England is searching for a bottom through the next few months and todays rally may prove short lived. Thats OK though because it fits with my feeling that there will still be plenty of opportunities for buying on the cheap, especially after the x-div date.
Your critical view is most interesting. There are many reports (urban legends?) of an imminent dividend increase but no official confirmation from the bank nor from reliable sources. As you say, there are loose references, personal opinions and strong beliefs but no hard data. Oink
They dividend will go up for sure as long as they do not lower it. As someone has previously posted, the dividend has stayed constant for five years in terms of the British Pound. However, as the dollar depreciates, it makes that payment a higher amount in terms of the US dollar. The dollar has come off significantly since their last final payment of $1.86. I believe they will increase the dividend which will further compound this effect. If that happens, this will have a 4 handle on it instead of a three. Good luck.