EFX - Equifax Inc.

NYSE - NYSE Delayed Price. Currency in USD
+0.12 (+0.09%)
At close: 4:01PM EDT
Stock chart is not supported by your current browser
Previous Close130.98
Bid131.15 x 800
Ask131.17 x 1100
Day's Range130.41 - 131.43
52 Week Range88.68 - 138.69
Avg. Volume829,284
Market Cap15.84B
Beta (3Y Monthly)1.42
PE Ratio (TTM)N/A
EPS (TTM)-2.88
Earnings DateJul 23, 2019 - Jul 29, 2019
Forward Dividend & Yield1.56 (1.19%)
Ex-Dividend Date2019-05-23
1y Target Est124.21
Trade prices are not sourced from all markets
  • Are Equifax Inc.'s (NYSE:EFX) Interest Costs Too High?
    Simply Wall St.20 hours ago

    Are Equifax Inc.'s (NYSE:EFX) Interest Costs Too High?

    Investors pursuing a solid, dependable stock investment can often be led to Equifax Inc. (NYSE:EFX), a large-cap worth...

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    PR Newswire2 days ago

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    ATLANTA, June 25, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- A new automotive survey from Equifax finds that dealers understand digital retail solutions, but may struggle in providing such solutions to customers. According to dealers, 45 percent said it still takes between one-and-a-half and two hours, while 31 percent said it takes between two and two-and-a-half hours to complete a deal. While 84 percent of dealers said they offer appointment setting online, only 27 percent said they can facilitate the entire deal online.

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  • Markit9 days ago

    See what the IHS Markit Score report has to say about Equifax Inc.

    Equifax Inc NYSE:EFXView full report here! Summary * ETFs holding this stock are seeing positive inflows * Bearish sentiment is moderate and increasing * Economic output in this company's sector is contracting Bearish sentimentShort interest | NeutralShort interest is moderate for EFX with between 5 and 10% of shares outstanding currently on loan. This represents an increase in short interest as investors who seek to profit from falling equity prices added to their short positions on May 24. Money flowETF/Index ownership | PositiveETF activity is positive. Over the last month, ETFs holding EFX are favorable, with net inflows of $11.32 billion. Additionally, the rate of inflows is increasing. Economic sentimentPMI by IHS Markit | NegativeAccording to the latest IHS Markit Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) data, output in the Industrialsis falling. The rate of decline is very significant relative to the trend shown over the past year, and is accelerating. The rate of contraction may ease in the coming months, however. Credit worthinessCredit default swapCDS data is not available for this security.Please send all inquiries related to the report to score@ihsmarkit.com.Charts and report PDFs will only be available for 30 days after publishing.This document has been produced for information purposes only and is not to be relied upon or as construed as investment advice. To the fullest extent permitted by law, IHS Markit disclaims any responsibility or liability, whether in contract, tort (including, without limitation, negligence), equity or otherwise, for any loss or damage arising from any reliance on or the use of this material in any way. Please view the full legal disclaimer and methodology information on pages 2-3 of the full report.

  • After Equifax breach, US watchdog says agencies aren't properly verifying identities
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    After Equifax breach, US watchdog says agencies aren't properly verifying identities

    A federal watchdog says the government should stop relying on the creditagencies to verify the identifies of those using government services

  • Cybersecurity Stocks: The Trillion-Dollar Industry That Will Impact Every Stock
    InvestorPlace15 days ago

    Cybersecurity Stocks: The Trillion-Dollar Industry That Will Impact Every Stock

    Gone are the days of pleasantries where criminals would send you a ransom note in the mail, with letters cut from magazines, demanding that you send "X" amount of money or else. Now, all it takes is a single email. If you click it, they can steal your personal information in a flash. This method is known as "ransomware," a rather fitting name, if you ask me.Source: Shutterstock According to the CISA, ransomware "is a type of malicious software, or malware, designed to deny access to a computer system or data until a ransom is paid. It typically spreads through phishing emails or by unknowingly visiting an infected website." If the victim takes the bait, their personal information gets stolen, and the thief tries to extort them for thousands or even millions of dollars.So, what if I told you that this happened to an entire city?InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsThat is exactly what's happening in Baltimore, MD, right now. Not much is known about the hackers, except that they want 13 bitcoins' worth of ransom. (That's about $100,000.) And for over a month, the Baltimore government has been unable to process people's water bills, property taxes and parking tickets.For a while, no one was even able to buy a house! And to this day, city employees are still locked out of their email accounts, doing all their business through Gmail instead.If this is the first you've heard of it -- that's probably because Baltimore's head of I.T. was keeping a lid on it. It is pretty embarrassing for the city. While Baltimore rightly refused to fork over the 13 bitcoins, the whole incident exposed the need for over $18 million of spending on upgrades (and lost revenues). If they'd done it earlier, maybe Baltimore could also have avoided a worrisome attack on their 911 system last spring!But it's not just governments that are going to become big spenders on cybersecurity. Corporations will, too. And this is going to have a material effect on stocks.In fact, it already has. Just look at Equifax (NYSE:EFX).The cyberattack on this Top 3 credit rating agency -- in which 143 million people had their most sensitive information stolen, and the thief vanished without a trace -- may have been almost two years ago now. But Equifax is still feeling the effects.EFX fell 35% on the news … and has yet to recover. Then in late May, Moody's downgraded their outlook on EFX -- the first time they've ever done so because of poor cybersecurity. Between settling lawsuits, paying fines and patching up their systems, Moody's expects that the 2017 breach "will continue to hurt the company's profit and free cash flow for the foreseeable future."It's not stacking up very well in my Portfolio Grader, either. If you take a look at the image below, you can see that its fundamentals are very weak.For a company that's worth more than $18 billion, has been around for 120 years and is so intimately involved in our lives and businesses … those are some pretty dismal stats.This is just one example. Just about every company will need to step it up, if they want to survive in this new world of data breaches and "dark web" hackers.Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) -- which, for its part, is an A-rated "Strong Buy" in my Portfolio Grader -- certainly has an eye on its cybersecurity. In fact, it just put out an open call, asking hackers to attack Microsoft Azure!Like many other savvy tech companies, Microsoft often relies on these "white hat" hackers to expose weaknesses in Windows, Office and its browsers before the bad guys do. Now it's doing the same for Azure, its suite of cloud data storage services. Basically, this is Microsoft's answer to Amazon Web Services -- a huge profit driver for Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) -- and when it comes to customer data, trust is everything. No one can afford to be the next Equifax.Globally, Gartner forecasts security spending to be more than $124 billion just this year. That number is set to double to $248 billion by 2023. And after that, I see it going to $1 trillion. For its part, the Trump administration requested about $11 billion for cybersecurity in its 2020 budget.So, while MSFT is undoubtedly a high-quality stock, I'd prefer to invest in a recipient of all this cybersecurity cash. The One AI Company Set to Corner the Booming Cybersecurity IndustryMy favorite play in cybersecurity stocks is a company that has developed a cunning detection system that can analyze past criminal behavior and predict the next attack, using pattern recognition and machine learning -- in a word, artificial intelligence (AI).Founded in the early 2000s, right at the dawn of the "Internet Age," it's become a leader in the field of cybersecurity.Not only is this company helping protect Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services … its other clients include Sprint (NYSE:S), Leidos (NYSE:LDOS), and even the Steelers and Boston Red Sox. And its revenues have surged from just $2 million in 2002 to $1.8 billion today.With its cutting-edge AI system, I believe this company is going to be grabbing a large slice of this potential $1 trillion market. The company not only has strong earnings growth -- it gets a solid rating for its Quantitative Grade as well. Meaning the stock is enjoying enough buying pressure to deliver further profits to its investors in the future.So, without further ado, click here for my free briefing on the "mother of all technologies." When you do, you'll get the chance to hear my 1 cybersecurity stock for the A.I. revolution. You can also get my special report, The One AI Company Set to Corner the Booming Cybersecurity Industry, absolutely free.Louis Navellier is a renowned growth investor. He is the editor of four investing newsletters: Growth Investor, Breakthrough Stocks, Accelerated Profits and Platinum Growth. His most popular service, Growth Investor, has a track record of beating the market 3:1 over the last 14 years. He uses a combination of quantitative and fundamental analysis to identify market-beating stocks. Mr. Navellier has made his proven formula accessible to investors via his free, online stock rating tool, PortfolioGrader.com. Louis Navellier may hold some of the aforementioned securities in one or more of his newsletters. More From InvestorPlace * 4 Top American Penny Pot Stocks (Buy Before June 21) * 7 Safe Stocks to Buy for Anxious Investors * 4 Tech Stocks Looking Vulnerable * Should You Buy, Sell, Or Hold These 7 Hot IPO Stocks? Compare Brokers The post Cybersecurity Stocks: The Trillion-Dollar Industry That Will Impact Every Stock appeared first on InvestorPlace.

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  • Equifax (EFX) Up 9.4% Since Last Earnings Report: Can It Continue?
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  • 15 Cybersecurity Stocks to Watch as the Industry Heats Up
    InvestorPlace20 days ago

    15 Cybersecurity Stocks to Watch as the Industry Heats Up

    [Editor's note: This story was previously published in February 2019. It has since been updated and republished.]Another day, another hack, another reason to buy a cybersecurity stock. That has been my motto for the better part of the past few years, as a huge surge in digital data volume globally has been accompanied by an equally large surge in headline cyber attacks. The big one was the Equifax (NYSE:EFX) scandal back in mid-2017, but that incident is far from isolated. Everyone from Under Armour (NYSE:UAA) to Wendy's (NYSE:WEN) to Whole Foods to Uber to Yahoo and U.S. universities has dealt with a cyber attack of some sort over the past several years.Concurrent to the rampant rise in cyber attacks, demand for cybersecurity solutions has burgeoned, and cybersecurity stocks have bounced. The Prime Cybersecurity ETF (NYSEARCA:HACK) is up roughly 20% over the past year, almost double the S&P 500's return of 18%.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips * 7 S&P 500 Dividend Stocks to Buy at Least Yielding 3% The pace of these attacks will only increase as more valuable data shifts online over the next several years. As such, demand for cybersecurity solutions will continue to grow and cybersecurity stocks will continue to outperform.With that in mind, here's a list of 15 cybersecurity stocks that investors should watch over the next several years. Indeed, I think a few of them could be huge winners: Palo Alto Networks (PANW)When it comes to cybersecurity stocks, the cream of the corp is Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW). "Another day, another hack, another reason to buy a cybersecurity stock" could just as easily read "another day, another hack, another reason to buy Palo Alto Networks stock." In other words, Palo Alto Networks is so big and so good at what it does that the company may as well be a substitute for the entire cybersecurity space.This dominance has manifested itself in a long and steady track record of 20%-plus revenue growth and healthy operating margin expansion, the sum of which has powered a 150% rally in PANW stock over the past five years.Recent numbers are a little weak, but analysts remain confident on the stock. Fortinet (FTNT)While Palo Alto Networks may be the cream of the corp in this industry, Fortinet Inc (NASDAQ:FTNT) isn't too far behind.Source: Dennis van Zuijlekom via FlickrThis is another really big, really strong cybersecurity company that has a strong track record of 20%-plus revenue growth and strong share price gains. Over the past five years, FTNT is up 211%.Revenue growth isn't slowing at all, implying that despite increased competition, Fortinet continues to ride secular tailwinds in cybersecurity to 20%-plus revenue growth. Thus, so long as cybersecurity tailwinds remain strong, FTNT stock should do well. * 10 Stocks to Buy That Could Be Takeover Targets Analysts are worried about valuation here and now, with the stock trading at nearly 40X forward earnings. That does seem a little rich and this stock may be due for a correction in the near future. But thereafter, long-term tailwinds should drive FTNT stock higher. Check Point (CHKP)Another cybersecurity industry titan is Check Point (NASDAQ:CHKP). And, as an industry titan, CHKP stock is a likely winner if cybersecurity tailwinds stay strong.Source: Check Point SoftwareBut, CHKP stock has struggled lately. CHKP stock is up just 14% over the past year. A lot of the recent weakness in CHKP stock has to do with anemic revenue growth. Revenue growth was just 2% last quarter, an usually low mark for a cybersecurity giant.Long story short, it looks like competition is weighing on CHKP stock. Thus, go-forward growth prospects, while strong, are muddied by competitive threats. Granted, CHKP stock sports a reasonable valuation at just a little more than 20X forward earnings. But, that low valuation runs next to low growth, so the stock really isn't a bargain.Analysts aren't in love with this stock, and the chart isn't all that great, either. Thus, while CHKP should head higher in the long run thanks to industry tailwinds, the outlook for the stock in the near- to medium-term is much less promising. FireEye (FEYE)I'd lump cybersecurity company FireEye (NASDAQ:FEYE) more into the Check Point pile than the Palo Alto Networks and Fortinet pile.Source: David via Flickr (Modified)This is a solid company with healthy industry drivers, but revenue growth isn't robust. Over the last few years, that's caught up with the stock which has fallen 60 percent over the last five years. The company is barely profitable.As such, FEYE stock doesn't look like a huge winner in the big picture. * 6 Big Dividend Stocks to Buy as Yields Plunge That being said, there is an argument to buy FEYE stock in the near- to medium-term. Ever since the start of 2016, FEYE stock has been highly cyclical. In that cycle, the stock usually bottoms when the trailing sales multiple hits 3. Right now, we are just above 3. Thus, further weakness in the stock should be expected but could turn into a medium-term buying opportunity. Proofpoint (PFPT)Proofpoint (NASDAQ:PFPT) is the nascent, hyper-growth player in the cybersecurity space. The company isn't all that big (under $6 billion market cap, versus nearly $20 billion for Palo Alto Networks). But, what this company lacks in size, it makes up for in growth. \Because of this massive growth in a rapidly expanding industry, PFPT stock has done quite well. The stock is up 200% over the past five years.Analysts think this stock heads higher. So do I. Growth rates are huge, the valuation is reasonable, and the chart looks good. Imperva (IMPV)There is a lot of noise surrounding Imperva (NASDAQ:IMPV) right now. But, I think that if you zoom out and look at the big picture, this is a cybersecurity company heading in the right direction. IMPV stock got slammed recently because of mixed quarterly numbers that included a big-cut to the full-year guide. The rationale behind the down-guide was that Imperva is transitioning to a subscription model, and that is adversely affecting revenue and profits in the near-term.Longer-term, though, this is the right move. We are entering the subscription economy era. Moreover, Imperva operates in a rapid growth area of cybersecurity (hybrid cloud), and that gives them exposure to huge tailwinds over the next several quarters. * 7 Bank Stocks to Leave in the Vault Meanwhile, the valuation on IMPV stock is reasonable at only 4.5X sales. Thus, in a big picture, I think IMPV stock is headed in the right direction. But, IMPV won't be a big winner overnight, so expect some choppiness while Imperva's financials take a near-term hit from the subscription shift. CyberArk (CYBR)Much like Proofpoint, CyberArk (NASDAQ:CYBR) is a cybersecurity company characterized by small scale but big growth.Source: Shutterstock CyberArk is even smaller than Proofpoint (just a $2 billion market cap). But, growth is really big. Last quarter, revenues rose 34% year-over-year, and deferred revenue rose by more than 40%.Also much like PFPT, CYBR stock has been a big winner due to its big growth. Over the past year, CYBR stock is up 103%.Analysts think this run will continue, albeit at a much slower rate. That seems reasonable to me. This stock is slightly more expensive than PFPT, but growing at a slower rate, so if you are searching for growth in the cybersecurity space, I'd pick PFPT over CYBR. Cisco (CSCO)One of the bigger companies on this list, Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO), is much more than just a cybersecurity company. But, a big part of this company's turnaround narrative is centered on cybersecurity.Source: Shutterstock That part of the Cisco narrative is doing well, and is powering improved financial results. After its 30 climb this year, Cisco may be starting to level off. Moreover, laps are going to get tougher going forward, so slowing revenue growth is a risk this company is looking at it in the near- to medium-term future. * 7 Stocks to Buy for Monster Growth That being said, CSCO stock is pretty cheap at just 16X forward earnings, and the chart looks pretty good.Big picture, CSCO stock has great, upside from here. It is a low-risk, low-volatility investment with a cheap valuation. But, it also lacks big-time growth drivers to unlock huge share price appreciation in the long-term. Carbonite (CARB)Although it is one of the smaller names on this list, Carbonite (NASDAQ:CARB) has one of the better growth narratives in all of cybersecurity.Source: Shutterstock This is a company that is positioning itself as a data protection company. Considering the volume of digital data is exploding higher right now on a global scale, data protection is the right niche to dominate over the next several years.Carbonite's numbers haven't been great as of late. Revenues were down year-over-year for the last quarter, but gross margins are trending higher. Operating margins, too. Net profits are growing by a whole bunch from a small base.The valuation, meanwhile, isn't all that bad at 4X trailing sales. The stock is down more than 70% over the past year, but it has a bunch of positive momentum right now. Qualys (QLYS)The next cybersecurity stock to watch over the next several years is Qualys (NASDAQ:QLYS).Source: Shutterstock The value prop of Qualys is getting enterprise customers to sign onto their platform, consolidate their security and compliance stacks, and cut IT spend. That is a pretty promising value prop, and a lot of customers are buying into it.Last quarter, revenues at Qualys rose more than 15%. Gross margins aren't soaring higher, but operating margins are moving higher as big revenue growth is driving opex leverage. * 7 Safe Stocks to Buy for Anxious Investors From a valuation perspective, this hyper-growth cybersecurity stock looks fully valued at over 13X trailing sales. That is about as big as it gets in this industry, but Qualys isn't the biggest grower. Thus, going forward, valuation will likely weigh on share price performance. Symantec (SYMC)Of all the stocks on this list, Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC) is the one that has been struggling the most.Source: Shutterstock SYMC stock is down more than 16% over the past year, mostly thanks to slowing revenue growth, which just turned negative. Considering competition in this space is only intensifying, it is discouraging to see revenue growth already dip into negative territory.That being said, SYMC stock is about as cheap as it gets in this sector. The stock trades at 2.5X trailing sales and 13X forward earnings. Those are pretty cheap multiples for exposure to cyber defense.If the growth trajectory for this company improves, SYMC stock could soar higher. Until then, though, SYMC stock will remain weak. There simply isn't much demand for zero-growth cyber defense stocks. Akamai (AKAM)One cybersecurity stock with a very attractive and multi-faceted growth narrative is Akamai (NASDAQ:AKAM).Source: Shutterstock The Akamai growth narrative is really quite broad. On one end, the company's fastest-growing segment is its Cloud Security solutions. Revenues in this segment are consistently growing around 25% to 35% year-over-year each quarter, and momentum is strong due to the security portfolio including new products.On the other end, Akamai provides solutions that enable the shift from linear content to internet content. This shift is only gaining momentum, and as such, Akamai's growth narrative and numbers are only getting better. * 7 High-Yield REITs to Buy (Even When the Market Tanks) Valuation is a concern for this stock. But, the fundamentals are pretty good. Thus, while I don't think AKAM stock has another 20%-plus upside in its tank over the next 12 months, I do see this stock heading higher in a multi-year window. Splunk (SPLK)Another high-growth name in this space is Splunk (NASDAQ:SPLK).Source: Web Summit Via FlickrSplunk essentially operates in the world of turning data into actionable insights. This is a good place to be. It puts Splunk at the heart of a $55 billion addressable market. Revenues currently sit around $1.3 billion on a trailing 12 month basis, so there is clearly a long runway for big growth.But, revenue growth has been consistently slowing at SPLK. The valuation, however, has not compressed. That is a worrisome combination, and likely at the heart of its 17% drop in May. With revenue growth last quarter under 40%, and the price-to-sales multiple above 10X, this stock looks unnecessarily risky here and now.Analysts have been moving to the sidelines on this name, and insiders are selling a bunch, so now might be the time to heed the warning signs. F5 Networks (FFIV)F5 Networks (NASDAQ:FFIV) has fallen upon hard times. But, that could change soon.Source: Shutterstock Over the past year, the stock is down 22% and the forward-earnings-multiple on FFIV stock remains below 20.The valuation is attractive, but it is on top of what is projected as sub-10% earnings growth over the next several years. A 20X multiple for less than 10% growth isn't all the great, especially considering the market is trading at a lower multiple (17X) for bigger growth (16.5%). * 7 Strong Buy Stocks With Over 20% Upside Perhaps that is why most analysts have a price target on the stock that is below the current price tag. I think the analysts are right on this one. Cybersecurity tailwinds are strong, but there are better cybersecurity stocks on this list with more upside potential. Zscaler (ZS)Freshly public and relatively small, Zscaler (NASDAQ:ZS) is one of the most exciting and risky cybersecurity stocks on this list.Source: Shutterstock Zscaler went public at $16-per-share in March 2018. The IPO was a huge success. ZS stock doubled in its first day of trading, closing at $33. The momentum hasn't really stopped. Today, ZS stock is around $70.The hype makes sense. Zscaler is a cloud security company with nearly 3,000 customers, a huge international presence, 50%-plus revenue growth and 80%-plus gross margins. The company is disrupting a huge, nearly $20 billion cloud and mobility market, and revenues last year were just $126 million.Thus, the long-term growth narrative supporting ZS stock is quite promising. But, this is nearly a $5 billion company that is expected to do under $200 million in sales this year, so the stock is trading at a rather huge 25X-plus sales multiple. That isn't a risk-off investment. As such, ZS is the high-risk, high-reward name in this cybersecurity bunch.As of this writing, Luke Lango was long HACK, PANW, FTNT and PFPT. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 10 Hot Stocks Leading the Market's Blitz Higher * 7 Strong Buy Stocks With Over 20% Upside * 5 Growthy Stocks Trading Below 15X Earnings Compare Brokers The post 15 Cybersecurity Stocks to Watch as the Industry Heats Up appeared first on InvestorPlace.

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  • PR Newswire28 days ago

    Equifax to present at conferences in New York and Chicago

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  • 9 Best Dividend Stocks to Buy for Every Investor
    InvestorPlacelast month

    9 Best Dividend Stocks to Buy for Every Investor

    Editor's Note: This story was previously published in April 2019. It has since been updated and republished.No matter where we are in the cycle, it's always good to remind ourselves of what worked and what didn't. In 2017 Wall Street forecasted a rough year but ended with quite the opposite happening. Benchmark indices hit all-time records, while most sectors witnessed tremendous optimism.In 2018, the long-running bull market took a breather as investors switched from risk-on to risk-off. Occasionally, inferior investment strategies are masked by secular bullishness.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsThis year so far has only been a little forgiving and that might not las, which is why I'm recommending investors to get selective. Fortunately, with dividend stocks, you don't have to feel pressured into always picking winners. * 7 Utility Stocks to Trust for Retirement At its core, choosing the right dividend stocks to buy is about options. Although picking high-flying growth companies is a sexier endeavor, it isn't always the smartest. With passive-income yielding firms, you get the potential for making capital gains, and also residual payouts to bolster your position. During a down period, dividends can also help you ride out the storm.But don't mistake these yields as "boring" strategies. Like any investment class, you can dial up the risk for the chance of greater rewards. This is why picking the most appropriate dividends stocks to buy is so important: no one knows your investment style better than you!The following ideas are broken down into three sections: stable, mid-level and high-yield (speculative). Each section has something to offer, depending on how much risk you're willing to take.Source: Shutterstock Johnson & Johnson (JNJ)Current Dividend Yield: 2.74%If you love stable dividend stocks, Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) is one of the best dividend stocks to buy. It is the powerhouse brands of powerhouse brands. Better yet, JNJ is levered toward the ultimate in secular industries: healthcare. Separated among consumer-level products, pharmaceuticals, and medical devices, JNJ is one of the most respected companies in the world.Currently, Johnson & Johnson's dividend yield is 2.74%. But what people may not immediately appreciate is that JNJ can also surprise people in the capital markets. For instance, year-to-date, shares are up nearly 8.7%.Critically for the conservative investor, JNJ rarely loses. Between 1970 to the end of 2018, annual returns average almost 15%. Moreover, JNJ only hit red ink 14 times, meaning that 72% of the time, you can expect shares to win.In our business, that's as close to a sure thing as you're gonna get!Source: Shutterstock Wells Fargo & Co (WFC)Current Dividend Yield: 3.9%I'll admit that I wasn't thrilled about putting Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) into my dividend stocks to buy list. You'll recall that WFC was embroiled in a major controversy that shocked the entire financial and business community. Essentially, the banking giant admitted to creating more than two million fake accounts to meet ambitious sales targets.It made me sick and I'm not the only one. But eventually, people get over this stuff, perhaps resigned to the fact that the major conglomerates always win. I even made the argument that Equifax Inc (NYSE:EFX) -- yes, that Equifax -- would be forgiven. * 5 Safe Stocks to Buy This Summer As cynical as it may sound, what good will being angry do for any of us? Today Equifax is just around 10 percent of pre-scandal highs and Wells Fargo just about 10% off and climbing back.It stinks that the ultra-rich get away with bloody murder. From a financial perspective, though, WFC is an opportunity. It's slowly making recovery inroads. Most important, WFC spits out the biggest dividend yield among the "big four" at more than 3.9%. That may be the price of forgiveness!Source: Shutterstock Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM)Current Dividend Yield: 4.70%Again, on the surface level, Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) is a strange name to put on a "best dividend stocks" list. Energy is hardly the most consistent sector. More to the point, XOM has been on the wrong end of a market shake-up. Since the oil collapse of 2014, XOM has at best been treading water against prior highs.But the flip side to this bearish argument is that in practical ways, energy is the most consistent sector possible. When people hit the switch, they expect the lights to turn on. Similarly, when they go to the gasoline station, they expect to fill their tanks. Without XOM and its ilk, none of these things would occur. A societal breakdown could commence.In all seriousness, investors should be encouraged by Exxon Mobil's response to the oil market downturn. They and the remaining survivors have revamped their operations and rid themselves of unproductive assets. Today, XOM and the oil community are leaner, meaner, and better prepared for whatever lies ahead.In other words, XOM has proven its resilience adding another 6.3% since the beginning of the year. As a conservative investor, you can buy that 4.70% yield with confidence.Source: Shutterstock Duke Energy Corp (DUK)Current Dividend Yield: 4.18%If you're a real numbers guy, you'll want to pay attention to Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK). Based on a quantitative model that our own Louis Navellier developed, DUK is one of the best dividend stocks to buy right now. Mixing in commonly-used metrics (ie. earnings momentum) as well propriety methods, DUK appears primed for a stellar new year.I prefer to keep it simple if there's no real need to complicate things. Here's what I'm looking at: Since the tech bubble and the 2008 financial crisis, DUK has steadily rewarded investors with few hiccups. This year, DUK is set to return more than 13% should its technical momentum hold. * 6 Stocks to Buy for This Decade's Massive Megatrend All indications suggest that Duke Energy can keep the good times flowing into next year. As it stands, the company is the seventh-largest electric utility company in the U.S. Furthermore, management has retired many of its coal power plants, instead focusing on natural gas and cleaner energy sources.Currently, DUK stock yields slightly more than 4%. Although slightly riskier than your conservative dividend play, Duke Energy has the right balance between stability and income.Source: Mike Mozart via Flickr AT&T Inc. (T)Current Dividend Yield: 6.32%I have to say that AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) disappointed me this year in the capital markets. Typically, AT&T is like clockwork, more often than not, you know what you're getting. This year was the anomaly.T stock dropped like a rock last year but struggled back to recover its losses and then some, adding a little more than 9% so far this year.Keep in mind that between 1984 through 2016, AT&T's annual returns average more than 13%. During this time, T stock has only lost eight times out of 33. AT&T is a winner almost 75% of the time.Like the aforementioned JNJ, at this rate, T stock is practically a sure thing. The only difference is the reward. AT&T offers a whopping 6.32% dividend yield!Source: sima dimitric via Flickr Welltower Inc (WELL)Current Dividend Yield: 4.27%It's always a little amusing to see a generation come of age. The news flash that everyone else knows instinctively is that time stops for no one; "youth is wasted on the young."With that harsh reality in mind, I bring to you Welltower (NYSE:WELL). WELL stock is a real estate investment trust specializing in senior care and facilities. Even if you're one of the young millennials that sees no use for Welltower, you still might put your parents into one of their centers. * 7 Safe Stocks to Buy for Anxious Investors Joking aside, I can think of no other business where revenues are virtually guaranteed, save for a funeral home. Although Welltower's market performance has been a little choppy, in the long haul, Welltower has been a steady investment.Of course, we can't forget the dividend yields, which for WELL stands at 4.27%.Source: Shutterstock Blackstone Group LP (BX)Current Dividend Yield: 5.34%Moving on to the speculative side of dividend stocks, we have Blackstone Group LP (NYSE:BX). If you were to simply assess BX based on this year's performance alone, Blackstone wouldn't seem at all risky. On a YTD basis, BX gained nearly 35%, making it a solid performer.Typically, strong capital returns and high yields don't go together. With a dividend yield of 5.34%, Blackstone's passive income is right around the same as an average mutual fund. So what gives?Let's just say that BX will probably never make the list of best "feel good" stocks. The financial firm has been involved in a number of controversies, ranging from scandalous real-estate practices to shadow banking. It's really one of those profit-at-all-costs kind of companies. But hey, who said Wall Street was a friendly place?Source: Shutterstock Kimco Realty Corp (KIM)Current Dividend Yield: 6.16%I will tell you straight up that anything involving brick-and-mortar retail is a risky game. Earlier this year, I cautioned my readers about investing in retail REITs. With overall declining foot-traffic, the physical retail space doesn't have the appeal it once did. Of course, the most important factor is ecommerce. Why sit in traffic and wait in lines when you can shop conveniently at Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)?The flip side to this argument is that there are some retail sectors that Amazon has troubleousting. For instance, most people find it more convenient to size their clothing at a physical apparel shop than guessing online. In addition, some store brands offer better pricing or a better experience than Amazon. Think Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Costco (NASDAQ:COST) and Best Buy (NYSE:BBY). * 7 Stocks to Buy for Over 20% Upside Potential A retail REIT that focuses on strong brands just might have a chance, hence Kimco (NYSE:KIM). KIM features multiple properties running highly demanded store brands. Moreover, a good chunk of their properties are located in lucrative markets.Will it be enough to overcome the risk to the entire sector? I'm not so sure, which helps explain Kimco's 6.16% dividend yield. If you're a believer, KIM stock gives you a solid opportunity.Source: Anders Jilden via Unsplash Sotherly Hotels Inc (SOHO)Current Dividend Yield: 7.33%Thanks to the abundance of consumer-level technologies, traditional industries face obsolescence. A decade ago, if you needed to go to the airport, you essentially had to call a cab. Now, with ride-sharing apps like Uber or Lyft, you can request a similar service conveniently through your smartphone.A similar upheaval may occur in the hotel industry, thanks to apps like Airbnb. To survive in this rough-and-tumble sector, you need a fresh approach. Sotherly Hotels (NASDAQ:SOHO) just might have the magic formula. Centered largely in the southern region of the U.S., SOHO provides an authentic, unique experience for its guests.Apparently, most millennials want brands to be more authentic, and that fits SOHO to a T. Visit any of their locations, and you feel like a welcomed member of a community, not some room number. Plus, former NFL star Herschel Walker sits on the board of directors. That's just downright awesome!But will any of this matter for investors? Again, it's a tough call given so many changes in the hospitality and services sector. Still, with a 7.33% dividend yield, SOHO is worth a second look.As of this writing, Josh Enomoto did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. More From InvestorPlace * 2 Toxic Pot Stocks You Should Avoid * 5 Machine-Learning Stocks to Buy for a Smarter Portfolio * 10 Stocks to Sell in February * 10 Triple-A Stocks to Buy in February Compare Brokers The post 9 Best Dividend Stocks to Buy for Every Investor appeared first on InvestorPlace.