Owning consistent dividend stocks is one of the best ways to beat the market over the long term. But dividends come in all shapes and sizes, so finding the best dividend stocks of 2014 can be difficult.

Fool contributor Travis Hoium found three companies with very different paths but equally attractive dividends. Apple has a huge cash hoard and the ability to increase its 2.2% dividend yield or even pay a special dividend. Seadrill's 10% yield is high enough to set off warning signs, but in the growing business of offshore drilling, it may be safer than it appears. Finally, there's 3M , which has paid a dividend for 97 years and increased its payout for 55 straight years.

In the video below, Erin Miller talked with Travis about what he looks for in a dividend and why the companies above are so attractive. 

Stock picks for dividend junkies
Looking for even more dividend picks? Our top analysts put together a free list of nine high-yielding stocks that should be in every income investor's portfolio. To learn the identity of these stocks instantly and for free, all you have to do is click here now.

The article The Best Dividend Stocks of 2014 originally appeared on Fool.com.

Erin Miller owns shares of Apple. Travis Hoium manages an account that owns shares of 3M, Apple, and Seadrill. The Motley Fool recommends 3M. It recommends and owns shares of Apple and Seadrill. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 - 2014 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Something to consider for the dividend investor: Please read Fooled by Dividends:


January 31 2014 at 1:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to alberto.einstein's comment

stocks for the long run.

January 31 2014 at 2:47 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply