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X Factor: 5 Stocks Reaching Their Ex-Dividend Date on February 6

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American Electric Power, BB&T Corporation, and Charles Schwab Corporation are on the list.

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Many stocks will reach their ex-dividend date next Wednesday, which is significant for investors as the seller of the stock on that date, not the buyer, receives the most recent dividend.

A stock must be bought one day before the ex-dividend date to claim any dividends that have been announced but not yet paid. The company determines on the record date, which usually occurs two days after the ex-dividend date, which shareholders qualify for the dividend. Shareholders listed as holders of record after the record date then receive their dividend on the date of payment established by the company. Those purchasing right before the record date forfeit the dividend and normally get the stock for a reduced amount.

It may seem an anachronism in this era of high frequency trading, but the dividend rate rules are in force since it can still take up to three business days for transactions to be credited to and settled in an investor's account.

Below are three stocks that schedule February 6 as their ex-dividend date. All annual yields are estimated.

American Electric Power (NYSE:AEP) yields 4.17% annually and has a market cap of $21.89 billion. The public utility holding company will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.47 on March 8, and the quarterly yield will be 1.04% based on yesterday's closing price of $45.11. The company has paid a quarterly dividend since 1971.

BB&T Corporation (NYSE:BBT) yields 3.01 % annually and has a market cap of $21.38 billion. BB&T is the holding company for Branch Banking and Trust Company. It will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.23 on March 1, and its quarterly yield will be 0.75% based on yesterday's closing price of $30.56. The company has paid a dividend since 1990 and a quarterly dividend since 1992.

Charles Schwab Corporation (NYSE:SCHW) yields 1.45% annually and has a market cap of $21.05 billion. The financial services company will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.06 on February 22, and its quarterly yield will be 0.37% based on yesterday's closing price of $16.35. The company has paid a quarterly dividend since 1990, and each dividend payment has either increased or remained the same from the prior quarter.

Alcoa (NYSE:AA) yields 1.36% annually and has a market cap of $9.39 billion. The producer of aluminum will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.03 on February 25, and its quarterly yield will be 0.34% based on yesterday's closing price of $8.80. The company has paid a quarterly dividend since 1962.

Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ:COST) yields 1.07% annually and has a market cap of $44.67 billion. The operator of membership warehouses will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.275 on February 22. Its quarterly yield will be 0.27% based on yesterday's closing price of $102.53. The company has paid a quarterly dividend since 2004, and each dividend payment has either increased or remained the same from the prior quarter.

These companies also have their ex-dividend date on February 6. All annual yields are estimated.

Federated Investors (NYSE:FII) yields 4.06% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.24 on February 15.

RPC (NYSE:RES) yields 2.73% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.10 on March 8.

East West Bancorp (NASDAQ:EWBC) yields 2.57% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.15 on February 22.

Parker-Hannifin Corporation (NYSE:PH) yields 1.84% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.43 on March 1.

Pall Corporation (NYSE:PLL) yields 1.47% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.25 on February 22.

Purchase -- and have your broker settle -- before the ex-dividend date to secure the dividend.

Twitter: @ChrisWitrak
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