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X Factor: 5 Stocks Reaching Their Ex-Dividend Date on January 23

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RR Donnelley, Government Properties Income Trust, and Tyco International are on the list.

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Ten 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 four stocks that schedule January 23 as their ex-dividend date. All annual yields are estimated.

RR Donnelley (NASDAQ:RRD) yields 11.33% annually and has a market cap of $1.66 billion. The global provider of integrated communication solutions will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.26 on March 1. The quarterly yield will be 2.83% based on yesterday's closing price of $9.18. The company has paid a quarterly dividend since 1985, and each dividend payment has either increased or remained the same from the prior quarter, except for 1994 and 1995.

Government Properties Income Trust (NYSE:GOV) yields 6.84% annually and has a market cap of $1.37 billion. The office real estate investment trust, or REIT, will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.43 on February 22. Its quarterly yield will be 1.71% based on yesterday's closing price of $25.14. The REIT began paying a quarterly dividend in 2009.

Tyco International (NYSE:TYC) yields 1.96% annually and has a market cap of $14.22 billion. Tyco provides various security products worldwide. It will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.15 on February 20, and its quarterly yield will be 0.49% based on yesterday's closing price of $30.54. The company has paid a quarterly dividend since 1988.

Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) yields 1.87% annually and has a market cap of $4.62 billion. The specialty retailer of home products will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.22 on February 25, and its quarterly yield will be 0.47% based on yesterday's closing price of $47.13. The company has paid a quarterly dividend since 2006, and each dividend payment has either increased or remained the same from the prior quarter.

Progressive (NYSE:PGR) yields 1.77% annually and has a market cap of $13.66 billion. The automobile and property casualty insurer will pay a quarterly dividend on February 1. The board of directors will determine the dividend amount based on the company's 2012 financial results.

These companies also have their ex-dividend date on January 23. All annual yields are estimated.

Compass Diversified Holdings (NYSE:CODI) yields 9.21% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.36 on January 31.

Franklin Street Properties (NYSEAMEX:FSP) yields 5.91% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.19 on February 14.

Pembina Pipeline Corporation (NYSE:PBA) yields 5.51% annually and will pay a monthly dividend of $0.135 on February 15.

Watsco (NYSE:WSO) yields 1.35% annually and will pay a quarterly dividend of $0.25 on January 31.

The Cooper Companies (NYSE:COO) yields 0.06% annually and will pay a semi-annual dividend of $0.03 on February 7.

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

Twitter: @ChrisWitrak
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