Consider Equity Income Funds for Today's Market
Investors who are looking for an investing strategy to potentially cushion equity market risks, while pursuing the long-term goal of growing wealth in today’s uncertain environment, may want to consider the benefits of an investment focus on dividend-paying stocks for seeking current income.
Different from “value” investing, Equity Income investing seeks both growth and current income from stocks of companies that have stable business models and the ability to maintain and/or increase dividend payments over time. And since dividend distributions are a tangible asset, the ability for companies to declare and distribute dividends can be a valuable indicator of the strength of a company’s balance sheet, its corporate fundamentals, and business model.
Furthermore, with the low current yields on U.S. government debt along with the prospects of prevailing low interest rates, investors with an appropriate risk tolerance may wish to consider high-quality equities as an income-generating alternative.
Performance based on the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Composite Stock Price Index, a widely accepted, unmanaged index of U.S. stock market performance. Dividend-Paying and Non-Paying dividend stocks are defined by each stock’s dividend policy that is determined on a rolling 12-month basis. Ned Davis Research classifies a stock as a dividend-paying stock if it pays a cash dividend anytime during the previous 12 months. For instance, if a stock pays a dividend on July 1, it will be classified as a dividend-paying stock through June 30 of the following year. The index returns are calculated using monthly equal-weighted geometric averages of the total returns of all dividend-paying (or non-paying) stocks. A stock’s return is only included during the period it is a component of the S&P 500 Index. The dividend figure used to categorize the stock is the company’s indicated annual dividend, which may be different from the actual dividends paid in a particular month. Dividend Growers/Initiators is a subset of dividend-paying stocks and include stocks that increased their dividend anytime in the last 12 months. Once an increase occurs, it remains classified as a grower for 12 months or until another change in dividend policy. Investors cannot invest in any index. Actual investment returns may vary.
Diversification and asset allocation do not ensure a profit or protect against loss.
The performance and rankings quoted represent past performance, which is no guarantee of future results. Share price and investment return fluctuate and an Investor’s shares may be worth more or less than original cost upon redemption. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance quoted. Go to Dreyfus.com for the fund’s most recent month-end returns. The Dreyfus Corporation has contractually agreed to waive receipt of its fees and/or assume the expenses of Dreyfus Global Equity Income Fund until July 1, 2014, and Dreyfus Equity Income Fund until October 1, 2014, so that the net operating expenses of each fund’s Class A shares (excluding taxes, interest, brokerage commissions, commitment fees on borrowings and extraordinary expenses) do not exceed 1.10% and 0.85%, respectively. Total expense ratio, Dreyfus Global Equity Income Fund Class A: 1.55% (Net Operating Expenses, Class A: 1.35%). Total expense ratio, Dreyfus Equity Income Fund Class A: 1.30% (Net Operating Expenses, Class A: 1.10%).
Investors should consider the investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses of the fund carefully before investing. To obtain a prospectus, or a summary prospectus, if available, that contains this and other information about a Dreyfus fund, investors should contact their financial representative. Investors should read the prospectus carefully before investing.
Equity funds are subject generally to market, market sector, market liquidity, issuer and investment style risks, among other factors, to varying degrees. Investing internationally involves special risks, including changes in currency exchange rates, political and economic instability, less market liquidity, lack of comprehensive company information, and differing auditing and legal standards. These risks may be greater in emerging markets, which tend to be more volatile than the markets of more mature economies, and generally have less diverse and less mature economic structures and less stable political systems than those of developed countries.
There is no guarantee that dividend-paying companies will continue to pay, or increase, their dividend.
1. Source: Morningstar, Inc. The fund represents a single portfolio with multiple share classes that have different expenses. Morningstar ratings are calculated using a formula that measures the amount of variation in a fund’s performance, and which gives more emphasis to downward variations. Ratings are subject to change every month. The top 10% of the funds in the category receive five stars; the next 22.5% four stars; the next 35% three stars; the next 22.5% two stars; and the last 10% one star.
2. Source: FactSet: For the 3- and 5-year periods ended 12/31/13 based on standard deviation, a statistical measure of the degree to which an individual portfolio return tends to vary from the mean, based on the entire population. The greater degree of dispersion, the greater degree of risk. In mutual funds, the standard deviation tells us how much the return on the fund has deviated from the expected returns.
3. Source: Lipper Inc. Lipper Fund Awards recognize funds that have excelled in delivering consistently strong risk-adjusted performance, relative to their peers, for the 3-, 5- and 10-year periods, as determined by having achieved the highest Lipper Leader for Consistent Return value within each eligible classification over an individual time period. Lipper Fund Awards and Lipper Leaders for Consistent Return may be the best fit for investors who value a fund’s year-to-year consistency relative to other funds in a particular peer group. Investors are cautioned that some peer groups are inherently more volatile than others, and even Lipper Leaders for Consistent Return in the most volatile groups may not be well suited to shorter-term goals or less risk-tolerant investors. For a detailed explanation, please review the Lipper Fund Award and Lipper Leaders methodology documents on www.lipperweb.com.
The Dreyfus Corporation is the investment adviser to each fund. Newton is the sub-investment adviser to Dreyfus Global Equity Income Fund. Mellon Capital Management investment professionals manage Dreyfus Equity Income Fund pursuant to a dual-employee agreement between Dreyfus and Mellon Capital. The opinions reflected are those of Dreyfus, Newton and Mellon Capital, and are subject to change.