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Delayed gratification is a fact of life in dividend growth investing, but there are exceptions.

The typical dividend growth stock has a low yield, but a record of providing reliable dividend growth through the years. As those dividend increase accumulate over the years, you end up with a rising yield on the capital you originally invested.

But it's possible to get both a high yield and dividend growth in today's market. Let's look at some examples taken from the S&P/TSX 60 index of big blue chips:

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- BCE Inc. (BCE-T): The yield has been in the 4.9 per cent range, while five-year annualized dividend growth has been 4.8 per cent. Inflation averaged 1.4 per cent in the past five years.

- Enbridge Inc. (ENB-T): A long-term dividend growth stalwart with a yield of 4.7 per cent and history of raising its dividend 16.6 per cent annually on average over the past five years.

- Emera Inc. (EMA-T): A dividend yield of 4.7 per cent and five-year dividend growth of 10 per cent.

- Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM-T): The yield is 4.7 per cent and the five-year dividend growth rate is 6.7 per cent.

- Power Corp. of Canada (POW-T): A yield of 4.5 per cent and five-year dividend growth of 4.3 per cent.

- Telus Corp. (T-T): A 4.4-per-cent yield and a five-year dividend growth rate of 10.1 per cent.

A good record of dividend growth generally helps propel a company's share price higher over the years. But stocks do fall into disfavor, even with a history of solid dividend growth. Reasons why a dividend growth stock is down in price could relate to concern about future prospects for a higher quarterly cash payout. That's why you have to dig deeper into beaten down dividend growers. Check the payout ratio and recent trends for profit and revenue growth. Try to get a sense of why the stock is down and whether the reasons will weigh on future dividend growth.

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Why persevere? For the rare combination of a high yield in the here and now plus dividend growth potential. The two don't normally go together, as you can see from the three 60 index stocks with the highest five-year dividend growth rates. Yields for Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc., Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. and Gildan Activewear Inc. are 0.6 per cent, 2.7 per cent and 1.2 per cent, respectively.

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