Interactive Investor

The world’s 10 biggest dividend payers in the second quarter of 2021

An electronics giant became the world’s biggest dividend payer.

24th August 2021 09:21

by Tom Bailey from interactive investor

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An electronics giant became the world’s biggest dividend payer. 

Samsung (LSE:SMSN) was the world’s biggest dividend payer in the second quarter of 2021, according to the latest Janus Henderson Global Dividend Index. The South Korean electronics giant paid a total of $12.2 billion (£8.8 billion) in dividend payments.

A large part of this was a special dividend distribution from the company. As a result, it was able to transition from being the world’s 11th biggest player during the second quarter of 2020 to the world’s biggest.

Samsung’s big payment knocked Nestlé (SIX:NESN) from its previous number one position to second place. Nestlé, the world's largest food and beverage company, had occupied the spot of the world’s biggest payer for every second quarter since 2015, with the exception of 2019, when Rio Tinto (LSE:RIO) briefly clinched the top spot.

Rio Tinto was the third biggest payer in 2021. The mining company was able to pay a large special dividend, reflective of the strong environment for commodities. However, Rio Tinto is still one place lower than the previous year. The company has occupied a place in the world’s top 10 payers since 2019.

The fourth biggest payer was Sberbank (LSE:SBER), a major Russian bank. It has previously held a place in the top-payers list. In the second quarter of this year, Sberbank paid $5.5 billion, its largest payment on record.

China Mobile (SEHK:941) dropped from third place in the second quarter of 2020, to seventh place in 2021, while Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) dropped from sixth to seventh, and Allianz (XETRA:ALV) from fourth to sixth.

Sanofi (EURONEXT:SAN) held on to its fourth-place position. The French pharmaceutical company has held a position in either third or fourth place in the second quarter since 2017.

HSBC (LSE:HSBA) was notably absent from the list. The company dropped out of the second quarter list in 2020 following the regulatory requirement for banks to cease dividend payments in the midst of the pandemic. Prior to this, the bank had consistently held a top 10 position since 2015. While payments have started to recover, it was in 18th place in the second quarter of this year.

Axa (EURONEXT:CS), the French insurer, and telecom company AT&T (NYSE:T) entered the top 10 for the second quarter of 2021.  

The world’s 10 largest dividend payers 

Rank2019 Q22020 Q22021 Q2
1Rio TintoNestleSamsung
2NestleRio TintoNestle
3Sberbank of RussiaChina Mobile LimitedRio Tinto
4SanofiAllianz Sberbank of Russia
5Allianz SanofiSanofi
6BNP ParibasMicrosoftAllianz
7HSBCAT&TChina Mobile Limited
8DaimlerExxon Mobil CorpMicrosoft
9Intesa SanpaoloToyota Motor Corporation Axa

Source: Janus Henderson Global Dividend Index 

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