Be sure to check out our detailed stock analysis (click here). Dividends are a great way to collect income at a time when interest rates are near historical lows. Billionaire Jim Simons just so happens to have five dividend paying stocks in his top ten, with four being in his top four. All of these stocks pay a dividend that yields in excess of 3%.
Simons founded the popular investment firm Renaissance Technologies (RenTech) in 1982 and now manages some $34 billion. Over the last few years, RenTech's hedge funds have used a variety of models for investing that are based on analyzing as much data as can be gathered and then looking for non-random movements to make predictions (check out Simons' cheap stock picks).
As for why we look at dividend paying stocks, ISI group examined the contribution of dividends to the total return of the S&P 500 from 1930 through 2011. Over that period, dividends provided a contribution of greater than 50% to the total return of companies on the S&P 500 on average.
Simons loves pharma
Two of Simons' big dividend payers are from the pharma sector, the first being Bristol Myers Squibb (BMY), which also happens to be RenTech's largest public equity holding. His other major pharma pick is Eli Lilly (LLY), which is his third largest holding.