We were looking over the ex-dividend calendar today and we were struck with the huge number of preferred stocks and baby bonds that go ex-dividend from now until the end of the month.
While there are a number of companies that drag their feet in getting their dividends declared, right at this moment we have about 220 dates set for the rest of the month–and another 80 or so that are yet to declare (but will certainly any minute now).
For the newer folks we want to make clear that you have to own the shares BEFORE the ex-dividend date. As long as you own the issue the day before the ex-dividend date you can sell on the ex-dividend date, or anytime after, and you are entitled to the dividend.
Our ex-dividend date is updated numerous times during the day and pretty accurately shows the coming dates (maybe there is 1 or 2% that are missed or have an error).
The ex-dividend page is here—you can take a copy for yourself–but remember if you rename the list for your own use it will no longer update.