Understand the pros and cons of DRIPs
Appropriately enough, investors may notice a slow trickle in earnings from "dividend reinvestment plans" (DRIPs). But these investments may end up providing a steady stream of income over the long run.
The concept is relatively simple. More than 1,000 companies and closed-end mutual funds around the country offer DRIPs to their shareholders. These programs enable shareholders to purchase stock directly from the company by automatically reinvesting dividends in additional shares. Many DRIPs also allow you to voluntarily make cash payments directly into the plan to buy even more shares.