Back in 1976, McDonald’s paid its first dividend: $10 a year to the owner of 100 shares. That was enough to buy 15 Big Macs. Suppose our burger-loving shareholder has held onto those 100 shares for the last 36 years.

“On the back of dividends alone, this shareholder has enough to buy around 2,800 Big Macs,” Mark Luschini, chief investment strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott, wrote in a recent commentary. “The dividend now received is around $11,300 per year.”

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