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3 top ASX dividend shares to buy for 2021 and beyond

ASX dividend shares represented by cash in jeans back pocket
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As we embark on another year on the ASX, a dominant theme from last year is still very much at play. That would be the near-zero interest rates we are currently experiencing. 

If you thought the interest you could receive from your savings accounts and term deposits was pathetic in 2020, it’s quite likely things will not improve in 2021, given that interest rates are predicted to remain low for at least a few years. This means many income investors are increasing turning to ASX dividend shares seeking more attractive returns.

After a torrid year for income investors last year, getting a decent and secure yield from the share market is high on many ASX investors’ priority lists. So, to that end, let’s take a look at 3 ASX dividend shares:

3 ASX dividend shares for 2021 and beyond

Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS)

In contrast to the big banks, Telstra kept its (arguably generous) dividend of 16 cents per share steady last year. It seems the even more intense love affair Aussies developed with on-demand TV and other online entertainment during the pandemic was good for an internet and network provider. On current pricing, Telstra’s 16 cent dividend is worth around 5.05% (or 7.21% grossed-up with full franking).

At the company’s annual general meeting last year, Telstra’s management stated that keeping this dividend steady in 2021 was a top priority for the company. That bodes well for income investors.

Coles Group Ltd (ASX: COL)

Coles is another robust ASX dividend share for income investors to consider. It was one of the few ASX blue chips that arguably benefitted from the pandemic last year as consumers stocked up their pantries with life’s essentials. This was highlighted when Coles raised its final dividend last year by 14%. That looks pretty good considering other companies were slashing their shareholder payouts left and right.

There’s a lot to be said for owning a company that sells food, drinks and other household essentials we all need. On current pricing, Coles’ 57.5 cents per share trailing dividend is worth around 3.18% (or 4.54% grossed-up with full franking).

Washington H. Soul Pattinson & Co. Ltd (ASX: SOL)

A final ASX dividend share to consider is ‘Soul Patts’. One could argue this industrial conglomerate is a contender for one of the best dividend shares on the ASX today. This is evidenced by the fact that Soul Patts is the only ASX company to deliver 20 consecutive annual dividend increases (a record that was upheld in 2020). Yes, this company has managed to not just keep, but grow, its dividend through both the global financial crisis and the coronavirus recession.

Soul Patts is more of a holding company these days. It owns massive stakes in a variety of other ASX shares, including Brickworks Limited (ASX: BKW) and TPG Telecom Ltd (ASX: TPG). On current pricing, Soul Patts offers a trailing dividend yield of 2.07% (or 2.96% grossed-up with full franking).

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*Returns as of February 15th 2021

Motley Fool contributor Sebastian Bowen owns shares of Telstra Limited and Washington H. Soul Pattinson and Company Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Brickworks, Telstra Limited, and Washington H. Soul Pattinson and Company Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of COLESGROUP DEF SET. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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