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2 high quality ASX dividend shares to buy to beat low rates

A hand moves a building block from green arrow to red, indicating negative interest rates
Image source: Getty Images

As I mentioned here earlier, the RBA will be meeting this afternoon to discuss the cash rate.

While there’s a chance it could cut rates to zero, Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) is tipping the central bank to make no changes and then keep rates on hold for some time to come.

Unfortunately, whichever way things go today, it seems inevitable that rates will be at ultra low levels for the foreseeable future.

With that in mind, if you’re an income investor, you might want to take a look at the dividend shares below. Here’s why they could be in the buy zone:

Sonic Healthcare Limited (ASX: SHL)

The first ASX dividend share to look at is Sonic Healthcare. It is a leading medical diagnostics company with operations across the world.

Sonic has been a very impressive performer during the pandemic thanks largely to strong demand for COVID-19 testing services. In fact, demand has been so strong, Sonic recently released its half year results and revealed a 33% increase in revenue to $4.4 billion and a whopping 166% increase in first half net profit to $678 million.

In response to this result, analysts at Citi put a buy rating and $37.50 price target on its shares. The broker is also forecasting dividends of $1.31 per share this year and then $1.40 per share in FY 2022.

Based on the latest Sonic share price of $31.85, this represents fully franked yields of 4.1% and 4.4%, respectively.

Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES)

Another ASX dividend share to look at is Wesfarmers. As with Sonic, this conglomerate recently released its half year results and revealed strong revenue and profit growth.

For the six months ended 31 December, the company reported a 16.6% increase in revenue to $17,774 million and a 25.5% jump in net profit after tax to $1,414 million.

While the majority of Wesfarmers’ businesses performed positively during the half, the star of the show was its key Bunnings business. The hardware giant recorded an impressive 24.4% increase in revenue to $9,054 million.

Goldman Sachs was pleased with the result and appears to believe its growth can continue. The broker has a buy rating and $59.70 price target on its shares. It is also forecasting a fully franked full year dividend of $1.88 per share in FY 2021.

Based on the latest Wesfarmers share price of $50.73, this equates to a 3.7% yield.

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Returns As of 15th February 2021

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Wesfarmers Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Sonic Healthcare Limited. 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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