Dividend growth accelerated in the second quarter, according to Janus Henderson’s Global Dividend Study.

The study is based on the Janus Henderson Global Dividend Index (JHGDI), which measures the progress global firms are making in paying their investors an income on their capital, and tracks dividends paid by the 1,200 largest firms by market capitalization.

The JHGDI rose to 161.9 – its highest level in three years – in Q2.

According to the study, “a more synchronized world economy supported corporate profits, with companies returning more of the resulting cash generated to their shareholders.”

Global dividends hit a new all-time quarterly record of $447.5 billion, up 5.4% year on year. Underlying growth was 7.2%, the fastest since late 2015, with every region seeing dividends grow in underlying terms.

“The improvement marked a welcome return to the long-term trend rate of dividend growth, following a lackluster showing over the last couple of years,” the study states.

Given strong Q2 dividend growth, Janus Henderson upgraded its forecast for 2017 to $1.208 trillion, which is up 3.9% year on year, equivalent to an underlying increase of 5.5%.

“Global growth is more synchronized at present than at any time in the past few years, providing a supportive environment for both company earnings and dividends,” according to the study.

The study also believes that the slightly weaker dollar will also prove less of a drag on headline growth.

Looking specifically at North America, the study reports that North American dividends rose rapidly, up 10.1% on a headline basis to $120.7 billion in Q2. The underlying growth was 6.3%.

U.S. payouts reached a new all-time quarterly record of $111.6 billion, up 9.8%, according to the study. The underlying U.S. growth was 5.9% once higher special dividends were deducted.

The study finds that U.S. banks made the largest contribution to growth.

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