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2012 S&P Dividend Aristocrats

Every year around the middle of December, the S&P announces the additions and deletions to its list of Dividend Aristocrats. To becomes a member of the Dividend Aristocrats, a company must increase its annual dividend payment every single year for twenty five consecutive years. If you don’t increase it, you fall from the list and you won’t get a chance to get back for twenty five years. It’s a pretty high bar to reach but there are plenty of blue chip household names on that list (and a few you’ve probably seen on the side of trucks rolling around town). It’s a popular list to be on because a lot of people looking for dividend stocks often start there.

The S&P announced a small change [3] to their eligibility rules starting in 2012 (with this list) – only regular dividend payments will be considered for index eligibility purposes. Special dividends will not count and they will no longer count towards eligibility.

With ten additions and only one deletion, the current list has fifty-four companies on it.

2012 Additions

Last year, there were only three additions to the 2011 Dividend Aristocrats list [4], this year we can welcome ten companies into the fold.

2012 Deletions

Only one company fell off, CenturyLink Inc (CTL [15]), after it ended a thirty seven year run of dividend increases. Last year we saw the fall of Eli Lilly & Co and Integrys Energy Group after a 42 and 51 year streak, respectively, so it’s nice to see only one name grace this section of the article.

2012 Dividend Aristocrats

Here are your 2012 Dividend Aristocrats!

If you’re looking for a dividend stock, this is a nice list to start with. Just keep in mind that fortunes can change and that history is a poor predictor of the future.