September 2016 List Of Dividend Aristocrats by Ben Reynolds

The Dividend Aristocrats Index is comprised of 50 stocks that have paid dividends for 25+ consecutive years.

The downloadable Dividend Aristocrats Excel Spreadsheet List below contains the following for each stock in the index:

  • 10 Year historical price-to-earnings ratio
  • Price-to-earnings ratio
  • Expected total return
  • Dividend yield
  • And more…

Click here to download your Dividend Aristocrats Excel Spreadsheet List now.

Dividend Aristocrats
Photo by stevepb (Pixabay)

All Dividend Aristocrats are high quality businesses based on their long dividend histories. But not all Dividend Aristocrats are created equally…

You can quickly find the Top 10 Dividend Aristocrats using The 8 Rules of Dividend Investing by downloading this exclusive PDF. Keep reading this article to learn more about Dividend Aristocrats.

List of All 50 Dividend Aristocrats

The financial metrics included in the spreadsheets are the same metrics used for the buy rules in The 8 Rules of Dividend Investing, including:

  • Dividend yield
  • Standard deviation
  • Growth rate
  • Payout ratio
  • Total return
  • Price-to-earnings ratio

A brief explanation of some of the less common metrics used in the spreadsheet are below:

Standard Deviation

Standard deviation in the spreadsheet above is calculated over a stock’s 10 year price history (when available).  Long-term price histories are used to reduce the effects of unusually high or low volatility in the recent past.

Stocks with low price standard deviations have historically outperformed the market.  Better price returns have come with lower ‘risk’ as defined by academics due to lower stock price standard deviation.

I don’t believe standard deviation to be a true measure of risk, but it is a good proxy for measuring real risk.  It has worked to improve returns historically.  The historical record should not be ignored.

Total Return

Total return is a calculated as a stock’s dividend yield plus its expected growth rate.  The higher the total return, the better.  Click here to learn more about total returns.

10 Year Historical P/E Ratio

This is the historical average P/E ratio over the last decade (when available).  If less than 10 years of data are available (as is the case with ABBV, ABT, and SPGI due to spin-offs), the maximum amount of years available is used.  Comparing the historical P/E ratio to the current P/E ratio is a quick way to get a ‘ballpark estimate’ of if a company is currently overvalued or undervalued.

Modified PEG

PEG stands for price-to-earnings-to-growth.  The PEG ratio is calculated as P/E Ratio divided by (Growth Rate x 100).  It shows the relative value of a company in relation to its growth rate.  The modified PEG ratio uses total return instead of growth rate; it takes into account the effects of dividends.  The modified PEG ratio is calculated as P/E Ratio divided by (Total Return x 100).  The lower the PEG, the better.  Click here to learn more about the Modified PEG Ratio.

Historical Dividend Aristocrats List

There are currently 50 Dividend Aristocrats.  Companies are added/removed most years.  The image below shows the history of the Dividend Aristocrats Index from 1989 through 2015:

Dividend Aristocrats

Note:  CL, GPC, and NUE were all removed and re-added to the Dividend Aristocrats Index through the historical period analyzed above.  I am unclear as to the reasoning behind this.

Click here to download the 1989 to 2015 Dividend Aristocrats Excel Spreadsheet.

This information was compiled from the following sources:

Interested in why companies were removed from the Dividend Aristocrats Index?  Take a look at this article.  You can see the (amazing) 25 year historical performance of the Top 9 Dividend Aristocrats here.

What is a Dividend Aristocrat?

A Dividend Aristocrat is a stock that has paid dividends for 25+ consecutive years, and:

  1. Is member of the S&P 500 Index
  2. Meets certain size and liquidity requirements.

The Dividend Aristocrats Index has outperformed the market by a wide margin over the last decade – with lower volatility.

Dividend Aristocrats

Source:  S&P Fact Sheet

The Dividend Aristocrats index has produced excellent risk-adjusted returns over the last decade.  The company’s annualized risk-adjusted returns are far in excess of the S&P 500’s over the last decade, as the image above shows.

Higher total returns with lower volatility is the ‘holy grail’ of investing.  It is worth exploring the characteristics of the Dividend Aristocrats in detail to determine why they have performed so well.

The performance of the Dividend Aristocrats by calendar year is shown below:

Dividend Aristocrats

Source:  S&P Fact Sheet

Sector Overview of Dividend Aristocrats

A sector breakdown of the Dividend Aristocrats index is shown below:

Dividend Aristocrats

Source:  S&P Fact Sheet

The top 3 sectors by weight in the Dividend Aristocrats are Consumer Staples, health care, and industrials.  The weight of these sectors in the Dividend Aristocrats Index versus in the S&P 500 is shown below for comparison.

  • Health Care:  14.6%
  • Consumer Staples:  10.1%
  • Industrials:  9.9%

The Dividend Aristocrats Index is tilted toward consumer staples and industrials relative to the S&P 500.  It is also significantly underweight the information technology sector.  The IT sector comprises 21.0% of the S&P 500, and just 1.9% of the Dividend Aristocrats Index (AT&T is the lone IT company in the Dividend Aristocrats Index).

The Dividend Aristocrat Index is filled with stable ‘old economy’ consumer products businesses and manufacturers; the 3M’s (MMM), Coca-Cola’s (KO), and Procter & Gamble’s of the investing world.

Why Have Dividend Aristocrats Outperformed?

The Dividend Aristocrats Index has trounced the market over the last decade.

I believe dividend paying stocks outperform non dividend paying stocks for two reasons:

  1. A company that pays dividends is likely to be generating earnings or cash flows so that it can pay dividends to shareholders.
  2. A business that pays consistent dividends must be more selective with the growth projects it takes on because a portion of its cash flows are being paid out as dividends.  Scrutinizing over capital allocation decisions likely adds to shareholder value.

I believe that Dividend Aristocrats have historically outperformed the market and other dividend paying stocks because they are, on average, higher quality businesses.

A high quality business should outperform a mediocre business over a long period of time, all other things being equal.

For a business to increase its dividends for 25+ consecutive years, it must have or at least had in the very recent past a strong competitive advantage.

The Dividend Aristocrats Are Highly Profitable Industry Leaders

Of the 50 Dividend Aristocrats, 18 (36%) are the largest by market cap in their respective industries.  37 of the 50 ( 74%) Dividend Aristocrats are one of the top 3 largest companies in their industries.

The companies in the Dividend Aristocrat Index are generally larger than their peers.  Intuitively, this makes sense. If a company has grown for 25 or more years, it is most likely going to be well established in its industry.

The businesses in the Dividend Aristocrats Index have another distinguishing feature – they are highly profitable.