Dividend Aristocrats gain 7.7% on average in 2016

The year 2016 has been great so far for Dividend Aristocrats with an average gain of almost 8 percent year-to-date.

Nucor (NUE) and Pentair (PNR) are the biggest gainers as of June 17th, with gains of more than 20%.

The 51 stocks making up the S&P Dividend Aristocrats Index that includes S&P500 members having raised their dividend for at least 25 consecutive years, are gaining 7.7% on average in 2016 as of June 17th, outperforming the S&P500-index with a gain of just 1.3%.

Steel maker Nucor (NUE) is the best performing Dividend Aristocrat in 2016 with a 24.9% gain as of June 17th (dividends excluded). Nucor has raised its dividend for 43 consecutive years, but showed the weakest dividend growth with an average dividend hike of just 0.7% over the last couple of 5 years. The stock has been underperforming the last couple of years, giving up almost 18% last year, following an 8% loss in 2014.

Another big gainer in 2016 is industrial Pentair (PNR). Pentair has raised its dividend for 39 straight years. The stock is up 23.6% year-to-date, following double digit losses in the previous two years.

Two other big gainer, Sysco (SYY) and Consolidated Edison (ED) are also gaining more than 20% in 2016, with Leggett & Platt (LEG) completing the top-5 of best performing Aristocrats.

TOP-10 best performing Dividend Aristocrats (as of June 17th)

    1. Nucor (NUE) +24.9%
    2. Pentair (PNR) +23.6%
    3. Sysco (SYY) +21.5%
    4. Cons. Edison (ED) +21.1%
    5. Leggett & Platt (LEG) +19.2%
    6. C.R. Bard (BCR) +18.8%
    7. AT&T (T) +18.4%
    8. Cincinnati Fin. (CINF) +17.0%
    9. McCormick (MKC) +16.9%
    10. Exxon Mobil (XOM) +16.4%
Just nine Dividend Aristocrats are losing in 2016, led by Abbott Laboratories (ABT) with a 16.7% loss. Other double digit losers are Cardinal Health (CAH) and Hormel Foods (HRL). Cardinal Health gives up 15.4% in 2016, following double digit gains in the prior two years.

Hormel was the best performing Aristocrat last year with a 51.8% gain. In 2016 Hormel Foods is losing 11.8% at $34.88 after hitting an all time of $45.72 earlier this year. Hormel has raised its dividend for 50 consecutive years. In 2016 the dividend was hiked by 16%. 

Following this year big gain, the average dividend yield for the 51 Dividend Aristocrats has dropped to 2.5% as of June 17th 2016.

Troubled Real Estate Investment Trust HCP (HCP) currently has the highest dividend yield with 6.5%. HCP is losing 8% year-to-date. This Friday HCP announced that it will spin off its HCR ManorCare portfolio into an independent publicly-traded REIT.

TOP-10 highest yields for Dividend Aristocrats (as of June 17th)

  1. HCP (HCP) 6.5%
  2. AT&T (T) 4.7%
  3. Chevron (CVX) 4.2%
  4. Emerson El. (EMR) 3.6%
  5. Target (TGT) 3.6%
  6. Cons. Edison (ED) 3.4%
  7. AbbVie (ABBV) 3.4%
  8. Procter & Gamble (PG) 3.2%
  9. Exxon Mobil (XOM) 3.2%
  10. Coca-Cola (KO) 3.1%
Currently 12 Dividend Aristocrats have a dividend yield of 3% or higher, with T. Rowe Price (TROW) and Nucor (NUE) completing the 10 highest yielding stocks above.
Chevon didn't raise it's dividend last year
The lowest yielding Dividend Aristocrat still is C.R. Bard with just 0.5%. The health care company is the only Aristocrat with a yield lower than 1%. C.R. Bard raised its dividend by 8.3% last on June 9th, and has raised its dividend for 45 consecutive years right now.

Three Dividend Aristocrats, Procter & Gamble (PG), Genuine Parts Co (GPC) and Dover (DOV) have raised their dividend for 60 straight years, topping the list list of best track records.

TOP-10 best track records for Dividend Aristocrats (as of June 17th)

  1. Procter & Gamble (PG) 60 years
  2. Genuine Parts (GPC) 60 years
  3. Dover Corp (DOV) 60 years
  4. Emerson Electric (EMR) 59 years
  5. 3M (MMM) 58 years
  6. Cincinnati Fin. (CINF) 56 years
  7. Lowe's Companies (LOW) 55 years
  8. Coca-Cola (KO) 54 years
  9. Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) 54 years
  10. Colgate-Palmolive (CL) 53 years
As of June 17th already 24 of the 51 Aristocrats have hiked their dividend in 2016. The biggest dividend increase came from Sherwin-Williams (+25.4%). Lowe's Companies raised its dividend by 25%.

The smallest dividend increase this year came from Procter & Gamble, with the consumer staples giant raising its dividend by just 1% in april.

One Dividend Aristocrat hasn't raised its dividend for more than two years. Chevron hiked its dividend for the last time in April 2014 and needs to increase its payout in the next six months to maintain it's position in the Dividend Aristocrats Index.

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