"Healthy" Dividend Aristocrats: 6 Great Health-Care Dividends

Sluggish global growth, the U.S.

Money coming out of an oversized capsule
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Sluggish global growth, the U.S. trade war with China and a stock market that’s up only about 2% over the past year have some investors thinking about playing defense. And few equities are better at adding ballast to a portfolio than the rock-solid dividend growth stocks in the Dividend Aristocrats – companies in the S&P 500 that have raised their payouts every year for at least 25 consecutive years.

Also, few areas of the market hold up as well in downturns as the health-care sector. Put them together – health-care stocks with multiple decades uninterrupted dividend growth – and investors have a recipe for income and lower risk in their equity portfolios.

Six of the elite Dividend Aristocrats can be found in the health-care sector. These stocks, most of which are household names, have hiked their payouts for anywhere from 34 to 57 consecutive years. That’s dividend growth an income investor can count on.

For dividend growth and defense, take a closer look at these six health-care Dividend Aristocrats.


Data and analysts’ ratings are of Sept. 23 unless otherwise noted. Companies are listed by dividend yield, from lowest to highest. The list of Dividend Aristocrats is maintained by S&P Dow Jones Indices. Dividend yields are calculated by annualizing the most recent quarterly payout and dividing by the share price. Dividend history based on company information and S&P data. Dividend-growth streaks include the current year if the company has announced a dividend hike in 2019. Analysts’ ratings provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Dan Burrows
Senior Investing Writer, Kiplinger.com

Dan Burrows is Kiplinger's senior investing writer, having joined the august publication full time in 2016.

A long-time financial journalist, Dan is a veteran of SmartMoney, MarketWatch, CBS MoneyWatch, InvestorPlace and DailyFinance. He has written for The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Consumer Reports, Senior Executive and Boston magazine, and his stories have appeared in the New York Daily News, the San Jose Mercury News and Investor's Business Daily, among other publications. As a senior writer at AOL's DailyFinance, Dan reported market news from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange and hosted a weekly video segment on equities.

Once upon a time – before his days as a financial reporter and assistant financial editor at legendary fashion trade paper Women's Wear Daily – Dan worked for Spy magazine, scribbled away at Time Inc. and contributed to Maxim magazine back when lad mags were a thing. He's also written for Esquire magazine's Dubious Achievements Awards.

In his current role at Kiplinger, Dan writes about equities, fixed income, currencies, commodities, funds, macroeconomics, demographics, real estate, cost of living indexes and more.

Dan holds a bachelor's degree from Oberlin College and a master's degree from Columbia University.

Disclosure: Dan does not trade stocks or other securities. Rather, he dollar-cost averages into cheap funds and index funds and holds them forever in tax-advantaged accounts.