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Due to a change in the way members are selected, there are 14 new members of the S&P 1500 Dividend Aristocrats Index. Companies already in the S&P 1500 Composite Index are now eligible for inclusion if they have increased their annual regular cash dividend payments for at least 20 consecutive years, a reduction from the prior requirement for at least 25 consecutive years of rising payouts. Changes to the index were implemented after the close of business on July 20, 2012.

Investors look to dividend growth stocks as a way to increase their dividend income when the stock increases its dividend payments. Here is the list of 14 companies being added to the Dividend Aristocrats Index, along with their dividend yields and listed by market outlook.

Chevron Corporation (CVX) engages in petroleum, chemicals, mining, power generation, and energy operations worldwide. CVX is trading at $109.19 with a 52-week price high of $112.28. CVX is trading at a PE of 8. CVX has raised its dividends for 24 consecutive years. CVX pays an annual dividend of $3.60 with a current dividend yield of 3.30%. CVX has a payout ratio of 23%. CVX increased dividends 15% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 9.2%. CVX has an equity summary score of 9.8 out of 10 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Cardinal Health, Inc. (CAH) operates as a healthcare services company that provides pharmaceutical and medical products and services. CAH is trading at $43.10 with a 52-week price high of $46.26. CAH is projected to grow EPS by 11% next year. CAH has raised its dividends for 24 consecutive years. CAH pays an annual dividend of $0.95 with a current dividend yield of 2.20%. CAH has a payout ratio of 28%. CAH increased dividends 10.5% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 14.6%. CAH has an equity summary score of 9.7 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Universal Health Realty Income Trust (UHT) operates as a real estate investment trust (REIT) in the United States. UHT is trading at $42.71 that is near its 52-week price high. UHT is trading at a PE of 6.8. UHT has raised its dividends for 24 consecutive years. UHT pays an annual dividend of $2.46 with a current dividend yield of 5.76%. The Company increased dividends 1.65% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 1.35%. UHT has an equity summary score of 9.4 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

Universal Corporation (UVV) operates as a leaf tobacco merchant and processor worldwide. It engages in selecting, procuring, processing, packing, storing, shipping, and financing leaf tobacco for sale to, or for the account of, manufacturers of consumer tobacco products. UVV is trading at $46.59 with a 52-week price high of $48.94. UVV is trading at 1.12 times book value. UVV has raised its dividends for 20 consecutive years. UVV pays an annual dividend of $1.96 with a current dividend yield of 4.21%. UVV has a payout ratio of 58%. The Company increased dividends 2.08% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 2.18%. UVV has an equity summary score of 9.3 for a VERY Bullish outlook.

National Retail Properties, Inc. (NNN) is a publicly owned equity real estate investment trust. NNN is trading at $29.50 with a 52-week price change of 12.7%. NNN has raised its dividends for 23 consecutive years (1 of 4 publicly traded REITs to do so). NNN just increased its annual dividend to $1.58 with a current dividend yield of 5.36%. NNN increased dividends 3.95% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 2.16%. NNN has an equity summary score of 7.1 for a Bullish outlook.

General Dynamics Corporation (GD) is an aerospace and defense company that provides business aviation; combat vehicles, weapons systems, and munitions; military and commercial shipbuilding; and communications and information technology products and services worldwide. GD is trading at $64.97 with a 52-week price high of $74.54. GD has raised its dividend for 20 consecutive years. GD pays an annual dividend of $2.04 with a current dividend yield of 3.14%. GD has a payout ratio of 27%. GD increased dividends 8.5% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 12%. GD has an equity summary score of 6.5 for a Neutral outlook.

Atmos Energy Corporation (ATO) engages in the distribution, transmission, and storage of natural gas in the United States. ATO is trading at $36.59, up from $31 in mid-April 2012. ATO has raised its dividends for 24 consecutive years. ATO pays an annual dividend of $1.38 with a current dividend yield of 3.77%. ATO has a payout ratio of 73%. ATO increased dividends 1.5% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 1.5%. ATO has an equity summary score of 6.5 for a Neutral outlook.

UGI Corporation (UGI) distributes and markets energy products and related services in the United States and internationally. UGI is trading at $30.29 with a 52-week price performance of -4.6%. UGI has raised its dividends for 24 consecutive years. UGI pays an annual dividend of $1.08 with a current dividend yield of 3.51%. UGI has a payout ratio of 61%. UGI increased dividends 3.85% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 7.85%. UGI has an equity summary score of 5.9 for a Neutral outlook.

MDU Resources Group, Inc. (MDU) operates as a diversified natural resource company in the United States. The company generates, transmits, and distributes electricity, as well as distributes natural gas. MDU is trading at $22.27 with a 52-week price performance of 0.4%. MDU has raised its dividends for 21 consecutive years. MDU pays an annual dividend of $0.67 with a current dividend yield of 2.94%. MDU has a payout ratio of 57%. MDU increased dividends 3.08% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 4.4%. MDU has an equity summary score of 5.0 for a Neutral outlook.

SEI Investments Co. (SEIC) is a publicly owned investment manager. The firm provides wealth management and investment advisory services to its clients through its subsidiaries. SEIC is trading at $20.74 with a 52-week price performance of 0.58%. SEIC has raised its dividends for 21 consecutive years. SEIC pays an annual dividend of $0.30 with a current dividend yield of 1.45%. SEIC pays dividends on a semi-annual basis with a payout ratio of 28%. SEIC increased dividends 25% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 16.5%. CBU has an equity summary score of 4.7 for a Neutral outlook.

Community Bank System, Inc. (CBU) operates as the bank holding company for Community Bank, N.A. that provides various banking and financial services to retail, commercial, and municipal customers. CBU is trading at $26.89 with a 52-week price performance of 6.6%. CBU has raised its dividends for 20 consecutive years. CBU pays an annual dividend of $1.04 with a current dividend yield of 3.87%. CBU has a payout ratio of 50%. CBU increased dividends 8.33% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 5.4%. CBU has an equity summary score of 4.4 for a Neutral outlook.

Westamerica Bancorporation (WABC) operates as the holding company for Westamerica Bank that provides various banking services to individual and corporate customers in northern and central California. WABC is trading at $45.97, up from $43 at the beginning of June 2012. WABC has raised its dividends for 22 consecutive years. WABC pays an annual dividend of $1.48 with a current dividend yield of 3.22%. WABC increased dividends 2.78% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 1.71%. WABC has an equity summary score of 3.0 for a Bearish outlook.

Aqua America, Inc.(WTR) operates regulated utilities that provide water or wastewater services in the United States. WTR is trading at $26.66, up from $23 at the beginning of June 2012. WTR is trading near its 52-week high. WTR has raised its dividends for 20 consecutive years. WTR pays an annual dividend of $0.66 with a current dividend yield of 2.48%. WTR has a payout ratio of 62%. WTR increased dividends 6.5% in the past year and has a 5-year average annual dividend increase of 7.5%. WTR has an equity summary score of 1.9 for a Bearish outlook.

Avon Products, Inc. (AVP) manufactures and markets beauty and related products worldwide. AVN is trading at $15.73 following a terrible 52-week performance of -45.57%. On July 12, 2012 Standard & Poor`s downgraded Avon from 3-STAR to 2-STAR. AVN has raised its dividends for 21 consecutive years. AVN pays an annual dividend of $0.92 with a current dividend yield of 5.85%. However, AVN has a payout ratio of 100%. AVN has an equity summary score of 0.8 for a VERY Bearish outlook.

Source: 14 New Dividend Aristocrats Added By S&P