I don't know how the stock market will perform in the new year. Wall Street analysts don't know, either. Any predictions are really only guesses.
There's no guesswork required, though, to expect that many stocks will continue to pay solid dividends regardless of what happens with the overall market. These are the kinds of stocks that income investors can own without losing any sleep.
Which specific stocks make the list? Here are 22 top dividend stocks to buy and hold in 2022.
22 top dividend stocks for 2022
Below are 22 top dividend stocks to buy and hold in 2022, listed in alphabetical order:
|Abbott Labs (ABT -1.10%)||$248 billion||1.33%|
|AbbVie (ABBV -1.04%)||$238 billion||4.20%|
|Air Products & Chemicals (APD -0.46%)||$68 billion||1.97%|
|Bristol Myers Squibb (BMY -0.76%)||$138 billion||3.47%|
|Brookfield Industrial Corporation (BIPC 1.09%)||$5 billion||2.97%|
|Brookfield Industrial Partners (BIP 0.06%)||$18 billion||3.40%|
|Brookfield Renewable Corporation (BEPC -1.15%)||$6 billion||3.31%|
|Brookfield Renewable Partners (BEP -0.06%)||$10 billion||3.43%|
|CVS Health (CVS -0.33%)||$136 billion||2.15%|
|Devon Energy (DVN 1.20%)||$30 billion||>9%*|
|Duke Energy (DUK -0.46%)||$81 billion||3.81%|
|Easterly Government Properties (DEA 2.22%)||$2 billion||4.66%|
|Enterprise Products Partners (EPD 0.12%)||$47 billion||8.33%|
|Innovative Industrial Properties (IIPR 4.56%)||$6 billion||2.29%|
|Intel (INTC 3.68%)||$212 billion||2.69%|
|Johnson & Johnson (JNJ -0.09%)||$450 billion||2.50%|
|Eli Lilly & Company (LLY -0.27%)||$266 billion||1.42%|
|Medical Properties Trust (MPW 5.52%)||$14 billion||4.86%|
|Pepsico (PEP -1.43%)||$239 billion||2.51%|
|Pfizer (PFE -0.72%)||$323 billion||2.70%|
|Verizon Communications (VZ 0.70%)||$222 billion||4.86%|
|Viatris (VTRS 1.93%)||$16 billion||3.23%|
You might have noticed there are more stocks from healthcare than any other sector. That's primarily because many healthcare stocks offer steady dividends and often provide solid growth prospects as well.
Three healthcare stocks boast especially impressive dividend track records. Abbott Labs and Johnson & Johnson are Dividend Kings -- S&P 500 members with at least 50 consecutive years of dividend increases. AbbVie is likely to join the club in 2022.
Eli Lilly and Pfizer could be attractive to growth investors. Lilly has multiple catalysts on the way in the new year. Pfizer handily outperformed the broader market in 2021 and could do so again in 2022 with strong sales of its COVID-19 vaccine and pill.
Value investors might like the other healthcare picks. CVS Health's shares trade at only 12 times expected earnings. Bristol Myers Squibb is even cheaper with a forward earnings multiple of a little over seven. And Viatris is dirt cheap, with its shares trading at less than 3.4 times expected earnings.
Companies in the energy sector are also often known for their dividends. Devon Energy certainly stands out with its fixed-plus-variable dividend of more than 9%. That's more than seven times higher than the S&P 500 average dividend yield.
Midstream energy leader Enterprise Products Partners isn't too far behind Devon, though, with a dividend yield of 8.33%. While the shift away from fossil fuels could impact these companies' businesses over the long term, their prospects over the next several years look bright.
That shift will work to the benefit of Brookfield Renewable. The company has two stocks on our list. It was originally formed as a limited partnership (LP), Brookfield Renewable Partners (BEP). In 2020, the company created Brookfield Renewable Corporation (BEPC) for investors who wanted to avoid the tax hassles associated with LPs.
Duke Energy isn't likely to deliver sizzling growth. However, income investors should be able to depend on the utility company's steady dividend. Duke has paid a dividend uninterrupted for 95 consecutive years.
Three of the top dividend stocks for 2022 are real estate investment trusts (REITs). They're required to return at least 90% of taxable income to shareholders in the form of dividends.
Medical Properties Trust is a REIT that focuses, as its name indicates, on medical properties -- primarily acute care hospitals. Its dividend yield of 4.86% is especially attractive. The company has increased its dividend payout for eight consecutive years.
Easterly Government Properties arguably ranks as one of the safest dividend stocks on the market. It specializes in leasing properties to the U.S. government.
Meanwhile, Innovative Industrial Properties is one of the fastest-growing REIT stocks. The company leases properties to regulated cannabis operators in the U.S. Its shares have skyrocketed nearly 1,300% over the past five years. IIP's dividend payout increased by 10 times during this period.
Technology and telecommunications
Intel underperformed the overall market in 2021. However, investors should focus more on where the chipmaker will be in 10 years or more than how its stock fared in one 12-month period. Intel's future should be better than its immediate past. More importantly for income investors, the company's dividend should be safe.
Likewise, Verizon was one of the worst-performing Dow Jones stocks in 2021. However, investors should love the telecom giant's juicy dividend. With the increased adoption of 5G networks, Verizon should have solid prospects over the coming years.
Rounding out the list of top dividend stocks for 2022 are Air Products & Chemicals, Brookfield Infrastructure, and PepsiCo. As was the case with Brookfield Renewable, Brookfield Infrastructure has two stocks -- one an LP (BIP) and the other a corporation (BIPC). There's only one underlying business, though. And that business is rock-solid thanks to steady cash flow from a wide variety of infrastructure assets.
Like some of the other stocks in the top 22, Air Products & Chemicals probably won't deliver jaw-dropping gains. However, it's a Dividend Aristocrat with 39 consecutive years of dividend hikes. You should be able to count on those dividends continuing to flow and grow in 2022.
PepsiCo is also a Dividend Aristocrat and will likely become a Dividend King in the new year. With its strong product lineup and dividend, PepsiCo is arguably one of the best consumer staples stocks to buy right now.