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10 Best 'Dividend Aristocrats' for 2012

7. Sigma-Aldrich

Liability Adjusted Cash Flow Yield: 4.09%

Dividend Yield: 1.05%

Return on Invested Capital: 22.97%

Paying a visit to Sigma-Aldrich's (SIAL) Web site, you might be surprised to see a periodic table necktie and matching coffee mug for sale. This coming from a company that boasts over 512 scientific services and sells 187,000 products that include no less than DNA itself.

Apparently, even chemists have a sense of humor.

This author makes no representations of understanding the details of Sigma-Aldrich's business. And, perhaps, the complexity of the business is great enough to preclude many investors from purchasing shares.

But it must be said that since 1978, Sigma-Aldrich's shares have appreciated over 15,000% (dividends notwithstanding). This performance makes even the best-performing stocks of the past 30 years seem like laggards.

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