12 Dividend Growth Stocks to Buy Now

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- For long-term investors living through The Great Contradiction, at least there's a bright side. Dividend-paying growth stocks continue to perform remarkably well.

I could not be happier with several of the dividend stocks I own.

A significant chunk of my portfolio sits in media and telecommunication giants Rogers Communications ( RCI), BCE ( BCE) and Time Warner ( TWX).

BCE Chart BCE data by YCharts

Each stock experienced a recent swoon. All three dips preceded excellent buying opportunities. Couple market-beating returns with dividend yields from 2.7% (TWX) to 4.0% (RCI) to 5.1% (BCE) and you have ideal core stocks for a volatile, low-interest rate environment. But it doesn't stop there.

When you buy stocks like TWX, RCI and BCE, you're not just allocating investment to some savings account alternative. You're buying three cash-flush and multi-billion dollar powerhouses well-positioned to realize long-term potential that's absolutely not priced into the stock.

While I love to speculate a bit more aggressively, I am also on the hunt for more of these relatively "safe" stocks. While there's no such thing as a safe stock market bet, compared to more speculative names, sturdy dividend payers offer a smaller degree of risk.

I expect to have at least some sort of a position in TWX, RCI and BCE for the foreseeable future. They represent three buys that I add to several times a month. I continue to look for dividend-paying stocks with similar attributes.

That process triggered several interesting stocks -- four that I am already long and another five that I can get long via an ETF that I used to own (sung to the tune of Gotye's "Somebody That I Used to Know").

Two Core Plays

I use Dividend Reinvestment Plans (DRIPs) to stay consistently long American Electric Power ( AEP) and Becton, Dickinson and Company ( BDX).

AEP Chart AEP data by YCharts

AEP tanked a bit earlier in the year on regulatory uncertainty in one of its largest markets, Ohio. After hitting lows in April, the stock has recovered by roughly 14%. Management cut AEP's dividend in 2003. They have increased it, however, every year but one since 2005 to its present $1.88 level. It looks stable.

I just got into BDX's DRIP on some weakness during the end of May. Here's another stock that's not all that exciting, but it pays a dividend that has a long history -- longer than AEP's -- of going up.

I write a check to each stock's DRIP every month alongside an automatic monthly investment and then forget that I own them.

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