Top dividend-paying stocks in the S&P 500

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The stock market is ending 2011 about where it started, but investors in dividend-paying stocks have had a good run.

Below are two lists of the top dividend-paying stocks in the Standard & Poor’s 500 index. The first shows the top dividend-paying stocks, ranked by the value of dividends paid in 2011. The second shows the top dividend stocks ranked by their yields. A dividend yield is the amount of the dividend paid over the course of a year divided by the share price of the stock.

Note: Figures through Dec. 28, 2011

Source for dividend yields: Yahoo Finance

Source for 2011 dividend totals: Standard & Poor’s