Understanding: The Dividend Section

Topics covered in this article:

 


Overview: Understanding the Dividend Section

The Dividend section provides an analysis of a company's dividend payments to its shareholders. It analyses the dividend payment in terms of its dividend yield against other dividend payers, as well as its stability, reliability, and sustainability.

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Key Information:

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Dividend Yield

This is the percentage that represents the estimated annual dividend income a shareholder could earn from every dollar invested in a stock. It is calculated by dividing the Annualized Dividend Per Share by the latest End-Of-Day Price. For instance, consider the case of NYSE:XOM as of October 3, 2023. At that time, the stock had an Annualized Dividend Per Share of US$3.64. When you divide this figure by its latest end-of-day price, which was US$115.83 on that date, the result is a Dividend Yield of 3.1%.

Payout Ratio

This is a Payout Ratio based on Earnings. It is the percentage of a company's earnings that is distributed to shareholders as cash dividends. It’s calculated by dividing the Annualized Dividend Per Share based on the latest reporting period by the Trailing Twelve Months Earnings Per Share also based on the latest reporting period. For instance,NYSE:XOM’s Annualized Dividend Per Share stands at US$3.64, while the Trailing Twelve Months Earnings Per Share, based on the latest period ending, amounts to US$12.544. By dividing the annualized dividend ($3.64) by the TTM Earnings Per Share ($12.544), we get a Payout Ratio of 29%

Industry Average Yield

This is the average of the dividend yields of all the companies in a given industry.

Next dividend pay date

This is the nearest upcoming dividend pay date.

Ex-dividend date

The ex-dividend date is the date when a stock starts trading without the right to receive the next dividend payment. If you buy the stock on or after this date, you won't get the upcoming dividend.

Dividend Per Share

This figure represents the Annualized Dividend Per Share which is an estimation of total dividend in 1 year time. The Annualized Dividend Per Share is directly sourced from our data provider S&P Global Market Intelligence. Typically, they calculate it by multiplying the frequency of regular dividend payments, especially for stocks with consistent and stable dividend payments. For more details on how our data provider computes the Annualized Dividend, proceed to the last section of this article.

Earnings Per Share

This represents the most recent Trailing Twelve Months Earnings Per Share. It’s calculated by dividing the latest trailing twelve months Net Income by the latest total shares outstanding.

Dividend Yield Forecast in 3Y

This is the forecasted annualized dividend yield in 3 years, sourced from analysts covering the company by CIQ.

 

 


Stability and Growth of Payment

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Dividend Payments - The Dividend payments which are represented in a cyan color in the chart are the actual amount of dividends paid by the company.

Annual Amount - The data for the annual amount is the Annualized Dividend Per Share. It is represented in a purple line in the chart. To learn more about Annualized Dividend and how it may differ to the actual amount paid by the company, visit this section explaining how annualized dividend is calculated.

 

What we check here for the Snowflake score:

  • We check if the company has a stable dividend; and

  • If it has a growing dividend payments

 

Stable Dividend Check

We checked the historical dividend per share payments taking into account the time intervals between data points in the dividend history. A drop exceeding 20% for a period of 1 year between data points would be flagged as volatile. If there's only 6 months between consecutive points in the chain, then a drop exceeding 10% would be flagged as volatile, while if there's 18 months between points, there would need to be a drop exceeding 30%. The minimum time between points that we look at is 2 months, which would need to exceed a 3.33% drop to be flagged as volatile.

 

In the case of NYSE:XOM, there has been no significant drop in the Dividend Per share payments in the past 10 years. It did not exceed the thresholds mentioned above therefore, it passed this stability check.

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Growing Dividend Check

The current annualized dividend amount paid is compared to the annualized dividend amount paid 10 years ago. This check also fails by default if the stock has been paying a dividend for less than 10 years. If the current annualized dividend amount is greater than the annual dividend amount 10 years ago, the company will pass this check.

For NYSE:XOM, the company has been paying dividends for more than 10 years and its current annualized dividend per share is higher compared to the annualized dividend per share 10 years ago, hence the company passed this check.

 

 


Company's Dividend Yield VS Market

 

Within this section, we analyze the company's current dividend yield in relation to the market. There’s also available data for industry averages and forecast in 3years.

What we check here for the Snowflake score:

  • We check if the company has a Notable Dividend; and

  • If it has a High dividend yield compared to the top 25% of the market.

 

Notable Dividend check

This metric checks 2 things. a.) It checks if the company's dividend is greater than the bottom 10% of companies in that market. b.) It checks if the company's dividend is greater than the bottom 25% of companies in that market. If the company dividend does not pass the 1st metric mentioned above (dividend is greater than the bottom 10% of companies in that market), then the company will automatically fail all dividend checks. This is because based on our Analysis Model, it's not considered an income stock if it fails the first criteria.

For NYSE:XOM, it meets both of these criteria indicating a notable dividend.

 

High Dividend Yield check

We check if the dividend yield is higher compared to the top 25% of the market. If it’s higher, the company will pass this check. If not, it will fail this check.

NYSE:XOM’s current dividend yield of 3.7% is lower compared to the top 25% of dividend payers in the US market, who have an average dividend yield of 4.6%, hence it failed this check.

 

 


Earnings Payout to Shareholders

What we check here for the Snowflake score:

  • We check if the company’s dividend is well covered by its earnings.

Earnings Coverage check

If the Earnings payout ratio is greater than 0% and less than 90%, the stock is scored one point. In the case of REITs, this threshold is 100%. The Earnings Payout ratio is calculated by dividing the latest annualized dividend per share by the latest trailing twelve months earnings per share. For REITs, it’s calculated by dividing the total cash dividend paid by total funds from operations.

For NYSE:XOM, the annualized dividend per share is US$3.64, and the latest TTM EPS stands at US$12.544. So, when we perform the calculation (US$3.64 / US$12.544), we get a payout ratio of 29%. Since this figure is below the 90% threshold, the company passes the earnings coverage check.

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NOTE: For REIT Companies, instead of using Earnings, we use Funds From Operation (FFO) from the last twelve month.

For a REIT company, let’s use NYSE:AMT as an example. As of the period ending June 2023, this company has paid a total of $2.8116b in common dividends over the last twelve months (LTM). When we divide this amount by the latest LTM Funds From Operations (FFO) of $4.4459b, the result is an Earnings Payout ratio of 63.2%. Since this figure is below the 100% threshold, the company passes the earnings coverage check.

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Cash Payout to Shareholders

What we check here:

  • We check if the company’s dividend is well covered by its Free Cash Flow from the last twelve month.

Cash Flow Coverage check

If the Cash payout ratio is greater than 0% and less than 90%, the stock is scored one point. In the case of REITs, this threshold is 100%. The Cash Payout ratio is calculated by dividing the most recent total Last Twelve Months (LTM) cash dividend paid by the most recent LTM Free Cash Flow. The same goes for REITs.

For NYSE:XOM, their total LTM cash dividend is 14.511b (latest annualized dividend of 3.64) * (shares outstanding of 3,986,501,076). When we divide this cash dividend by the most recent LTM Free Cash Flow, which stands at $46.34 billion, we arrive at a cash payout ratio of 31%. Since this figure is below the 90% threshold, it passes this Cash Flow coverage check.

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How do we Calculate the Annualized Dividend?

Annualized Dividend Calculation

The dividend data presented in our reports are annualized. It represents an estimation of total dividend in 1 year time. Therefore, the value may differ from the actual dividend paid by the company.

Annualized dividend is usually calculated by multiplying the frequency of regular dividend payments especially for stocks with consistent and stable dividend payments.  Otherwise, in some cases, there are exemptions where different approaches are utilized to get the annualized dividend.

  1. Calculation based on frequency of payment - This applies to companies paying regular and stable dividends

    • Quarterly dividends

    • Semi-annual dividend

    • Annual dividend (for one-time annual dividend payment)

  2. Calculations based on special cases

    • As reported

    • Irregular dividends

      • Quarterly dividends

      • Semi-annual dividends

    • With Special dividends

    • No reported dividend

    • Suspended Dividend

Note: In this article, the ‘Annualized Dividend’ refers to the Dividend Per Share that we check in the dividend analysis section. The annualized dividend is represented by a purple line in the Stability and Growth of Payments chart, while the actual dividends are represented by a cyan color.

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Calculation Based on Frequency of Payment

1. Companies Paying Quarterly Dividends

FORMULA: Latest DPS X 4

If the company pays quarterly dividends and has maintained a consistent trend of either increasing, decreasing, or maintaining the same dividend payment amount over the past two years, then the annualized dividend is calculated by multiplying the current quarter’s dividend per share (DPS) by 4.

In the below example, Apple (NasdaqGS:AAPL) has consistently paid increasing quarterly dividends over the past 2 years, hence its annualized dividend is calculated by multiplying the current quarter’s DPS of $0.23 by 4, resulting in an annualized dividend per share of $0.92

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

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2. Companies Paying Semi-Annual Dividends

FORMULA: Latest DPS X 2

If the company pays semi-annual dividends and has maintained a consistent trend of either increasing, decreasing, or maintaining the same dividend payment amount over the past two years, then the annualized dividend is calculated by multiplying the current semi-annual DPS by 2.

Example: Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) has consistently paid increasing semi-annual dividends over the past 2 years. Its annualized dividend is calculated by multiplying the current DPS of AU$2.4 by 2, resulting in an annualized dividend per share of AU$4.8.

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

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3. Companies Paying Annual Dividends

FORMULA: Latest actual DPS will be adopted as the annualized dividend data.

This is pretty straightforward. If the company pays annual dividends, then the current annual DPS is used as the annualized dividend.

Example: SBI Shinsei Bank, Limited (TSE:8303) has declared an annual dividend for FY-2022 and there is no forecast dividend reported for the subsequent year. Therefore the latest Annualized dividend per share would be the latest dividend per share of 12.00 yen.

 

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

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Calculations Based on Special Cases

1. As Reported by the Company

If the company explicitly reports an annualized dividend value in their document, that value is used.

Example: Intelligent Wave (TSE:4847) has declared an Annual dividend of 17 yen for FY-2022 and it has also reported a forecasted dividend of 20 yen for FY-2023. This information is reported in the FY-2022 Financial statement. As the company has reported the forecasted dividend 20.00 yen for the subsequent year, then the forecasted dividend 20.00 yen will be the Annualized dividend.

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Sourced from Tokyo Stock Exchange: https://www2.jpx.co.jp/disc/48470/140120230201598133.pdf 

 

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

Intelligent Wave Dividend.png

 

2. Irregular Dividends 

In cases where a company pays dividends on a quarterly or semi-annual basis but does so in an irregular pattern  (i.e., there is no consistent pattern in the last 2 years of dividend payments),  the Annualized Dividend is calculated by considering the latest annualized Dividend per Share (DPS) from the latest annual period.

Example of Irregular Quarterly Dividend

If the company pays quarterly dividends in no consistent trend (neither increasing, decreasing, nor maintaining the same dividend amount), the annualized dividend per share that will be used is the total dividend declared for the latest annual financial period. 

Example: Sculptor Capital Management (NYSE:SCU) has paid quarterly dividends in the last 2 years. However, the trend of their dividend payments is not consistent; it is neither increasing, decreasing, nor staying at the same amount. In this case, the Annualized dividend is the total dividend declared for the latest annual financial period which is US$0.45 (0.20 + 0.01 + 0.13 + 0.11)

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Screenshot taken from the company website: https://irpages2.eqs.com/download/companies/sculptor/Annual%20Reports/Annual%20Report_Sculptor_10-K_22.pdf 

On February 28, 2023, the Company announced a cash dividend of $0.20 per Class A Share. The dividend is payable on March 21, 2023, to holders of record as of the close of business on March 14, 2023.

Source: The company website and its official filing 

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

Irregular Quarterly Platform Sample .png

 

Example of Irregular Semi-Annual Dividend

If the company pays semi-annual dividends in no consistent trend (neither increasing, decreasing, nor maintaining the same dividend amount), the annualized dividend per share that will be used is the total dividend declared for the lastest annual financial period. 

Example: Mitie Group plc (LSE:MTO) has paid semi-annual dividends in the last two years. However, the trend of their dividend payments is not consistent; it is neither increasing, decreasing, nor staying at the same amount. In this case, the Annualized dividend is the total dividend declared for the latest annual financial period which is £0.029 (£0.007 + 0.022)

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Screenshot taken from: https://www.mitie.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Mitie-Annual-Report-2023.pdf

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

Mitie Group Irregular Dividend.png

 

3. Special Dividends 

If a company pays a special dividend for two years in a row, it is considered as a recurring special dividend and included in the annualized dividend calculation.

Example: CNA Financial Corporation (NYSE:CNA) has consistently paid special dividends over the past 2 years, hence the special dividend is incorporated into the calculation of the annualized dividend.  Its annualized dividend is calculated by multiplying the current regular dividend of US$0.42 by 4 plus the special dividend of 1.2, result in an annualized dividend of US$2.88

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Screenshot taken from the company website: 

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

CNA Financial Special Dividend.png

 

4. No Dividend Per Share Data reported

If a company is paying dividend but did not report the dividend per share data in their financial statement, the annualized dividend per share will be 0.

Example: BMV:ORBIA * has been consistently paying dividends historically, however, there is no dividend per share data reported in their latest financial statement, hence the annualized dividend per share as of July 11, 2023 is 0.

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Screenshot taken from the official filing of BMV:ORBIA

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

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5. Suspended Dividend / Canceled Dividend

Annualized dividend will not be calculated and will automatically be zero from filing date of the suspension notification until the filing date of new dividend pattern.

Example: NYSE:HBI announced the suspension of its quarterly cash dividend In its Q1 2023 financial report. Therefore, our report shows an annualized dividend of 0 as of July 10, 2023.

 

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Screenshot taken from NYSE:HBI official filing:

How it looks like on Simply Wall St Platform:

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