Tonight, at the close, if you hold SDRL shares, you become entitled to the recent 76 cent dividend. Tomorrow, the stock price will reflect the ex-dividend status and open down 76 cents from tonight's close. Fine. But here's the rub... You will be charged tax on the dividend when you file this year's taxes. Now, if you sell right now, you don't get the dividend. But you CAN buy the stock back tomorrow for 76 cents less.
Well, the divicend is different mainly due to the payable date and the declaration date. People often confuse these with dividends, but with divicends, they are interchangeable and the share owner can select the date he or she prefers. It's much easier that way.
I take and reinvest the dividend, unless you need the money to use somewhere. .76 is pretty decent all things considered, my REITS pay 1.40 and HTS pays a dollar. Of course you have to pay attention to them but the Fed said no interest bumps until mid 2013, and I will take a 20% payback every Q, anytime. AGNC is $1.40 qnd HTS is 1.00.