You know it is kind of funny to see so many of these newcomers who kept bragging about how many shares of PSEC they bought and how much dividend from PSEC they received each month and how they would sell before its ex-div date and buy it back on or after its ex-div date when its price drops so they can maximize their profit. They even ridiculed other more experienced investors and called them idiots, then turned around acting like a BIG expert in answering other investors' questions regarding something as simple as when the ex-div date of PSEC is for this month (March, 2013). (actually not a simple question at all, IMHO) The problem is if they do not know, just said so or using a good brokerage service who would at least furnish you with this info. But they are either too dumb or too lazy and just picked a date and gave to the person who asked with answers like this:
"I was wrong it says that the owners of record on march 29th will receive the distribution."
"according to their press release it is march 28th."
Unfortunately, none of these are the correct answers.
Now if you go to PSEC's web site and under investor's relation you will see that they did list March 29, 2013 as it record date and March 27, 2013 as its ex-div date.
So you should tell others that the ex-div date for PSEC this month is 3/27/13, this Wednesday?
WRONG, if you are lazy and check on the ex-div date that was listed by brokerage firms such as E-Trade or Fidelity you will find that the ex-div date for PSEC is actually March 26, tomorrow.
Wow, how did that happen? Did PSEC make a typo? Yes and No. PSEC sets its record date for March on March 29, 2013 and that is absolutely correct. The problem is that:
"Contrary to another common misperception, the ex-dividend date is not set by the company. It is set by the stock exchange the company's stock is traded on."
Normally, two business days (or trading days) before the record date will be the ex-div date, therefore, when PSEC set its record date on 3/29/13, the ex-div date was indeed supposedly on 3/27/13.
"There is another complication caused by weekends and holidays, and that is when the record date falls on a weekend or an exchange holiday. In such a case, the ex-date is sooner than it otherwise would have been. For example, if Friday is the record date, normally Wednesday would be the ex-date. But if Friday is an exchange holiday, the ex-date in that circumstance would be Tuesday. Record dates that fall on weekends are handled in a similar manner, but while a record date that falls on a Saturday would have an ex-date one day sooner than if it were on a weekday, a record date that falls on a Sunday would have an ex-date two days sooner than it otherwise would be. "
Since March 29, this Friday would be Good Friday and the market will be closed, therefore, even though the record date is on March 29, it basically moves PSEC's ex-div date to March 26, tomorrow.
Can it be more complicated? Well, it pays to study, some time an investor can surely make a lot of money from investors who have no clue when the ex-div date of a dividend stock falls and steal their dividends because they sold too early.
"But when counting back two days from the record date to determine the ex-dividend date, be careful of weekends and holidays! If the record date is Tuesday the 5th, the ex-dividend date is Friday the 1st, not Sunday the 7th. If the record date is Friday, December 26th, the ex-dividend date is Tuesday, December 23, not Wednesday, December 24th, because Christmas is not a business day. (Also, for foreign stocks, be aware of the holidays of the country in which the stock is primarily traded. For example, in Canada and Great Britain December 26 is Boxing Day, so would not be counted as a business day in those countries.)"