Some investors rely on dividends for growing their wealth, and if you're one of those dividend sleuths, you might be intrigued to know that Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ:GRMN) is about to go ex-dividend in just four days. Ex-dividend means that investors that purchase the stock on or after the 14th of September will not receive this dividend, which will be paid on the 30th of September.
Garmin's next dividend payment will be US$0.61 per share. Last year, in total, the company distributed US$2.44 to shareholders. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, Garmin has a trailing yield of approximately 2.5% on its current stock price of $99.36. We love seeing companies pay a dividend, but it's also important to be sure that laying the golden eggs isn't going to kill our golden goose! We need to see whether the dividend is covered by earnings and if it's growing.
Dividends are usually paid out of company profits, so if a company pays out more than it earned then its dividend is usually at greater risk of being cut. Garmin paid out a comfortable 50% of its profit last year. That said, even highly profitable companies sometimes might not generate enough cash to pay the dividend, which is why we should always check if the dividend is covered by cash flow. It distributed 47% of its free cash flow as dividends, a comfortable payout level for most companies.
It's positive to see that Garmin's dividend is covered by both profits and cash flow, since this is generally a sign that the dividend is sustainable, and a lower payout ratio usually suggests a greater margin of safety before the dividend gets cut.
Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?
Stocks in companies that generate sustainable earnings growth often make the best dividend prospects, as it is easier to lift the dividend when earnings are rising. Investors love dividends, so if earnings fall and the dividend is reduced, expect a stock to be sold off heavily at the same time. That's why it's comforting to see Garmin's earnings have been skyrocketing, up 21% per annum for the past five years. Garmin is paying out less than half its earnings and cash flow, while simultaneously growing earnings per share at a rapid clip. This is a very favourable combination that can often lead to the dividend multiplying over the long term, if earnings grow and the company pays out a higher percentage of its earnings.
Many investors will assess a company's dividend performance by evaluating how much the dividend payments have changed over time. Garmin has delivered 13% dividend growth per year on average over the past 10 years. It's great to see earnings per share growing rapidly over several years, and dividends per share growing right along with it.
The Bottom Line
From a dividend perspective, should investors buy or avoid Garmin? It's great that Garmin is growing earnings per share while simultaneously paying out a low percentage of both its earnings and cash flow. It's disappointing to see the dividend has been cut at least once in the past, but as things stand now, the low payout ratio suggests a conservative approach to dividends, which we like. It's a promising combination that should mark this company worthy of closer attention.
In light of that, while Garmin has an appealing dividend, it's worth knowing the risks involved with this stock. For example, we've found 2 warning signs for Garmin that we recommend you consider before investing in the business.
A common investment mistake is buying the first interesting stock you see. Here you can find a list of promising dividend stocks with a greater than 2% yield and an upcoming dividend.
This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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