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Should You Buy U.S. Bancorp (NYSE:USB) For Its Upcoming Dividend In 3 Days?

Simply Wall St

U.S. Bancorp (NYSE:USB) is about to trade ex-dividend in the next 3 days. You can purchase shares before the 30th of March in order to receive the dividend, which the company will pay on the 15th of April.

U.S. Bancorp's upcoming dividend is US$0.42 a share, following on from the last 12 months, when the company distributed a total of US$1.68 per share to shareholders. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, U.S. Bancorp has a trailing yield of approximately 5.2% on its current stock price of $32.03. Dividends are an important source of income to many shareholders, but the health of the business is crucial to maintaining those dividends. We need to see whether the dividend is covered by earnings and if it's growing.

View our latest analysis for U.S. Bancorp

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. That's why it's good to see U.S. Bancorp paying out a modest 38% of its earnings.

Generally speaking, the lower a company's payout ratios, the more resilient its dividend usually is.

Click here to see the company's payout ratio, plus analyst estimates of its future dividends.

NYSE:USB Historical Dividend Yield March 26th 2020

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. If earnings fall far enough, the company could be forced to cut its dividend. With that in mind, we're encouraged by the steady growth at U.S. Bancorp, with earnings per share up 6.1% on average over the last five years.

Another key way to measure a company's dividend prospects is by measuring its historical rate of dividend growth. In the past ten years, U.S. Bancorp has increased its dividend at approximately 24% a year on average. We're glad to see dividends rising alongside earnings over a number of years, which may be a sign the company intends to share the growth with shareholders.

The Bottom Line

Is U.S. Bancorp an attractive dividend stock, or better left on the shelf? U.S. Bancorp has seen its earnings per share grow slowly in recent years, and the company reinvests more than half of its profits in the business, which generally bodes well for its future prospects. Overall, U.S. Bancorp looks like a promising dividend stock in this analysis, and we think it would be worth investigating further.

With that in mind, a critical part of thorough stock research is being aware of any risks that stock currently faces. We've identified 2 warning signs with U.S. Bancorp (at least 1 which makes us a bit uncomfortable), and understanding these should be part of your investment process.

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.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.