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Does It Make Sense To Buy CDW Holding Limited (SGX:BXE) For Its Yield?

Simply Wall St

Could CDW Holding Limited (SGX:BXE) be an attractive dividend share to own for the long haul? Investors are often drawn to strong companies with the idea of reinvesting the dividends. Yet sometimes, investors buy a stock for its dividend and lose money because the share price falls by more than they earned in dividend payments.

A high yield and a long history of paying dividends is an appealing combination for CDW Holding. We'd guess that plenty of investors have purchased it for the income. During the year, the company also conducted a buyback equivalent to around 1.5% of its market capitalisation. There are a few simple ways to reduce the risks of buying CDW Holding for its dividend, and we'll go through these below.

Explore this interactive chart for our latest analysis on CDW Holding!

SGX:BXE Historical Dividend Yield, October 21st 2019

Payout ratios

Companies (usually) pay dividends out of their earnings. If a company is paying more than it earns, the dividend might have to be cut. So we need to form a view on if a company's dividend is sustainable, relative to its net profit after tax. CDW Holding paid out 3806% of its profit as dividends, over the trailing twelve month period. Unless there are extenuating circumstances, from the perspective of an investor who hopes to own the company for many years, a payout ratio of above 100% is definitely a concern.

In addition to comparing dividends against profits, we should inspect whether the company generated enough cash to pay its dividend. Last year, CDW Holding paid a dividend while reporting negative free cash flow. While there may be an explanation, we think this behaviour is generally not sustainable.

With a strong net cash balance, CDW Holding investors may not have much to worry about in the near term from a dividend perspective.

Consider getting our latest analysis on CDW Holding's financial position here.

Dividend Volatility

Before buying a stock for its income, we want to see if the dividends have been stable in the past, and if the company has a track record of maintaining its dividend. For the purpose of this article, we only scrutinise the last decade of CDW Holding's dividend payments. Its dividend payments have fallen by 20% or more on at least one occasion over the past ten years. During the past ten-year period, the first annual payment was US$0.016 in 2009, compared to US$0.011 last year. This works out to be a decline of approximately 3.7% per year over that time. CDW Holding's dividend hasn't shrunk linearly at 3.7% per annum, but the CAGR is a useful estimate of the historical rate of change.

We struggle to make a case for buying CDW Holding for its dividend, given that payments have shrunk over the past ten years.

Dividend Growth Potential

Given that the dividend has been cut in the past, we need to check if earnings are growing and if that might lead to stronger dividends in the future. CDW Holding's earnings per share have shrunk at 64% a year over the past five years. With this kind of significant decline, we always wonder what has changed in the business. Dividends are about stability, and CDW Holding's earnings per share, which support the dividend, have been anything but stable.

Conclusion

Dividend investors should always want to know if a) a company's dividends are affordable, b) if there is a track record of consistent payments, and c) if the dividend is capable of growing. It's a concern to see that the company paid out such a high percentage of its earnings and cashflow as dividends. Earnings per share have been falling, and the company has cut its dividend at least once in the past. From a dividend perspective, this is a cause for concern. In this analysis, CDW Holding doesn't shape up too well as a dividend stock. We'd find it hard to look past the flaws, and would not be inclined to think of it as a reliable dividend-payer.

See if management have their own wealth at stake, by checking insider shareholdings in CDW Holding stock.

If you are a dividend investor, you might also want to look at our curated list of dividend stocks yielding above 3%.

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.

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. Thank you for reading.