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Should Investors Buy WestRock Company (NYSE:WRK) And Lock In The 5.0% Dividend Yield?

Simply Wall St

WestRock Company (NYSE:WRK) is a true Dividend Rock Star. Its yield of 5.0% makes it one of the market's top dividend payer. In the past ten years, WestRock has also grown its dividend from $0.20 to $1.82. Below, I have outlined more attractive dividend aspects for WestRock for income investors who may be interested in new dividend stocks for their portfolio.

View our latest analysis for WestRock

What Is A Dividend Rock Star?

It is a stock that pays a consistent, reliable and competitive dividend over a long period of time, and is expected to continue to pay in the same manner many years to come. More specifically:

  • It is paying an annual yield above 75% of dividend payers
  • It has paid dividend every year without dramatically reducing payout in the past
  • Its has increased its dividend per share amount over the past
  • It can afford to pay the current rate of dividends from its earnings
  • It is able to continue to payout at the current rate in the future

High Yield And Dependable

The company's dividend yield stands at 5.0%, which is high for Packaging stocks. But the real reason WestRock stands out is because it has a high chance of being able to continue to pay dividend at this level for years to come, something that is quite desirable if you are looking to create a portfolio that generates a steady stream of income.

NYSE:WRK Historical Dividend Yield, July 22nd 2019

Reliability is an important factor for dividend stocks, particularly for income investors who want a strong track record of payment and a positive outlook for future payout. WRK has increased its DPS from $0.20 to $1.82 in the past 10 years. It has also been paying out dividend consistently during this time, as you'd expect for a company increasing its dividend levels. This is an impressive feat, which makes WRK a true dividend rockstar.

The company currently pays out 53% of its earnings as a dividend, according to its trailing twelve-month data, which means that the dividend is covered by earnings. Going forward, analysts expect WRK's payout to remain around the same level at 52% of its earnings. Assuming a constant share price, this equates to a dividend yield of around 5.2%. Furthermore, EPS should increase to $3.56.

When considering the sustainability of dividends, it is also worth checking the cash flow of a company. A business with strong cash flow can sustain a higher divided payout ratio than a company with weak cash flow.

Next Steps:

With WestRock producing strong dividend income for your portfolio over the past few years, you can take comfort in knowing that this stock will still continue to be a top dividend generator moving forward. However, given this is purely a dividend analysis, I urge potential investors to try and get a good understanding of the underlying business and its fundamentals before deciding on an investment. There are three important aspects you should further research:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for WRK’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for WRK’s outlook.
  2. Valuation: What is WRK worth today? Even if the stock is a cash cow, it's not worth an infinite price. The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether WRK is currently mispriced by the market.
  3. Other Dividend Rockstars: Are there strong dividend payers with better fundamentals out there? Check out our free list of these great stocks here.

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.