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What To Know Before Buying Imperial Oil Limited (TSE:IMO) For Its Dividend

Kelly Murphy

Dividends can be underrated but they form a large part of investment returns, playing an important role in compounding returns in the long run. In the past 10 years Imperial Oil Limited (TSX:IMO) has returned an average of 1.00% per year to investors in the form of dividend payouts. Let’s dig deeper into whether Imperial Oil should have a place in your portfolio. View our latest analysis for Imperial Oil

How I analyze a dividend stock

When researching a dividend stock, I always follow the following screening criteria:

  • Does it pay an annual yield higher than 75% of dividend payers?
  • Has it paid dividend every year without dramatically reducing payout in the past?
  • Has it increased its dividend per share amount over the past?
  • Is its earnings sufficient to payout dividend at the current rate?
  • Will the company be able to keep paying dividend based on the future earnings growth?
TSX:IMO Historical Dividend Yield Mar 26th 18

How well does Imperial Oil fit our criteria?

The current trailing twelve-month payout ratio for IMO is 108.37%, meaning the dividend is not sufficiently covered by its earnings. In the near future, analysts are predicting a more sensible payout ratio of 31.39%, leading to a dividend yield of 1.90%. Furthermore, EPS should increase to CA$1.66, meaning that the lower payout ratio does not necessarily implicate a lower dividend payment. If there is one thing that you want to be reliable in your life, it’s dividend stocks and their constant income stream. IMO has increased its DPS from CA$0.36 to CA$0.64 in the past 10 years. During this period it has not missed a payment, as one would expect for a company increasing its dividend. This is an impressive feat, which makes IMO a true dividend rockstar. Relative to peers, Imperial Oil has a yield of 1.89%, which is on the low-side for Oil and Gas stocks.

Next Steps:

Taking all the above into account, Imperial Oil is a complicated pick for dividend investors given that there are a couple of positive things about it as well as negative. However, if you are not strictly just a dividend investor, the stock could still offer some interesting investment opportunities. Given that this is purely a dividend analysis, I recommend taking sufficient time to understand its core business and determine whether the company and its investment properties suit your overall goals. I’ve put together three essential factors you should further examine:

To help readers see pass the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned.