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Should Microequities Asset Management Group Limited (ASX:MAM) Be Part Of Your Income Portfolio?

Simply Wall St

Is Microequities Asset Management Group Limited (ASX:MAM) a good dividend stock? How can we tell? Dividend paying companies with growing earnings can be highly rewarding in the long term. Unfortunately, it's common for investors to be enticed in by the seemingly attractive yield, and lose money when the company has to cut its dividend payments.

Microequities Asset Management Group has only been paying a dividend for a year or so, so investors might be curious about its 4.0% yield. Some simple analysis can offer a lot of insights when buying a company for its dividend, and we'll go through this below.

Click the interactive chart for our full dividend analysis

ASX:MAM Historical Dividend Yield, January 9th 2020

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. As a result, we should always investigate whether a company can afford its dividend, measured as a percentage of a company's net income after tax. In the last year, Microequities Asset Management Group paid out 103% of its profit as dividends. A payout ratio above 100% is definitely an item of concern, unless there are some other circumstances that would justify it.

We update our data on Microequities Asset Management Group every 24 hours, so you can always get our latest analysis of its financial health, here.

Dividend Volatility

From the perspective of an income investor who wants to earn dividends for many years, there is not much point buying a stock if its dividend is regularly cut or is not reliable. With a payment history of less than 2 years, we think it's a bit too soon to think about living on the income from its dividend. Its most recent annual dividend was AU$0.02 per share.

It's good to see at least some dividend growth. Yet with a relatively short dividend paying history, we wouldn't want to depend on this dividend too heavily.

Dividend Growth Potential

The other half of the dividend investing equation is evaluating whether earnings per share (EPS) are growing. Over the long term, dividends need to grow at or above the rate of inflation, in order to maintain the recipient's purchasing power. Microequities Asset Management Group's earnings per share have fallen -51% over the past year. This is a pretty serious concern, and it would be worth investigating whether something fundamental in the business has changed - or broken. Any one year of performance can be misleading for a variety of reasons, so we wouldn't like to form any strong conclusions based on these numbers alone.

Conclusion

To summarise, shareholders should always check that Microequities Asset Management Group's dividends are affordable, that its dividend payments are relatively stable, and that it has decent prospects for growing its earnings and dividend. Microequities Asset Management Group is paying out a larger percentage of its profit than we're comfortable with. Earnings per share have been falling, and the company has a relatively short dividend history - shorter than we like, anyway. Using these criteria, Microequities Asset Management Group looks suboptimal from a dividend investment perspective.

Now, if you want to look closer, it would be worth checking out our free research on Microequities Asset Management Group management tenure, salary, and performance.

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

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.