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Readers hoping to buy The National Security Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:NSEC) for its dividend will need to make their move shortly, as the stock is about to trade ex-dividend. Investors can purchase shares before the 9th of August in order to be eligible for this dividend, which will be paid on the 30th of August.
National Security Group's upcoming dividend is US$0.05 a share, following on from the last 12 months, when the company distributed a total of US$0.20 per share to shareholders. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, National Security Group has a trailing yield of approximately 1.7% on its current stock price of $11.4999. If you buy this business for its dividend, you should have an idea of whether National Security Group's dividend is reliable and sustainable. So we need to investigate whether National Security Group can afford its dividend, and if the dividend could grow.
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. National Security Group has a low and conservative payout ratio of just 18% of its income after tax.
Generally speaking, the lower a company's payout ratios, the more resilient its dividend usually is.
Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?
When earnings decline, dividend companies become much harder to analyse and own safely. If earnings decline and the company is forced to cut its dividend, investors could watch the value of their investment go up in smoke. National Security Group's earnings per share have fallen at approximately 14% a year over the previous 5 years. When earnings per share fall, the maximum amount of dividends that can be paid also falls.
Another key way to measure a company's dividend prospects is by measuring its historical rate of dividend growth. National Security Group's dividend payments per share have declined at 14% per year on average over the past 10 years, which is uninspiring. It's never nice to see earnings and dividends falling, but at least management has cut the dividend rather than potentially risk the company's health in an attempt to maintain it.
Should investors buy National Security Group for the upcoming dividend? National Security Group's earnings per share are down over the past 5 years, although it has the cushion of a low payout ratio, which would suggest a cut to the dividend is relatively unlikely. It doesn't appear an outstanding opportunity, but could be worth a closer look.
Keen to explore more data on National Security Group's financial performance? Check out our visualisation of its historical revenue and earnings growth.
We wouldn't recommend just buying the first dividend stock you see, though. Here's a list of interesting dividend stocks with a greater than 2% yield and an upcoming dividend.
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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.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.