Some investors rely on dividends for growing their wealth, and if you're one of those dividend sleuths, you might be intrigued to know that Toromont Industries Ltd. (TSE:TIH) is about to go ex-dividend in just 4 days. This means that investors who purchase shares on or after the 6th of March will not receive the dividend, which will be paid on the 2nd of April.
Toromont Industries's next dividend payment will be CA$0.31 per share, on the back of last year when the company paid a total of CA$1.24 to shareholders. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, Toromont Industries has a trailing yield of approximately 1.9% on its current stock price of CA$66.36. Dividends are an important source of income to many shareholders, but the health of the business is crucial to maintaining those dividends. As a result, readers should always check whether Toromont Industries has been able to grow its dividends, or if the dividend might be cut.
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. Toromont Industries paid out a comfortable 31% of its profit last year. A useful secondary check can be to evaluate whether Toromont Industries generated enough free cash flow to afford its dividend. The company paid out 95% of its free cash flow over the last year, which we think is outside the ideal range for most businesses. Companies usually need cash more than they need earnings - expenses don't pay themselves - so it's not great to see it paying out so much of its cash flow.
Toromont Industries paid out less in dividends than it reported in profits, but unfortunately it didn't generate enough cash to cover the dividend. Cash is king, as they say, and were Toromont Industries to repeatedly pay dividends that aren't well covered by cashflow, we would consider this a warning sign.
Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?
Companies with consistently growing earnings per share generally make the best dividend stocks, as they usually find it easier to grow dividends per share. If earnings fall far enough, the company could be forced to cut its dividend. Fortunately for readers, Toromont Industries's earnings per share have been growing at 15% a year for the past five years. Earnings have been growing at a decent rate, but we're concerned dividend payments consumed most of the company's cash flow over the past year.
Another key way to measure a company's dividend prospects is by measuring its historical rate of dividend growth. Toromont Industries has delivered an average of 7.5% per year annual increase in its dividend, based on the past ten years of dividend payments. We're glad to see dividends rising alongside earnings over a number of years, which may be a sign the company intends to share the growth with shareholders.
The Bottom Line
Should investors buy Toromont Industries for the upcoming dividend? We're glad to see the company has been improving its earnings per share while also paying out a low percentage of income. However, it's not great to see it paying out what we see as an uncomfortably high percentage of its cash flow. Overall, it's hard to get excited about Toromont Industries from a dividend perspective.
Ever wonder what the future holds for Toromont Industries? See what the seven analysts we track are forecasting, with this visualisation of its historical and future estimated earnings and cash flow
If you're in the market for dividend stocks, we recommend checking our list of top dividend stocks with a greater than 2% yield and an upcoming dividend.
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