It looks like Preformed Line Products Company (NASDAQ:PLPC) is about to go ex-dividend in the next four days. The ex-dividend date is one business day before a company's record date, which is the date on which the company determines which shareholders are entitled to receive a dividend. The ex-dividend date is important as the process of settlement involves two full business days. So if you miss that date, you would not show up on the company's books on the record date. Thus, you can purchase Preformed Line Products' shares before the 30th of September in order to receive the dividend, which the company will pay on the 20th of October.
The company's upcoming dividend is US$0.20 a share, following on from the last 12 months, when the company distributed a total of US$0.80 per share to shareholders. Calculating the last year's worth of payments shows that Preformed Line Products has a trailing yield of 1.2% on the current share price of $68.2. If you buy this business for its dividend, you should have an idea of whether Preformed Line Products's dividend is reliable and sustainable. That's why we should always check whether the dividend payments appear sustainable, and if the company is growing.
Dividends are typically paid from company earnings. If a company pays more in dividends than it earned in profit, then the dividend could be unsustainable. Preformed Line Products has a low and conservative payout ratio of just 12% of its income after tax. A useful secondary check can be to evaluate whether Preformed Line Products generated enough free cash flow to afford its dividend. Luckily it paid out just 16% of its free cash flow last year.
It's positive to see that Preformed Line Products's dividend is covered by both profits and cash flow, since this is generally a sign that the dividend is sustainable, and a lower payout ratio usually suggests a greater margin of safety before the dividend gets cut.
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 business enters a downturn and the dividend is cut, the company could see its value fall precipitously. That's why it's comforting to see Preformed Line Products's earnings have been skyrocketing, up 39% per annum for the past five years. Preformed Line Products looks like a real growth company, with earnings per share growing at a cracking pace and the company reinvesting most of its profits in the business.
Another key way to measure a company's dividend prospects is by measuring its historical rate of dividend growth. Preformed Line Products's dividend payments are broadly unchanged compared to where they were 10 years ago.
From a dividend perspective, should investors buy or avoid Preformed Line Products? Preformed Line Products has been growing earnings at a rapid rate, and has a conservatively low payout ratio, implying that it is reinvesting heavily in its business; a sterling combination. It's a promising combination that should mark this company worthy of closer attention.
Want to learn more about Preformed Line Products? Here's a visualisation of its historical rate of revenue and earnings growth.
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.
This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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