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Is Severn Bancorp Inc (NASDAQ:SVBI) A Smart Choice For Dividend Investors?

Dividends play an important role in compounding returns in the long run and end up forming a sizeable part of investment returns. Historically, Severn Bancorp Inc (NASDAQ:SVBI) has been paying a dividend to shareholders. Today it yields 1.5%. Does Severn Bancorp tick all the boxes of a great dividend stock? Below, I’ll take you through my analysis.

See our latest analysis for Severn Bancorp

5 questions to ask before buying a dividend stock

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

  • Is its annual yield among the top 25% of dividend-paying companies?
  • Has it paid dividend every year without dramatically reducing payout in the past?
  • Has dividend per share amount increased over the past?
  • Is is able to pay the current rate of dividends from its earnings?
  • Based on future earnings growth, will it be able to continue to payout dividend at the current rate?
NasdaqCM:SVBI Historical Dividend Yield November 26th 18

Does Severn Bancorp pass our checks?

The current trailing twelve-month payout ratio for the stock is 20%, meaning the dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Furthermore, analysts have not forecasted a dividends per share for the future, which makes it hard to determine the yield shareholders should expect, and whether the current payout is sustainable, moving forward.

When assessing the forecast sustainability of a dividend it is also worth considering the cash flow of the business. Companies with strong cash flow can sustain a higher payout ratio, while companies with weaker cash flow generally cannot.

If dividend is a key criteria in your investment consideration, then you need to make sure the dividend stock you’re eyeing out is reliable in its payments. Not only have dividend payouts from Severn Bancorp fallen over the past 10 years, it has also been highly volatile during this time, with drops of over 25% in some years. This means that dividend hunters should probably steer clear of the stock, at least for now until the track record improves.

Compared to its peers, Severn Bancorp has a yield of 1.5%, which is on the low-side for Mortgage stocks.

Next Steps:

After digging a little deeper into Severn Bancorp’s yield, it’s easy to see why you should be cautious investing in the company just for the dividend. But if you are not exclusively a dividend investor, the stock could still be an interesting investment opportunity. Given that this is purely a dividend analysis, you should always research extensively before deciding whether or not a stock is an appropriate investment for you. I always recommend analysing the company’s fundamentals and underlying business before making an investment decision. There are three key aspects you should further research:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for SVBI’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for SVBI’s outlook.
  2. Valuation: What is SVBI worth today? Even if the stock is a cash cow, it’s not worth an infinite price. The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether SVBI is currently mispriced by the market.
  3. Dividend Rockstars: Are there better dividend payers with stronger fundamentals out there? Check out our free list of these great stocks here.

To help readers see past 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. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.