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Is It Smart To Buy Sound Financial Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:SFBC) Before It Goes Ex-Dividend?

Simply Wall St

Sound Financial Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:SFBC) stock is about to trade ex-dividend in 4 days time. Ex-dividend means that investors that purchase the stock on or after the 7th of August will not receive this dividend, which will be paid on the 22nd of August.

Sound Financial Bancorp's next dividend payment will be US$0.14 per share, and in the last 12 months, the company paid a total of US$0.56 per share. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, Sound Financial Bancorp has a trailing yield of approximately 1.6% on its current stock price of $35.01. If you buy this business for its dividend, you should have an idea of whether Sound Financial Bancorp's dividend is reliable and sustainable. So we need to check whether the dividend payments are covered, and if earnings are growing.

Check out our latest analysis for Sound Financial Bancorp

If a company pays out more in dividends than it earned, then the dividend might become unsustainable - hardly an ideal situation. Sound Financial Bancorp paid out just 21% of its profit last year, which we think is conservatively low and leaves plenty of margin for unexpected circumstances.

When a company paid out less in dividends than it earned in profit, this generally suggests its dividend is affordable. The lower the % of its profit that it pays out, the greater the margin of safety for the dividend if the business enters a downturn.

Click here to see how much of its profit Sound Financial Bancorp paid out over the last 12 months.

NasdaqCM:SFBC Historical Dividend Yield, August 2nd 2019

Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?

Stocks in companies that generate sustainable earnings growth often make the best dividend prospects, as it is easier to lift the dividend when earnings are rising. Investors love dividends, so if earnings fall and the dividend is reduced, expect a stock to be sold off heavily at the same time. Fortunately for readers, Sound Financial Bancorp's earnings per share have been growing at 12% a year for the past five years.

Many investors will assess a company's dividend performance by evaluating how much the dividend payments have changed over time. Sound Financial Bancorp has delivered an average of 13% per year annual increase in its dividend, based on the past 10 years of dividend payments. Both per-share earnings and dividends have both been growing rapidly in recent times, which is great to see.

To Sum It Up

From a dividend perspective, should investors buy or avoid Sound Financial Bancorp? When companies are growing rapidly and retaining a majority of the profits within the business, it's usually a sign that reinvesting earnings creates more value than paying dividends to shareholders. Perhaps even more importantly - this can sometimes signal management is focused on the long term future of the business. Sound Financial Bancorp ticks a lot of boxes for us from a dividend perspective, and we think these characteristics should mark the company as deserving of further attention.

Curious about whether Sound Financial Bancorp has been able to consistently generate growth? Here's a chart 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.

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.

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. Thank you for reading.