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This is Why Rocky Brands (RCKY) is a Great Dividend Stock

Zacks Equity Research
eBay (EBAY) delivered earnings and revenue surprises of 9.68% and 0.50%, respectively, for the quarter ended June 2019. Do the numbers hold clues to what lies ahead for the stock?

All investors love getting big returns from their portfolio, whether it's through stocks, bonds, ETFs, or other types of securities. But when you're an income investor, your primary focus is generating consistent cash flow from each of your liquid investments.

Cash flow can come from bond interest, interest from other types of investments, and of course, dividends. A dividend is the distribution of a company's earnings paid out to shareholders; it's often viewed by its dividend yield, a metric that measures a dividend as a percent of the current stock price. Many academic studies show that dividends account for significant portions of long-term returns, with dividend contributions exceeding one-third of total returns in many cases.

Rocky Brands in Focus

Rocky Brands (RCKY) is headquartered in Nelsonville, and is in the Consumer Discretionary sector. The stock has seen a price change of -6.85% since the start of the year. The footwear company is currently shelling out a dividend of $0.14 per share, with a dividend yield of 2.31%. This compares to the Shoes and Retail Apparel industry's yield of 1.14% and the S&P 500's yield of 2.04%.

Taking a look at the company's dividend growth, its current annualized dividend of $0.56 is up 19.1% from last year. Rocky Brands has increased its dividend 2 times on a year-over-year basis over the last 5 years for an average annual increase of 3.57%. Looking ahead, future dividend growth will be dependent on earnings growth and payout ratio, which is the proportion of a company's annual earnings per share that it pays out as a dividend. Rocky Brands's current payout ratio is 25%. This means it paid out 25% of its trailing 12-month EPS as dividend.

RCKY is expecting earnings to expand this fiscal year as well. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2019 is $2 per share, with earnings expected to increase 6.38% from the year ago period.

Bottom Line

Investors like dividends for many reasons; they greatly improve stock investing profits, decrease overall portfolio risk, and carry tax advantages, among others. But, not every company offers a quarterly payout.

Big, established firms that have more secure profits are often seen as the best dividend options, but it's fairly uncommon to see high-growth businesses or tech start-ups offer their stockholders a dividend. Income investors have to be mindful of the fact that high-yielding stocks tend to struggle during periods of rising interest rates. That said, they can take comfort from the fact that RCKY is not only an attractive dividend play, but also represents a compelling investment opportunity with a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy).


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