The board of Savaria Corporation (TSE:SIS) has announced that it will pay a dividend on the 9th of December, with investors receiving CA$0.0433 per share. Based on this payment, the dividend yield on the company's stock will be 3.4%, which is an attractive boost to shareholder returns.
Savaria's Dividend Is Well Covered By Earnings
We like to see robust dividend yields, but that doesn't matter if the payment isn't sustainable. Before making this announcement, the company's dividend was higher than its profits, and made up 90% of cash flows. This indicates that the company could be more focused on returning cash to shareholders than reinvesting to grow the business.
According to analysts, EPS should be several times higher next year. If recent patterns in the dividend continue, we could see the payout ratio reaching 49% which is fairly sustainable.
The company's dividend history has been marked by instability, with at least one cut in the last 10 years. The dividend has gone from an annual total of CA$0.094 in 2012 to the most recent total annual payment of CA$0.52. This means that it has been growing its distributions at 19% per annum over that time. It is great to see strong growth in the dividend payments, but cuts are concerning as it may indicate the payout policy is too ambitious.
Savaria May Find It Hard To Grow The Dividend
Growing earnings per share could be a mitigating factor when considering the past fluctuations in the dividend. Although it's important to note that Savaria's earnings per share has basically not grown from where it was five years ago, which could erode the purchasing power of the dividend over time. So the company has struggled to grow its EPS yet it's still paying out 129% of its earnings. As they say in finance, 'past performance is not indicative of future performance', but we are not confident a company with limited earnings growth and a high payout ratio will be a star dividend-payer over the next decade.
The Dividend Could Prove To Be Unreliable
Overall, we don't think this company makes a great dividend stock, even though the dividend wasn't cut this year. The track record isn't great, and the payments are a bit high to be considered sustainable. We would be a touch cautious of relying on this stock primarily for the dividend income.
Companies possessing a stable dividend policy will likely enjoy greater investor interest than those suffering from a more inconsistent approach. At the same time, there are other factors our readers should be conscious of before pouring capital into a stock. To that end, Savaria has 3 warning signs (and 1 which is significant) we think you should know about. If you are a dividend investor, you might also want to look at our curated list of high yield dividend stocks.
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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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