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Briscoe Group Limited (NZSE:BGP) Goes Ex-Dividend Soon

Some investors rely on dividends for growing their wealth, and if you're one of those dividend sleuths, you might be intrigued to know that Briscoe Group Limited (NZSE:BGP) is about to go ex-dividend in just two days. The ex-dividend date occurs one day before the record date which is the day on which shareholders need to be on the company's books in order to receive a dividend. The ex-dividend date is important because any transaction on a stock needs to have been settled before the record date in order to be eligible for a dividend. Therefore, if you purchase Briscoe Group's shares on or after the 22nd of March, you won't be eligible to receive the dividend, when it is paid on the 30th of March.

The company's next dividend payment will be NZ$0.19 per share. Last year, in total, the company distributed NZ$0.28 to shareholders. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, Briscoe Group has a trailing yield of approximately 5.9% on its current stock price of NZ$4.75. Dividends are an important source of income to many shareholders, but the health of the business is crucial to maintaining those dividends. So we need to check whether the dividend payments are covered, and if earnings are growing.

See our latest analysis for Briscoe Group

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. Briscoe Group is paying out an acceptable 71% of its profit, a common payout level among most companies. That said, even highly profitable companies sometimes might not generate enough cash to pay the dividend, which is why we should always check if the dividend is covered by cash flow. It distributed 48% of its free cash flow as dividends, a comfortable payout level for most companies.

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It's encouraging to see that the dividend is covered by both profit and cash flow. This generally suggests the dividend is sustainable, as long as earnings don't drop precipitously.

Click here to see the company's payout ratio, plus analyst estimates of its future dividends.

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historic-dividend

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 earnings fall far enough, the company could be forced to cut its dividend. This is why it's a relief to see Briscoe Group earnings per share are up 7.4% per annum over the last five years. While earnings have been growing at a credible rate, the company is paying out a majority of its earnings to shareholders. If management lifts the payout ratio further, we'd take this as a tacit signal that the company's growth prospects are slowing.

Many investors will assess a company's dividend performance by evaluating how much the dividend payments have changed over time. Briscoe Group has delivered an average of 9.8% per year annual increase in its dividend, based on the past 10 years of dividend payments. We're glad to see dividends rising alongside earnings over a number of years, which may be a sign the company intends to share the growth with shareholders.

Final Takeaway

Should investors buy Briscoe Group for the upcoming dividend? While earnings per share growth has been modest, Briscoe Group's dividend payouts are around an average level; without a sharp change in earnings we feel that the dividend is likely somewhat sustainable. Pleasingly the company paid out a conservatively low percentage of its free cash flow. In summary, while it has some positive characteristics, we're not inclined to race out and buy Briscoe Group today.

So while Briscoe Group looks good from a dividend perspective, it's always worthwhile being up to date with the risks involved in this stock. Our analysis shows 1 warning sign for Briscoe Group and you should be aware of it before buying any shares.

Generally, we wouldn't recommend just buying the first dividend stock you see. Here's a curated list of interesting stocks that are strong dividend payers.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

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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