Dividend Growth Investing Is About Total Returns

growthIt is close of five year now that I have been a long term buy and hold, and dividend growth focused investor. When I meet friends, acquaintances, or colleagues, on many occasions the discussion starts from what’s market doing today and steers towards trading/investing is nothing but a poker game. I get a sense that many of these folks think that buying (and selling) stocks is just a gamble of some kind. Irrespective of this, I believe both, trading and investing, have their own set of pros and cons depending upon what context an individual is looking at it. In the end, both trading and investing is done to make money. Some use approach of capital appreciation, some use dividend income, some do trades to generate income. The key is to have a plan and execute it with consistent results.

When it comes to dividend investing, many individuals think of high yields (perhaps Cramerica syndrome!). It shows lack of patience and tendency to read too much into the business media. They do not understand dividend growth and sustainability.

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Which High Do You Prefer?

Do you prefer a company with high profitability, high revenue, high income, high dividends, high market share, high cash flow, etc. Aren’t all these highs depicting a good picture about any given company’s state of business? We can find an answer to this in the concept of value investing i.e. wide moat and under pricing. These are the two key ingredients for value investing. Here, the concept of wide moat and under pricing is in the context of its business environment or competition. It is a relative term. Similarly, when we think about any given company’s financial metric, we need to look at it in relative terms. High profitability or high income, or high EPS growth rate as a standalone does not provide a true picture.

We can get a true picture by looking for consistency. Two simple statistical measures of average and standard deviation can help us measure consistency. A standard deviation that is narrow and lower than average is a good observation. The table below shows some examples of randomly selected financial metric for few companies. continue reading rest of the article….

TROW – Stock Analysis for Dividend Growth Portfolio

logoThis article was originally published on The DIV-net on May 21, 2009

T. Rowe Price Group is a publicly owned corporation, a holding group, and an investment manager. The firm provides its services to corporations, corporate, public, and Taft-Hartley retirement plans, foundations, and endowments. It is modeled as an asset manager.

TROW is a dividend achiever and has been paying growing dividends for last 10 years. In one of my earlier post, I listed few companies that may have potential for dividend growth investments. TROW was one of them I had shortlisted for more analysis. Keeping with that, my objective here is to analyze if TROW is a good dividend growth stock and risk of dividends associated with it.

Trend Analysis

Here I am looking at trends for past 10 years of corporation’s revenue and profitability. These parameters should show consistently growth trends. The trend charts and data summary are shown in images below. continue reading rest of the article….

Potential Dividend Growth Opportunities

History shows that it is normal for corporations to change (increase, decrease, or suspend) the dividends paid to the common share holders. These changes take place irrespective of which stage of economic cycle we are in. In last one year, i.e. between March 2008 and February 2009, within S&P500 index, there were 205 corporations that increased their dividends, 63, have decreased their dividends, and 25 have suspended their dividends. I could be argued that all 205 may not have good quality sustainable dividends. However, this list is deep enough for mining potential gems. In general, a typically dividend growth investor will look for a corporation that has increase its dividend consistently for at least last 10 years. It is always good to wait for 10 years worth of dividend history. However, I would like to evaluate corporations that have started showing signs of dividend growth early on, and see how it stands in my analysis.

In this context, I have shortlisted nine corporations (from S&P500) that for the last five years have (1) consistently increased their dividends; and/or (2) demonstrated their inclination to consistently pay dividends. The attached table shows the dividends for last 5 years and corresponding growth in last five years. Note: Year 2003 growth is with respect to Year 2002. continue reading rest of the article….

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