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Dividend paying stocks like Hester Biosciences Limited (NSE:HESTERBIO) tend to be popular with investors, and for good reason - some research suggests a significant amount of all stock market returns come from reinvested dividends. On the other hand, investors have been known to buy a stock because of its yield, and then lose money if the company's dividend doesn't live up to expectations.
A 0.6% yield is nothing to get excited about, but investors probably think the long payment history suggests Hester Biosciences has some staying power. Some simple research can reduce the risk of buying Hester Biosciences for its dividend - read on to learn more.
Dividends are typically paid from company earnings. If a company pays more in dividends than it earned, then the dividend might become unsustainable - hardly an ideal situation. As a result, we should always investigate whether a company can afford its dividend, measured as a percentage of a company's net income after tax. In the last year, Hester Biosciences paid out 23% of its profit as dividends. With a low payout ratio, it looks like the dividend is comprehensively covered by earnings.
Consider getting our latest analysis on Hester Biosciences's financial position here.
Before buying a stock for its income, we want to see if the dividends have been stable in the past, and if the company has a track record of maintaining its dividend. Hester Biosciences has been paying dividends for a long time, but for the purpose of this analysis, we only examine the past 10 years of payments. Its dividend payments have fallen by 20% or more on at least one occasion over the past ten years. During the past ten-year period, the first annual payment was ₹1.67 in 2009, compared to ₹11.00 last year. Dividends per share have grown at approximately 21% per year over this time. The dividends haven't grown at precisely 21% every year, but this is a useful way to average out the historical rate of growth.
So, its dividends have grown at a rapid rate over this time, but payments have been cut in the past. The stock may still be worth considering as part of a diversified dividend portfolio.
Dividend Growth Potential
Given that the dividend has been cut in the past, we need to check if earnings are growing and if that might lead to stronger dividends in the future. It's good to see Hester Biosciences has been growing its earnings per share at 34% a year over the past 5 years. The company is only paying out a fraction of its earnings as dividends, and in the past been able to use the retained earnings to grow its profits rapidly - an ideal combination.
To summarise, shareholders should always check that Hester Biosciences's dividends are affordable, that its dividend payments are relatively stable, and that it has decent prospects for growing its earnings and dividend. It's great to see that Hester Biosciences is paying out a low percentage of its earnings and cash flow. We were also glad to see it growing earnings, but it was concerning to see the dividend has been cut at least once in the past. Hester Biosciences performs highly under this analysis, although it falls slightly short of our exacting standards. At the right valuation, it could be a solid dividend prospect.
Now, if you want to look closer, it would be worth checking out our free research on Hester Biosciences management tenure, salary, and performance.
If you are a dividend investor, you might also want to look at our curated list of dividend stocks yielding above 3%.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.