Be Sure To Check Out Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAR) Before It Goes Ex-Dividend

Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAR) stock is about to trade ex-dividend in 3 days time. You can purchase shares before the 21st of August in order to receive the dividend, which the company will pay on the 30th of September.

Marriott International’s upcoming dividend is US$0.48 a share, following on from the last 12 months, when the company distributed a total of US$1.92 per share to shareholders. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, Marriott International has a trailing yield of approximately 1.5% on its current stock price of $128.82. We love seeing companies pay a dividend, but it’s also important to be sure that laying the golden eggs isn’t going to kill our golden goose! So we need to check whether the dividend payments are covered, and if earnings are growing.

See our latest analysis for Marriott International

If a company pays out more in dividends than it earned, then the dividend might become unsustainable – hardly an ideal situation. That’s why it’s good to see Marriott International paying out a modest 41% of its earnings. A useful secondary check can be to evaluate whether Marriott International generated enough free cash flow to afford its dividend. It distributed 35% of its free cash flow as dividends, a comfortable payout level for most companies.

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.

NasdaqGS:MAR Historical Dividend Yield, August 17th 2019
NasdaqGS:MAR Historical Dividend Yield, August 17th 2019

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. Investors love dividends, so if earnings fall and the dividend is reduced, expect a stock to be sold off heavily at the same time. Fortunately for readers, Marriott International’s earnings per share have been growing at 15% a year for the past five years. Earnings per share have been growing rapidly and the company is retaining a majority of its earnings within the business. This will make it easier to fund future growth efforts and we think this is an attractive combination – plus the dividend can always be increased later.

The main way most investors will assess a company’s dividend prospects is by checking the historical rate of dividend growth. In the past 10 years, Marriott International has increased its dividend at approximately 19% a year on average. Both per-share earnings and dividends have both been growing rapidly in recent times, which is great to see.

Final Takeaway

Is Marriott International worth buying for its dividend? It’s great that Marriott International is growing earnings per share while simultaneously paying out a low percentage of both its earnings and cash flow. It’s disappointing to see the dividend has been cut at least once in the past, but as things stand now, the low payout ratio suggests a conservative approach to dividends, which we like. There’s a lot to like about Marriott International, and we would prioritise taking a closer look at it.

Curious what other investors think of Marriott International? See what analysts are forecasting, with this visualisation of its historical and future estimated earnings and cash flow .

A common investment mistake is buying the first interesting stock you see. Here you can find a list of promising dividend stocks with a greater than 2% yield and an upcoming dividend.

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 editorial-team@simplywallst.com. 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.