Stock Analysis

Laurentian Bank of Canada's (TSE:LB) Dividend Will Be Increased To CA$0.45

TSX:LB
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Laurentian Bank of Canada (TSE:LB) has announced that it will be increasing its dividend on the 1st of August to CA$0.45. This takes the annual payment to 4.1% of the current stock price, which is about average for the industry.

Check out our latest analysis for Laurentian Bank of Canada

Laurentian Bank of Canada's Payment Has Solid Earnings Coverage

We aren't too impressed by dividend yields unless they can be sustained over time. Based on the last payment, earnings were actually smaller than the dividend, and the company was actually spending more cash than it was making. Paying out such a large dividend compared to earnings while also not generating free cash flows is a major warning sign for the sustainability of the dividend as these levels are certainly a bit high.

Looking forward, earnings per share is forecast to rise exponentially over the next year. Assuming the dividend continues along recent trends, we estimate that the payout ratio could reach 32%, which is in a comfortable range for us.

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TSX:LB Historic Dividend June 8th 2022

Dividend Volatility

Although the company has a long dividend history, it has been cut at least once in the last 10 years. The dividend has gone from CA$1.68 in 2012 to the most recent annual payment of CA$1.80. Dividend payments have been growing, but very slowly over the period. We're glad to see the dividend has risen, but with a limited rate of growth and fluctuations in the payments the total shareholder return may be limited.

The Dividend Has Limited Growth Potential

Growing earnings per share could be a mitigating factor when considering the past fluctuations in the dividend. Earnings per share has been sinking by 20% over the last five years. A sharp decline in earnings per share is not great from from a dividend perspective. Even conservative payout ratios can come under pressure if earnings fall far enough. However, the next year is actually looking up, with earnings set to rise. We would just wait until it becomes a pattern before getting too excited.

We're Not Big Fans Of Laurentian Bank of Canada's Dividend

In summary, investors will like to be receiving a higher dividend, but we have some questions about whether it can be sustained over the long term. The company isn't making enough to be paying as much as it is, and the other factors don't look particularly promising either. Considering all of these factors, we wouldn't rely on this dividend if we wanted to live on the income.

It's important to note that companies having a consistent dividend policy will generate greater investor confidence than those having an erratic one. At the same time, there are other factors our readers should be conscious of before pouring capital into a stock. As an example, we've identified 3 warning signs for Laurentian Bank of Canada that you should be aware of before investing. Looking for more high-yielding dividend ideas? Try our collection of strong dividend payers.

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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.