Does It Make Sense To Buy adidas AG (ETR:ADS) For Its Yield?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
April 12, 2021
XTRA:ADS

Could adidas AG (ETR:ADS) be an attractive dividend share to own for the long haul? Investors are often drawn to strong companies with the idea of reinvesting the dividends. Yet sometimes, investors buy a stock for its dividend and lose money because the share price falls by more than they earned in dividend payments.

A slim 1.1% yield is hard to get excited about, but the long payment history is respectable. At the right price, or with strong growth opportunities, adidas could have potential. There are a few simple ways to reduce the risks of buying adidas for its dividend, and we'll go through these below.

Click the interactive chart for our full dividend analysis

historic-dividend
XTRA:ADS Historic Dividend April 12th 2021

Payout ratios

Companies (usually) pay dividends out of their earnings. If a company is paying more than it earns, the dividend might have to be cut. So we need to form a view on if a company's dividend is sustainable, relative to its net profit after tax. In the last year, adidas paid out 140% of its profit as dividends. Unless there are extenuating circumstances, from the perspective of an investor who hopes to own the company for many years, a payout ratio of above 100% is definitely a concern.

While the above analysis focuses on dividends relative to a company's earnings, we do note adidas' strong net cash position, which will let it pay larger dividends for a time, should it choose.

Consider getting our latest analysis on adidas' financial position here.

Dividend Volatility

One of the major risks of relying on dividend income, is the potential for a company to struggle financially and cut its dividend. Not only is your income cut, but the value of your investment declines as well - nasty. For the purpose of this article, we only scrutinise the last decade of adidas' dividend payments. The dividend has been cut on at least one occasion historically. During the past 10-year period, the first annual payment was €0.8 in 2011, compared to €3.0 last year. Dividends per share have grown at approximately 14% per year over this time. adidas' dividend payments have fluctuated, so it hasn't grown 14% every year, but the CAGR is a useful rule of thumb for approximating the historical growth.

adidas has grown distributions at a rapid rate despite cutting the dividend at least once in the past. Companies that cut once often cut again, but it might be worth considering if the business has turned a corner.

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 not great to see that adidas' have fallen at approximately 8.6% over the past five years. A modest decline in earnings per share is not great to see, but it doesn't automatically make a dividend unsustainable. Still, we'd vastly prefer to see EPS growth when researching dividend stocks.

Conclusion

To summarise, shareholders should always check that adidas' dividends are affordable, that its dividend payments are relatively stable, and that it has decent prospects for growing its earnings and dividend. First, it's not great to see how much of its earnings are being paid as dividends. Earnings per share have been falling, and the company has cut its dividend at least once in the past. From a dividend perspective, this is a cause for concern. To conclude, we've spotted a couple of potential concerns with adidas that may make it less than ideal candidate for dividend investors.

Market movements attest to how highly valued a consistent dividend policy is compared to one which is more unpredictable. Meanwhile, despite the importance of dividend payments, they are not the only factors our readers should know when assessing a company. As an example, we've identified 3 warning signs for adidas that you should be aware of before investing.

Looking for more high-yielding dividend ideas? Try our curated list of dividend stocks with a yield above 3%.

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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. 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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