Stock Analysis

Is VST Industries Limited (NSE:VSTIND) A Smart Choice For Dividend Investors?

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NSEI:VSTIND
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Dividend paying stocks like VST Industries Limited (NSE:VSTIND) 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. If you are hoping to live on your dividends, it's important to be more stringent with your investments than the average punter. Regular readers know we like to apply the same approach to each dividend stock, and we hope you'll find our analysis useful.

A slim 2.7% yield is hard to get excited about, but the long payment history is respectable. At the right price, or with strong growth opportunities, VST Industries could have potential. Some simple research can reduce the risk of buying VST Industries for its dividend - read on to learn more.

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historic-dividend
NSEI:VSTIND Historic Dividend December 30th 2020

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. VST Industries paid out 50% of its profit as dividends, over the trailing twelve month period. A payout ratio above 50% generally implies a business is reaching maturity, although it is still possible to reinvest in the business or increase the dividend over time.

In addition to comparing dividends against profits, we should inspect whether the company generated enough cash to pay its dividend. VST Industries paid out a conservative 40% of its free cash flow as dividends last year. 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.

With a strong net cash balance, VST Industries investors may not have much to worry about in the near term from a dividend perspective.

Remember, you can always get a snapshot of VST Industries' latest financial position, by checking our visualisation of its financial health.

Dividend Volatility

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. For the purpose of this article, we only scrutinise the last decade of VST Industries' dividend payments. The dividend has been stable over the past 10 years, which is great. We think this could suggest some resilience to the business and its dividends. During the past 10-year period, the first annual payment was ₹30.0 in 2010, compared to ₹103 last year. Dividends per share have grown at approximately 13% per year over this time.

With rapid dividend growth and no notable cuts to the dividend over a lengthy period of time, we think this company has a lot going for it.

Dividend Growth Potential

While dividend payments have been relatively reliable, it would also be nice if earnings per share (EPS) were growing, as this is essential to maintaining the dividend's purchasing power over the long term. It's good to see VST Industries has been growing its earnings per share at 19% a year over the past five years. VST Industries' earnings per share have grown rapidly in recent years, although more than half of its profits are being paid out as dividends, which makes us wonder if the company has a limited number of reinvestment opportunities in its business.

Conclusion

To summarise, shareholders should always check that VST Industries' dividends are affordable, that its dividend payments are relatively stable, and that it has decent prospects for growing its earnings and dividend. First, we think VST Industries has an acceptable payout ratio and its dividend is well covered by cashflow. Next, growing earnings per share and steady dividend payments is a great combination. VST Industries 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.

It's important to note that companies having a consistent dividend policy will generate greater investor confidence than those having an erratic one. Meanwhile, despite the importance of dividend payments, they are not the only factors our readers should know when assessing a company. See if management have their own wealth at stake, by checking insider shareholdings in VST Industries stock.

We have also put together a list of global stocks with a market capitalisation above $1bn and yielding more 3%.

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