Should Coromandel International Limited (NSE:COROMANDEL) Be Part Of Your Dividend Portfolio?

Is Coromandel International Limited (NSE:COROMANDEL) a good dividend stock? How would you know? A dividend paying company with growing earnings can be rewarding in the long term. If you are hoping to live on the income from dividends, it’s important to be a lot more stringent with your investments than the average punter.

While Coromandel International’s 1.5% dividend yield is not the highest, we think its lengthy payment history is quite interesting. There are a few simple ways to reduce the risks of buying Coromandel International for its dividend, and we’ll go through these below.

Explore this interactive chart for our latest analysis on Coromandel International!
NSEI:COROMANDEL Historical Dividend Yield, April 11th 2019
NSEI:COROMANDEL Historical Dividend Yield, April 11th 2019

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. Comparing dividend payments to a company’s net profit after tax is a simple way of reality-checking whether a dividend is sustainable. Coromandel International paid out 28% of its profit as dividends, over the trailing twelve month period. This is medium payout level that leaves enough capital in the business to fund opportunities that might arise, while also rewarding shareholders. Plus, there is room to increase the payout ratio over time.

We also measure dividends paid against a company’s levered free cash flow, to see if enough cash was generated to cover the dividend. Coromandel International paid out 165% of its free cash last year. Cash flows can be lumpy, but paying out this much cash is not ideal. Paying out more than 100% of your free cash flow in dividends is generally not a long-term, sustainable state of affairs, so we think shareholders should watch this metric closely.

We update our data on Coromandel International every 24 hours, so you can always get our latest analysis of its financial health, here.

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 Coromandel International’s dividend 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 ₹5.00 in 2009, compared to ₹6.50 last year. This works out to be a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 2.7% a year over that time. The dividends haven’t grown at precisely 2.7% every year, but this is a useful way to average out the historical rate of growth.

It’s good to see some dividend growth, but the dividend has been cut at least once, and the size of the cut would eliminate most of the growth, anyway. We’re not that enthused by this.

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. Coromandel International has grown its earnings per share at 8.5% per annum over the past five years. Earnings per share have been growing at a credible rate. What’s more, the payout ratio is reasonable and provides some protection to the dividend, or even the potential to increase it.

Conclusion

Dividend investors should always want to know if a) a company’s dividends are affordable, b) if there is a track record of consistent payments, and c) if the dividend is capable of growing. Coromandel International has a low payout ratio, which we like, although it paid out virtually all of its generated cash. Second, earnings growth has been ordinary, and its history of dividend payments is chequered – having cut its dividend at least once in the past. While we’re not hugely bearish on it, overall we think there are potentially better dividend stocks than Coromandel International out there.

Earnings growth generally bodes well for the future value of company dividend payments. See if the 10 Coromandel International analysts we track are forecasting continued growth with our free report on analyst estimates for the company.

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