Chorus (NZSE:CNU) Will Pay A Larger Dividend Than Last Year At NZ$0.21

August 24, 2022
  •  Updated
September 07, 2022
NZSE:CNU
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The board of Chorus Limited (NZSE:CNU) has announced that it will be paying its dividend of NZ$0.21 on the 11th of October, an increased payment from last year's comparable dividend. This makes the dividend yield about the same as the industry average at 4.4%.

Check out our latest analysis for Chorus

Chorus Doesn't Earn Enough To Cover Its Payments

We like to see a healthy dividend yield, but that is only helpful to us if the payment can continue. Prior to this announcement, the company was paying out 245% of what it was earning. It will be difficult to sustain this level of payout so we wouldn't be confident about this continuing.

Over the next year, EPS is forecast to expand by 21.2%. However, if the dividend continues along recent trends, it could start putting pressure on the balance sheet with the payout ratio getting very high over the next year.

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NZSE:CNU Historic Dividend August 24th 2022

Dividend Volatility

While the company has been paying a dividend for a long time, it has cut the dividend at least once in the last 10 years. Since 2012, the annual payment back then was NZ$0.146, compared to the most recent full-year payment of NZ$0.35. This implies that the company grew its distributions at a yearly rate of about 9.1% over that duration. A reasonable rate of dividend growth is good to see, but we're wary that the dividend history is not as solid as we'd like, having been cut at least once.

Dividend Growth Potential Is Shaky

With a relatively unstable dividend, it's even more important to evaluate if earnings per share is growing, which could point to a growing dividend in the future. Chorus' earnings per share has shrunk at 12% a year over the past five years. This steep decline can indicate that the business is going through a tough time, which could constrain its ability to pay a larger dividend each year in the future. Over the next year, however, earnings are actually predicted to rise, but we would still be cautious until a track record of earnings growth can be built.

Chorus' Dividend Doesn't Look Great

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's earnings aren't high enough to be making such big distributions, and it isn't backed up by strong growth or consistency either. Overall, the dividend is not reliable enough to make this a good income stock.

Companies possessing a stable dividend policy will likely enjoy greater investor interest than those suffering from a more inconsistent approach. 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 2 warning signs for Chorus 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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