How Does Sunny Friend Environmental Technology Co., Ltd. (TPE:8341) Fare As A Dividend Stock?

Dividend paying stocks like Sunny Friend Environmental Technology Co., Ltd. (TPE:8341) 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 the income from dividends, it’s important to be a lot more stringent with your investments than the average punter.

With a 2.6% yield and a five-year payment history, investors probably think Sunny Friend Environmental Technology looks like a reliable dividend stock. A low yield is generally a turn-off, but if the prospects for earnings growth were strong, investors might be pleasantly surprised by the long-term results. Some simple analysis can offer a lot of insights when buying a company for its dividend, and we’ll go through this below.

Click the interactive chart for our full dividend analysis

TSEC:8341 Historical Dividend Yield, March 4th 2020
TSEC:8341 Historical Dividend Yield, March 4th 2020

Payout ratios

Dividends are typically paid from company earnings. If a company pays more in dividends than it earned, then the dividend might become unsustainable – hardly an ideal situation. As a result, we should always investigate whether a company can afford its dividend, measured as a percentage of a company’s net income after tax. In the last year, Sunny Friend Environmental Technology paid out 73% of its profit as dividends. This is a fairly normal payout ratio among most businesses. It allows a higher dividend to be paid to shareholders, but does limit the capital retained in the business – which could be good or bad.

In addition to comparing dividends against profits, we should inspect whether the company generated enough cash to pay its dividend. Sunny Friend Environmental Technology paid out 101% of its free cash flow last year, which we think is concerning if cash flows do not improve. Sunny Friend Environmental Technology paid out less in dividends than it reported in profits, but unfortunately it didn’t generate enough free cash flow to cover the dividend. Cash is king, as they say, and were Sunny Friend Environmental Technology to repeatedly pay dividends that aren’t well covered by cashflow, we would consider this a warning sign.

Remember, you can always get a snapshot of Sunny Friend Environmental Technology’s latest financial position, by checking our visualisation of its financial health.

Dividend Volatility

From the perspective of an income investor who wants to earn dividends for many years, there is not much point buying a stock if its dividend is regularly cut or is not reliable. Sunny Friend Environmental Technology has been paying a dividend for the past five years. During the past five-year period, the first annual payment was NT$2.20 in 2015, compared to NT$6.50 last year. Dividends per share have grown at approximately 24% per year over this time.

The dividend has been growing pretty quickly, which could be enough to get us interested even though the dividend history is relatively short. Further research may be warranted.

Dividend Growth Potential

Dividend payments have been consistent over the past few years, but we should always check if earnings per share (EPS) are growing, as this will help maintain the purchasing power of the dividend. Strong earnings per share (EPS) growth might encourage our interest in the company despite fluctuating dividends, which is why it’s great to see Sunny Friend Environmental Technology has grown its earnings per share at 24% per annum over the past five years. With recent, rapid earnings per share growth and a payout ratio of 73%, this business looks like an interesting prospect if earnings are reinvested effectively.

Conclusion

When we look at a dividend stock, we need to form a judgement on whether the dividend will grow, if the company is able to maintain it in a wide range of economic circumstances, and if the dividend payout is sustainable. Sunny Friend Environmental Technology gets a pass on its dividend payout ratio, but it paid out virtually all of its cash flow as dividends. This may just be a one-off, but we’d keep an eye on this. We were also glad to see it growing earnings, although its dividend history is not as long as we’d like. While we’re not hugely bearish on it, overall we think there are potentially better dividend stocks than Sunny Friend Environmental Technology out there.

Companies that are growing earnings tend to be the best dividend stocks over the long term. See what the 4 analysts we track are forecasting for Sunny Friend Environmental Technology for free with public analyst estimates for the company.

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

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.

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. Thank you for reading.