Could NewSoft Technology Corporation (GTSM:5202) 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 popular dividend stock because of its yield, and then lose money if the company's dividend doesn't live up to expectations.
NewSoft Technology has only been paying a dividend for a year or so, so investors might be curious about its 2.9% yield. Some simple analysis can offer a lot of insights when buying a company for its dividend, and we'll go through this below.
Companies (usually) pay dividends out of their earnings. If a company is paying more than it earns, the dividend might have to be cut. 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. Although NewSoft Technology pays a dividend, it was loss-making during the past year. When a company recently reported a loss, we should investigate if its cash flows covered the dividend.
Last year, NewSoft Technology paid a dividend while reporting negative free cash flow. While there may be an explanation, we think this behaviour is generally not sustainable.
With a strong net cash balance, NewSoft Technology investors may not have much to worry about in the near term from a dividend perspective.
Consider getting our latest analysis on NewSoft Technology's financial position here.
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. This company has been paying a dividend for less than 2 years, which we think is too soon to consider it a reliable dividend stock. Its most recent annual dividend was NT$0.4 per share.
Modest dividend growth is good to see, especially with the payments being relatively stable. However, the payment history is relatively short and we wouldn't want to rely on this dividend too much.
Dividend Growth Potential
Examining whether the dividend is affordable and stable is important. However, it's also important to assess if earnings per share (EPS) are growing. Over the long term, dividends need to grow at or above the rate of inflation, in order to maintain the recipient's purchasing power. Over the past five years, it looks as though NewSoft Technology's EPS have declined at around 55% a year. With this kind of significant decline, we always wonder what has changed in the business. Dividends are about stability, and NewSoft Technology's earnings per share, which support the dividend, have been anything but stable.
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. It's a concern to see that the company paid a dividend despite reporting a loss, and the dividend was also not well covered by free cash flow. Earnings per share are down, and to our mind NewSoft Technology has not been paying a dividend long enough to demonstrate its resilience across economic cycles. In this analysis, NewSoft Technology doesn't shape up too well as a dividend stock. We'd find it hard to look past the flaws, and would not be inclined to think of it as a reliable dividend-payer.
Market movements attest to how highly valued a consistent dividend policy is compared to one which is more unpredictable. However, there are other things to consider for investors when analysing stock performance. To that end, NewSoft Technology has 3 warning signs (and 1 which is potentially serious) we think you should know about.
If you are a dividend investor, you might also want to look at our curated list of dividend stocks yielding 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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