Is Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY) A Smart Pick For Income Investors?

Dividends play an important role in compounding returns in the long run and end up forming a sizeable part of investment returns. Signature Bank (NASDAQ:SBNY) has started paying a dividend to shareholders. It currently trades on a yield of 1.9%. Does Signature Bank tick all the boxes of a great dividend stock? Below, I’ll take you through my analysis.

Check out our latest analysis for Signature Bank

5 questions I ask before picking a dividend stock

When researching a dividend stock, I always follow the following screening criteria:

  • Is their annual yield among the top 25% of dividend payers?
  • Does it consistently pay out dividends without missing a payment of significantly cutting payout?
  • Has the amount of dividend per share grown over the past?
  • Can it afford to pay the current rate of dividends from its earnings?
  • Will the company be able to keep paying dividend based on the future earnings growth?
NasdaqGS:SBNY Historical Dividend Yield December 9th 18
NasdaqGS:SBNY Historical Dividend Yield December 9th 18

How well does Signature Bank fit our criteria?

The company currently pays out 6.6% of its earnings as a dividend, according to its trailing twelve-month data, which means that the dividend is covered by earnings. In the near future, analysts are predicting a higher payout ratio of 20%, leading to a dividend yield of around 1.7%. Moreover, EPS should increase to $10.74. The higher payout forecasted, along with higher earnings, should lead to greater dividend income for investors moving forward.

When considering the sustainability of dividends, it is also worth checking the cash flow of a company. Companies with strong cash flow can sustain a higher payout ratio, while companies with weaker cash flow generally cannot.

If dividend is a key criteria in your investment consideration, then you need to make sure the dividend stock you’re eyeing out is reliable in its payments. Unfortunately, it is really too early to view Signature Bank as a dividend investment. It has only been paying out dividend for the past one year. Generally, the rule of thumb for determining whether a stock is a reliable dividend payer is that it should be consistently paying dividends for the past 10 years or more. Clearly there’s a long road ahead before we can ascertain whether SBNY one as a stable dividend player.

Relative to peers, Signature Bank produces a yield of 1.9%, which is on the low-side for Banks stocks.

Next Steps:

If Signature Bank is in your portfolio for cash-generating reasons, there may be better alternatives out there. However, if you are not strictly just a dividend investor, the stock could still offer some interesting investment opportunities. Given that this is purely a dividend analysis, you should always research extensively before deciding whether or not a stock is an appropriate investment for you. I always recommend analysing the company’s fundamentals and underlying business before making an investment decision. There are three essential aspects you should further research:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for SBNY’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for SBNY’s outlook.
  2. Valuation: What is SBNY worth today? Even if the stock is a cash cow, it’s not worth an infinite price. The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether SBNY is currently mispriced by the market.
  3. Dividend Rockstars: Are there better dividend payers with stronger fundamentals out there? Check out our free list of these great stocks here.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.