Banc of California, Inc. (NYSE:BANC) has announced that it will pay a dividend of US$0.06 per share on the 1st of July. The dividend yield is 1.3% based on this payment, which is a little bit low compared to the other companies in the industry.
Banc of California's Dividend Is Well Covered By Earnings
Even a low dividend yield can be attractive if it is sustained for years on end. However, Banc of California's earnings easily cover the dividend. As a result, a large proportion of what it earned was being reinvested back into the business.
The next year is set to see EPS grow by 37.0%. Assuming the dividend continues along recent trends, we think the payout ratio could be 11% by next year, which is in a pretty sustainable range.
The company's dividend history has been marked by instability, with at least 1 cut in the last 10 years. Since 2012, the dividend has gone from US$0.44 to US$0.24. Doing the maths, this is a decline of about 5.9% per year. Declining dividends isn't generally what we look for as they can indicate that the company is running into some challenges.
Banc of California May Find It Hard To Grow The Dividend
Given that dividend payments have been shrinking like a glacier in a warming world, we need to check if there are some bright spots on the horizon. Earnings per share has been crawling upwards at 4.5% per year. If Banc of California is struggling to find viable investments, it always has the option to increase its payout ratio to pay more to shareholders.
We'd also point out that Banc of California has issued stock equal to 21% of shares outstanding. Trying to grow the dividend when issuing new shares reminds us of the ancient Greek tale of Sisyphus - perpetually pushing a boulder uphill. Companies that consistently issue new shares are often suboptimal from a dividend perspective.
Overall, we think Banc of California is a solid choice as a dividend stock, even though the dividend wasn't raised this year. The dividend has been at reasonable levels historically, but that hasn't translated into a consistent payment. The payment isn't stellar, but it could make a decent addition to a dividend portfolio.
Market movements attest to how highly valued a consistent dividend policy is compared to one which is more unpredictable. Meanwhile, despite the importance of dividend payments, they are not the only factors our readers should know when assessing a company. As an example, we've identified 1 warning sign for Banc of California 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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