Some investors rely on dividends for growing their wealth, and if you're one of those dividend sleuths, you might be intrigued to know that The Travelers Companies, Inc. (NYSE:TRV) is about to go ex-dividend in just 4 days. Investors can purchase shares before the 9th of March in order to be eligible for this dividend, which will be paid on the 31st of March.
Travelers Companies's next dividend payment will be US$0.82 per share, and in the last 12 months, the company paid a total of US$3.28 per share. Last year's total dividend payments show that Travelers Companies has a trailing yield of 2.6% on the current share price of $125.31. We love seeing companies pay a dividend, but it's also important to be sure that laying the golden eggs isn't going to kill our golden goose! That's why we should always check whether the dividend payments appear sustainable, and if the company is growing.
Dividends are usually paid out of company profits, so if a company pays out more than it earned then its dividend is usually at greater risk of being cut. Fortunately Travelers Companies's payout ratio is modest, at just 32% of profit.
Generally speaking, the lower a company's payout ratios, the more resilient its dividend usually is.
Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?
Stocks with flat earnings can still be attractive dividend payers, but it is important to be more conservative with your approach and demand a greater margin for safety when it comes to dividend sustainability. Investors love dividends, so if earnings fall and the dividend is reduced, expect a stock to be sold off heavily at the same time. It's not encouraging to see that Travelers Companies's earnings are effectively flat over the past five years. Better than seeing them fall off a cliff, for sure, but the best dividend stocks grow their earnings meaningfully over the long run.
Many investors will assess a company's dividend performance by evaluating how much the dividend payments have changed over time. In the last ten years, Travelers Companies has lifted its dividend by approximately 11% a year on average.
To Sum It Up
Is Travelers Companies an attractive dividend stock, or better left on the shelf? Travelers Companies's earnings per share have not grown at all in recent years, although we like that it is paying out a low percentage of its earnings. We're unconvinced on the company's merits, and think there might be better opportunities out there.
Wondering what the future holds for Travelers Companies? See what the 16 analysts we track are forecasting, with this visualisation of its historical and future estimated earnings and cash flow
If you're in the market for dividend stocks, we recommend checking our list of top dividend stocks with a greater than 2% yield and an upcoming dividend.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.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.
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