Whether it's through stocks, bonds, ETFs, or other types of securities, all investors love seeing their portfolios score big returns. But for income investors, generating consistent cash flow from each of your liquid investments is your primary focus.
Cash flow can come from bond interest, interest from other types of investments, and of course, dividends. A dividend is the distribution of a company's earnings paid out to shareholders; it's often viewed by its dividend yield, a metric that measures a dividend as a percent of the current stock price. Many academic studies show that dividends account for significant portions of long-term returns, with dividend contributions exceeding one-third of total returns in many cases.
PSEG in Focus
Headquartered in Newark, PSEG (PEG - Free Report) is a Utilities stock that has seen a price change of 15.89% so far this year. The parent company of PSEG Power and Public Service Electric & Gas Co. Is currently shelling out a dividend of $0.47 per share, with a dividend yield of 3.12%. This compares to the Utility - Electric Power industry's yield of 2.93% and the S&P 500's yield of 1.97%.
Looking at dividend growth, the company's current annualized dividend of $1.88 is up 4.4% from last year. PSEG has increased its dividend 5 times on a year-over-year basis over the last 5 years for an average annual increase of 4.99%. Any future dividend growth will depend on both earnings growth and the company's payout ratio; a payout ratio is the proportion of a firm's annual earnings per share that it pays out as a dividend. PSEG's current payout ratio is 58%. This means it paid out 58% of its trailing 12-month EPS as dividend.
PEG is expecting earnings to expand this fiscal year as well. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2019 is $3.27 per share, which represents a year-over-year growth rate of 4.81%.
From greatly improving stock investing profits and reducing overall portfolio risk to providing tax advantages, investors like dividends for a variety of different reasons. However, not all companies offer a quarterly payout.
Big, established firms that have more secure profits are often seen as the best dividend options, but it's fairly uncommon to see high-growth businesses or tech start-ups offer their stockholders a dividend. Income investors must be conscious of the fact that high-yielding stocks tend to struggle during periods of rising interest rates. With that in mind, PEG is a compelling investment opportunity. Not only is it a strong dividend play, but the stock currently sits at a Zacks Rank of 3 (Hold).