All investors love getting big returns from their portfolio, whether it's through stocks, bonds, ETFs, or other types of securities. 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 make up large portions of long-term returns, and in many cases, dividend contributions surpass one-third of total returns.
Kaiser Aluminum in Focus
Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, Kaiser Aluminum (KALU - Free Report) is an Industrial Products stock that has seen a price change of 6.72% so far this year. The aluminum products company is currently shelling out a dividend of $0.6 per share, with a dividend yield of 2.52%. This compares to the Metal Products - Procurement and Fabrication industry's yield of 0.65% and the S&P 500's yield of 1.89%.
Taking a look at the company's dividend growth, its current annualized dividend of $2.40 is up 9.1% from last year. In the past five-year period, Kaiser Aluminum has increased its dividend 5 times on a year-over-year basis for an average annual increase of 11.56%. 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. Kaiser's current payout ratio is 37%. This means it paid out 37% of its trailing 12-month EPS as dividend.
Earnings growth looks solid for KALU for this fiscal year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2019 is $7.20 per share, with earnings expected to increase 11.28% from the year ago period.
From greatly improving stock investing profits and reducing overall portfolio risk to providing tax advantages, investors like dividends for a variety of different reasons. But, not every company offers a quarterly payout.
High-growth firms or tech start-ups, for example, rarely provide their shareholders a dividend, while larger, more established companies that have more secure profits are often seen as the best dividend options. Income investors must be conscious of the fact that high-yielding stocks tend to struggle during periods of rising interest rates. That said, they can take comfort from the fact that KALU is not only an attractive dividend play, but is also a compelling investment opportunity with a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy).