In an effort to enhance shareholder value, the board of directors of The Ensign Group, Inc. (ENSG - Free Report) has proposed a 5.3% increase in the quarterly dividend of 4.75 cents per share. This translates to a yearly dividend payment of 5 cents per share. Shareholders of record on Dec 31, 2019 are expected to receive this meatier dividend on or before Jan 31, 2019.
Ensign Group has been paying dividends since 2002 and has increased its payouts every year. This marks the 17th straight year of dividend raises by the company. Its track record of disbursing excess capital to investors remains impressive. The improved dividends not only bear testimony to the operational and financial strength of Ensign Group but also make the stock attractive for yield-seeking investors.
The company is well poised for growth and is eyeing greater prospects, which would help it continue to boost shareholder value. Its solid financial footing underlines its confidence in this regard. The dividend hike is indicative of the bullish investor sentiment and should further cement the company’s position to taste success in both the near and long term.
Its current dividend yield stands at 1.6%, much higher than its industry's average of 0.9%.
Frequent share repurchases and dividend payments at regular intervals enabled the company to retain investor confidence in the stock that bodes well. Maintenance of capital resources at sufficient levels will provide flexibility to future business growth.
Ensign Group has been witnessing a steady rise in revenues on the back of its Medicaid and Medicare businesses, Transitional & Skilled Services growth strategies and acquisitions. We expect the company's solid businesses to consistently support its dividend payment trend going forward.
Shares of this Zacks Rank #4 (Sell) company have gained 14% in the past year against its industry’s dip of 1.9%.
Stocks to Consider
Investors interested in the medical sector might consider some better-ranked stocks like Select Medical Holdings Corporation (SEM - Free Report) , WellCare Health Plans, Inc. and Genesis Healthcare, Inc. (GEN - Free Report) . You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Select Medical Holdings operates critical illness recovery hospitals, rehabilitation hospitals, outpatient rehabilitation clinics and occupational health centers. In the trailing four quarters, the company’s average beat was 11.07%. The stock sports a Zacks Rank #1.
WellCare Health offers managed care services to government-sponsored health care programs. The company pulled off average positive surprise of 17.32% in the preceding four quarters. It carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
Genesis Healthcare operates skilled nursing facilities and assisted/senior living homes. In the last four quarters, the company delivered average beat of 80.96%. It has a Zacks Rank of 1.
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