Is It Worth Considering Pembina Pipeline Corporation (TSE:PPL) For Its Upcoming Dividend?

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 Pembina Pipeline Corporation (TSE:PPL) is about to go ex-dividend in just 3 days. The ex-dividend date is usually set to be one business day before the record date which is the cut-off date on which you must be present on the company’s books as a shareholder in order to receive the dividend. The ex-dividend date is important as the process of settlement involves two full business days. So if you miss that date, you would not show up on the company’s books on the record date. Therefore, if you purchase Pembina Pipeline’s shares on or after the 24th of August, you won’t be eligible to receive the dividend, when it is paid on the 15th of September.

The company’s upcoming dividend is CA$0.21 a share, following on from the last 12 months, when the company distributed a total of CA$2.52 per share to shareholders. Last year’s total dividend payments show that Pembina Pipeline has a trailing yield of 5.2% on the current share price of CA$48.61. 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.

View our latest analysis for Pembina Pipeline

If a company pays out more in dividends than it earned, then the dividend might become unsustainable – hardly an ideal situation. Pembina Pipeline paid out 97% of its earnings, which is more than we’re comfortable with, unless there are mitigating circumstances. Yet cash flow is typically more important than profit for assessing dividend sustainability, so we should always check if the company generated enough cash to afford its dividend. Dividends consumed 71% of the company’s free cash flow last year, which is within a normal range for most dividend-paying organisations.

It’s good to see that while Pembina Pipeline’s dividends were not well covered by profits, at least they are affordable from a cash perspective. Still, if this were to happen repeatedly, we’d be concerned about whether the dividend is sustainable in a downturn.

Click here to see the company’s payout ratio, plus analyst estimates of its future dividends.

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Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?

Stocks in companies that generate sustainable earnings growth often make the best dividend prospects, as it is easier to lift the dividend when earnings are rising. If earnings decline and the company is forced to cut its dividend, investors could watch the value of their investment go up in smoke. That’s why it’s comforting to see Pembina Pipeline’s earnings have been skyrocketing, up 20% per annum for the past five years.

Many investors will assess a company’s dividend performance by evaluating how much the dividend payments have changed over time. Pembina Pipeline has delivered an average of 4.9% per year annual increase in its dividend, based on the past 10 years of dividend payments. It’s good to see both earnings and the dividend have improved – although the former has been rising much quicker than the latter, possibly due to the company reinvesting more of its profits in growth.

The Bottom Line

From a dividend perspective, should investors buy or avoid Pembina Pipeline? Pembina Pipeline has been growing its earnings per share nicely, although judging by the difference between its profit and cashflow payout ratios, the company might have reported some write-offs over the last year. All things considered, we are not particularly enthused about Pembina Pipeline from a dividend perspective.

If you want to look further into Pembina Pipeline, it’s worth knowing the risks this business faces. In terms of investment risks, we’ve identified 3 warning signs with Pembina Pipeline and understanding them should be part of your investment process.

Generally, we wouldn’t recommend just buying the first dividend stock you see. Here’s a curated list of interesting stocks that are strong dividend payers.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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