Monday, October 5, 2009

State Of Dividends 3rd Quarter 2009

Today, I am updating my spreadsheet on dividends. I am showing not only my stock, but also all the ones I follow and have blogged about. For all these stock, I have shown in the “09” column if the company actually increased their dividend yet for the current year of 2009. Next, I will talk about the dividends for specific companies.

I hold Manulife Financial (TSX-MFC). Although this stock’s dividend was cut in half, from $.26 a share to $.13 a share, for me the dividend in 2009 only went down 22%. This is because I have already received two dividends this year at $.26 a share and will only receive two at the new rate of $.13 a share. If the company does not change their dividend from the new rate of $.13 a share, my dividends for this company will decrease a further 33% in 2010. It is hard to know what will happen. As far as I can see, the company has not stated what their intentions are in connection with dividends.

The other change to my dividends for the end of September 2009 is for the stock, Saputo Inc. (TSX-SAP). This stock has raised their dividend for the one paid in September 2009. However, if you notice on the spreadsheet, the last two raises where around 17% and this one is only 6.5%. Dividend increases have slowed down and now are few and far between. This is pretty typical as we have been in a financial crisis for a while. The longer it last, the less dividends are increased.

On my list, for the stocks that I own, I have 7 companies that have decreased their dividends already in 2009. I also have 14 companies that have increased their dividends. The rest have not yet made changes, but I do know that BCE has already announced that they will be increasing their dividends for this year. Also, on the spreadsheet I have some dividend changes in purple. This is because these changes did not affect me. This will be like the stock AltaGas Income Trust (TSX-ALA.UN) where they decreased their dividend before I purchased any stock.

When I have a “Y” in the “09”, it means that the stock actually raised their dividends this year. Take ATCO Ltd (TSX-ACO.X), for the financial year ending in December 2008, they paid 4 dividends of $.235. For the financial year ending in December 2009, they will potentially pay 4 dividends of $.25. There was an actual increase in dividends for 2009 starting with the dividend payable in March 2009. I have therefore placed a “Y” in the “09” column.

For the stock AGF Management Ltd (TSX-AGF.B), they paid 4 dividends for the financial year ending in 2008. This dividend consisted of one of $.20 and 3 of $.25 for a total dividend of $.95. So far, in 2009, they have paid three dividends of $.25 and since they have not stated a dividend increase, I am assuming that they will pay 4 dividends of $.25 for a total dividend of $1.00. There is an increase in dividends for this company from $.95 to $1.00, of some 5.3%. However, since they have not actually raised the dividend this year from the $.25 paid last year, I have inserted an “N” in the “09” column to show that the dividend has not actually been raised.

If a company has decreased their dividends this year, I have placed a “D” in the “09” column. For example, Consumers' Waterheater Fund (TSX-CWI.UN) paid 12 dividends of $.1075 in the financial year ending in 2008. For this year, they paid 9 dividends of $.1075 and then reduced the dividends to $.054. The last 3 payments of this year will probably be at $.054. They have therefore decreased their payments for 2009 by 12%. If they do not change them for 2010, they will pay 42% less in 2010 than in 2009.

If you are looking for stocks to buy this fall, you might want to first look at the ones with dividend increases.

This blog is meant for educational purposes only, and is not to provide investment advice. Before making any investment decision, you should always do your own research or consult an investment professional. See my website at for a list of the stocks for which I have put up spreadsheets.

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