Sabre Insurance Group plc (LON:SBRE) has announced that on 22nd of September, it will be paying a dividend of£0.028, which a reduction from last year's comparable dividend. The yield is still above the industry average at 9.9%.
While the dividend yield is important for income investors, it is also important to consider any large share price moves, as this will generally outweigh any gains from distributions. Sabre Insurance Group's stock price has reduced by 41% in the last 3 months, which is not ideal for investors and can explain a sharp increase in the dividend yield.
Sabre Insurance Group's Payment Has Solid Earnings Coverage
A big dividend yield for a few years doesn't mean much if it can't be sustained. Prior to this announcement, the company was paying out 120% of what it was earning and 81% of cash flows. The company could be more focused on returning cash to shareholders, but this could indicate that growth opportunities are few and far between.
Over the next year, EPS is forecast to expand by 136.3%. Assuming the dividend continues along the course it has been charting recently, our estimates show the payout ratio being 48% which brings it into quite a comfortable range.
Sabre Insurance Group's Dividend Has Lacked Consistency
Looking back, the dividend has been unstable but with a relatively short history, we think it may be a bit early to draw conclusions about long term dividend sustainability. Since 2018, the dividend has gone from £0.144 total annually to £0.121. Doing the maths, this is a decline of about 4.3% per year. A company that decreases its dividend over time generally isn't what we are looking for.
Dividend Growth Potential Is Shaky
With a relatively unstable dividend, it's even more important to see if earnings per share is growing. Earnings per share has been sinking by 41% over the last five years. Dividend payments are likely to come under some pressure unless EPS can pull out of the nosedive it is in. Over the next year, however, earnings are actually predicted to rise, but we would still be cautious until a track record of earnings growth can be built.
The Dividend Could Prove To Be Unreliable
Overall, it's not great to see that the dividend has been cut, but this might be explained by the payments being a bit high previously. The track record isn't great, and the payments are a bit high to be considered sustainable. This company is not in the top tier of income providing stocks.
It's important to note that companies having a consistent dividend policy will generate greater investor confidence than those having an erratic one. However, there are other things to consider for investors when analysing stock performance. For example, we've identified 3 warning signs for Sabre Insurance Group (1 can't be ignored!) that you should be aware of before investing. If you are a dividend investor, you might also want to look at our curated list of high yield dividend stocks.
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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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