Anda di halaman 1dari 18

Dividend Policy Chapter 12

303 | P age














A firms primary goal is to maximize the owners
wealth i.e. by maximizing the share price. One
way management influences the share price is
through its dividend policies.






Learning objectives

After learning this chapter, you should be able to:

1. Understand the meaning of dividend.
2. Identify the important dates in dividend payment.
3. Know how a company makes dividend payments.
4. Understand the different types of dividend.
5. Compute the impact of dividend payment on companys financial
statement.
6. Know the restrictions imposed on dividend payment.



Dividend Policy
GOAL
Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

304 | P age

12.0 INTRODUCTION

Dividend policy is an important subject in corporate finance. A company would always
want to give as much as possible back to its shareholders by paying dividend. Or it can
invest the money for its shareholders, instead of paying it out. Therefore, the heart of the
dividend policy question is should the firm pay out money to its shareholders or should the
company take the money and invest it for its shareholders?

In this chapter we will focus on dividend policy, discussing a number of practical
considerations which influence a companys board of directors decision in determining
dividend payment and how the dividends are paid.

What is Dividend?

The term dividend usually refers to the total returns paid annually as
expected by shareholders. Besides expecting the prices of common stock to
appreciate, shareholders also expect to receive dividends regularly.

A firms dividend policy established guidelines to determine the amount of its
earnings to be paid out to shareholders as dividends. The critical question is a
choice of dividend policy affects its share price and hence values. This is
important for us to study and understand as almost all firms pay dividend, and
as a practice management will:

1. Pay part of earnings per share as dividend (dividend payout ratio) to
shareholder. This will result in cash drain from the firm and
shareholders will receive cash as return on their investment.

2. Reinvest part of earnings per share (retention rate) in the company.
Instead of paying dividends, the firm can retain and reinvest part of
EPS for other uses of cash that includes capital expenditures and
retiring existing debt. This will promote future growth and represent
lower cost of internal funds to support financing requirements.

How much of its earnings should the firm pay out as dividends to its
shareholders? The challenge is to come up with optimal dividend
Dividend Policy Chapter 12

305 | P age

policy that strikes a balance between current dividend to satisfy the
investors demand and future growth that maximizes price of the stock.

Can dividend policy affect share price and hence the firms value? Similar the
study of capital structure, there are conflicting points of view about dividend
policy. In a perfect capital market environment, the dividend policy and capital
structure would not matter, as the cash flows will not change the firms value.
However, in practice, firms normally behave as though both matters. This is
because imperfections exist in the capital market operations due to such
matters as tax, information asymmetries, and transaction costs. These
provide the basis for the importance of dividend policy in practice.

The majority of managers believe that dividend policy is important even tests
of dividend policy have not found conclusively that dividends affect stock
price. However, it does show significant average stock price reactions to
dividend changes. These are the issues that we are going to deal with in this
chapter by presenting the conflicting views and try to justify why dividend
policy does matters to the shareholders and firms alike.

12.1 DIVIDEND POLICY PRACTICE

It is important for the firm to establish a policy that will maximize shareholder wealth. This
can be achieved by employing a passive policy, distribute excess funds to shareholders, and
stabilize the absolute amount of dividends if necessary. The payout greater than excess
funds should occur only in an environment that has a net preference for dividends. Due to
institutional restrictions or signaling effects, there is a positive value associated with a
modest dividend. Dividends more than the passive policy do not appear to lead to share
price improvement because of taxes and flotation costs. Empirical testing showed:

1. Dividends are taxed more heavily than capital gains, so before-tax returns should be
higher for high-dividend-paying firms.

2. Evidence is largely consistent with dividend neutrality.

3. Expectation of increase (decreases) in dividend lead to positive (negative) excess
stock returns. Empirical results are consistent with these expectations.
Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

306 | P age

Regardless of the firms long-term dividend policy, most firms choose one of the following
alternative dividend payment patterns:

1. Constant dividend payout. In this policy, the firm pays the same percentage of
earnings as dividend to shareholders every year. With stable dividend payout ratio,
the Ringgit dividend per share naturally fluctuates every year as profits vary from
year to year.

2. Stable dollar dividend. This is the most popular policy that maintains a relatively
stable Ringgit dividend over time. Dividend does not change quickly until the
management is convinced that higher dividend cannot be maintained or current
dividend cannot be supported in the future.

3. Small regular dividend plus year-end extra payment. A firm with this policy tends
to pay small regular dividend plus extra dividend at end of year if earnings permit.
This is to avoid the suggestion of permanent dividend. However, it defeats the
purpose if extra dividends recurring and expected by the investors.

Dividends as a Passive Residual

The passive dividend policy recognized that issuing new shares involves high
floatation costs. Firms with investment opportunities that require capital would
prefer to use internal funds rather than issue new stock. It calls for the firm to
accept all investments with positive net present values and use retained
earnings to finance investments when possible. If retained earnings left over
after making investments, pay a dividend with the residual. If there are no
residual funds, it pays no dividend.

To illustrate, consider a firm that finances 40% of its investments with debt
with the remaining with common equity. Presently, earnings of RM2 millions
are available for new investment or to pay dividends. Therefore, maximum
investments without changing its capital structure equals to:

Maximum investments =Equity / Equity ratio
=2,000,000 / 0.6
=3,333,333.33
Dividend Policy Chapter 12

307 | P age

The maximum investment or total financing that the company can made is
RM3,333,333 that consists of RM2,000,000 of available funds, and
RM1,333,333 of new debt. If the company requires only RM2 millions in total
financing, therefore:

Equity requirements =2,000,000 (0.60) =1,500,000
Debt requirements =2,000,000 (0.40) =1,000,000

The firm only needs RM1.5 millions in equity and therefore, RM500,000
dividends can be paid out to stockholders as the firm has residual after the
equity requirements. However, If the company requires RM4 millions in total
financing:

Equity requirements =4,000,000 (0.60) =2,400,000
Debt requirements =4,000,000 (0.40) =1,600,000

With RM4 million financing requirements, the firm will pay no dividend as
there are no residual earnings available. In addition, the firm must issue
RM400,000 worth of new equity to meet the equity requirements since there
are only RM2 million available internally.

12.2 FACTORS INFLUENCING DIVIDEND POLICY

Many considerations may influence the firms decision in setting the appropriate dividend
policy. Other general considerations that are relevant are:

1. Legal restrictions on dividend payment:

a. Capital impairment rule. Many states prohibit the payment of dividends if
these dividends impair capital (usually either par value of common stock or
par plus additional paid-in capital). State laws Designed to prevent excessive
payments of dividends. Often prohibit dividends to exceed legally defined
surplus retained earnings.

b. There may be legal restrictions on dividends called for in bond indentures,
loan agreements, and preferred stock agreements. In addition, state laws
Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

308 | P age

have restrictions on dividends if company is not financially sound. These
restrictions are designed to minimize the firms agency costs.

2. Insolvency rule. Some states prohibit the payment of cash dividends if the company
is insolvent under either a fair market valuation or equitable sense.

3. Undue retention of earnings rule. It prohibits the undue retention of earnings more
than the present and future investment needs of the firm.

4. Funding needs of the firm. Higher financing needs of the firm may restrict its ability
to distribute dividends to shareholders, and vice versa.

5. Liquidity Position. The firm must have sufficient cash to pay the dividend

6. Ability to borrow or sources of financing. Small firms may not be able to easily
raise money in the capital markets so they will have low dividends

7. Earning after tax (EAT) dividends are paid out of a firms earning after tax. If the
net income after tax is high, dividend may be high. If the net income after tax is less,
an investor may get less dividend. However, a firm may pay a certain percentage out
of their EAT as dividends and the remainder will be retained and used for
reinvestment as an internal capital source.

8. Ownership control. Earnings will be retained to reduce the firms dependencies on
the external equity issues as it will dilute the ownership control of the firm.

9. Firms life cyclen - how much dividend is to be paid also depends on the life cycle
of the firm. During the early stage, the firm may face substantial capital needs to
support growth. Therefore, the proportion of dividends paid will be small. If the firm
is already at the maturity stage where there is stable finance, the firm may use all the
profits that are obtained and distribute them to the shareholders.





Dividend Policy Chapter 12

309 | P age

Industry Differences in Dividend Policy

Payout ratios vary systematically across industries. Investment opportunities
are comparable within an industry, but vary across industries. Behavioral
principle suggests using payout ratios similar to those of other firms in the
industry. Firm specific information must be taken into account.

1. Preference for paying common dividends. Smaller and younger
firms normally do not pay cash dividends. Sufficiently mature firms
begin paying cash dividends due to its stability.

2. Stability of dividends. Dividends are more stable from year to year
than are earnings. They follow the trend in cash flow more closely.

3. Regular decisions. Review dividend policy at least annually, and at
about the same time each year.

4. Regular payments. Quarterly payments most common. Annual, semi-
annual and monthly payments are less common.

5. Reluctance to cut dividends. Beyond regularity of dividends, firms
dislike to cut dividends. Dividend cut is interpreted as a negative
signal such as earnings prospects have worsened. Adversely affect a
firms share price.

6. Extra or special dividends. Paid in addition to regular-scheduled
dividends. Paid during periods of temporarily high earnings. Generally,
occur at the end of the fiscal year. Firm has substantial excess cash.

12.3 PROCEDURAL ASPECTS OF DIVIDEND POLICY

Dividend payment follows several procedures set forth to answer several questions such as
(1) how frequently are the dividend payment to be made, and (2) who is entitled to the
dividends as shares are traded in the market continuously. Essential important dates are:

1. Declaration Date (DD). It is the date that the board of directors announces the
amount and date of the next dividend.
Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

310 | P age

2. Record Date (RD). The date set by the board of directors when a dividend is
declared, on which an investor must be a shareholder of record to be entitled to the
upcoming dividend.

3. Ex-dividend Date (ED). The first date on which a stock purchaser is no longer
entitled to the recently declared dividend. The buyer and seller of the shares have
several days to settle (pay for the shares or deliver the shares). The brokerage
industry has a rule that new shareholders are entitled to dividends only if they
purchase the stock at least two business days before the record date.

4. Payment Date (PD). The date when the corporation actually pays the declared
dividend and shareholders receive the dividends.

To illustrate, assume that the board of directors of Premier Goods Co. announced a dividend
of RM0.30 per share on March 1(Monday), 1999, payable to shareholders of record as of
March 19 (Friday), 1999. The dividend would be paid on March 25 (Thursday), 1999. What is
the ex-dividend date? What happens to the stock price on this day?


DD ED RD PD

1/3 17/3 19/3 25/3

Price =RM(P +0.30) Price =RM(P)

The ex-dividend date is two business days before the record date that is on Wednesday
March 17, 1999. Investors who purchased the shares on March 17, 1999 onwards are not
entitled to receive the upcoming dividends. Suppose Premiers stock closed at RM20 on
Tuesday, March 16, 1999., the stock would open ex-dividend at about RM19.70 (=200.30).

12.4 TYPES OF DIVIDEND BEING DISTRIBUTED

Firms do not always pay dividends in cash that will reduce the cash position and retained
earnings of the firm. Frequently firms pay stock dividend that increases the number of shares
each shareholder owns with each share has a proportionately smaller claim. Another method
of indirect dividend that achieves similar financial effect to stock dividend is stock split. The
only difference is in term of technical in rearranging the firms capital accounts on its balance
sheet. Neither method affects the net worth of the company or the proportional ownership
interest of any of the shareholders.
Dividend Policy Chapter 12

311 | P age

12.4.1 Cash Dividend

It is a normal practice for the firm to distribute part of its earnings to
shareholders inform of cash dividend, quarterly or annually depending ob the
companys policy. The cash dividend will be distributed directly to the
shareholders based on stated dividend per share as agreed and declared by
the companys board of directors. This in fact represent the transfer of wealth
from the company to the shareholders with no significant impact on the
shareholders wealth.

To illustrate, assume that Azlina owns 10,000 shares of a company with
400,000 shares of RM5 par common stock outstanding. The company had
generate earnings after tax RM2 million during the period and decided to pay
RM2.50 dividend per share. This represent a 50% dividend payout ratio. The
pre-dividend market value is RM40. How does this affect the shareholders
equity accounts?

Given the above decisions, Total shareholders equity increases to
RM10.60 million as shown in the following table before and after cash
dividend of RM1 per share.

Before cash dividend RM
(Mill)
After cash dividend RM
(Mill)
Common stock
(RM5 par; 400,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
7.00
Common stock
(RM5 par; 420,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
6.00
Total shareholders equity 10.00 Total shareholders equity 9.00

The decisions involve the following transactions:

1. Amount of cash dividend paid to shareholders=RM1 million (=400,000
x RM2.50)

2. Value transferred out of retained earnings =RM1 million


Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

312 | P age

What is the effect of cash dividend on the market share price, Azlinas total
earnings and wealth?

1. Market price per share =RM37.50 (=RM40 RM2.50)

2. Azlinas total earnings are RM25,000 (=RM2.50 x 10,000) before stock
dividend.

3. Total wealth after cash dividend = RM400,000 (=Total earnings +
Total market value of shares owned (=10,0000 x RM37.50))

Therefore, Azlinas total wealth does not changed at RM400,000 (=10,000 x
RM40) before the cash dividend.

12.4.2 Stock Dividends and Stock Split

A stock dividend is more expensive administratively than cash dividend, but
there are several rational adopting stock dividends or split:

1. Optimal Price Range (RM10 RM30). Some managers believe stock
price should not be too high and will split the stock or reduce the
dividend to reduce the price. Used to move the stock into a more
popular trading range, increase share demand and broaden the
ownership of the firms shares.

2. Information. Stock splits and dividends are seen as a signal that the
company is growing. However, it represents a negative signal if the
firm decided to issue stock dividend because of financial difficulty.

3. Cash Dividend Substitute. Companies who want to conserve cash
or do not have cash available to pay a regular dividend may issue a
stock dividend instead.





Dividend Policy Chapter 12

313 | P age

Stock dividends

A stock dividend proportionately increases the number of shares each
shareholder owns. A 10% stock dividend Increases total number of
shares outstanding by 10% and Increases each shareholder holding
by 10%. If a shareholder own 100 shares before the stock dividend,
she owns 110 shares after the stock dividend is paid. The fair market
value of these new shares is transferred from retained earnings to
paid in capital. Capital contributed more than par value. Total common
stockholders equity remains unchanged. Typically, a stock dividend
less than 20% of previously outstanding common stock as more than
25% are considered a stock split.

To illustrate, assume a company with 400,000 shares of RM5 par
common stock outstanding pays a 5% stock dividend. The pre-
dividend market value is RM40. How does this affect the shareholders
equity accounts?

Given the above decisions, Total shareholders equity remains
unchanged at RM10 million as shown in the following table before 5%
stock dividend and after the 5% stock dividend.

Before 5% Stock Dividend RM
(Mill)
After 5% Stock Dividend RM
(Mill)
Common stock
(RM5 par; 400,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
7.00
Common stock
(RM5 par; 420,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.70
6.20
Total shareholders equity 10.00 Total shareholders equity 10.00

The transfer of accounts is as follows:

1. Number of new shares issued = 400,000 shares (0.05) =
20,000 shares

2. Value transferred into common stock =20,000 shares (RM5)
=RM100,000
Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

314 | P age

3. Value into additional paid-in-capital =20,000 shares (RM40
RM5) =RM700,000

What is the effect of stock dividends on total earnings, earnings per
share (EPS) and the share price? To illustrate, assume that Azlina
owns 10,000 shares and the earned RM2.50 per share:

1. Azlinas total earnings are RM25,000 (=RM2.50 x 10,000)
before stock dividend.

2. After the 5% dividend, she owns 10,500 shares (=10,000 x
1.05) and the same proportionate earnings of RM25,000.

3. Therefore, EPS is reduced to RM2.38 per share (=RM25,000 /
10,500) because of the stock dividend.

4. The share price will also decline proportionately to RM38.10
(=RM40 / 1.05).

If the stock dividend is 20% or greater of previously outstanding
common stock, the material effect on the market price per share
causes the transaction to be accounted for differently. Reclassification
is limited to the par value of additional shares rather than pre-stock-
dividend value of additional shares.

To illustrate, assume a company with 400,000 shares of RM5 par
common stock outstanding pays a 100% stock dividend. The pre-
stock-dividend market value per share is RM40. How does this affect
the shareholders equity accounts?

Given the above decisions, Total shareholders equity remains
unchanged at RM10 million as shown in the following table before
100% stock dividend and after the 100% stock dividend.



Dividend Policy Chapter 12

315 | P age

Before 100% Stock Dividend RM
(Mill)
After 100% Stock Dividend RM
(Mill)
Common stock
(RM5 par; 400,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
7.00
Common stock
(RM5 par; 800,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
4.00
1.00
5.20
Total shareholders equity 10.00 Total shareholders equity 10.00

1. Number of new shares issued =400,000 shares (1) =400,000
shares

2. Value transferred out of retained earnings = 400,000
shares(RM5) =RM2,000,000

3. Value transferred into common stock = 400,000 shares
(RM5) =RM2,000,000

As for the above example, Azlinas total earnings will remains
constant. However:

1. EPS will decline by more than 50% to RM1.25 [=RM25,000 /
((1 +1)10,000].

2. Share will also by 50% to RM20 [=RM40 / (1 +1)].

Note that the factor of (1 +1) in the above calculation represents
original number of shares plus growth in number of shares due to
stock dividend.. As such, a factor of +1 is equivalent to a 100% stock
dividend.

Stock Splits

A stock split alters the par value of the shares but there is no transfer
of balances between the equity accounts. The total number of shares
outstanding increases. In a 3-for-2 stock split, 3 new shares are
issued for every 2 pre-split shares outstanding. Thus, there is a 50%
increase in the number of shares outstanding.

Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

316 | P age

In term of rearranging the capital accounts, it has similar economic
consequences as a 100% stock dividend. Assume a company with
400,000 shares of RM5 par common stock splits 2-for-

How does this affect the shareholders equity accounts?

Before 2-For-1 Stock Split RM
(Mill)
After 2-For-1 Stock Split RM
(Mill)
Common stock
(RM5 par; 400,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
7.00
Common stock
(RM5 par; 800,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
7.00
Total shareholders equity 10.00 Total shareholders equity 10.00

It involves the following changes:

1. Number of shares outstanding = 400,000 shares (2 / 1) =
800,000 shares

2. Value of par value per share =RM5 (1 / 2) =RM2.50

As shown, capital accounts value remains constant with changes in
par value per share and number of shares outstanding. What is the
effect on Azlinas total earnings, EPS, and the share price?

1. Azlina now owns 20,000 shares (=10,000 x (2 / 1)) with EPS of
RM1.25 (=RM2.50 x (1 / 2)).

2. Her total earnings remains constant, but the share price is
reduced to RM20 (=RM40 (1 / 2)).








Dividend Policy Chapter 12

317 | P age

Reverse Stock Splits

The firm may also decide to issue a reverse stock split. To illustrate,
assume a company with 400,000 shares of RM5 par common stock
splits 1-for-4. How does this affect the shareholders equity accounts?

Before 1-For-4 Stock Split RM
(Mill)
After 1-For-4 Stock Split RM
(Mill)
Common stock
(RM5 par; 400,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
7.00
Common stock
(RM2.50 par; 100,000 shares)
Additional paid-in capital
Retained earnings
2.00
1.00
7.00
Total shareholders equity 10.00 Total shareholders equity 10.00

It involves the following changes:

1. Number of shares outstanding = 400,000 shares (1 / 4)
=100,000 shares

2. Value of par value per share =RM5 (4 / 1) =RM20.00

Given the above reverse stock split:

1. Azlina now owns 2,500 shares (=10,000 x (1 / 4)) with EPS of
RM10 (=RM2.50 x (4 / 1)).

2. Her total earnings remain constant with share price of RM160
(=RM40 x (4 / 1)).

12.5 THE PROS AND CONS OF PAYING DIVIDEND

Payment of dividends provides some positive aspects such as:

1. Cash dividend can signals good results and provides support to stock price.

2. Stock price usually increases with the announcement of a new of increased dividend.

3. Dividends may attract institutional investors who prefer steady dividends return. The
presence of institutional and individual investors may ease the firm in an effort to
raise future capital at lower cost because of wider market reach.
Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

318 | P age

4. Dividends absorb excess cash flow.

5. Dividend may reduce agency costs that arise from conflicts between management
and shareholders.

On the other hand, dividends also present some negative aspects such as:

1. Dividends are taxed as ordinary income for shareholders.

2. Dividends will reduce internal source of financing and have to rely on more expensive
external source of funds. Thus, the firm may force to forgo positive NPV projects due
to higher cost of capital.

3. Dividends cuts are hard to make once established without adversely affecting the
stock price.
















Dividend Policy Chapter 12

319 | P age



1. What are the factors affecting dividend policy? Give any four factors.

2. Selayang Baru has had a net income of RM13 million last year, and has had
2 million common shares outstanding. They declared a 12 percent stock
dividend. Calculate EPS before and after the stock dividend.

3. The stockholders equity portion of Midland Corporation is as follows:

Comon stock ( 2 million shares at RM10 par) RM20,000,000
Capital in excess of par 17,000,000
Retained Earnings 33,000,000

The current market value of Midlands stock is RM20

Show what the Balance Sheet will look like if the company declares a 10%
stock dividend.
















Chapter 12 Dividend Policy

320 | P age