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What are the Main Factors that Influence the Dividend Decisions?

Profitability Is the Biggest Factor

❶Stability of dividend means either a constant amount per shares or a constant percentage of net earnings.

What external factors determine the dividend policy?

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There are three main approaches to dividends: Residual Dividend Policy Companies using the residual dividend policy choose to rely on internally generated equity to finance any new projects. As a result, dividend payments can come out of the residual or leftover equity only after all project capital requirements are met.

If any project required an equity portion that was greater than the company's available levels, the company would issue new stock. Typically, this method of dividend payment creates volatility in the dividend payments that some investors find undesirable. The residual-dividend model is based on three key pieces: The first step in the residual dividend model to set a target dividend payout ratio to determine the optimal capital budget.

Then, management must determine the equity amount needed to finance the optimal capital budget. This should be done primarily through retained earnings. The dividends are then paid out with the leftover, or residual, earnings. Given the use of residual earnings, the model is known as the "residual-dividend model.

A significant disadvantage is that dividends may be unstable. In a bad quarter, some companies may even defer operating expenses or borrow money to maintain the dividend at the current level. A company must make sure the dividend is sufficient to keep investors happy, but not too excessive, so that it can continue to pay it the future. The ratio of current profits to current dividend is called the dividend coverage. The opposite ratio, of current dividends to current profits, is called the dividend payout ratio.

A dividend increase can cause a stock price to go up by making it more valuable to investors, who are willing to pay more for it. A dividend decrease can cause a stock price to go down because the stock becomes less valuable to investors, or because the decrease is a sign of falling profits or other financial difficulties.

A dividend increase often affects a stock price more than the actual dividend amount. Knowing that, a company may pay small dividends but increase them periodically to boost the stock price. Based in San Diego, Slav Fedorov started writing for online publications in , specializing in stock trading.

He has worked in financial services for more than 20 years, serving as a banker, financial planner and stockbroker. Now working as a professional trader, Fedorov is also the founder of a stock-picking company. The taxes directly reduce the residual earnings after tax available for the shareholders. Indirectly, the dividend distribution is taxable after a certain limit. Even if the company has been profitable over the years, the trend should be properly analyzed to find the average earnings of the company.

This average number should be then studied in relation to the general economic conditions. This will help in opting for a conservative policy if a depression is approaching. Liquidity has a direct relation with the dividend policy.

If a firm has a strong liquidity and enough cash for its working capital , it can afford to pay higher dividends. However, a firm with less liquidity will choose a conservative dividend policy. There are certain legal restrictions on the companies for dividend payments. It is legal to pay a dividend only if the capital is not reduced post payment. Inflationary environments compel companies to retain major part of their earnings and indulge in lower dividends.

As the prices rise, the companies need to increase their capital reserves for their purchases and other expenses. The firms aiming for more control in the hands of current shareholders prefer a conservative dividend payout policy. It is imperative to pay fewer dividends to retain more control and the earnings in the company.

In a nutshell, the management of a company is completely free to frame the required dividend policy. There are no obligations to be adhered to. So, the company needs to judiciously weigh all the above-mentioned factors and formulate a balanced dividend policy. A dividend policy can also be revised in the wake of changes in any of the factors. He is passionate about keeping and making things simple and easy.

What external factors affect the dividend policy?

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Income stability is one of the top factors in determining dividend policies. Specifically, established companies with stable, predictable income streams are more likely to pay dividends than companies with growing or volatile income.

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In some cases, control of the firm may be a factor to consider when establishing dividend policy. Suppose a fairly substantial proportion of the firm is owned by a controlling group, and the remainder of the stock is publicly held.

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Factors determining the dividend policy of a company are as given below: Liquidity: For paying the dividend, a company will require access to cash. Dividend Policy Dividend policy is one of the most important factors that attract the investors toward a company. Dividend policy is simply concerned with determining the portion of firm’s earning into dividend and retained earnings in the firm. A firm’s dividend policy is influenced by the large numbers of factors.

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This also affects the dividend policy to the extent to which the firm has access to the capital market In other words, if easy access to the capital market is possible whether due to financially strong or, big in size, the firm in that case, may adopt a liberal dividend policy. FACTORS AFFECTING DIVIDEND POLICY Finance Management Sharon M MBG SHARON M, INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT IN KERALA 2. DIVIDEND POLICY “Policy that a company uses to decide the amount to be paid to the shareholders in form of dividends” A company in growth may either choose to pay dividend or may .