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KLA Corporation (NASDAQ:KLAC) Passed Our Checks, And It's About To Pay A US$1.05 Dividend

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KLA Corporation (NASDAQ:KLAC) is about to trade ex-dividend in the next 2 days. The ex-dividend date is one business day before the record date, which is the cut-off date for shareholders to be present on the company's books to be eligible for a dividend payment. The ex-dividend date is of consequence because whenever a stock is bought or sold, the trade takes at least two business day to settle. This means that investors who purchase KLA's shares on or after the 13th of May will not receive the dividend, which will be paid on the 1st of June.

The company's next dividend payment will be US$1.05 per share. Last year, in total, the company distributed US$4.20 to shareholders. Last year's total dividend payments show that KLA has a trailing yield of 1.3% on the current share price of $318.83. Dividends are an important source of income to many shareholders, but the health of the business is crucial to maintaining those dividends. We need to see whether the dividend is covered by earnings and if it's growing.

See our latest analysis for KLA

Dividends are typically paid from company earnings. If a company pays more in dividends than it earned in profit, then the dividend could be unsustainable. KLA is paying out just 20% of its profit after tax, which is comfortably low and leaves plenty of breathing room in the case of adverse events. 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. The good news is it paid out just 23% of its free cash flow in the last year.

It's positive to see that KLA's dividend is covered by both profits and cash flow, since this is generally a sign that the dividend is sustainable, and a lower payout ratio usually suggests a greater margin of safety before the dividend gets cut.

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

historic-dividend
historic-dividend

Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?

Businesses with strong growth prospects usually make the best dividend payers, because it's easier to grow dividends when earnings per share are improving. 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 KLA's earnings have been skyrocketing, up 36% per annum for the past five years. With earnings per share growing rapidly and the company sensibly reinvesting almost all of its profits within the business, KLA looks like a promising growth company.

The main way most investors will assess a company's dividend prospects is by checking the historical rate of dividend growth. KLA has delivered 12% dividend growth per year on average over the past 10 years. It's great to see earnings per share growing rapidly over several years, and dividends per share growing right along with it.

The Bottom Line

From a dividend perspective, should investors buy or avoid KLA? KLA has been growing earnings at a rapid rate, and has a conservatively low payout ratio, implying that it is reinvesting heavily in its business; a sterling combination. KLA looks solid on this analysis overall, and we'd definitely consider investigating it more closely.

While it's tempting to invest in KLA for the dividends alone, you should always be mindful of the risks involved. Our analysis shows 1 warning sign for KLA and you should be aware of this before buying any shares.

A common investing mistake is buying the first interesting stock you see. Here you can find a full 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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