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Be Sure To Check Out ARC Document Solutions, Inc. (NYSE:ARC) Before It Goes Ex-Dividend

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ARC Document Solutions, Inc. (NYSE:ARC) stock is about to trade ex-dividend in 3 days. The ex-dividend date is one business day before a company's record date, which is the date on which the company determines which shareholders are entitled to receive a dividend. It is important to be aware of the ex-dividend date because any trade on the stock needs to have been settled on or before the record date. Thus, you can purchase ARC Document Solutions' shares before the 28th of April in order to receive the dividend, which the company will pay on the 31st of May.

The company's next dividend payment will be US$0.05 per share. Last year, in total, the company distributed US$0.20 to shareholders. Calculating the last year's worth of payments shows that ARC Document Solutions has a trailing yield of 5.3% on the current share price of $3.8. Dividends are a major contributor to investment returns for long term holders, but only if the dividend continues to be paid. We need to see whether the dividend is covered by earnings and if it's growing.

Check out our latest analysis for ARC Document Solutions

Dividends are usually paid out of company profits, so if a company pays out more than it earned then its dividend is usually at greater risk of being cut. ARC Document Solutions paid out 51% of its earnings to investors last year, a normal payout level for most businesses. That said, even highly profitable companies sometimes might not generate enough cash to pay the dividend, which is why we should always check if the dividend is covered by cash flow. What's good is that dividends were well covered by free cash flow, with the company paying out 9.2% of its cash flow last year.

It's encouraging to see that the dividend is covered by both profit and cash flow. This generally suggests the dividend is sustainable, as long as earnings don't drop precipitously.

Click here to see how much of its profit ARC Document Solutions paid out over the last 12 months.

historic-dividend
historic-dividend

Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?

Companies with consistently growing earnings per share generally make the best dividend stocks, as they usually find it easier to grow dividends per share. 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 ARC Document Solutions's earnings have been skyrocketing, up 64% per annum for the past five years. Management appears to be striking a nice balance between reinvesting for growth and paying dividends to shareholders. Earnings per share have been growing quickly and in combination with some reinvestment and a middling payout ratio, the stock may have decent dividend prospects going forwards.

Many investors will assess a company's dividend performance by evaluating how much the dividend payments have changed over time. In the past two years, ARC Document Solutions has increased its dividend at approximately 124% a year on average. It's exciting to see that both earnings and dividends per share have grown rapidly over the past few years.

To Sum It Up

Has ARC Document Solutions got what it takes to maintain its dividend payments? We like ARC Document Solutions's growing earnings per share and the fact that - while its payout ratio is around average - it paid out a lower percentage of its cash flow. It's a promising combination that should mark this company worthy of closer attention.

On that note, you'll want to research what risks ARC Document Solutions is facing. For example - ARC Document Solutions has 1 warning sign we think you should be aware of.

Generally, we wouldn't recommend just buying the first dividend stock you see. Here's a curated list of interesting stocks that are strong dividend payers.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

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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