Annual dividend history
Media conglomerate Twenty-First Century Fox (FOXA) (or Fox) continues to bolster shareholder wealth through regular dividend payments. It pays dividends on a half-yearly basis every year. At the end of fiscal 1Q18 (ended September 30, 2017), Fox paid $67 million in dividends compared to $105 million in the prior year’s quarter.
At the end of fiscal 2017, Fox returned nearly $943 million in dividends to its investors compared to $821 million in the previous year’s period.
From the graph above, we can see Fox’s dividend payment history in the last five years. It’s clear from the graph that Fox is maintaining an increasing dividend distribution trend with an average payment of $809 million every year.
Dividend yield comparison
In fiscal 2017, Fox paid $0.36 per share in dividends compared with $0.33 per share in fiscal 2016. In the last five years, Fox continues to hike rates in order to boost shareholder returns. In fiscal 2018, it expects $670 million to be distributed as dividends to its investors.
Currently, Fox’s dividend yield is 0.98%, which is a bit low compared to other media players. Viacom (VIAB), CBS (CBS), Time Warner (TWX), and Comcast (CMCSA) had dividend yields of 2.7%, 1.3%, 1.7%, and 1.6%, respectively.
Fox exited fiscal 2017 with cash and cash equivalents of $6.2 billion and a free cash flow of $3.4 billion. Despite high debt levels, it continues to use its excess cash for dividend payments each year.