Shell’s dividend payments
Royal Dutch Shell’s (RDS.A) dividend payments have remained steady for the past few years. In the fourth quarter of 2018, the company paid a dividend of $0.94 per share (or American depositary receipt), which was equal to the dividend it paid in the fourth quarter of 2016. The dividend was announced on November 1, 2018, and paid on December 19, 2018.
Wall Street analysts expect Shell’s dividend to stay stable at $0.94 per share in the first quarter of 2019. Since the second quarter of 2014, Shell has steadily paid a quarterly dividend of $0.94 per share, so analysts might expect it to follow the trend and pay the same dividend in the first quarter. The company also has a share repurchase program in place to share the benefits of its higher earnings and cash flows with its shareholders.
Shell’s dividend yield
Shell’s current dividend yield stands at 6.2%, down from 7.4% in the fourth quarter of 2016. The fall in its yield is the result of a rise in its stock price in the stated period. Since the fourth quarter of 2016, Shell stock has surged 12.6%.
Shell has been taking measures to improve its shareholders’ returns. Shell plans to buy back shares worth ~$25 billion by 2020. It’s finished the first part of its buyback program and announced the second part. It completed the first portion, worth $2.0 billion, in October 2018. For the second portion, it expects to buy a maximum of ~$2.5 billion worth of shares as of January 28.
Peers’ dividend yields
Shell has the highest dividend yield compared to its peers. BP (BP), Total (TOT), and Eni (E) have dividend yields of 6.1%, 5.3%, and 5.8%, respectively. However, ExxonMobil (XOM), Chevron (CVX), and Suncor Energy (SU) have relatively low dividend yields of 4.5%, 4.0%, and 3.5%, respectively.
In the next article, we’ll review Shell’s short interest ahead of its earnings release.