Do Dividends Go Down When Stock Price Goes Up?


If you’re thinking about buying a dividend stock, you want to make sure that you know all about how dividend investing works. This includes understanding how your dividend payments can impact the price of the stock itself.  That way, you can confidently make a wise investment decision. Many investors new to dividend investing often wonder if dividends go down when stock prices go up? Is that really the case?

Dividends can fluctuate when stock prices change, as businesses can change the dividend amount at any time. However, companies are not required to change the yield when the stock prices go up. Some corporations may need to increase dividends if the stock goes up to match their expected yield rate. 

Further in this article, I will explain the relationship between dividend payments and stock prices. If you are new to dividend investing or an experienced investor looking to understand how dividends and stock prices are correlated, I am sure this article highlights a lot that you can appreciate. So, without further ado, let’s begin! 

How Dividends and Stock Prices Interact?

Dividends are small payments that investors receive for owning shares of a company’s stock. These yields vary, although many businesses strive to offer their investors reasonable payments each term. If you’re looking for a passive way to earn an income, buying stock with dividends is a great option.

With dividend investing, there are two main methods for you to receive dividend payments. These are:

  • Receiving cash payments.
  • Receiving another portion of the stock.

Dividends and stock interact with one another. 

Depending on how one acts, you might expect the other to react in a certain way. Most of the time, however, dividends tend to trend slowly in the upwards direction. It looks good for a business when they consistently provide investors with a good dividend growth, so it’s something that they strive to do.

That said, there are still some ways that dividends can affect the price of a stock. 

Many investors consider the dividend trends since it allows them to determine the value of a stock in the future. When a company that usually offers excellent yields provides a lower dividend than usual, it could be a sign the company isn’t doing well.

If an investor interprets skipped dividends as a bad sign, they may sell their stock. Of course, companies don’t want this to happen, so they do their best to avoid such a situation. But, decline in dividend payments do happen and when that happens, the markets tend to react negatively, driving the stock price lower.

However, there are unique situations where dividend drops can contribute to a rise in the value of the stock. Let us briefly discuss why that could happen in the following section.

When Dividend Drop Could Raise Stock Price?

When a company announces dividends, the market takes away that amount from the stock once the dividend payments are locked. This happens because investors might sell the stock immediately after receiving the dividend payments.

However, when that same business stops offering dividends, it appears as though the stock prices go up. This occurrence is the price of the dividends factoring back into the stock, making it look like the price rises. 

Overall, market fluctuations won’t impact dividends. The yield usually only goes down when a business alters its internal cash flow. Dividends can have a variety of effects on the prices of stock. 

You must be familiar with them so that you can make better investing choices.

Who Benefits From Dividend Stocks?

Anyone looking for reliable income can benefit from using dividend stocks. Dividends are a great way to fight inflation, which helps to keep your savings and investments intact years from now. 

You’ll find dividends with companies that have deep roots in the market. These brands probably aren’t focused on growing anymore since they don’t need to reinvest that yield into their development.

If you want to also benefit from dividend stocks, you’ll want to make sure you understand how they work, and how stock prices can fluctuate depending on the dividend payments.

Effects of Dividends on Stock Prices

According to Investopedia, when a company announces that they want to payout dividends, they need to declare the yield and the payment date. This announcement also includes the last day that you can buy shares and still get the dividends.

This period is also often called the ex-dividend date. 

It usually activates right before the day the business reviews its shareholder list. When they make the announcement, the amount of stock a company sells naturally increases.

This phenomenon happens because investors want to receive dividends, which makes a sales spike. Many even pay higher prices than usual.

Dividends Dilute Stock Prices

When the dividend appears alongside the stock, the price goes up because its demand goes up. However, when the dividends are distributed in the form of company stock, the total number of outstanding shares increases, causing a decline in the per unit price of the stock. While the business is still stable, this splitting can make it appear that the stock price has reduced.

For that reason, dividends tend to cause the common share to dilute. As the ex-dividend date approaches, this leads to a more noticeable impact by investors.

The Ex-Dividend Date Impact

When the ex-dividend date comes around, the stock price drops by approximately the dividend amount. The drop occurs because new investors aren’t willing to pay the premium any longer without the promise of a dividend.

This impact can give the appearance that the drop in stock price was driven by the dividend payments. 

Similarly, right before the ex-dividend date, you can expect the cost of the stock to jump since more investors want to receive dividend yields before they disappear.

You need to buy before the final ex-dividend date to get the dividend. Even if you buy the stock within minutes of the ex-dividend date, you will be entitled to receive the dividend payments. Investors entitled to compensation should start getting their yield as long as it was before the final date passed.

Overall, the ex-dividend date significantly impacts the stock price. This is likely why many people think the dividend rates change with the prices of company stock.

What Causes Dividend Yields To Fluctuate?

There are two main reasons why you might notice your dividend yields going up and down between payments. 

The first reason is that the company’s net profits changed. When performing well, a company might offer investors more money. However, by similar reasoning in the contrary direction, the price of the stock could also go in a negative direction.

The second common reason is that the company changed its financial strategy. It might focus profits on the growth of the company instead of the investors. In those cases, you may notice a slight dip in your dividend yields. 

When such changes to dividend yields happen, you shouldn’t rush to sell the stock immediately, because you would first want to understand the underlying reasons behind such changes to make the best possible decision, depending on your financial goals.

What You Should Do When Dividends Drop?

As discussed above, drastic dividend cuts can mean that the company isn’t doing well financially anymore. If you notice this, make sure to do some research first, as you don’t want to sell your stock immediately.

You want to determine why the dividends went down first. 

It’s worth noting that you still receive the dividend if you hold onto the stock until after the ex-dividend day before selling. You can sell the stock on or after the ex-dividend date and still earn that yield. 

Keep in mind that the share prices also go down when a dividend payment comes through. So, make sure to review your portfolio from a broader lens before selling your positions in haste.

If you desire to understand more about dividend investing, I recommend reading Dividend Growth Investing (available on Amazon.com). The book covers much good information, including what dividend stocks work the best, yield traps to avoid, and more. Getting a grasp on these subjects will surely benefit your investment acumen.

Conclusion

Overall, dividends usually don’t go down when the stock value goes up. However, the price of dividends can have a noticeable impact on stock prices. 

For instance, the ex-dividend date can cause more investors to buy since they worry about missing out on the yield. The stock price then goes down when there’s no longer an assurance of dividend payment for investors.

It’s essential to know how dividend stocks work before investing. I recommend that you check some other articles on TradeVeda. On this website, I have written numerous articles on dividend investing, and other financial market related topics. There are a variety of ways to make it work for you.

  1. Cash flow vs. profit: What’s the difference? (2020, April 21). Business Insights – Blog. https://online.hbs.edu/blog/post/cash-flow-vs-profit
  2. Dividend and income fund. (2020, April 13). SEC.gov. https://www.sec.gov/investment/dividend-income-fund-041020-14a8
  3. Ex-dividend dates. (n.d.). Investor.gov. https://www.investor.gov/introduction-investing/investing-basics/glossary/ex-dividend-dates
  4. Topic No. 404 dividends. (2021, March 12). Internal Revenue Service | An official website of the United States government. https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc404

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Welcome To TradeVeda

Navdeep Singh

Navdeep has been an avid trader/investor for the last 10 years and loves to share what he has learned about trading and investments here on TradeVeda. When not managing his personal portfolio or writing for TradeVeda, Navdeep loves to go outdoors on long hikes.

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