Duke Dividend For High Yield, But Slow Dividend Growth
Let’s dive into a Duke Energy dividend stock analysis today.
Because Duke Energy has been powering homes and businesses with electricity and natural gas for more than 150 years. Most importantly, the Duke Energy dividend is substantial. It is one of those slow and steady stocks that I like to own.
So let’s take a closer look at this essential services company. And address some important questions. Such as…
Is Duke Energy a good investment? Certainly, I will have some thoughts on that topic.
Also, we will look at Duke’s dividend growth, dividend safety, and much more.
Disclosure: At no cost to you, I may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
Duke Energy Stock Dividend Analysis: Key Takeaways
1. Duke is a stable, steady, and consistent dividend growth stock. Operating in the U.S. regulated utility sector.
2. The stocks dividend yield usually falls within my preferred range of 3-5%.
3. Assuming the company is successful at executing its business plans. An investor can reasonably expect 8-10% total returns over the long run.
4. I have a mid-size position in Duke stock. As part of my portfolio of dividend growth stocks. And currently, rate it a “hold” for my personal investment decision-making.
Your situation may be different. So, read on for a full evaluation.
If you like me and are always on the hunt for new dividend stocks to invest in. Then, I have a couple of “go-to” sources I would like to suggest.
First, there is the Simply Investing report. It focuses on both U.S.-based and Canadian-based companies that pay regular dividends.
Simply Investing’s interactive database is a great tool. For monitoring all of the stocks in your portfolio.
I also like the Motley Fool Stock Advisor. For its insightful stock reviews and recommendations delivered right to your in box every month.
Okay. With those highlights and thoughts taken care of. Let’s get into the details. Starting with some background on the company.
Duke Energy Company Background
Duke is one of the largest electric power holding companies in the United States. They operate as a regulated utility.
Regulated utility companies, like Duke, are some of the most stable stocks you can buy.
Duke’s business is focused on:
- Generating electricity
- Distributing natural gas
- Producing energy from renewable sources
Source: Duke Energy – About Us
More about these businesses…
Electricity: Their electric generating capacity is centered in the Carolinas, the Midwest, and Florida.
Natural gas distribution: They serve more than a million customers in Kentucky, Tennessee, and the Carolinas.
Commercial business: They own and operate a range of power generation assets in North America. With an emphasis on renewable energy.
Duke’s Strategic Vision & Growth Plan:
Duke is seeking to improve their customer’s experience by:
- Modernizing their energy grid
- Generating cleaner energy
- Expanding their natural gas infrastructure
The company’s long-term growth will come from making smart investments. With their 5-year plan calling for billions of dollars in capital improvement projects.
Investments that are expected to generate steady annual earnings growth.
Source: Duke Energy Investor Update
Duke Energy Stock Symbol
Finally, Duke stock trades on the New York Stock Exchange. It trades under the ticker symbol DUK (NYSE: DUK).
When I buy (and hopefully never sell) my dividend stocks. I use the Webull app. It’s fast and powerful. And has great research tools.
And best of all, trades are commission-free. You can learn more about Webull here.
Okay. That completes the business overview portion of today’s Duke stock analysis.
So, moving right along with our feature company. Let’s get to know the dividends paid by Duke Energy.
Duke Dividend Rate Per Share
Duke’s annual forward dividend is the last cash dividend payment approved by the company. Multiplied by the number of times the company pays dividends each year.
By taking the forward dividend. And dividing it by the stock price. We get Duke’s dividend yield…
Duke Energy Dividend Yield
And the company’s dividend yield typically falls in or around my desired target range. Of 3-5%.
Dividend yields can change quickly. Since they are inversely related to the stock price.
So, I use this range to screen for new dividend stocks to buy. And for stocks in my portfolio that may be candidates for additional investments.
Thus, be sure to check for Duke’s current dividend yield. To see how if fits with your investment objectives. Before investing money.
How Often Does Duke Energy Pay Dividends?
Duke’s dividends are paid 4 times per year. Each quarterly dividend payment is one-fourth of the annual rate.
When Does Duke Pay Dividends?
The timing of quarterly dividend payments for Duke is March, June, September, and December. During these months the dividend payments are made on or around the 16th day.
When Is The Ex-Dividend Date For Duke Stock?
For an investor to receive Duke’s next dividend payment. One must complete their purchase of Duke stock before the ex-dividend date.
Duke’s ex-dividend date is approximately 1 month before each of the quarterly dividends is paid.
Mind Your Dividend Dates
The timing of dividend payments varies slightly each quarter. So, it’s a good idea to check the company’s investor relations site. For the latest dividend announcement.
Otherwise, just buy and hold. Then you will be entitled to every dividend the company pays going forward.
Duke Energy Dividend History And Growth
Duke has been paying dividends annually since 1927.
And, they have a nice consecutive annual dividend increase streak going. Specifically, they have increased the dividend every year since 2005.
While the dividend growth rate normally falls in the low single digit percentages.
We will circle back to the dividend in a moment. But now, let’s check out business fundamentals and financial position first. To help with that further assessment of the dividend.
Duke Historical Revenue Trend
As a slow and steady regulated utility. Duke Energy is not a high-growth company.
On the other hand, a stable revenue base is one of the things that makes regulated utilities some of the most consistent stocks you can find. With revenue fluctuations mainly due to acquisition and divestiture activity.
While the underlying demand for the company’s energy products and services grows slowly. Mostly influenced by the performance of the local economies in which it operates.
Duke Energy Earnings And Dividend Payout Ratio
Duke’s earnings grow over time. However, they can be volatile.
Again, this is mainly due to mergers and acquisitions-related costs. Plus regulatory rate settlements. And, the write-down of past investments when required.
The company prefers to discuss “adjusted earnings per share” with investors. Since management makes adjustments to factor out the volatile one-time items from earnings reported under the accounting rules.
Regardless, in the long run, Duke’s earnings grow from acquisitions. And they grow by investing in capital improvement projects.
The cost of capital projects plus a profit margin is then passed on to their customers. This is the essence of a regulated utility business model.
The dividend payout ratio based on earnings is somewhat high. But this is fairly common for utility stocks.
Next, let’s discuss this company’s stock dividend and cash flow.
Duke Energy Dividend Payments & Free Cash Flow
Evaluating dividend payments versus cash flows is oftentimes not relevant for regulated utilities.
Because these businesses have large capital investment requirements. The investments often consume more cash than the company generates.
But due to the predictability of their stable and regulated businesses. They can finance those expenditures with long-term debt. The resulting debt payments are supported by the revenues and profits the capital expenditures generate.
So, earnings are usually the best measure of a utility’s dividend-paying capacity. Not cash flow. And in Duke’s case, adjusted earnings are best.
As I stated, Duke has been operating with a reasonable dividend payout ratio. Based on adjusted earnings and dividends per share.
Next, let’s check the company’s credit rating. And financial position. Then I can circle back to some additional points about Duke’s dividend.
Duke Energy Credit Rating
Knowing a company’s credit rating is important. It provides a signal about the company’s financial position.
A corporation’s credit rating is similar to how your credit score works.
Higher credit ratings mean lower risk to those who lend the company money. Also, higher ratings mean lenders will likely get their loans paid back.
Duke typically earns investment-grade credit risk ratings from S&P and Moody’s, respectively.
Normally adequate, but at the lower end of the investment-grade spectrum.
On a side note, be sure to keep an eye on your personal credit score. I check mine for free using Credit Karma. You can learn more about Credit Karma here.
Furthermore, investing in dividend stocks is just one aspect of solid money management. It’s also a good idea to treat your entire financial picture as a business.
To do so, I manage all of my investments and spending in one place. By using web-based Personal Capital.
You can learn more about Personal Capital here. It’s easy to sign up. And free to use.
Duke Energy Debt To Equity Ratio
Duke maintains a debt to equity ratio that is in line with other regulated utilities. And operates with a fairly conservative capital structure.
Duke Energy Dividend Safety
I like to make a judgment on dividend safety based on several factors presented thus far:
- Business model and growth plan
- Dividend payout ratio
- Credit rating
- Debt to equity
Based on these metrics, the Duke Energy dividend has some risk to it, in my opinion.
Also, the investment newsletter Utility Forecaster gives Duke a relatively low dividend safety rating.
I’m not convinced that Duke’s dividend will be reduced in the future. I don’t know that for a fact. But, risky dividends are a downside to dividend stocks.
However, the Duke Energy dividend certainly does not get the highest marks for safety. The one mitigating factor Duke has? The predictability of its business given its status as a regulated utility.
Related: How to pick dividend stocks
Duke Energy Dividend Growth Forecast
I like it when a company is transparent in communicating objectives for the dividend. It helps me plan for my future income. Duke management is helpful in this area. But, not completely transparent.
Duke Energy’s plans for dividend growth are stated as a “long-term dividend growth commitment”. Accompanied by underlying mid-single-digit percentage annual earnings growth.
Thus, Duke desires to share its profit growth in the form of dividends with investors. I like that.
But, I’m going to use a dividend forecast that is less than projected earnings growth. For my planning purposes. Specifically, I will use 2-4%.
Until I see actual proof that the company will raise the dividend more rapidly. I won’t go any higher.
Because historical dividend growth does not suggest it prudent to do so. Since recent dividend increases were below the longer-term trend.
Let’s wrap up today’s dividend stock analysis. With a look at the stock’s valuation next.
Duke Energy Stock Valuation
Let’s judge value by using a dividend discount model approach…
Duke Energy Dividend Discount Model
The single-stage dividend discount model considers some of the factors I have discussed thus far.
- Current dividend payment
- Projected dividend growth rate
And my desired annual return on investment.
Using these assumptions, the dividend discount model considers Duke Energy’s stock overvalued.
But take note, stock valuation metrics can change rapidly. Either due to stock prices changes or a shift in business fundamentals.
That’s why I like using the Simply Invest Report and Analysis Platform. For all the latest dividend metrics. And a solid, up-to-date opinion on stock valuation.
Duke Energy Dividend Stock Analysis – Wrap Up
Duke is a regulated utility. Because of the consistent demand for electricity and natural gas, Duke is considered a stable and consistent stock to own.
Is Duke Energy A Good Investment?
The Duke Energy dividend yield is at an attractive level. However, the dividend appears somewhat risky. And has been growing at a slow rate. There may be better investments to consider for one’s investment dollars.
For me, Duke holds a mid-sized position in my dividend growth stock portfolio. And I plan to hold.
But, do not intend to add to the position at this time. Furthermore, I will consider selling if I see any signs that the dividend may be at a higher risk of reduction.
Further Reading About Stable Utility Stocks And Their Dividends
I hope you enjoyed this article. If so, here are a couple of others that you may find interesting:
- AEP dividend stock analysis
- Dominion dividend stock analysis
- Southern Company dividend stock review
- NextEra Energy, a utility stock for rapid dividend growth
- Dividends Diversify model dividend stock portfolio
My Favorite Dividend Investing Resources
The dividend investing and personal finance resources I mentioned in this article are summarized here for your convenience.
I use all of them. To make the most of my money and investments.
Author Bio, Disclosure, & Disclaimer: Please join me (Tom) as I try to achieve my goals, find my next place to live, and make the most of my money. However, I am not a licensed investment adviser, financial counselor, real estate agent, or tax professional. Instead, I’m a 50-something-year-old, early retired CPA, finance professional, and business school teacher with 40+ years of DIY dividend investing experience. I’m here only to share my thoughts about essential topics for success. As a result, nothing published on this site should be considered individual investment, financial, tax, or real estate advice. This site’s only purpose is general information & entertainment. Thus, neither I nor Dividends Diversify can be held liable for losses suffered by any party because of the information published on this website. Finally, all written content is the property of Dividends Diversify LLC. Unauthorized publication elsewhere is strictly prohibited.