PSE-listed firms disburse P402-B cash dividends in 2021

Photo from PNA

The amount of cash dividends paid out by publicly listed companies (PLCs) to common shareholders surged by 17.3 percent to PHP402.18 billion in 2021 from previous year’s PHP342.88 billion, data collated by the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) showed.

These translate to dividend yields of 2.58 percent and 2.50 percent, respectively.

“The gradual reopening of the local economy allowed companies to generate better income, which resulted in bigger dividends for shareholders. We hope that earnings growth among PLCs continues to improve to ensure steady dividend income for stock market investors,” PSE president and chief executive officer Ramon Monzon said in a statement.

For PSEi companies, the cash dividends paid by 28 of the 30 main index members amounted to PHP157.58 billion, giving common shareholders a 1.72 percent dividend yield.

In 2020, 29 PSEi constituents distributed PHP157.05 billion in cash dividends, providing a dividend yield of 1.76 percent.

Among the six sectors in the PSE, Financials had the largest dividend payout at PHP187.55 billion.

Among the PLCs that paid dividends were the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) listed in the PSE namely, AREIT, Inc., DDMP REIT, Inc., Filinvest REIT Corp., RL Commercial REIT, Inc., and MREIT, Inc.

They had an aggregate cash dividend payout of PHP5.77 billion, resulting in 2.16 percent dividend yield, even as three of the five REITs were only listed for an average of four months.

“REITs have become a preferred asset class among investors because of its dividend mandate. With more REITs expected to list this year, including non-property REITs, investors will have a wider selection of companies that can provide passive income,” Monzon said.

In 2021, 108 of 276 PLCs gave out cash dividends compared with 105 of 271 the year before.

“With around 40 percent of PLCs giving out dividends to their common shareholders, we deemed it necessary to showcase companies that provide high dividend income to investors by coming up with a dividend yield index. This thematic index will be one of the new indices that we will be introducing within the semester,” Monzon added.