Reasons to Avoid Focusing on Dividend Stocks

Reasons to Avoid Focusing on Dividend Stocks

There is an increase in popular high-dividend payers because they are seen as stocks that are similar to bonds. Even so, perceiving dividend stocks as safe may be an illusion. Investors and the flow of their investments may move in an upper direction but the probability of damages to the market can affect the stocks as well. The reality of the stock market can be very different than the increase depicted in the evaluations. Here’s why it is imperative to invest wisely and not focus only on dividend stocks.

1.   Risk factors as an issue

When an investor chooses stocks on their own, they take on uncompensated risk. Dividend-paying stocks are those which lead to individual stock investing. The uncompensated risk that accompanies these stocks can be diversified, which means if a risk can be diversified it won’t be charged. If an investor holds a portfolio of five or ten stocks, it takes along a single stock risk. On the other hand, by purchasing dividend stocks of a low-cost and broadly-diversified index fund, the investor is not paid for it. Even if professionals were to pick stocks of their choice with resources amounting to dollars, they wouldn’t be able to rely on best index funds over the long run, especially on an after-tax basis. Considering the value of time, the individual investor should avoid trying it if professionals are unlikely to do it.

2.   Dividends may just not be tax efficient

There can be a rise in tax rates on dividends which makes purchasing dividend stocks a futile option. The company would have to pay the taxes levied and the pay for your invested amount would reduce. Dividends are subject to taxes and can affect the income received by the investors. When a company chooses to avoid paying dividends, the investor is bestowed the liberty of creating a timeline of the tax payment. The investor can choose when taxes can be paid on their share of company earnings. An investor can declare her own dividend by opting for selling some shares. This can contribute to deferring the value of income earned by the investor where they pay taxes according to their own convenience. Deferment of taxes aids in gaining time value of the money or even complete elimination of taxes.

3.   Bonds are not the same as dividends

A bond is an investment of fixed income nature where the investor borrows a sum of money (from typically a corporate or government). It is an error to assume dividend stocks as similar instruments because they provide periodic income. Although comparatively less volatile than share prices, there are cases where even solid dividend-paying companies have gone bankrupt. There have been recurring incidences where big companies have completely stopped or reduced the dividend payment. All stocks are vulnerable to a drop in their prices. Whereas, bonds can maintain their yield to an extent. The fall in stock prices can also cause the dividend yields to fall.

4.   Value bend can occur inefficiently

There are instances when a company gives out value stocks as dividend-paying stocks. This automatically causes dividend stocks to outperform the overall stock market. Investors are under the impression that regular dividend stocks earn the dividend investors a profit, but they don’t notice the reason behind this occurrence. The behavior in the rise of dividend stocks may be due to investor behavior or an increase in the risk factor. Investors tend to bend their portfolio towards value stocks and take advantage of it.

5.   Yield prices are not bigger than total returns

There are instances when an investor lays more focus on the dividend yield from the stock than the total returns from it. It is necessary to turn attention away from the dividend, yield or income of investment and zoom in on the total returns. The percent of yield cannot provide enough information for an investor to decide on the stock they must invest in. Despite the promises, there are chances that investors earn yields which may amount to only the return of their principal rather than an increased sum.

6.   At the discretion of the company

The company can reduce or eliminate investor’s dividend payments whenever they choose, for any reason. Thus, the investor is at the company’s mercy to receive the payment. Dividends are distributed amongst shareholders from the company’s profits. If the profits of a company go down, the investor’s dividends are likely to reduce. Dividend earned from dividend stocks depends highly on the company’s profit in that financial period.

Considering dividend yield as a factor for building a portfolio is a risky strategy. It is recommended to be selective and actively approach stocks based on their growth and profitability. This approach helps in constructing an equity portfolio which can withstand market uncertainty. Make it a point to conduct an in-depth analysis of the nature of the company and the company’s fundamentals before making any stock purchases. Getting sidetracked by dividend yields may not serve good results at the end.


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