Of all the investment opportunities out there, I have a special place in my heart for dividend growth stocks. As a subset of those, I like the ones on the list of Dividends Champions, Contenders and Challengers even better.
But the most personal love goes out to those dividend growth stocks that I perceive to be undervalued.
My most recent dividend growth stock purchase falls - in my opinion - in that last category.
On July 18 I bought 20 shares of Delta Airlines, Inc. (DAL) for a total of $1,060.
Delta Air Lines, Inc. provides scheduled air transportation for passengers and cargo in the United States and internationally.
The company operates through two segments, Airline and Refinery. Its route network is centered on a system of hubs, international gateways, and airports in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, London-Heathrow, Los Angeles, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-LaGuardia, New York-JFK, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Salt Lake City, Seattle, and Tokyo-Narita.
The company sells its tickets through various distribution channels, including delta.com and mobile applications/Web, telephone reservations, online travel agencies, traditional brick and mortar, and other agencies.
It also provides aircraft maintenance, repair, and overhaul services; staffing, aviation, and professional security and training services to third parties; and vacation packages to third-party consumers, as well as aircraft charters, and management and programs.
As of February 9, 2018, the company operated a fleet of approximately 800 aircraft. Delta Air Lines, Inc. was founded in 1924 and is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.
DAL‘s current dividend yield is 2.74% – below the average 3.5% yield I strive for in building my portfolio.
The company is featured on David Fish’s list of Dividends Champions, Contenders and Challengers - with an modest 5 year streak of growing dividend pay-outs.
The 5 year dividend growth - given the short history - is yet TBD, but the 1 year dividend growth comes in at 72.84% (!) - which is incredible. It’s also much higher than prior year’s 50%.
The Current Trailing Dividend Payout Ratio is also at an attractive level, and sits at just 30%.
DAL’s Earnings per Share (EPS) over the last five years shows an 32.99% increase. Projected EPS growth for the next 3-5 years is 18.67%.
The Cash Free Flow Growth Rate over the last 5 years is 17.69%.
The trailing 12 months Price/Earnings (P/E) is 11.32, which is a little lower than it’s 5 year average of 12.37. It is also lower than the industry’s 5 year average of 13.67.
EVA Dimensions (an equity research firm) states in their July 20 report that DAL’s DAL’s Performance Risk Valuation score is at the 60th percentile of all firms in its industry, which leads to a recommendation to Buy, i.e., to continue with its prior rating until a more significant or sustained move is made into the Overweight rating category. DAL is still viewed as more attractively priced in relation to its true value than all but a few of the stocks in its industry.
Ford Equity Research projects that DAL will perform in line with the market over the next 6 to 12 months. This projection is based on their analysis of three key factors that influence common stock performance:
earnings strength, relative valuation, and recent price movement. Ford’s 52-Week Price Range is between $45.21 - $60.13
Jefferson Research states that DAL is showing strong Cash Flow Quality, Operating Efficiency and Earnings Quality, and Valuation suggests a lower amount of price risk, but Balance Sheet Quality is weak. When combined, DAL deserves a HOLD rating. The Balance Sheet rating improved on the strength of better receivables and inventory positions. Though this dimension and all of the others were either stronger or unchanged at worst, it was not sufficient to raise the overall rating.
Given DAL’s annual dividend of $1.40 per share, this new purchase increased my forward annual dividend income by $28.00.