You’re sitting at your favourite coffee shop, sipping a delightful flat white when you overhear a conversation about dividends. The buzzwords “high yield,” “reinvestment,” and “passive income” pique your interest. You’ve dipped your toe into the investment world before, but this ‘dividends’ malarkey has always seemed a little foggy. No worries, mate! Here’s your hassle-free, jargon-free guide to understanding dividends.

First off, what are dividends? Well, simply put, dividends are a slice of the pie. When you buy shares in a company, you’re buying a small piece of that company, a stake, if you will. Now, when the company performs well and rakes in the profits, they have a choice. They could reinvest the profits to grow the business or, the sweet part for us investors, they can distribute a portion of these profits to shareholders – that’s us! These cash payments are called dividends.

Sounds brilliant, right? But before you start scouring the Johannesburg Stock Exchange for your first investments, let’s get into a bit more detail. There are typically two types of dividends: regular dividends and special dividends. Regular dividends are typically paid out quarterly, semi-annually, or annually. Special dividends, on the other hand, are like those unexpected treats – they’re paid out when a company has had an especially good year.

Now, I hear you ask, “How do I find out how much I’ll get paid?” That, my dear reader, is determined by the company’s dividend yield. The dividend yield is calculated by dividing the annual dividend payment by the share’s current market price. You’ll see it represented as a percentage. So, if a company has a dividend yield of 4%, for every R100 you invest, you’ll receive R4 back in dividends per year.

At this point, you might be wondering, “Well, do all companies pay dividends?” Not all companies do. Often, young or fast-growing companies may choose to reinvest all of their profits back into the business, aiming for growth rather than income distribution. So, if you’re interested in dividends, look for established companies with a history of stable earnings and dividends payments. These are often referred to as “blue-chip” companies.

Dividends can be a wonderful source of passive income, especially if you choose to reinvest them. This practice, known as dividend reinvestment, involves using your dividends to buy more shares in the company. This way, your investment can grow exponentially over time due to the magic of compounding.

But remember, while dividends can be enticing, they shouldn’t be the only reason you invest in a company. It’s important to consider the overall health and future prospects of the business, as well as your own financial goals and risk tolerance.

To sum it up, dividends are your share of the profits when the company you’ve invested in does well. They offer an exciting way to generate passive income, and if reinvested, can help to grow your investment over time. However, as with all aspects of investing, it’s essential to do your research and consider the bigger picture.

So, the next time you’re at the coffee shop, you’ll be the one talking about dividends, exciting your mates with tales of your financial savvy. Happy investing!

Free Debt Relief Quote