First Business Financial Services (FBIZ) is a Top Dividend Stock Right Now: Should You Buy?

Getting big returns from financial portfolios, whether through stocks, bonds, ETFs, other securities, or a combination of all, is an investor's dream. But when you're an income investor, your primary focus is generating consistent cash flow from each of your liquid investments.

Cash flow can come from bond interest, interest from other types of investments, and of course, dividends. A dividend is the distribution of a company's earnings paid out to shareholders; it's often viewed by its dividend yield, a metric that measures a dividend as a percent of the current stock price. Many academic studies show that dividends make up large portions of long-term returns, and in many cases, dividend contributions surpass one-third of total returns.

First Business Financial Services in Focus

First Business Financial Services (FBIZ) is headquartered in Madison, and is in the Finance sector. The stock has seen a price change of -6.48% since the start of the year. Currently paying a dividend of $0.25 per share, the company has a dividend yield of 2.67%. In comparison, the Banks - Midwest industry's yield is 3.67%, while the S&P 500's yield is 1.54%.

Taking a look at the company's dividend growth, its current annualized dividend of $1 is up 9.9% from last year. First Business Financial Services has increased its dividend 5 times on a year-over-year basis over the last 5 years for an average annual increase of 10.24%. Any future dividend growth will depend on both earnings growth and the company's payout ratio; a payout ratio is the proportion of a firm's annual earnings per share that it pays out as a dividend. First Business Financial Services's current payout ratio is 21%, meaning it paid out 21% of its trailing 12-month EPS as dividend.

Earnings growth looks solid for FBIZ for this fiscal year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2024 is $4.69 per share, representing a year-over-year earnings growth rate of 8.31%.

Bottom Line

From greatly improving stock investing profits and reducing overall portfolio risk to providing tax advantages, investors like dividends for a variety of different reasons. However, not all companies offer a quarterly payout.

Big, established firms that have more secure profits are often seen as the best dividend options, but it's fairly uncommon to see high-growth businesses or tech start-ups offer their stockholders a dividend. Income investors must be conscious of the fact that high-yielding stocks tend to struggle during periods of rising interest rates. That said, they can take comfort from the fact that FBIZ is not only an attractive dividend play, but also represents a compelling investment opportunity with a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy).

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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