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Consolidated Edison Raises Dividend Despite Weak Earnings Guidance

Consolidated Edison Inc. (ED), or Con Edison, is one of the largest energy delivery companies in the United States with about $13 billion in annual revenue and $60 billion in assets.

The company generated 83% of its revenue from electric, 9% from natural gas and 2% from steam, during the third quarter of 2020, with the remaining revenue coming from non-utility sources. The company’s primary focus is in New York city where it serves approximately 3.5 million customers in a 660 square mile service area.

Lowering Earnings Expectations

Consolidated Edison will report its fourth-quarter and fiscal 2020 earnings on February 18, 2021, after the market closes. In late-January, the company said that it expects FY2020 non-GAAP earnings to be at the low-end of its guidance of between $4.15 and $4.30 per share, which compares to the then-consensus analyst estimate of $4.23 per share.

The company plans to continue targeting a 60 to 70% dividend payout ratio but said that the continuing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic will place it at the upper end of the range for 2021.

Having said that, the company decided to raise its quarterly dividend by 1.3% to $0.775 per share, which represents a 4.4% forward yield. The dividend is payable on March 15, 2021, to shareholders on record as of February 17, 2021.

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