Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) will today begin trading ex-dividend. That means that investors who didn’t get into the stock before today will miss the quarterly cash dividend distribution of $0.30 per share scheduled for March 2, 2016. Pfizer’s latest dividend amount is 7.14% higher than what it paid per share in the previous quarter.
Pfizer’s commitment to return value to shareholders stands as the company prepares to distribute $0.30 for each share in the hands of investors. However, the latest dividend payout will only benefit investors who owned the stock before Feb. 3, 2016, which was the ex-dividend date announced by the management.
Dividend payout bump
Pfizer is not afraid to boost dividends despite the pending multibillion dollar acquisition deal with Allergan PLC (NYSE:AGN), which will no doubt tamper with its balance sheet health. Pfizer’s new quarterly dividend to be distributed in March is 7.14% sweeter than what it paid out in the prior quarter.
$155 billion acquisition
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) is in the process of tying up with Ireland-based Allergan PLC in a transaction valued at $155 billion. If the deal goes through as planned, Pfizer will shift its tax headquarters to Ireland from New York, a move that is expected to save the company billions of dollars in taxes. Pfizer’s CEO, Ian Read, recently downplayed fears that the U.S. government might block the tax inversion transaction.
Earnings and outlook
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) impressed in its 4Q2015 earnings report, posting EPS that exceeded consensus estimate. However, the company disappointed with its soft guidance for 2016.
Adjusted EPS of $0.53 in 4Q compared with the consensus estimate of $0.52. Revenue of $14 billion in the quarter rose 7% YoY, but a stronger U.S. dollar caused a $934 million dent on the quarter’s topline number.
Overall, 4Q benefited from the contribution of Hospira, an asset that Pfizer acquired last year and strong sales of new drugs.
For 2016, Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) is looking for EPS in the band of $2.20 – $2.30. Revenue is projected to be in the range of $49 to $51 billion. Both Pfizer’s EPS and topline projections for 2016 fall short of consensus estimate at EPS of $2.36 on revenue of $52.5 billion.